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).

214 Scaife Hall
Google Scholar
Philip LeDuc
The LeDuc Lab
Center for the Mechanics and Engineering of Cellular Systems
Selected Publications
Personal site

Powering the Cities of the Future with Renewable Energy

The Intersection of Mechanical Engineering, Biology & Medicine

Merging Computational Design & Biology


1999 Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University

1995 MS, North Carolina State University

1993 BS, North Carolina State University

Media mentions

CMU Engineering

Engineering students apply mechanics to food

Engineering students were back in the kitchen this semester to learn how the same mechanics that apply to airplanes and automobiles relate to the mechanics of cells in the foods we eat.

Additive Manufacturing Media

Ozdoglanar and LeDuc speak to Additive Manufacturing Media

The video of a new 3D ice printing method developed by Carnegie Mellon engineers is magical according to Additive Manufacturing Media. Read about how mechanical engineering faculty Burak Ozdoganlar and Philip LeDuc and Ph.D. student Akash Garg are printing sacrificial structures that are as small as blood vessels.

Mechanical Engineering

Review of microfluidic tools shows flow of innovation

Collaborative research between doctoral students from Biological Sciences and Mechanical Engineering yields findings published in Nature Communications.

CMU Engineering

3D printing ice

3D printed ice isn’t as magical as in the movie Frozen, but it has wonderful potential for biomedical engineering and advanced manufacturing.

CMU Engineering

Modeling light for solar panel placement in urban settings

Solar panel installation in cities requires setups tailored to the complex geometry of urban spaces that provide the most direct sunlight to each panel. Among the processes for designing the most efficient setup for solar panels is shadow modeling.


LeDuc’s work on desalination featured in newsletter

MechE’s Phil LeDuc and alumnus Adam Wood’s work on using bread to remove salt from water was featured in Axios’ science newsletter on February 3.

CMU Engineering

When biology influences technology: using bread to desalinate water

Though water covers two-thirds of our planet’s surface, water scarcity remains a persistent issue. Mechanical Engineering’s Philip LeDuc and Adam Wood have an unconventional solution: bread.


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.