Solving the pressing problems of today and tomorrow

The Francis College of Engineering has developed a broad research portfolio, comprising basic research funded by the National Science Foundation and Department of Defense, and applied work with companies throughout the region.

Given our founding as a developer of solutions for the textile industry, it is no surprise that our College heavily engages with industry to find solutions to the pressing problems of today and tomorrow. In fact, one-third of our research expenditures in 2018 were from industry.

It is this willingness and ability to partner with industry that has led to our leading participation in a number of Manufacturing USA Initiatives, including those in Additive Manufacturing (America Makes), Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing (NIIMBL), Functional Fabrics (AFFOA), Robotics Manufacturing (ARM), Composites Manufacturing (IACMI), Flexible Electronics (NextFlex), and Recycling and Reuse (REMADE). 

These initiatives bring industry and universities together, often with additional government funding, in order to solve problems in the future of manufacturing. We have highlighted a number of our research innovations in Engineering Solutions, a semi-annual publication of the College.

  • Research in the College is generally conducted through a variety of Laboratories, Centers and Institutes, many of which are interdisciplinary. Below is a partial list.

    • Advanced Composites Materials and Textile Research Laboratory (ACMTRL): The Lab is working to better understand the design, analysis, and manufacture of high performance composite materials and textile structures.

    • Advanced Computation and Telecommunications (CACT): The Center is active in the areas of compute-intensive modeling of physical and information systems, and research areas include medical imaging, acoustics, fluid dynamics, heat transfer, control, probabilistic modeling, information processing and communication networks.

    • Advanced Computing & Networking Systems (ACANETS): This lab addresses the challenges in big data analytics, software defined networking and intelligent sensing.

    • Advanced Mammalian Biomanufacturing Innovation Center (AMBIC) Industry University Cooperative Research Center: This National Science Foundation I/UCRC, in collaboration with Clemson, Johns Hopkins, and Delaware, focuses develop enabling technologies, knowledge, design tools and methods that apply and integrate high-throughput and genome-based technologies to fast-track advanced biomanufacturing processes.

    • Advanced Materials: Its goal is the development of a knowledge base in the design, synthesis, characterization and intelligent processing of advanced materials, driven by the needs of potential technological applications.

    • Baseball Research Center: The mission of the center is to be a Center of Excellence for the Science and Engineering of Baseball for both experimental and analytical methods, concentrating on baseball bat performance and durability.

    • Climate Change Initiative: The Initiative brings faculty, students and communities together to address one of the biggest challenges facing humanity: climate change.

    • Computer Machine/Human Intelligence, Networking & Distributed Systems: Helping advance the analytical, experimental, and operational aspect of Computer Engineering and Information Technologies that have potential influence on the Acquisition, Management, and Storage of Knowledge and Data Engineering and Services. 

    • Emerging Technologies to Protect Soldiers: Harnessing Emerging Research Opportunities to Empower Soldier or HEROES is a joint research and development initiative of UMass Lowell and the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research Development and Engineering Center (NSRDEC). Its aim is to tap the research assets, people and facilities of both organizations to improve the survivability and protection of U.S. troops.

    • Massachusetts BioManufacturing Center: MBMC is an interdisciplinary research, development and education center that assists biotechnology companies in developing procedures leading to validated, cGMP compliant manufacturing processes.

    • Massachusetts Medical Device Development Center: M2D2 is a lifeline for the state’s smaller medical device companies, offering inventors and executives easy, affordable, and coordinated access to world-class researchers and resources at the Lowell and Worcester campuses of the University of Massachusetts.

    • Nanomanufacturing Center: The Center's mission is the creation of environmentally benign manufacturing processes that enable commercialization of nanotechnology products.

    • Nuclear Security & Safeguards Laboratory (INSSL): The Integrated Lab aims to promote the development of research, education and training tools that support a wide range of global nuclear security and safeguards objectives.

    • Photonics, Electromagnetics and Nanoelectronics (CPEN): Research and development in the Center focuses on the interaction of electromagnetic fields with materials and devices of use in microwave and optical systems and applications.

    • Printed Electronics Research Collaborative (PERC): A strategic partnership between industry, university and government, this entity aims to strengthen and expand the region’s capabilities in printed and flexible electronics.  

    • Radiation Laboratory: Provides controlled radiation environments and analytical measurement services to government organizations and to industry. The laboratory provides facilities for proton, neutron and gamma environments.

    • Raytheon-UMass Lowell Research Institute (RURI): A joint research facility focused on the advancement of innovative technologies including flexible and printed electronics, RURI serves as a launchpad for collaboration and learning among UMass Lowell faculty and students and Raytheon employees. It is located on the fourth floor of the Saab ETIC.

    • Science of Heterogeneous Additive Printing of 3D Materials (SHAP3D) Industry University Cooperative Research Center: This National Science Foundation I/UCRC, in collaboration with Georgia Tech and UConn, focuses on the design of new materials and methods for 3D printing.

    • Structural Dynamics & Acoustic Systems Laboratory (SDASL): The lab focuses on research related to analytical and experimental problems in the areas of structural and acoustic systems. The lab is well equipped to conduct structural dynamic, acoustical, modal analysis, and control system experiments and modeling.

    • UML Research Institute: With its location just outside the gates of Hanscom Air Force Base, UMLRI is leading a focused initiative linking our core competencies to Department of Defense requirements, providing rapid and innovative solutions for defense and commercial customers.

    • Wind Energy: This center has unique expertise and capabilities to conduct research in the advancement of wind turbine science and systems, focusing on wind turbine manufacturing, reliability, energy storage, and design.

    • Wind Energy, Science, Technology and Research (WindSTAR) Industry University Cooperative Research Center: This National Science Foundation I/UCRC, in collaboration with UT Dallas, focuses solving the pressing needs of the wind industry, including composites and blade manufacturing, foundations and towers, structural health monitoring, and energy storage and grid integration.

Working with Us

If you are interested in working with UMass Lowell, we encourage you to reach out directly to faculty in the desired area of expertise.  If you are interested in seeing available technologies for licensure, please visit the Office of Technology Commercialization.

The Francis College of Engineering is a proud member of the Consortium for System of Systems Security (SOSSEC).

Consortium for System of Systems Security (SOSSEC)