Materials scientists and engineers are at the forefront of exciting innovations in technologies which depend critically on high quality new materials. Discovering new materials (simply called "Stuff" in a recent PBS NOVA series) and integrating it into engineering design is a daunting but rewarding task. This is the heart of the discipline of MSE. Metals, ceramics, glasses and polymers are all used for a variety of functions in cell phones, semiconductors, automobiles, airplanes, tennis rackets, bicycles, space shuttle tiles or surgical implants.
Electrical systems and computers form the backbone of many of the structures central to contemporary life. Communication, medicine, education, space exploration, defense and other critical sectors of our society and economy depend on electrical engineers for their design, analysis and effective use. As an electrical engineering major, you will work closely with top-ranked faculty to gain an understanding of the fundamental knowledge and theories that underpin modern engineering.
From home video game systems to hospital monitoring equipment, computer systems are part of every aspect of contemporary culture. Computer scientists and engineers design, build and improve these systems, finding new applications for sophisticated technology. As a computer science and engineering major at UC Davis, you'll receive a solid background in engineering fundamentals that will allow you to adapt to newly introduced systems and methods; you'll also have the chance to work with well-respected researchers on projects that represent the cutting edge of computer science today.
Computer engineers analyze, design, develop and program all types of information processing systems, commonly called "computers." Yet the application of these systems goes far beyond simple computation. Computer applications are central to modern communications, health care, education, entertainment and industry. As a computer engineering major at UC Davis, you'll get the fundamental skills you need to ensure your long-term employability in a rapidly changing field. You'll also work with cutting-edge technologies in electronics, digital systems, circuits fabrication and other areas.
Civil engineers are responsible for the design, construction and maintenance of structures that form the transportation, resource distribution, environmental systems and physical infrastructure of contemporary society. From bay-spanning bridges to earthquake-safe buildings, civil engineers design and build solutions to an enormous variety of problems. Increasingly, civil engineers are called upon to safeguard the health of our environment by managing and improving air, land and water quality with air, water and waste treatment systems.
Chemical engineers apply the principles of chemistry and engineering to produce useful commodities ranging from antibiotics to zirconium. Contemporary areas of interest to chemical engineers include alternative energy, environmental processes and preservation, food and pharmaceutical production, and medicine. As a chemical engineering major at UC Davis, you'll have access to resources like scanning electron microscopes and X-ray diffractometers to enhance your study, and you may participate in research projects along with some of the most highly regarded researchers in the nation.
Biomedical engineering is an interdisciplinary field of study that integrates knowledge of engineering principles with the biomedical sciences. It is a very diverse field, with biomedical engineers working in areas ranging from medical imaging to regenerative medicine. Some major contributions of biomedical engineering include the left ventricular assist device (LVAD), artificial joints, hemodialysis, bioengineered skin, coronary stents, computed tomography (CT) and flexible endoscopes.
As biological sciences and biotechnology become ever more important sectors of our economy, engineers will be needed to work side by side with life scientists to bring laboratory developments into commercial production. Such industries as plant and animal production, tissue culture, biotechnology, food processing, aquaculture and forest production will all need engineers with strong backgrounds in biology.
Biochemical engineers apply the principles of biology, chemistry, and engineering to produce useful products such as biopharmaceuticals, biofuels, biopolymers and industrial enzymes. Biochemical engineering includes cell culture processes and separation processes for biopharmaceutical production, food processing, biofuels and biological waste treatment. As a biochemical engineering major at UC Davis, you'll learn to grow cells in bioreactors and to separate their products from solutions using the most up-to-date processes and equipment available.
Aerospace science is the study of newer and better ways to fulfill one of humanity's oldest dreams: the dream of flight. As an aerospace science and engineering major, you will help create faster, more efficient and more economical forms of aircraft. You will work with some of the foremost scientists in the field today, and you will benefit from access to unparalleled research opportunities. Your studies will prepare you not only for work in the aerospace industry, but in any branch of engineering dealing with bodies and vehicles whose applied loads are influenced by aerodynamic forces.