About Us

UMaine Composites Center logoAbout Us

The University of Maine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center is a world-leading, interdisciplinary center for research, education, and economic development encompassing material sciences, manufacturing, and engineering of composites and structures. The Center is housed in a 100,000 ft2 ISO 17025-accredited testing laboratory with more than 150 full and part time personnel.

Since 1996, the Center has: financially supported more than 2,000 positions for undergraduate and graduate students; served more than 500 industrial and governmental clients, including 150 Maine companies; formed 14 spinoff companies through licensing agreements of patents or trade secrets, and received more than 40 national and international awards.

The Center has gained national and international reputation from major research and development projects such as the VolturnUS 1:8, the first grid-connected floating offshore wind turbine in the US and the first in the world made out of concrete and composite materials, the inflatable composite arch bridges “Bridge-in-a-Backpack” technology now approved in the AASHTO Code, the first Modular Ballistic Protection System (MBPS) approved by the US Army to protect troops in tents from blast and ballistic threats, development of coated wood technology for blast and hurricane resistant wood buildings, and the longest carbon-fiber composite vessel built for the US Navy.

The Center is led by its founding Executive Director, Dr. Habib Dagher, P.E. Dr. Dagher is a world-leading advocate for developing advanced structural systems which simultaneously optimize structures, materials, and construction. Dr. Dagher holds more than 25 patents, and has received numerous awards including the 2015 White House Transportation Champion of Change, the Carnegie Foundation Maine Professor of the Year, the Distinguished Maine Professor Award, the highest award given to a faculty member at UMaine, and the American Society of Civil Engineers Charles Pankow Innovation Award. Dr. Dagher earned his Ph.D. in structural engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, as well as two Masters Degrees in Structural engineering and engineering mechanics and joined the University of Maine faculty in 1985.