Materials engineers design, select, fabricate and evaluate materials for use in engineering applications. Since everything we use is made of materials, materials engineers serve as the foundation for many engineering advances. Materials engineers use science and engineering principles to develop the smallest building blocks of manufacturing, experiment with sensory devices and much more. Understanding the underlying science of materials is essential to designing new and improved engineered materials. Thus, materials specialists combine engineering problem solving with scientific curiosity.
Materials engineers address the science and technology of producing materials that have properties and shapes suitable for practical use. These materials include metals, ceramics, polymers (plastics), and their combinations (composites). The activities of these engineers range from materials production to the design, development and processing of materials used in aerospace, transportation, electronics, energy conversion and biomedical systems, and virtually any material one can dream up.