MEC4425 - Micro/nano solid and fluid mechanics - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit

Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering


Dr Mainak Majumder

Unit guides



  • Second semester 2017 (Day)


Introducing micro and nano-technology in the design of next-generation microelectromechanical systems, microfluidic devices and biomedical applications. Basic concepts and physics of small-scale systems are covered. Topics include: scaling effects, nanofabrication techniques, continuum mechanical theories, low Reynolds number flows, capillary effects and interfacial flows, flows in channels of arbitrary dimensions, convective-diffusive mass transport, electro hydrodynamics including classical double layer theory, electrophoresis, electro-osmosis, dielectric polarisation and dielectrophoresis. The course also focuses on device applications, specifically MEMS sensors and actuators and lab-on-chip devices, through hands-on laboratory sessions (held at Melbourne Centre for Nanofabrication).


To instill:

  1. Exposure to the emerging fields of micro and nano technology, particularly for biomedical engineering
  2. Thorough understanding of the physical behaviour of solids and fluids at the micron and nanometer length scales through continuum and molecular theories
  3. An understanding of the difficulties in fabrication, manipulation, and imaging of components at the micro scale and beyond
  4. An appreciation of the various fluid transport mechanisms in micro/nano channels or devices and physical interaction mechanisms in solids at the micro/nano scale
  5. Knowledge in the design of micro/nano-electro-mechanical-systems and micro/nano-fluidic devices for various bio-applications

    To develop the ability to:

  6. Construct models of micro/nano components and systems
  7. Solve the fundamental equations of motion governing the dynamics of such systems analytically, semi-analytically or using numerical techniques to understand their behaviour for prediction and design
  8. Apply the knowledge provided in the course for the design of practical micro/nano devices
  9. Know where and how to continue learning on advanced and/or new topics in micro/nano solid and fluid mechanics.


Continuous assessment: 40%

Final Examination (2 hours): 60%

Students are required to achieve at least 45% in the total continuous assessment component and at least 45% in the final examination component and an overall mark of 50% to achieve a pass grade in the unit. Students failing to achieve this requirement will be given a maximum of 45% in the unit.

Workload requirements

3 hours lectures, 3 hours practical classes and 6 hours of private study per week

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)


(MEC3451, MEC3453, MEC3455) or (120 points and TRC2200, TRC3200)