The PhD course in Industrial Engineering aims to provide participants with a deepening of the topics developed, in order to achieve a suitable cultural training both for the integration into a productive industrial unit, and in an organization (public or private) of development and scientific research. The PhD course aims at the deepening of numerical, analytical and experimental techniques, able to make the Doctor of research suitable to face any technical-scientific problem of industrial engineering, with capacity Management and organizational skills able to provide autonomy in the work and readiness of insertion in a collaborative context with other researchers and professionals, or organizations or companies. The basic preparation also includes an in-depth computer skills and a thorough knowledge of technical-scientific English aimed at the presentation of articles in Journal and at the oral exhibition at conferences. The internationalization phase envisaged in the three-year curriculum allows us to weave relationships with other foreign realities, providing the research doctor with an additional tool to enter into a scientific context not only limited to national boundaries.

Here are some first useful information.


LEARNING: Each of you should get 12 learning credits (CFU in what follows) during the first two years of the program.
You are advised to get:

  • at least 3 CFU should come from the doctoral school (SDIA) to which our PhD belongs
  • at least 9 CFU should be obtained by courses for which a final exam is needed.

Possible courses are:

  • PhD courses organized by ourselves
  • SDIA courses
  • Master degree courses
  • online PhD courses (like those organized by Stanford University)
  • summer PhD courses

As a general rule, each CFU corresponds to an eight hours course if a final exam is given, and to a twenty-five hour course if no exam is given.

RESEARCH: it is required that within the end of the three years you publish at least two papers on international conference proceedings or in international journals.

Research groups and topics

The activities of the research groups are devoted to the following topics:

Administrative law – IUS/10

The research topics focus on higher education policies, administrative procedure, renewable energies, food safety and law of economics. The team, therefore, both fulfills autonomous interests and supports scientific research carried out within the Department. Researchers competences consist in the interpretetation of legal deeds, drafting of papers, commentaires, reports and monographies, giving legal advice, public speaking and in the organization of multidisciplinary workshops.

Thermal engineering and industrial energy systems- ING-IND/10

The activity of the “Thermal engineering and industrial energy systems” group is aimed at the study of the fundamental and applicative aspects of thermodynamics and heat transmission, with particular attention to the following themes: thermodynamic analysis of energy processes; energy efficiency in the civil and industrial sectors; renewable energy sources; applied thermo-fluid dynamics; thermotechnics and refrigeration technology; thermos-physical properties of materials; heat transfer enhancement; thermo-fluid dynamics of processes in the food industry; thermo-fluid dynamic phenomena in miniaturised components; computational fluid dynamics; fire safety engineering.

Research activities mainly concern:

  • performance of heat transfer apparatuses: passive techniques of convective heat transfer enhancement; thermo-fluid dynamics of fluids with complex rheology, such as many fluids in the food industry; scraped surface heat exchangers; finned pack heat exchangers; micro heat exchangers.
  • estimation of parameters of engineering interest: estimation of thermos-physical properties; estimation of local friction factor and local convective heat transfer coefficient (single-phase and two-phase); inverse problems solution methods; estimation techniques applied to thermographic images.
  • energy: energy and economic analysis of cogeneration/trigenerative processes; energy analysis of thermal storage systems, in soil and water tanks; energy analysis of passive cooling techniques and assessment of thermal comfort in semi-open spaces.

Environmental Technical Physics – ING-IND/11

It is an application area located between industrial applications and environmental repercussions, in which the disciplines related to the physical effects on human well-being lie: thermo-hygrometric comfort, lighting, acoustics. It also studies the problems related to the impact on the external environment of pollutants of physical origin (heat, noise, vibrations, light, etc.), with references both to the effects on man and on non-anthropized ecosystems. Environmental Technical Physics also has consequences outside the industrial sector, in particular in the civil engineering sector the conditions of well-being are sought (thermal, acoustic and visual) inside and outside environments, through the use of techniques both passive, both active, in which the conditions of well-being are guaranteed by the action of suitable systems. The group's scientific research activities mainly concern applied acoustics:

  • sound propagation, both outdoors (noise from road, rail, air and naval traffic, acoustic environmental impact of large installations or infrastructures) and indoors (industrial environments, theaters, auditoriums, building acoustics);
  • acoustic virtual reality systems, advanced multichannel recording and reproduction techniques used both in the architectural field and in music production and broadcasting;
  • acoustic characterization of motor vehicle interiors, psychoacoustic optimization of audio systems on cars;
  • measurement of acoustic properties of materials, by laboratory tests or in situ.

An experimental laboratory is active since many years, equipped with top level scientific instrumentation for acoustics, lighting and vibrational impact measurements on man and buildings. In addition, original numerical calculation tools have been developed, specialized in the field of applied acoustics, which are also widely used in the field of sound engineering. The Laboratory is able to perform most of the acoustic, lighting and vibrational measures envisaged on the basis of the current legislative and regulatory framework, issuing test certificates; in particular, in addition to the experimental research activities already cited:

  • Measurement of the environmental parameters relevant to the achievement of the conditions of thermal, acoustic and visual confort;
  • Acoustic qualification of concert halls, theaters, auditoria, classrooms;
  • Measure in the laboratory and in situ of the acoustic absorption coefficient of the materials;
  • Measurement of sound insulation and sound power level.

Industrial Mechanical Systems Engineering – ING-IND/17

The research area of the industrial mechanical plants sector covers activities related to the design, construction and management of industrial production systems. The following topics are of particular interest:

  • The study and design of industrial plants. This includes technical and economic aspects related to the design of production plants, feasibility study, location and layout design decisions, environmental assessment of products and processes, risk and safety analysis, energy efficiency, sizing techniques, quality management.
  • Facilities and service plants. This topic includes the modelling of the physical parameters of the equipment and components of the plant, the study and the configuration of the fluid systems, the assessments of reliability and availability, the industrial maintenance, the study of pneumatic systems for the handling of materials bulk.
  • Logistics and supply chain management. This field encompasses issues related to the design and effective management of the product flow, service and information, from suppliers of raw materials and components to the final consumer. In particular, topics related to warehouses and material handling systems, product packaging, transport systems and modes, stock management, as well as feasibility studies for the implementation of value-added tracking systems and automatic identification and data capturing technologies.
  • Operations management. These topics include the design of batch production systems, make to order systems or continuous production systems, the requirement planning of “push” systems, the project planning, stochastic simulation of production systems, demand forecasting techniques, optimization of product allocation and production scheduling decisions.
  • Food plants. Particular attention has been paid to the production technologies of the food sector, with in-depth analysis in the fields of food safety (HACCP systems), aseptic packaging, meat maturing systems, packaging and bottling of liquid foods, numerical simulation and optimization of food processes, design of dedicated software packages for the simulation of particular processes (e.g. extrusion) or for process analysis.

Business and management engineering – ING-IND/35

The area of economic and business and management engineering includes the competences for the integration of economic, organizational and managerial aspects in the engineering field. The research activity of the area is related to the disciplines of management and the management of innovation of industrial companies and services in the dual strategic and organizational perspective. Particular attention is given to the complex and reciprocal interactions between strategic variables, technological and managerial practices, through the analysis of the business processes both inside the company and outside its organizational perimeter. Specifically, the research activity of the area is due to the following macro-thematic:

  • The management of innovation and technology transfer processes;
  • Organizational systems for the management of knowledge and individual skills in the R&S;
  • The management of the generational turnover in family business.

The guiding principles of the research projects are represented by the theoretical development and subsequent scientific validation of innovative models and operational solutions. The research methodologies used are broad-spectrum (case studies, survey for multivariate statistical analysis, simulation approaches, text mining techniques).

Fluid Machinery – ING-IND/08

In the field of Fluid Machinery and Energy Conversion Systems the main research topics are:

Fluid power systems: the research group is active in (i) mathematical modelling of hydraulic machines and components, (ii) analysis and simulations of typical and innovative fluid power architectures used to supply concurrent actuations on mobile machinery, (iii) implementation of hybridization/electrification solutions for mobile machinery and (iv) development of methodologies applied to condition monitoring for variable displacement axial pistons pumps; experimental analysis on components and machines.

  • Food machinery: the research group has developed competence in CFD simulations applied to high pressure homogenizing valves.
  • Energy conversion systems: the research activity is mainly aimed at developing methodologies for the development of mathematical models for the simulation of the behavior of energy conversion systems, from both fossil and renewable sources, and of the distribution networks. These models can therefore be widely used in the simulation of complex energy networks in both stationary and transient operation and they can thus be used to optimize the network architecture and the management strategies of the whole system and of its components.
  • Internal combustion engines: research activities in the field of internal combustion engines are aimed at developing real-time models of both spark and compression ignition engines also with reference to complex architectures (supercharging, e-Boost, integration with ORC, etc.). This type of model is aimed at the design and validation of control algorithms using HiS/SiL techniques.

Applied mechanics - ING-IND/13

The group of Applied Mechanics operates in various contexts of mechanical engineering. We list the most relevant topics in the following:

  • Mechanism and machine theory (kinematics, dynamics, mechanism synthesis, optimization)
  • Computational mechanics (multibody simulation, finite elements, contact problems, numerical methods, vehicle dynamics)
  • Tribology (lubrication, wear, elasto-hydro-dynamics)
  • Mechatronics (robotics, automation, mechanical actuators)
  • Vibrations (modal analysis, rotors, acoustics)
  • Measures and diagnostics
  • Wave propagation (modelling and numerical methods, scattering, structural health monitoring, sound insulation, vibro-acoustic analysis).

Metallurgy – ING-IND/21

The scientific topics specific to "Metallurgy" group are related to the study of microstructure and mechanical properties of metallic materials; the main purpose is the analysis of engineering problems related to science and technology of metal alloys, with particular attention to their applicability in industrial practice.

Specific research topics:

  • The Additive Manufacturing of metallic materials: microstructural aspects, heat treatments and static mechanical characterisation of Ti alloys and AlSi alloys produced by AM technologies.
  • Influence of the addition of Ni, V or Cu to Al-Si foundry alloys on microstructure and mechanical properties at room T or higher.
  • Evaluation of new anti-wear materials and new deposition techniques for coating and repair of aeronautical components.
  • Study of Friction Stir Welding (FSW) and Friction Stir Processing (FSP) of austenitic stainless steels, aluminum alloys and magnesium alloys: mechanical response and microstructure evolution.
  • Ecap of innovative light alloys and properties of ultrafine grain materials.
  • Hot deformation of aluminum alloys and metal matrix composites: study of microstructural evolution and correlation with the constitutive parameters.
  • Effect of heat treatments on the mechanical properties of aluminum and magnesium alloys obtained by tixoforming and hpdc.
  • Study of the ADI cast irons: austempering transformation.

Mechanical and thermal measurements - ING-IND / 12

The group of Mechanical and Thermal Measures has a long lasting experience, not only in the development and qualification of new measurement techniques, but also in the customization and application of well-established measurement principles in innovative fields. The group's activity is directed to both applied and non-applied research and to industrial consultancy. The main sectors in which the Group operates are:

  • Structural monitoring: development of innovative measurement systems for continuous monitoring of structures, testing of new sensors, data mining, advanced analysis techniques.
  • Image-based measurement methods: contactless measures of profiles.
  • Localization of acoustic sources: beamforming technique and its applications.
  • Modal analysis: testing of civil and mechanical structures, analysis and experimental coupling of complex structures.
  • Human structure interaction: influence of occupants on the properties of a structure, vibration serviceability of structures.
  • Diagnostics and prognostics of machinery and components through measurement systems and data analysis techniques developed ad hoc.
  • Smart materials for the control and reduction of mechanical vibrations
  • Consultancy and research in the field of metrological problems (Dynamic calibration of transducers)

In addition to research, the group is characterized by its propensity for collaboration with industry and the ability to provide testing activities in the field of mechanical vibrations, modal analysis, vibro-acoustics characterized by particular attention to the quality of results.

Among the main collaborations are: PirelliTtyre; Leonardo Elicotteri (Agusta Westland); Permasteelisa; BreBeMi Consortium; Monitoring of the Giuseppe Meazza stadium in Milan; Monitoring of the main spire of the Milan Cathedral; Dynamic testing of the Tower of Palazzo Lombardia, ALPIQ srl.

Mechanical design and construction of machines - ING-IND / 14

The Machine Design area has expertise in the field of advanced methodologies for the design and verification of machine elements, structural components and mechanical systems, and the design and development of products in various industrial sectors, including automotive, mechanical, biomedical, food, hydraulic and materials. The research activities developed, also through collaborations with national and foreign companies, are related to the following topics:

  • Computer Aided Engineering: Optimization of design solutions; Simulation of mechanical components in complex operating conditions. Interactive design of mechanical systems; Application and development of micromechanical models of material behavior; Simulation of the residual strength of cracked structures subjected to static and fatigue loads. Simulation of the injection process of polymeric materials.
  • Structural integrity: fatigue design of welded joints subjected to service loads; static and fatigue strength of glued and hybrid joints glued / riveted, glued / clinched, glued / welded; mechanical characterization of metallic, non-metallic and composite materials (Elastomeric, thermoplastic and thermosetting polymers, including structural adhesives; polymer matrix and metal matrix composites; aluminum-silicon alloys for castings; ultrafine grained metal; metal alloys produced with additive manufacturing technologies; polymeric compounds for rapid prototyping).
  • Product design and development: methodologies to support the conceptual phase of design; product development acceleration techniques.
  • Experimental mechanics: digital image correlation and the study of material deformations; strain gages; design and development of innovative test systems.

Structural mechanics – ICAR/08

The science of construction is an applied science that sinks its origins in classical mechanics. The competences of the scientific discipline Science of constructions concern the study and the use of theoretical and experimental physico-mathematical models describing the behaviour of the structures and their components (structural elements) under The effect of various actions or stresses.

The research group is mainly concerned with:

  • Study and modeling of the behaviour of fragile materials, with particular reference to fracture mechanics and damage in fragile and quasi-fragile materials, in particular glass for structural applications; Development of design Guidelines
  • Non-linear theory of elasticity and plasticity, developed mainly with a variational approach.
  • Behaviour of sandwich plates and beams with interlayers that make the cutting coupling. Study of the case of curved-axis beams. Development of models to the effective thicknesses for laminated glass, widely used in structural applications. Modeling of flexion behaviour and buckling of sandwich beams with viscoelastic interlayers. Study and modelling of cold-bending processes of laminated glass and cold-lamination-bending, with particular attention to rheological aspects and optimization.
  • Reinforcement of structures in quasi-fragile material through the use of fibre-reinforced composite materials. -Adhesion problems and cohesion in the contact problems between reinforcements and elastic substrates. Analytical modeling of the phenomena of delamination and detachment of the laminae by the use of fracture mechanics and distributed displacement theory.

Materials science and technology – ING-IND/22

The interest in nanostructured materials and coatings, as well as for ceramics for construction and construction, is at the centre of the area's activities that aim to develop prototype materials and components, essentially based on clayey, oxide and composite basis. The design of nanoparticle systems for aesthetic and functional applications today arouses an enormous interest in the most diverse industrial sectors. The modification of the chemical-physical and aesthetic properties of the surface (deposition of coatings, enamels or nanoparticle inks) allows to confer to the materials, as well as the improved mechanical properties (anti-scratch coating) and properties Anti-corrosion, new features that range from the degradation of pollutants and bacterial fillings (antibacterial coatings) to the possibility of activating autopulenza mechanisms. The know-how concerns the control of the product/process parameters for the design and synthesis of inorganic and hybrid functional coatings on a nanoscale, the development of suitable and easily transferable deposition methodologies on a scale Industrial, optimization of the chemical-physical and functional characteristics of the finished products, as well as the durability of performance over time. The expertise developed by the research group can be extended to a wide range of materials-such as ceramics, glass, metals or composites-with assessment of specific problems.

There are currently active lines of research and precompetitive development for the realization of:

  • Innovative photoreactors for the treatment of industrial water obtained by means of advanced oxidation processes (AOP) based on semiconductor oxides, e.g. TiO2, capable of degrading organic molecules under UV irradiation; In this field, innovative solutions are being studied to maximize the volumes/h processed by application both in the manufacturing and agro-alimentary fields;
  • New nanostructured composite materials for biomedicals with particular reference to the dental sector; In this field, new formulations are being studied with improved mechanical, aesthetic and functional properties compared to the photocurable resins currently in use.
  • The design and manufacture of nanocomposite polymer materials and functional coatings requires the development of innovative preparation and deposition processes with evaluation of the dependence of bulk properties (chemical-Physical, Mechanical-tribological, thermal, microstructural), surface (composition, structure and morphology) and functional (catalytic activity, wetting and durability over time) owned by the products. In these cases, the research group is able to support the design and realization of the products, as well as to offer the most suitable analytical techniques for the characterization of the final products.

Manufacturing technology and systems – ING-IND/16

The group is focused on both conventional manufacturing processes and innovative technologies. The list below pinpoints the key competences of the group among a wider selection of scientific activities carried out in the last five years.

  • Theoretical and experimental evaluation of conventional manufacturing processes (foundry, forming, machining, welding and assembly) and innovative technologies (e.g. electroerosion, laser machining, waterjet cutting).
  • Micromachining processes with a special focus on the analysis of abrasive micromanifacturing for obtaining functional surfaces.
  • Short and ultrashort pulsed laser micromanufacturing for the design of specifically conceived surface textures for food industry and biomedical applications.
  • Surface and coating technologies for the generation of thin films with dedicated properties such as: low-wear, self-lubrication, anticorrosion, biocompatible, antibacterial (PVD, Plasma Spray, CVD, PACVD).
  • Microstructural characterization including microhardeness, scratch test and microscratch test for the definition of the interface properties of coatings and surface treatments.
  • Characterization of the mechanical properties of thin films including adhesion, delamination, deformation and fracture. Characterization of the tribological properties in dry and lubricated conditions by means of tribo-test.
  • 3D-Microtopographical analysis of surfaces by means of coherent correlation interferometry CCI for precision engineering applications.
  • Integrated production planning of flexible manufacturing systems by means of a CAD/CAPP/CAM approach following the guidelines defined by Computer Integrated Manufacturing.


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