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UCL Mechanical Engineering
Faculty of Engineering Sciences


MECH0026 Elasticity and Plasticity

MECH0026 Elasticity and Plasticity

FHEQ Level:
6 (Undergraduate Yr 3)
Terms 1 and 2
UCL / ECTS Credits:
15 UCL / 7.5 ECTS
Previous Module Code:
Alternative Module Code:
This module is offered to Term 1 affiliate students under the code MECH0027
MECH0013 Mechanics of Solids & Structures

Taught By

Dr Eral Bele (Module Coordinator):
Eral Bele
Dr Liwei Guo:
Liwei Guo

Module Overview

This module develops further understanding of the static behaviour of elastic bodies as well as the new area of plasticity.

Students are introduced to fundamental aspects of the theory of elasticity and how the results can be related to engineering applications.  This includes classical problems relating to plane stress and strain, end loading problems relating to both torsion and shear, and finally thin plates and shells.  Although the emphasis is on theory, real-world applications are used as motivating and practice examples.  Where practical, these examples are linked to current or recent research within the department.

The second half of the module covers plasticity theory, extending elastic stress-strain relationships to explore plastic effects and yield criteria.  Plane strain problems relating to rigid perfectly plastic materials are explored, and limit analysis (both from the perspective of theory and design).

Topics Covered

  • Theory of elasticity
  • Torsion
  • Plate buckling
  • Uniaxial plasticity stress notation
  • Yield criteria plastic relations
  • Slip lines and plasticity bounds
  • Research applications

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this module students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the essential facts, concepts, theories and principles underlying elasticity and plasticity theory, and how the two fields are underpinned by mathematics and physics.
  • Have an appreciation of the wider multidisciplinary context of the underlying theory, including applications of both elasticity and plasticity to engineering design such as aircraft wing design and buckling in aircraft structures.
  • Apply appropriate quantitative science, engineering and mathematical tools to the analysis of problems arising in elastic and plastic material behaviours.
  • Demonstrate creative and innovative ability in the synthesis of theoretical solutions, and linking them to the design of real-world structures.
  • Comprehend the broad picture of the application of elasticity and plasticity theory, and use this to inform an appropriate level of detail in the theoretical descriptions.
  • Develop transferable skills including problem solving, communication and effective sourcing of background resources and materials required for self-learning.

Method of Instruction

This module is taught through:

  • Lectures
  • Tutorials


This module is assessed entirely through an unseen written examination.

For more information about assessment please contact

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