Senior Design

The two-semester capstone senior design sequence provides a bridge between concepts learned in the classroom and the practical application of these concepts in an industrial setting. Teams of students work on real-world materials problems supported by local industrial sponsors.


Student Experience

Fall: MSE 423

Introduction to Materials Engineering DesignΒ 


  • Be introduced to teamwork and materials selection concepts.
  • Hear presentations of projects by project-sponsoring company representatives.
  • Be assigned groups, projects, MSE faculty advisor, and a sponsoring company liaison.
  • Develop a written proposal as a team to describe the plan to address the project goals.

Spring: MSE 470

Materials Science and Engineering Senior Design Project


  • Work closely with faculty advisors and company liaisons to complete projects.
  • Give three oral progress reports and keep a lab notebook.
  • Have access to the analytical and testing facilities at NC State.
  • Present final oral presentations and submit final written reports.


Reception and Prizes

A reception is held on the day of final presentations. Cash prizes are awarded to the team giving the best oral presentation and the team that prepares the best written report. The same team cannot win both prizes. The presentation winner is announced at the reception and the written report winner is announced at the MSE Graduation Ceremony.


Industrial Sponsor Commitments

Project Creation

Define a materials-related problem that has a reasonable chance of completion by a team of three or four MSE seniors within a five-month time frame.

Company Liaison

Assign an engineer or scientist to serve as a company liaison who will assist the team in its efforts.

Provide a Donation*

This contribution covers costs incurred by the team for supplies, materials, use of NC State equipment, and travel.

Intellectual Property

Any intellectual property developed by the teams will be managed in accordance with the Patent and Tangible Research Policy of NC State University.

Learn How to Become a Sponsor


*Fee structure: $8,500 per project or $20,000 paid upfront for three projects. The three projects can be spread over one, two, or three years. The three-project option will involve three separate senior design teams, each with a different faculty advisor.