Philip LeDuc is the William J. Brown Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. In his lab, he works at the intersection of mechanical engineering and biology by envisioning cells and molecules as systems that can be investigated with some of the same fundamental approaches used on machines such as planes and automobiles looking for unifying principles. These systems range from mammalian cells to microorganisms to developmental biology systems and apply principles from mechanical engineering fields to understand how these principles may apply across diverse nature-based systems.

In the energy domain, LeDuc is focused on algae and bacterial fuel cells. His lab conducts basic science and applied research in crossing over mechanical engineering approaches including solid mechanics, fluid mechanics, control theory, etc. with biological systems ranging from algae to artificial cells to developmental biology.

He has received the National Science Foundation CAREER award, George Tallman Ladd Research Award, Russell V. Trader Career Faculty Fellow, Benjamin Richard Teare Teaching Award, “Professor of the Year” as voted by the senior class, MARC Minority Faculty Mentor Award, and Beckman Foundation Young Investigator Award. He is a member of the National Research Council Roundtable on Biomedical Engineering Materials and Applications (BEMA), and a Fellow of the Biomedical Engineering Society, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, the American Institute for Medical & Biological Engineering, and the International Academy of Medical and Biological Engineering (IAMBE).

338 Roberts Engineering Hall
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Philip LeDuc
The LeDuc Lab
Center for the Mechanics and Engineering of Cellular Systems
Selected Publications
Personal site

The Intersection of Mechanical Engineering, Biology & Medicine

Merging Computational Design & Biology


2009 Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University

1995 MS, North Carolina State University

1993 BS, Vanderbilt University

Media mentions


Leduc elected Fellow of IAMBE

MechE’s Philip Leduc has been nominated and elected for Fellowship by the International Academy of Medical and Biological Engineering (IAMBE).

CMU Engineering

Predictive placentas: Using AI to protect mothers’ future pregnancies

In partnership with UPMC, Carnegie Mellon researchers developed a machine learning approach for examining placenta samples to determine if mothers are at risk for complications in future pregnancies.

Mechanical Engineering

Reassess, recalibrate, and transform

Mechanical Engineering students and faculty adapted with innovation and agility to finish the spring 2020 semester during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Advanced Science News

LeDuc’s research on microstructures featured

An image of MechE’s Philip LeDuc’s research on microstructures was featured in Advanced Science News’ “This month in pictures” for April 2020.

The Piper

LeDuc receives Lazarus Award

MechE’s Philip LeDuc has recieved the 2020 Barbara Lazarus Award for Graduate Student and Junior Faculty Mentoring. Named after a beloved member of the CMU community, the award celebrates those who foster an inviting and nurturing environment for graduate students and young faculty at the university.

Beckman Foundation

LeDuc joins Beckman Foundation’s Scientific Advisory Council

MechE’s Philip LeDuc has joined the Beckman Foundation’s Scientific Advisory Council. LeDuc received the Beckman young Investigator Award in 2005 and has since served the foundation in many roles, including as a member of the Executive Committee of the Arnold O. Beckman Postdoctoral Fellows Program. In his new role, he will advise and review the Foundation’s program and award winners for the Board of Directors, as well as suggest changes or new avenues for funding.

CMU Engineering

Giving robots a “nose”

A team of CMU researchers are developing soft robots that sense and respond to chemicals.

CMU Engineering

The root of the matter

A team from the College of Engineering has used the natural architecture of the mangrove tree to unlock a better method of desalination.

Mechanical Engineering

Collaborators’ creation reveals how mechanical forces control genes

A LeDuc/Minden collaboration in mesofluidics—a medium-sized twist on microfluidics—was featured on the cover of the journal Lab on a Chip. The research team merged expertise in biomechanics, biology, and engineering to develop a new device.

The College of Engineering faculty award winners announced

The College of Engineering has named this year’s faculty award winners, selected by the College of Engineering Faculty Awards Committee. Congratulations to the winners.

CMU Engineering

A 3-D approach to stop cancer in its tracks

Although cell analysis traditionally occurs in a plastic petri dish, researchers created a 3-D model scientists can use to analyze the complexities of cancer cells in an environment that more closely mimics the human body.

Mechanical Engineering

Mousetrap tinkerers

Students tinker with household objects like mousetraps and rubber bands to create vehicle prototypes for a final challenge in MechE 101.