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Academic year
Didactic period
Secondo Semestre

Training objectives

The Course, as the first introduction to the Mechanics of Materials and Structures, has two main purposes:

- to provide the mathematical – physical tools and the basic mechanical models for a correct design of artefacts and prototypes for Industry, such as to meet the requirements of strength, stability and functionality at the same time.

- to illustrate the physical and mechanical properties of traditional and innovative materials , manufacturing processes, testing techniques for quality control, check procedures on stress and strain admissibility in conditions of ordinary use of the industrial product.


Students must have familiarity with the Mathematics and Physics of the High School.

Course programme


SI measure units, global and local reference systems

Basic elements of Vector Analysis

Concepts of Force, Moment of Forces, displacements and rotations, work and their representation in terms of Vectors

The fundamental laws of Mechanics

Rigid bodies and the fundamental laws of Statics

2-D and 3-D external and internal constraints; relationships between mechanical representation and technological features

Elements of Geometry of Masses; center of masses, static moment, moments of inertia and related properties

Structure as bearing body

Basic loading conditions

Equilibrium of rigid bodies and rigid body systems


Tension and Strain

Material elastic, linear elastic, plastic and fragile behaviors by means of diagrams of axial experimental tests

Homogeneity, isotropy, orthotropy, anisotropy, ductility, fragility, hardness, tenacity, resilience, creep, fluage

Determinate and indeterminate structures

One-dimensional models for the analysis of statically determinate structures

Constraint reactions

Elementary and combined internal forces: tension, compression, bending, compression and bending, shear, torsion

Influence of temperature on material behavior: thermal conductivity and thermal expansion

Basic concepts of structural instability

Simple checks on material strength by means of the admissible tension Method

Relationship shape-structure, shape - strength

Structural typologies and their strength based either on mass or shape

Presentation of works carried out by students in previous academic years


Composite materials. Definition, classification. Semi-finished product Advantages and disadvantages of composite materials. Fibers and matrices. Carbon, glass, aramidic fibers. Polyesters and epoxy resins. Metallic and ceramic matrix. Composites as anisotropic materials. Mechanical properties, strength and stiffness. Micromechanics. Mixture rule for moduli. Estimate of longitudinal and transverse strength. Failure analysis of composite materials. Composites manufacturing. Manual techniques. Prepreg lay-up and cure in autoclave. Compression moulding. Pultrusion. Filament winding. Resin transfer molding (RTM)
Polymeric materials: Advantages and disadvantages of plastics. Definition. Structure. Classifications: thermoplastic and thermosetting, amorphous and semi-crystalline. Main polymers and specialty polymers. Additives and compounding. Manufacturing technologies: extrusion, injection molding, thermoforming, rotomolding, blow molding. Design for manufacturing. Joining and assembly elements.
Tutorial: Designing a product using a material of those described in the course

Didactic methods

Direct lectures. The topics of the Course are presented in their main features and with their relationships with the present trend of the Industrial Design. The theoretical parts of the Course are always followed by applications to specific case studies.

Learning assessment procedures

In both Modules the level of achievement of the main objectives of the Course is checked and evaluated. In particular, in both Modules the test consists of:

1. Compilation of a questionnaire containing multiple choice questions on the topics of the course
2. A brief interview on essential topics of the course
3. Possible presentation by the student of a project work previously agreed with the Professor
The overcoming of phase 1 is essential to proceed with steps 2 and 3 of the test.
The exam is considered as passed if all three phases have been successful

Reference texts

Basic bibliography:

- Lecture notes and educational material in the course web page

- Works carried out by students of the previous years

- Materiali per il Design – Introduzione ai materiali e alle loro proprietà. A cura di B. Del Curto e C. Marano. Casa Editrice Ambrosiana. ISBN 978-88-08-18400-9

- Materiali compositi, I. Crivelli Visconti, Edizione Hoepli

STATICA applicata alle costruzioni, L. Boscotrecase & A. Di Tommaso, Patròn Ed.

- Introduzione alla Meccanica delle Strutture per il Design, Antonietta Campanella , ARACNE Ed., 2014, ISBN-13: 978-8854879331