Ph.D. Research Position in Soft Material Mechanics (U.S. Citizen or U.S. Permanent Resident/Green Card holder only)

One Ph.D. research position is available in January 2022 at Iowa State University’s Mechanical Engineering Department in the area of soft tissue biomechanics and biomaterials. The candidates must be a U.S. Citizen or U.S. Permanent Resident/Green Card holder and have earned a B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering, Bioengineering, or a related field. The selected candidate is expected to start no later than June 2022.

The primary objective of the research is to apply non-contact experimental methods to characterize the mechanical response of soft materials to dynamic loading. The candidate is responsible for conducting the experiments, analyzing the results, and developing computational models to understand the response of the soft material to various loading conditions. Familiarity with the finite element software package ABAQUS and ability to program in MATLAB, FORTRAN, or Python is a plus, but is not required.

To apply, please send the following materials to Dr. Sarah Bentil by email (sbentil@iastate.edu) and put PhD Applicant: Soft Material Mechanics in the subject of the email:

  • Cover letter (briefly stating your research interests, along with a summary of your background, achievements, and motivations)
  • CV (including research experience, related courses, publications, presentations, projects, and GRE score)
  • Copy of transcripts
  • Names and addresses of three references
  • Copy of a representative publication (if applicable)

Visit the following link to learn more about our research group and activities: http://www.me.iastate.edu/sbentil/

Lab Technician

A team of researchers in the Apparel Events and Hospitality Management (AESHM) department are looking for a mechanical engineering undergraduate student (preferably 3rd or 4th year) to work in the Laboratories for Functional Textiles and Protective Clothing. The technician will work closely with the lab manager to run tests on textiles and clothing, 3D scans Personal Protective Equipment components (e.g., protective gloves), and handle, program, and manipulate 3D models in 3D modelling software.

Work will be done in 1078/2094 LeBaron Hall and remotely via University VPN.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Perform routine laboratory functions to support scientific experiments and investigations
  • Setting up, testing, adjusting, calibrating, and maintaining laboratory equipment and apparatus
  • Recording, analyzing, and writing reports, reviews, and summaries on the findings of experiments and trials
  • Collecting and preparing samples, solutions, cultures, and specimens and ensuring safe disposals of waste
  • Enforcing strict health and safety regulations
  • Staying up to date with relevant scientific developments that can improve the efficiency of lab operations

Required Minimum Qualifications and Skills

  • Proficiency in calibrating and maintaining technical laboratory equipment
  • The ability to learn and follow specific scientific techniques
  • Ability to use technical equipment with maximum accuracy and efficiency
  • Experience and willingness to work in a lab environment involving simulated hazards (e.g., flame, steam)
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Outstanding attention to detail
  • Ability to work independently
  • Strong time management skill
  • Interpersonal skills

Preferred Qualification

  • Proficiency in 3D modelling software (e.g., Geomagic and Solidworks)
  • Familiar with ANSYS Fluent and ICEM CFD

Wage and benefits

  • This is an hourly based position (not exceeding 20 hour per week)
  • Wage and benefits will be in accordance to ISU employment guidance


PhD position in modeling of the interaction between phase transformations and plasticity

PhD position(s) is available immediately in the Engineering Mechanics program in Aerospace Engineering Department at Iowa State University to perform theoretical and computational part of work on NSF-funded projects on the interaction between phase transformations and plasticity. Phase-field, micromechanical, and macroscale simulations using FEM are of interest, in close collaboration with high-pressure experiments performed in our lab. Please send vita to Prof. Valery Levitas ( vlevitas@iastate.edu ).

Postdoc Researcher

A full-time postdoctoral researcher position is immediately available in the System Reliability and Safety Laboratory (SRSL) at Iowa State University.

The postdoc researcher will primarily contribute to a research project on machine learning for the state estimation and lifetime prediction of lithium-ion batteries. Another application domain of interest is the predictive maintenance of rotating machinery (e.g., motors, pumps, and rotor-bearing systems).

Below is a detailed description of this position.


Applications are invited for one Postdoctoral Research Associate position in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Iowa State University. The research objectives are to (1) develop machine learning algorithms to online detect faults and predict failures of lithium-ion batteries and rotating machinery (e.g., motors, pumps, and rotor-bearing systems) and (2) assist in validating the data analytics on Battery Management Systems (BMS) and Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) hardware and software platforms. The duration of the position is expected to be one year and may be renewable based on performance and availability of funding. The salary will be commensurate with the prior research experience of the applicant.


Candidates should have a recent Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, or a related discipline. Applicants with experience in (1) fault diagnostics and failure prognostics, (2) machine learning and deep learning, and/or (3) experimental/computational studies of lithium-ion batteries are highly encouraged to apply. Particularly, prior research experience in one or more of the following areas are desired:

– Algorithm development for machine learning and deep learning
– Algorithm development for fault diagnostics and failure prognostics
– Algorithm development for battery state estimation in BMS
– Computational modeling of lithium-ion cell designs and their degradation/lifetime
– Vibration analysis for diagnostics/prognostics of rotating machinery


The postdoctoral associate will attend the weekly individual and group meetings, mentor at least two Ph.D. students in the group, and facilitate close collaborations with companies specialized in battery materials design and testing, IIoT, and predictive maintenance. The postdoctoral associate will also publish the findings of his/her research in premier journals, present his/her research in high-impact conferences, and participate in proposal writing. Only individuals who have a strong desire to pursue an academic career are encouraged to apply.

Applicant Information:

The position is available immediately. Applications will be processed as they arrive until the position is closed. Interested applicants should submit by email (1) a cover letter that summarizes prior research experience and (2) a CV to Dr. Chao Hu, chaohu@iastate.edu.