Institute of Mechanics
The Institute of Mechanics (IMech) is a leading scientific center with longstanding traditions in fundamental and applied research in the fields of mechanics, robotics, mechatronics, biomechanics and related fields. It participates in the preparation of PhD students and highly qualified specialists, performs expert and innovation activities and directly applies scientific results into practice.
IMech’s main priorities are the development of the Institute’s subject area in line with the global trends in mechanics, the realization of active international scientific cooperation and the participation in European Union trends and guidelines for the development of science.
Brief history of the unit
The Institute of Mechanics is a successor of the Institute of Technical Mechanics (ITM) founded in 1962. Later, the Institute of Mathematics and Mechanics and the Central Laboratory of Biomechanics were created in 1972 on the basis of personnel from the Institute of Technical Mechanics, the Mathematical Institute and the Institute of Water Problems. In 1977, the Central Laboratory of Biomechanics and the mechanics departments of the Institute of Mathematics and Mechanics were incorporated in the Institute of Mechanics and Biomechanics. It was renamed in 1993 to become the Institute of Mechanics. Since 1987, the Institute is housed in its own building. Its first Director, Academician Georgi Brankov, has major merit for the foundation and development of the Institute of Mechanics.
The research and applied activity at the institute develops in 6 main areas:
Mechatronics: modeling the dynamics of multibody systems, development of mechatronic and biomechatronic systems and devices oriented towards the human being; analysis and modelling of the movements of the human body in norm and pathology, development of mechatronic systems for rehabilitation, orthoses and prostheses; robotic systems for micromanipulations with biological cells and for orthopedic surgery; development and study of unmanned mobile platforms; synthesis and production of micro-modular gears; high-performance MEMS sensors for force and displacement measurement.
Fluid Mechanics: development of mathematical fluid models for the study of of new materials, modern production and transport means; study of nonlinear waves in fluids, flows in biofluids and microfluidic flows; theory and practice of complex systems: complex fluid, social and other complex systems in the field of natural sciences and biology and nanocomposite materials.
Mechanics of Deformable Solids: the mechanical behavior of various materials (metals, metallic and non-metallic composites, ceramics, biological tissues) subjected to mechanical impacts is studied; non-destructive testing of materials and constructions based on laser-optical, ultrasonic, electromagnetic and acoustic-emission methods.
Biomechanics: biodynamics, biorheology and biomechanics of environments and processes – study of the mechanical and electrical properties of blood and the formed elements of blood in the conditions of stationary and non-stationary flow. Disorders in hemorheology and hemodynamics by cerebrovascular diseases, macro- and microcirculation, and peripheral circulation in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus are analyzed. Mathematical modelling and numerical simulations in mechanics: modeling and numerical analysis examination of phenomena and processes of modern micro- and nano-technologies and bio-processes.
Physico-chemical mechanics: development of new technologies for the preparation of polymeric micro- and nanocomposites created on the basis of polymeric matrices of different origins and methods for their study. Structural and mechanical studies of high-tech silicate systems: modelling of structural, strength-deformation and technological properties of structural silicate systems, self-recovering composites, application of waste products in the composition of silicate composites and optimization of testing machines. Expert activity in the field of special concrete and mortars.
The results of the research are reflected in publications in authoritative editions and are presented at a number of international and national scientific forums. IMech researchers work on dozens of scientific themes funded by BAS budget, the Science Fund at the Ministry of Education and Science, the National Innovation Fund and international programs. The achieved applied results are protected by dozens of patents and awarded prestigious awards.
The Institute maintains experimental equipment and methods for studying different systems:
The equipment in the open laboratory of experimental mechanics which disposes of unique devices for mechanical, thermal and rheological testing of materials is on a world level.
Robotic devices with rehabilitation and assistive functions (active orthoses, prostheses and exoskeletons) to support and analyze human movements, communication interfaces and virtual reality are designed and developed in the laboratory on rehabilitation robotics and virtual reality experiments.
Laser-optical methods and experimental equipment for measuring displacements and deformations in solids and liquids by speckle interferometry and digital correlation analysis of images;
Devices for measuring and non-destructive testing of the physical and mechanical properties of materials and structures;
Computer system with viscometer for rheological measurements of physiological liquids;
Laboratory equipment testing materials stretch and stress-relaxation studies;
Equipment for testing the mechanical properties of nanomaterials.
There is an educational center for the training of non-destructive control specialists: defectoscopists in the Institute of Mechanics which is part of PhD Training Centre of BAS. It is organized in accordance with the requirements of ISO 25108. The training programs and their requirements are in compliance with the following standards: ISO 25107, BDS EN ISO 9712, EN 4179 and ISO 18436-2.
The Institute of Mechanics is accredited to teach PhD students under the following PhD programs:
- Scientific specialty “Theoretical mechanics”, Professional field: 4. “Natural sciences, mathematics and informatics”
- Scientific specialty “Applied Mechanics”, Professional Field: 4. “Natural Sciences, Mathematics and Informatics”
- Scientific specialty “Mechanics of a deformable body”, Professional field: 4. “Natural sciences, mathematics and informatics”
- Scientific specialty “Fluid Mechanics”, Professional Field: 4. “Natural Sciences, Mathematics and Informatics”
- Scientific specialty “Biomechanics”, Professional field: 4. “Natural sciences, mathematics and informatics”
- Scientific specialty “Mathematical Modelling and Application of Mathematics, Professional Field: 4. “Natural Sciences, Mathematics and Informatics”
- Scientific specialty “Robots and manipulators”, Professional field: 5. “Technical sciences”
- Scientific specialty “Composite Materials Technology”, Professional Field: 5.6 “Materials and Materials Science”.
- Scientific specialty “Building materials, products and technologies”
- Acad. Georgi Bonchev Str., Bl. 3, 1113 Sofia, Bulgaria
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