Kenji Shimada is the Theodore Ahrens Professor of Engineering in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. His research and teaching interests are in computer modeling and simulation for product design, analysis, and manufacturing. His research work has focused on geometric computing, emphasizing how to generate, represent, and manipulate geometric information.

Shimada’s recent projects include: physically-based mesh generation; non-manifold geometric modeling; automated shape synthesis using physically-based models; feature-based, dimension-driven surface and solid modeling; collision detection between moving objects; robot motion teaching using interactive computer graphics; and realistic image synthesis using radiosity calculation.

One of Shimada’s current research projects is the closer integration of design and analysis, e.g., automatic conversion of a CAD model to an analysis model, and advanced issues in mesh generation, such as a mesh conversion, anisotropic meshing, adaptive remeshing, and feature-based meshing.

A high-quality mesh is essential in many computer application areas such as FEM and BEM analysis, geometric modeling, and computer graphics. Shimada has developed a new physically-based meshing method, called Bubble Mesh, inspired by observations of efficient packing patterns in nature. The method has been applied in industry in the areas of automobile crash simulation, sheet metal forming simulation, and computer graphics.

Another research project covers new geometric design methodologies such as energy minimizing surface modeling and non-manifold geometric modeling.

These research targets address industry’s immediate and long-term needs for increased design efficiency, higher product quality, and manufacturing cost reduction.

B06 Scaife Hall

Using a Smart Drone without GPS for Detecting Moving Objects


1993 Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering (with Business Minor), Massachusetts Institute of Technology

1985 MS, Precision Machinery Engineering, University of Tokyo

1983 BS, Precision Machinery Engineering, University of Tokyo

Media mentions

CMU Engineering

One student’s ambition leads Carnegie Mellon to sponsor first ever clinical trial

After four years, Erica Martelly’s dream of testing custom CPAP masks on real patients came to fruition in Carnegie Mellon University’s first ever clinical trial.

CMU Engineering

Drones CAN navigate dynamic environments

Novel drone navigation technology developed by Kenji Shimada was put to the test in an active Japanese tunnel construction site, enabling drones to approximate where a collision may occur and prevent it.

CMU Engineering

Virtual reality partners become real world neighbors

In July, the YKK AP Technologies Lab opened at Mill 19. Their focus on the development of a virtual factory is well aligned with the digital twin work underway at the Manufacturing Futures Institute.

USGlass News Network

YKK AP’s new research lab works to advance job site safety, productivity, and quality

The opening celebration of YKK AP’s research lab at Mill 19 included demonstrations by MechE’s Kenji Shimada’s research team, which is developing technology to solve key issues in the architectural products industry.

Mechanical Engineering

Student recognized for academic excellence, service, and leadership

Jocelyn Su, senior studying mechanical engineering and robotics, was recognized by the Engineers Society of Western Pennsylvania.

USGlass News Network

YKK AP to research feasibility of virtual factory at Mill 19

YKK AP Technologies Lab, who has partnered with MechE’s Kenji Shimada since 2020, has signed a five-year lease for space at Mill 19. They hope to develop a “virtual factory” that simulates engineering and supply chains in a virtual space for construction, glass, and fenestrations industries.

Mechanical Engineering

At home with research

Despite the coronavirus shutdown, researchers and students were creative about continuing their work and joining the fight against COVID-19.

CMU Engineering

Installing windows with help from robots

Kenji Shimada is working on a collaboration with YKK AP to create high-tech window installation robots.

CMU Engineering

Molding masks against coronavirus

Kenji Shimada and Erica Martelly team up for the America Makes Fit to Face Challenge, creating one of the top two designs in the competition.

San Francisco Chronicle

Shimada quoted on robots

MechE’s Kenji Shimada was quoted in the San Francisco Chronicle about robots.

America Makes

Carnegie Mellon team wins top design

MechE’s Kenji Shimada and Erica Martelly’s face mask design, Moldable Masks, were named a top design in America Makes’ “Fit to Face Challenge.”

Mechanical Engineering

Making innovation count

Undergraduate research support empowers Miguel Martinez to engineer surgical training solutions.