Professor Maria Charalambides

Imperial College London

Department: Mechanical Engineering
Institution: Imperial College London
Phone: +44 (0)20 7594 7246

Research summary

My research is centred on mechanical modelling and characterisation of complex materials. These are materials which might have one or more of the following:

(i) an inherent complex material behaviour (e.g. non linear viscoelasticity),
(ii) complex geometries in their microstructure (e.g. foams),
(iii) more than one phase (e.g. composite materials).

One of my group’s main objectives is to determine the effect of microstructures on the mechanical behaviour of the materials. In many cases the latter are complex, soft solids exhibiting highly nonlinear deformation properties (e.g. gels, soft solid foods). Image based micromechanics models are developed using Finite Element methods to simulate fracture mechanisms in particulate composite materials. Fracture models such as cohesive zones are also used to simulate peeling failure in applications such as medical patches.

Another area focuses on the modelling of fracture both under monotonic and fatigue loading scenaria; here the problem of cracking and delamination of thin film coatings is also investigated for art painting conservation purposes.


Coatings, Colloids, Crack Propagation, Damage, Foams, Fracture, Delamination, Failure Mechanisms, Fatigue, Micromechanics, Microstructure, Thin Films, Finite Elements, Polymer Composites, Colloids, Delamination, Failure Mechanisms, Fatigue, Micromechanics, Microstructure, Thin Films