Senior Design

Our senior design program gives senior Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) students a “capstone” experience applying coursework knowledge to solve real, materials-related industrial problems. This two-semester senior design program begins with the fall semester course MSE 423, which introduces teamwork and materials selection concepts. From mid-August to mid-September, representatives from project-sponsoring companies present their projects to the class. By the end of September, teams of three or four students are formed and assigned to each project. Each team has an MSE faculty advisor and a liaison from the sponsoring company. In October, teams develop a written proposal describing how they plan to address the project goals. Actual work on the project begins in early November.

In the following spring semester course, MSE 470, teams work closely with their faculty advisors and industrial liaisons to complete the project. Lab work can be done at the sponsor’s site if feasible, or at NC State, or some combination of both as dictated by the needs of the project. Students have full access to the excellent analytical and testing facilities at NC State. At the end of the spring semester, students give oral presentations and prepare written reports describing the results of their work.

Industrial Sponsor Commitments

  1. 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.
  2. Assign an engineer or scientist to serve as company liaison who will assist the team in its efforts.
  3. Provide a tax-deductible donation to the MSE Senior Design Program account which is managed by the NCSU College of Engineering Foundation. These funds cover costs incurred by the team for supplies, materials, use of NC State equipment and travel.
  4. Fee structure: $7,500 per project, or $15,000 (paid up front) for three projects, which may 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.
  5. Any intellectual property developed by the teams will be managed in accordance with the Patent and Tangible Research Policy of NC State University.