Program and Course Descriptions

Mechanical Engineering is among the broadest and most versatile of the engineering professions. It includes robotics, control systems, mechatronics, medical devices, environmentally conscious energy systems including buildings, transportation, and renewable energy, machine design, solid mechanics, materials, including composites, fluid mechanics, heat transfer, manufacturing, or a combination of these fields as is often the case in the development of complex systems. Mechanical engineers can pursue careers in design, testing, manufacturing, research and development, sales, management, and consulting.

The Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (BSME) program contains 79 credits of mechanical engineering coursework and 56 credits of other math, science, and engineering coursework. Please visit the Course Catalog or the Mechanical Engineering Student Handbook for details of program requirements.

Please scroll down for course descriptions and information on milestones in the program.

Program Electives 

All BSME students are required to complete three (3) mechanical engineering electives which total to a minimum of nine (9) credits. All courses counted toward fulfilling the mechanical engineering elective requirement must be 3000-level or above.

The mechanical engineering department changes their elective offerings every year and strives to provide a range of both contemporary and relevant topics to supplement the major program requirements. Students should work closely with their faculty advisor to discuss upcoming offerings to learn when different electives will be offered.

Mid-Program Comprehensive Exam

All BSME students take the Comprehensive Exam at the beginning of the senior year. The exam provides a direct measure of a student’s knowledge of basic mechanical engineering subjects. All students must take the mid-program Compressive Exam before or concurrent with the first quarter of their Senior Design Project.

Senior Design Project

All engineering students complete an industry-sponsored Senior Design Project in conjunction with the Seattle University Project CenterStudents complete their design project over one academic year through three linked courses: MEGR 4870, MEGR 4880, and MEGR 4890. Explore past engineering projects.

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Mechanical Engineering Course Descriptions

MEGR 1000 Introduction to Mechanical Engineering - 1 credit hour

An overview of mechanical engineering. Course includes seminars by practicing mechanical engineers who discuss day- to- day engineering and the latest advances in the industry. Typical industries represented include: aerospace, transportation, HVAC, power generation, manufacturing, medical equipment, and sports equipment. Graded CR/F. One seminar per week. (fall)

MEGR 1050 Engineering Graphics and Design - 3 credit hours

Technical sketching. Isometric, orthographic, auxiliary, and sectional views. Dimensioning. Introduction to computer-aided drafting (CAD) and solid modeling. Includes design project using CAD.Three laboratory sessions per week.  (fall, winter)

MEGR 1060 Machine Shop - 1 credit hour

Hands-on machine shop projects focusing on fundamental theory and operation of precision measuring instruments, hand tools, metal lathes and CNC mills. One laboratory per week. Corequisite:MEGR 1050. (fall, winter, spring)

MEGR 1890 Integrated Engineering Design Project 1 - 3 credit hours

Introduction to the engineering design, teamwork and project-based learning. The design process, problem definition, design requirements, concept generation, prototype fabrication and design iteration. Includes a quarter long design project with team members from MEGR 1890, 2890 and 3890. Prerequisite: MEGR 1060. (spring)

MEGR 2100 Statics - 4 credit hours

Vector algebra. Equilibrium of forces and moments, distributed forces, hydrostatics, friction, virtual work; all applied to simple bodies. Prerequisites: MATH 1335, PHYS 1210. (fall, winter)

MEGR 2300 Dynamics - 4 credit hours

Vectors applied to kinematics and kinetics. Particle, system of particles, and rigid bodies related to translation, rotation, plane motion, relative motion, forces, impulse- momentum, work- energy. Prerequisites: MEGR 2100. (winter, spring)

MEGR 2810 Engineering Methods - 4 credit hours

Application-based overview of the computer programming and numerical method techniques use to solve typical engineering problems. Course will focus on algorithms, basic programming data types and structures, debugging, numerical solutions to typical engineering problems, data collection and analysis, and exposure to relevant programming languages. Programming activities and group work required. Three lecture/labs per week. Corequisites: MATH 1335, PHYS 1210. (fall, spring)

MEGR 2890 Integrated Engineering Design Project 2 - 3 credit hours

Second course in the integrated engineering design course sequence, with a specific focus on engineering analysis in the context of design. Topics include system integration, modeling, design decision-making and uncertainty analysis. Course includes a quarter long design project with team members from MEGR 1890, 2890 and 3890. Prerequisite: MEGR 1890

MEGR 2910 Special Topics- 1- 5 credit hours

MEGR 2960 Directed Study - 1- 5 credit hours

MEGR 3210 Thermodynamics - 5 credit hours

Thermal properties of ideal and real gases, liquids, vapors and mixtures. Conservation of mass and energy. Second law. Energy conversion. Power, efficiency, coefficient of performance. Gas cycles, vapor power cycles, refrigeration cycles, and air-conditioning. Environmental aspects. Four lecture hours and one laboratory per week. Prerequisites: MATH 2330, MEGR 2300 (fall)

MEGR 3230 Fluid Dynamics - 4 credit hours

Fundamental fluid dynamics course for engineering students. Topics covered include fluid properties, hydrostatics, fluid kinematics, fluid dynamics, including energy and momentum conservation equations, velocity profiles, boundary layers, lift and drag calculations, non-dimensional analysis, turbomachinery, and piping systems. Students will develop the necessary skills to analyze fluid systems for engineering applications in a variety of environments, and the content of this course will provide a framework for future courses and design project work in engineering. Four lecture hours per week. Prerequisite or Co-requisite Course(s): MEGR 2300, MATH 2340 (winter)

MEGR 3240 Heat Transfer - 4 credit hours

Three heat transfer modes: conduction, convection and radiation. Conduction in one and two dimensions, steady state and transient. Forced and natural convection. Radiation between two or three black and gray bodies. Heat exchangers. Including design problems. Four lecture hours  per week. Prerequisite: MEGR 3210. Pre- or co- requisite: CEEGR 3310. (spring)

MEGR 3360 Instrumentation and Data Acquisition 1 - 4 credit hours

Introduction to basic interfacing, instrumentation and computer-based data acquisition, with application to mechanical engineering systems. This is the first course of the two-course sequence applying data acquisition techniques to fluids, machine design, and mechatronics. The course topics interfacing, microcontrollers, sensors, statistical analysis, frequency domain analysis and filtering. Includes weekly labs. Prerequisite: MEGR 2810, MATH 2340. Corequisite: CEEGR 3310, MEGR 3710. (winter)

MEGR 3370 Instrumentation and Data Acquisition 2 - 4 credit hours

Introduction to basic interfacing, instrumentation and computer-based data acquisition, with application to mechanical engineering systems. This is the first course of the two-course sequence applying data acquisition techniques to thermal system, machine design, heat transfer and mechatronics. The course topics interfacing, microcontrollers, sensors, statistical analysis, frequency domain analysis and filtering. Includes weekly labs. Prerequisite: MEGR 2810, MEGR 3360. Corequisite: MEGR 3240. (spring)

MEGR 3500 Materials Science - 5 credit hours

Atomic structure. Metallic bond. Structure of metals and non- metals. Equilibrium diagrams. Time- dependent transformations. Relation of structure to properties. Elastic and plastic deformation. (fall)

MEGR 3710 Machine Design I - 4 credit hours

Advanced strength of materials including combined loading, beams, columns, connection forces and stress concentrations. Introduction to statistics and reliability. Introduction to finite element analysis. Material failure including static failure theories, fracture mechanics and fatigue. Design problem. Four lecture hours per week.  Prerequisite: CEEGR 2210. (winter)

MEGR 3890 Integrated Engineering Design Project 3 - 3 credit hours

Third course in the integrated engineering design course sequence, with a specific focus on project management and leadership skills. Topics to be covered include PM principles, peer leadership, team dynamics, ethics in design, budget management and effective design communication. Course includes a quarter long design project with team members from MEGR 1890, 2890 and 3890. Prerequisite: MEGR 2890. (spring)

MEGR 3910 Special Topics - 1- 5 credit hours

MEGR 3960 Directed Study - 1- 5 credit hours

MEGR 4050 Introduction to Finite Elements - 3 credit hours

Development of theory and concepts of finite element analysis. Applications in all areas of mechanical engineering, including mechanics of solids, heat transfer, fluid mechanics and design. Weekly computer exercises. Prerequisites: MEGR 3710, MEGR 3240, and senior standing.

MEGR 4210 Thermodynamics II - 3 credit hours

Continuation of MEGR 3210. Ideal thermodynamiccycles,power plants and jet engines. Cooling towers. Combustion chemistry. Environmental aspects.Exergy. Second-law analysis. Compressible Flow. Design problem. Power plant tour. Three lecture hours per week. Prerequisite: MEGR 3210. (winter)

MEGR 4220 Energy and Environment - 3 credit hours

Overview and discussion of primary energy consumption and energy conservation techniques. Theory and design of environmentally conscious energy conversion and relevant pollution reduction technologies. Assessment of energy conversion technologies with life cycle analysis. Design and research projects. Prerequisites: MEGR 3210.

MEGR 4230 Introduction to Combustion - 3 credit hours

An introduction to the topic of combustion. The areas of study include the thermodynamics of combustion, chemical kinetics and combustion reaction analysis, study of diffusion and premixed flames, combustion related to spark- ignited and diesel engines, and special topics of combustion including pollution reduction, instrumentation for combustion processes, and microscale combustion. Prerequisites: MEGR 3210.

MEGR 4260 Heating/Ventilation/Refrigeration - 3 credit hours

Psychometrics; space heating and cooling loads; air conditioning; fans and ducts; heat exchangers; solar systems; refrigeration. Prerequisites: MEGR 3210, MEGR 3240. (fall)

MEGR 4300 Intermediate Dynamics - 3 credit hours

Motion analysis and modeling of systems of particles and rigid bodies in three- dimensional motion. Prerequisite: MEGR 2300.

MEGR 4320 Mechanical Vibrations - 3 credit hours

Analysis of structural vibrations of mechanical systems. Modeling of lumped and distributed parameter systems. Topics include: single- and multi- degree of freedom systems, free and forced vibrations, periodic and non- periodic forcing functions, mass/stiffness matrices, Lagrange's equations, and modal analysis. Continuous systems (string, rod, and beam vibrations). Design considerations and experimental testing methods. Prerequisite: junior standing.

MEGR 4350 Dynamic Systems - 5 credit hours

Modeling of mechanical, thermal, hydraulic, pneumatic, and electrical systems. Introduction to computer modeling and simulation using existing symbolic computer programs. Laplace transforms, stability criteria, and frequency response. Three lectures and one laboratory per week. Prerequisite: MEGR 3360. (fall)

MEGR 4380 Control Systems - 4 credit hours

Course covers the design and analysis of feedback control systems. Analysis methods include root locus, Nyquist and Bode plots, and digital simulations using Matlab. Compensation methods include proportional, integral and derivative control and phase-lead and phase-lag controllers. Prerequisite: MEGR 4350. (winter)

MEGR 4510 Mechanics of Composite Materials - 3 credit hours

Introduction, basic concepts, fabrication methods, stress and strain analysis of fiber- reinforced composite materials. Elastic behavior of unidirectional lamina, lamination theory, effects of temperature and moisture, stress and failure analysis of laminates, composite structural design, and experimental characterization. Prerequisite: junior standing.

MEGR 4710 Kinematics and Dynamics of Machinery - 3 credit hours

Analysis and synthesis of mechanisms based on combinations of linkages and cams. Considers geometry of motion, velocity and acceleration profiles, and associated forces. Uses manual analytical and graphical methods as well as more advanced computer methods. Prerequisite: MEGR 2300.

MEGR 4720 Machine Design II - 3 credit hours

Continuation of MEGR 3710. Fasteners, welds, springs, bearings, gears, shafts, lubrication, clutches and brakes. Design problem. Three lecture hours per week. Prerequisite: MEGR 3710. (spring)

MEGR 4870 Engineering Design I - 3 credit hours

MEGR 4880 Engineering Design II - 4 credit hours

MEGR 4890 Engineering Design III - 3 credit hours

Group design project focusing on the integrative aspects of engineering subject matter. The project focuses on: (1) philosophy of design, a creative approach, and a comprehensive design project; planning, organizing and leading an engineering project; exercising judgment and considering economic factors; and (2) integrated aspects of creative design and analysis; case studies; design of a novel device or system. Format consists of classroom lectures and individual design team meetings each week. The three courses must be taken as a continuous sequence. Fulfills the senior synthesis core requirement. Prerequisite: department permission. (4870, fall; 4880, winter; 4890, spring)

MEGR 4910 Special Topics - 3 credit hours

MEGR 4960 Independent Study - 1- 5 credit hours

MEGR 4990 Undergraduate Research - 1- 5 credit hours

Analytical, numerical, or laboratory investigation of a research problem in mechanical engineering under the supervision of a mechanical engineering department faculty member. Graded CR/F. Prerequisite: junior standing.