Lawrie N. Virgin
Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science
Professor Virgin's research is centered on studying the behavior of nonlinear dynamical systems. This work may be broadly divided into two components. First, investigation of the fundamental nature of nonlinear systems based on a mathematical description of their underlying equations of motion. Both analytical and numerical techniques are used with special attention focused on the loss of stability of dynamical systems.
The second area of interest is to apply recent results from nonlinear dynamical systems theory to problems of practical engineering importance. These include the nonlinear rolling motion of ships leading to capsize; buckling of axially-loaded structural components; aeroelastic flutter of aircraft panels at high supersonic speeds; vibration isolation based on nonlinear springs; energy harvesting; damage detection and structural health monitoring; and the dynamics of very flexible structures including solar sails and marine risers. Professor Virgin conducts mechanical experiments to complement these studies.
The flavor of much of this work is contained in the books:
Introduction to Experimental Nonlinear Dynamics, L.N. Virgin, Cambridge University Press, 2000.
Vibration of Axially Loaded Structures, L.N. Virgin, Cambridge University Press, 2007.
Appointments and Affiliations
- Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science
- Office Location: 3393 Fciemas, Duke Box 90300, Durham, NC 27708
- Office Phone: (919) 660-5342
- Email Address: email@example.com
- Ph.D. University of London (UK), 1986
- M.S. Cardiff University, 1982
- B.S. University of Manchester (England), 1981
Study of the behavior of nonlinear dynamical systems, including the investigation of the fundamental nature of nonlinear systems based on a mathematical description of their underlying equations of motion and the application of recent results from nonlinear dynamical systems theory to problems of practical engineering importance, especially in aerospace engineering.
Awards, Honors, and Distinctions
- Frocht Award. Society for Experimental Mechanics. 2016
- International Gas Turbine Institute's (IGTI) J. P. Davis Award. American Society of Mechanical Engineers. 2012
- CEE 647: Buckling of Engineering Structures
- COMPSCI 524: Nonlinear Dynamics
- ME 391: Undergraduate Projects in Mechanical Engineering
- ME 392: Undergraduate Projects in Mechanical Engineering
- ME 394: Engineering Undergraduate Fellows Projects
- ME 473: Aerospace Structures
- ME 490: Special Topics in Mechanical Engineering
- ME 491: Special Projects in Mechanical Engineering
- ME 493: Engineering Undergraduate Fellows Projects
- ME 527: Buckling of Engineering Structures
- ME 591: Research Independent Study in Mechanical Engineering or Material Science
- ME 592: Research Independent Study in Mechanical Engineering or Material Science
- NCS 513: Nonlinear Dynamics
- PHYSICS 513: Nonlinear Dynamics
- Xu, Y; Virgin, LN; Ross, SD, On experimentally locating saddle-points on a potential energy surface from observed dynamics, Mechanical Systems and Signal Processing, vol 130 (2019), pp. 152-163 [10.1016/j.ymssp.2019.05.002] [abs].
- Ehrhardt, DA; Virgin, LN, Experiments on the thermal post-buckling of panels, including localized heating, Journal of Sound and Vibration, vol 439 (2019), pp. 300-309 [10.1016/j.jsv.2018.08.043] [abs].
- Virgin, LN; Susan Guan, Y; Plaut, RH, Curved structures that can elastically snap-through, Conference Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Mechanics Series, vol 1 (2019), pp. 275-277 [10.1007/978-3-319-74280-9_28] [abs].
- Guan, Y; Virgin, LN; Helm, D, Structural behavior of shallow geodesic lattice domes, International Journal of Solids and Structures, vol 155 (2018), pp. 225-239 [10.1016/j.ijsolstr.2018.07.022] [abs].
- Zhong, J; Virgin, LN; Ross, SD, A tube dynamics perspective governing stability transitions: An example based on snap-through buckling, International Journal of Mechanical Sciences, vol 149 (2018), pp. 413-428 [10.1016/j.ijmecsci.2017.10.040] [abs].
Many of my research projects have an experimental component, some photos can be found in the following links showing:
- A cable-suspended mass
- A fiber-optic condition monitoring system
- An airfoil with a loose flap
- An experimental Duffing system
- A thermally buckled, acoustically excited papnel
- Inflatable beams for space attennas
- A rocking block
- A highly flexible structure
- A composite beam with bolted connection
- A hardening spring oscillator
- Vibration isolation
Some of my latest research involves solar sails for deep space exploration (sponsored by NASA):
Numerical simulation has also played an important role in the development of dynamics: