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Mechanics of Interfaces and Adhesion


God made the bulk; the surface was invented by the devil …”- Wolfgang Pauli. We are devil's advocate trying to shape properties of layered materials by design of surfaces and interfaces between constituents. Can we make a layered material more compliant or stiff only by design of interfaces? Can damage tolerance be improved? Can layered material detect own flaws? When material fail?…why? and how? Answers will allow safer, stronger, lighter or smart materials to be developed.

Research topics:


Failure in layered and laminated materials

Interfacial fracture and damage mechanics across different length-, and time scales. Durability, damage tolerance and reliability of layered materials.

Design/tuning/control of interface properties

Design of crack growth paths by local modifications of surfaces and geometry of components, hierarchical interfaces. These approaches are linked with impact of quality of surfaces, interfaces and geometry on load carrying capacities of materials and structures.

Physics and mechanics of crack propagation

Fracture along homo- and heterogeneous interfaces. Effects of surface topography on fracture energy and work of adhesion. 

Crack onset and crack arrest

Material and geometrical non-linearity effects pre- and post- failure including crack front pinning-depinning transition studies.

Multiscale modelling, design and evaluation

Layered materials are by very nature multiscale. The structural parameters fully rely on local phenomena taking places at or near the interfaces. Correct design requires profund understanding of all phenomena from surface morphologies (e.g. roughness), surface composition (e.g. atomic structure, resultant wettability), geometry of interface regions up to geometry and loading acting on the structures. Here, we help in developing experimental, analytical and numerical tools leading to full understanding how each scale contributes to the performance.

Dry adhesion

Nature inspired mechanisms e.g. the famous gecko feet, of controlling apparent adhesion. Adhesion control through geometrical and material (incl. hierarchical) design of surfaces and interfaces enabling controlled attachement/disattachement processes. 


  • Adhesive bonding
  • Composite materials
  • Multimaterials through additive manufacturing
  • Soft materials and reversible adhesion
  • Interfaces under harsh environmental conditions

Key Publications

Laboratory for Mechanics and Physics

The important part of activities is taking place in Laboratory for Mechanics and Physics of Solids located on the 5th floor of Navitas building.