Materials and Manufacturing Research Center

Materials and Manufacturing Research Center logo

Students working in a lab

The Materials and Manufacturing Research Center (MMRC) is an interdisciplinary research and education center of excellence with over 1200 square feet of laboratory space. Located within the Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering Department at Virginia Commonwealth University, the center aims to promote the highest quality research and educational experiences to the MNE’s diverse population of undergraduate and graduate students. Through development, processing, manufacturing, and characterization of advanced materials, the MMRC will be prominently distinct in four research thrust areas:

  • Advanced Magnetic Materials for Energy and Power Conversion;
  • Tribology of Material Systems;
  • Extreme Environment Materials;
  • Biomaterials for Theranostic Platforms.

The research activities of the faculty are supported by companies and federal agencies including NSF, DOE, DOD, and NIH.

Major Equipment

The Materials and Manufacturing Research Center (MMRC) offers a broad range of experimental infrastructure for materials scientists, metallurgists, and manufacturing engineers. With capabilities ranging from additive manufacturing machines to small-scale arc melting and mechanical alloying via high energy ball milling to spin coating and sputtering, the center is poised to allow the synthesis of metals, alloys, oxides and composites in bulk and nanoscale forms. Post alloying samples can be heat-treated using a suite of high-temperature furnaces with controlled atmosphere capabilities. With metallography, analytical, and characterization resources to supplement the sample fabrication capabilities, MMRC is designed to satisfy all advanced materials processing aspects.

  • Spin coater
  • Autoclave
  • Microscope
  • Diamond Band Saw
  • Ball Mill
  • Polisher
  • Thermal Evaporator (800 A)
  • Thermolyne Furnace, Muffle (1100 °C)
  • Vacuum - Tube Furnace (1200 °C)
  • High-Vacuum Furnace – CryoTorr Pump (1800 °C)
  • High-Frequency Induction Furnace – 7.5 kW -
  • Vacuum oven (300 °C)
  • Sigmatone probe station
  • Micro Impact Tester
  • Hardness Tester
  • Spark Emission Spectrometer (Oxford Instruments)
  • Ellipsometer (SE 800)
  • Tabletop SEM - Phenom ProX with EDX detector.
  • AFM Nanosurf Easyscan 2 STM
  • Rigaku XRD Miniflex 6G HyPix-400MF detector (Anton Park Heating Stage- Ambient to 500 °C – Vacuum or Controlled atmosphere)
  • Optical microscope (Nikon Optiphot)
  • Reactive Ion Etching (OptiGlow)
  • Magnetocaloric testing device


MMRC Faculty

Radhika Barua, Ph.D. Ravi Hadimani, Ph.D. Carlos Castano, Ph.D.

Key Users

Gary Tepper, Ph.D. Jessika Rojas, Ph.D. Reza Mohammadi, Ph.D.
Atulasimha Jayasimha, Ph.D. Karla Mossi, Ph.D.  

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