Erik G. Herbert

Erik G. Herbert
"You always have a choice and it always makes a difference."
—Rick Dunn


  • Adjunct Associate Professor, Materials Science and Engineering
  • PhD, Materials Science and Engineering, University of Tennessee


  • Postdoctoral Research Assistant, Department of Materials Science & Engineering, University of Tennessee, 2009
  • Visiting Scientist, Center for Research on Adaptive Nanostructures and Nanodevices (CRANN) at Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland, 2009
  • Assistant Research Professor, Department of Materials Science & Engineering, University of Tennessee, 2010–2015
  • Full-Time Guest, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, 2010–2015
  • Industry: Nanoinstruments (later acquired by the MTS Systems Corporation in 1998 and then Agilent Technologies in 2008), 1997–2009

Our small-scale mechanical testing labs and research programs are rapidly being developed. Learn more about our instrumentation and capabilities.

Links of Interest

Teaching Interests

  • Introduction to Materials Science and Engineering
  • Mechanical Behavior of Materials
  • Nanoindentation and Contact Mechanics

Research Interests

  • State-of-the-art ambient, non-ambient, in-operando and in-situ mechanical behavior of materials at nanometer and micrometer length scales
  • Development and implementation of novel small-scale mechanical testing methodologies for metals, ceramics, polymers, composites, semiconductors, biomaterials and structured devices
  • Mechanical characterization of unique materials & systems such as but not limited to bulk materials, individual phases, thin films, coatings, modified surfaces, micro-pillars, fibers, membranes, hydrogels, MEMS, microfluidic and micromachined devices
  • Small-scale mechanical testing in inert atmospheres and over the temperature range from -20 to 100 degrees C (to 1100 degrees C at the Joint Institute for Advanced Materials)
  • Measuring the components of the complex modulus of small volumes of viscoelastic solids
  • Predicting uniaxial stress-strain curves from nanoindentation data
  • High-speed property mapping of interfaces, multi-phase alloys and heat affected zones
  • Multi-axis contact experiments that enable manipulation of the state of stress
  • Measuring residual stress in free-standing thin films