The vital core of research at the Department are its laboratories. In fact, the Department boasts several of the finest set-ups in Europe – developed after its transfer to the Bovisa Campus – fitted out with all the necessary, most up-to-date cutting-edge equipment in the different research areas.
The Department has always aimed at guaranteeing the excellence of its laboratories, continuing to invest heavily thanks to the subsidisation of funds raised through research contracts.
Our laboratories are grouped into 19 areas as described below.
In the laboratory for additive manufacturing, research is developed on process optimization and control, on properties of metallic alloys and on the design and characterization of products manufactured by additive techniques. The lab is equipped with systems based on selective laser melting and electron beam melting and on several laser sources equipped with coaxial cladding heads fitted on anthropomorphic robot arms for direct metal deposition approaches.
Automotive and Electric/Hybrid Vehicles Lab
The research activity of this laboratory is mainly devoted to the passive and active safety of road vehicles as well as to the application of the theoretical knowledge in the field of vehicle dynamics. Innovative technical solutions aimed to energy saving and environmental sustainability are being developed.
Lab Brochure – La.S.T.
Lab Brochure – Vehicle Dynamics and Control
3D Vision Lab
The activities carried out in this laboratory include: 3d acquisition of physical objects through active and passive systems, metrological characterization of active and passive 3D measurement systems and 3D measurement systems integration, in order to continuously improve the 3D digitalisation techniques.
Cable Dynamics Lab
This laboratory is devoted to the study of the dynamics of suspended cables and their related systems to limit vibrations. The activities aim to the experimental measurement of the characteristics of interest of the vibratory phenomenon of cables and dampers (for instance the damping characteristics), in order to develop and validate numerical models for the prediction of the behavior of real systems of conductors.
CNC Machine Tools and Computer Aided Manufacturing Lab
This laboratory represents a fundamental resource for the research activity of the Department of Mechanical Engineering: it allows to continuously develop the mechanical components required to realise prototypes useful for testing. The development and realisation of prototypes is obtained through a constant interaction between the researchers and the model developers, obtaining precise results in a short time.
Composite Material Parts and Models Lab
In this laboratory traditional and innovative composite materials are used in order to obtain, by means of advanced production techniques, rigid or aero-elastic models to use in many research fields, including wind tunnel testing. Moreover the laboratory produces components with elastic and inertial characteristics guaranteeing the set-up of low power control and implementation systems.
Electric Drives Lab
This laboratory is specialised in the research, development and testing of control systems and electrical drives for industrial and transportation applications.
Haptics and Virtual Prototyping Lab
The research activities developed in this laboratory include: the development and use of virtual prototypes for testing interactional and functional aspects of industrial products, the development of software and hardware technologies for Virtual and Mixed Reality applications, the simulation of deformable objects on massively parallel computer.
Lab Brochure – Haptics and Virtual Prototyping
Lab Brochure – Reverse Engineering
The Manufacturing laboratory is organised in different areas devoted to specific research subjects in the field of traditional and innovative manufacturing techniques, such as Micro Machining Laboratory, SITEC Laboratory for Laser Application, Water Jet Lab, Geometrical Metrology Lab, Manufacturing Systems Lab.
Material Testing Lab
The experimental activities of this laboratory deals with the analysis of mechanical behavior of materials and small components. The static and dynamic tests can be done using universal testing machines at room temperature or in controlled environment (between -100°C and 1000°C).
Measuring Devices and Calibration Lab
The experimental aspects of the researches play a crucial role in the activity of the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Therefore a huge effort is done to continuously enrich and renew the instrumentation (about 1000 sensors and measuring devices). In this perspective the Measuring Devices and Calibration Laboratory manages the whole procedure of transducers maintenance and calibration.
Mechatronics and Smart Structures Lab
The Mechatronics and Smart Structures Lab focuses on mechatronics applications ranging from domotics to industrial robotics. Particular emphasis is given to the integrated design of smart systems for noise and vibration control that couple micro-sensors, energy harvesting devices, miniaturised actuators and innovative control architectures.
Non-destructive Tests (NDT) Lab
The experimental activity carried out in this laboratory deals with the application and development of traditional and innovative NDT methods, applied in the design and production of materials, as well as in the maintenance and prognostics of mechanical systems.
Numerical Simulation Lab
In the world of Mechanical Engineering it is fundamental for the designer to rely on precise computation codes. Therefore, the Department of Mechanical Engineering has a numerical simulation laboratory for the research and development of codes, for the modeling and simulation of the behavior of mechanical systems, for the study of fluid dynamics problems and of the fatigue strength of materials.
Process Metallurgy and Materials Analysis Lab
This laboratory consists of a set of analytical equipment as long as processing and mechanical testing systems aimed at investigating material composition and mechanical behavior. The experimental tests play a key role in the research activities but also in industrial applications, for example in the production of materials and the prediction of resistance.
Railway Engineering Lab
This laboratory is equipped with test benches for the characterization, development and verification of the components of railway vehicles and track. Test bench for bogies, axles test bench and the facilities for the study of wheel-rail contact and pantograph-catenary interaction can be mentioned among the most advanced experimental equipment.
The Department of Mechanical Engineering gives great emphasis to the connection between theory and practice in the teaching activity. Consequently the Department makes huge efforts in order to allow students to experience practical learning laboratories – properly equipped with up to date instrumentation – in different areas.
Tests of Mechanical Components Lab
The Laboratory Tests on Mechanical Components performs static and dynamic tests on full scale components, including simple machine elements, sections of complex devices or complete machines. To this purpose, this laboratory is equipped with loading devices and modular structures used to optimise the experimental set-up for each test. This laboratory is useful for the research in the field of experimental mechanics, civil structure testing and transportation.
The Politecnico di Milano Wind Tunnel allows the experimental analysis of wind effects on scale models of civil structures, road and rail vehicles, sail boats and mechanical components in general, including wind generators and suspended cables. The data obtained from the experimentation are useful both for the research activities and the structure design.