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Neil McCartney

Neil McCartney

Emeritus NPL Senior Fellow

Current interests

Neil McCartney is an Emeritus Senior Fellow in Materials Modelling. Neil's work on continuum modelling of materials includes:

  • Modelling of proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells, where multi-physics, two phase and multi-scale continuum modelling is considered. Heat and mass transport modelling is based on the principles of continuum thermodynamics.
  • Modelling of multi-layered piezoelectric laminates subject to complex loading involving mechanical, thermal and electrical stimuli. Use of models to develop methodologies for the measurement of piezoelectric properties.
  • Prediction of the effective properties of undamaged composites (particle and fibre reinforced) and of undamaged laminates.
  • Prediction of the initiation and progressive growth of damage in UD fibre reinforced lamina and general symmetric laminates to the point of failure. (A book on this topic is currently being written.)
  • Studying deformation and fracture processes in metals, ceramics, polymers (including multi-layered coatings).
  • Fatigue and creep response of metals, polymers and composites.
  • A key current area of interest is the identification of reliable methods of linking atomistic models to continuum models, including dealing with the significant problems of the meso-scale arising from the presence of vacancies, dislocations and domains.

In the future he would like to extend the work so that the continuum thermodynamical modelling of interacting mechanical, thermal, electric and magnetic phenomena can be applied at the nano- and meso-scales for a range of important industrial applications.


Neil received a BSc, MSc and PhD in Applied Mathematics from Manchester University.
He has since worked at NPL, currently as an NPL Emeritus Senior Fellow, acting as a consultant to the Engineering, Materials and Electrical Science Department, where his work includes polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cell modelling and the modelling of nanostrain in multi-layered piezoelectric systems subject to complex loading involving mechanical, thermal and electric stimulation.
Neil was Visiting Professor in Dept. of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Surrey, March 1995 to 31 Aug. 2010, and Visiting Professor in Centre for Collaborative Research, The University of Tokyo, Japan, 1 Feb. 1999 - 8 May 1999.
He is a Fellow of the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications. He is also a Chartered Mathematician.
He has published 90+ papers in refereed journals, 10+ book chapters.

Selected publications

Email Neil McCartney

  • Prediction of dislocation formation in epitaxial multi-layers subject to in-plane loading
    Phil. Mag. 85, 1575-1610 (2005)
  • Modelling scale failure in tension (fracture and spallation)
    Materials at High Temperatures, 22, No.1/2, 167-177 (2005)
  • Energy methods for fatigue damage modelling of laminates
    Composites Science and Technology, 68, 2601-2615 (2008)
  • Maxwell's far-field methodology applied to the prediction of properties of multi-phase isotropic particulate composites
    L.N.McCartney and A.Kelly
    Proc. Roy. Soc. A464, pp 423-446 (2008)
  • Maxwell's far-field methodology predicting elastic properties of multiphase composites reinforced with aligned transversely isotropic spheroids
    Phil. Mag. 90 (31/32) (2010)
    doi: 10.1080 /14786431003752142
  • Modelling nonlinear behaviour in polymers for design using finite element analysis
    G.D.Dean, L.N.McCartney, R.Mera and J.M.Urquhart
    Polymer Engineering & Science, 51, 2210-2219 (2011)
    doi: 10.1002/pen.21993
  • A novel method of determining residual stress distributions in plates using the incremental slitting method
    S.J.Roberts, L.N.McCartney and W.R.Broughton
    J. Strain Analysis, 46(4), 280-297 (2011)
  • Energy-based delamination theory for biaxial loading in presence of thermal stresses
    L.N.McCartney, A.Blazquez and F.Paris
    Comp. Sci. Tech., 72, 1753-1766 (2012)
  • Derivations of energy-based modelling for ply cracking in general symmetric laminates
    J. Comp. Mater. 47 (20-21), 2641-2673 (2013)
  • Analytical models for sliding interfaces associated with fibre fractures or matrix cracks
    Computers, Materials, Continua, 35(3), 183-227 (2013)
  • Methods for determining piezoelectric properties of thin epitaxial films: Theoretical Foundations
    L.N.McCartney, L.Wright, M.G.Cain, J.Crain, G.J.Martyna and D.M.Newns
    Journal of Applied Physics, 116, 014104 (2014)
    doi: 10.1063/1.4885058
  • Electrode size and boundary condition independent measurement of the effective piezoelectric coefficient of thin films
    M. Stewart, S. Lepadatu, L. N. McCartney, M. G. Cain, L. Wright, J. Crain, D. M. Newns and G. J. Martyna
    APL Mat. 3, 026103 (2015)
    doi: 10.1063/1.4907954
  • Micro-level approaches to the modelling of damage in composite materials: generalised plane strain analysis
    L.N. McCartney
    Chapter 13 in Modeling damage, fatigue and failure of composite materials, eds. R. Talreja and J. Varna, Woodhead Publishing, Cambridge, UK (2016)
  • Predicting Properties of Undamaged and Damaged Carbon Fibre Reinforced Composites L.N. McCartney
    L.N. McCartney
    Chapter 16 in The Structural Integrity of Carbon Fiber Composites: Fifty Years of Progress and Achievement of the Science, Development, and Applications, eds. P.W.R. Beaumont and C. Soutis, Springer.
  • Comparison of variational and generalized plane strain approaches for matrix cracking in general symmetric laminates
    M. Hajikazemi & L.N. McCartney
    Int. J. Damage Mechanics, 27(4), 507-540 (2017)
    doi:  /10.1177/1056789516685381
  • Theory of variational stress transfer in general symmetric composite laminates containing non-uniformly spaced ply cracks
    M. Hajikazemi, L.N. McCartney, W. Van Paepegem and M.H. Sadr
    Composites Part A, 107, 374-386 (2018)