About Us

UMaine Composites Center logoThe 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
  • 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
  • The development of coated wood technology for blast and hurricane resistant wood buildings
  • 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, which is the highest award given to a faculty member at UMaine
  • 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.