Dr. Ulrike Wegst Joins MSE

Published on Tuesday August 28, 2007

The Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Drexel University is pleased to announce the addition of Dr. Ulrike Wegst to the department of Materials Science and Engineering. Dr. Wegst will join the department as the Anne Stevens Assistant Professor in September 2007.

Dr. Wegst studied Physics and Materials Science at the Georg-August Universität Göttingen,Germany and at the University of Cambridge, UK.  In 1997 she received her PhD from the University of Cambridge for her analysis of the Mechanical Performance of Natural Materials.  Until 2000 she worked as a Research Associate in the Engineering Design Centre of the Cambridge University Engineering Department on the development of a software-based methodology for the environmentally-conscious selection of materials and processes, since then implemented in the CES Eco-Selector software.  From 2000 to 2001 Ulrike Wegst was a Visiting Scientist at the Institut National Polytechnique de Grenoble, France, where she started her work on the qualitative and quantitative characterization of biological materials using synchrotron-generated X-rays.  From 2001 to 2007 Ulrike Wegst was a staff scientist at the Max Planck Institute for Metals Research, Stuttgart, Germany.  Since 2005, Ulrike Wegst is a Visiting Scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

The goal of Dr. Wegst’s research on biological materials is to understand in detail the relationship between their structure, mechanical properties and function.  To achieve this she combines mechanical property measurements at a number of length scales of the material’s hierarchical structure, ranging from macroscopical to in situ testing in SEM and FIB, with microstructural examination by electron microscopy and X-ray tomography, and modelling.  The lessons learned from her research and similar studies in the literature are captured in her software-based Biomimetic Design Guide tool to enable the systematic transfer of biological principles of function and efficiency to technology.  Her work on the development of novel nanocomposites for bone regeneration is an example for this.