Professor Rotta Loria welcomes you to the Mechanics and Energy Laboratory of Northwestern

We work at the interface of the fields of geomechanics, structural mechanics and energy to solve critical questions and problems related to three interconnected scopes:

  • The understanding of the mechanical behavior of geomaterials under multiphysyical conditions that are associated, for example, to energy production and storage, and the modification of the properties and structure of such materials for engineered applications;
  • The analysis and design of novel multifunctional geostructures that can serve the built and natural environments in a variety of roles, such as structural support, energy supply and hazard prevention means;
  • The conceptual development of geosystems and urban networks wherein the subsurface is employed as a new spatial, material and resourceful medium for the sustainability and development of human activity with a limited impact on the environment.

To address the previous challenges, we perform theoretical and experimental research activities that address a multitude of scales: from the scale of the particles that constitute the investigated materials to the scale of cities. The ultimate goal of our activities is to achieve groundbreaking results for the advancement of science and engineering, and the improvement of our lives.

The employment of our theories and results aims to develop new (i) materials, (ii) technologies and (iii) systems that allow for the achievement of efficient energy harvesting and storage applications, the development of resilient structures and infrastructures, the prevention or mitigation of natural hazards, and the establishment of built environments that can adapt their response to meet human activity needs.