Materials Selection Process for Engineering Designs     New!


I.D.# WB1520Printable Description
Duration: 8 Hours
Upcoming open enrollment dates being scheduled. Please check back.

Any product is a collection of materials that have been manipulated into various shapes to form the components and joints used within the product. In fact, up to 70% of the cost to make a product is due to its materials. Therefore, getting the materials right will have a big impact on the success of a product. However, many organizations have difficulties getting the materials right and end up facing problems such as repeating product verification tests because sub-optimum materials fail, product failures associated with materials that degrade too fast, components that cost too much or are difficult to manufacture, suppliers incapable of providing materials and components that consistently meet requirements, and low manufacturing yields. These problems result in increased costs, missed schedules, and unhappy customers. A major reason for these problems is that design teams do not use a methodical approach for selecting materials.

This eight-hour web seminar covers the engineering process for selecting materials to use for components and joints within a product. Applying the process enables selection of materials that optimize product performance, reliability and cost, while helping keep projects on schedule. The topics covered include identifying materials selection criteria, selecting candidate materials, and evaluating materials to determine their suitability. Considerations include design for reliability and design for manufacturability. Case studies will be used to reinforce the concepts taught.

Note: Because this content is focused on product design, discussion of the science of specific materials is outside the scope of this course. Examples used will be based on input from participants about products on which they are actively working or have developed in the past.

Learning Objectives
By participating in this web seminar, you will be able to:

  • Explain the steps for the materials selection process
  • Describe the categories of product design requirements that must be considered for materials selection
  • Identify materials selection criteria based on the product design requirements
  • Explain how to identify potential materials to use for a component or joint
  • Identify the evaluations needed to determine whether materials are suitable for an application

Who Should Attend
This course will be beneficial to design engineers (mechanical and electrical) of all levels who select materials to use in products and to program engineers who have to plan product development schedules. This includes engineers within any industry supported by SAE. The information will enable design teams to more quickly assess risks to meeting development schedules and budget and improve the probability of developing products that meet performance, reliability, and cost requirements. The course will also be beneficial to engineering managers, program managers, and manufacturing engineers.

Topical Outline
Session 1

  • Materials Selection Process Steps
  • Iterative Process and Trade-offs
  • Design Hierarchy Between Component Physical Construction and Materials
  • Design Requirements Categories
  • Identify Product, Sub-assembly, and Component Requirements for the Different Design Requirements Categories
  • Identify Component Materials Selection Criteria
Session 2
  • Identify Potential Materials
  • Risk Management
Session 3
  • Identify and Perform Tests to Evaluate the Materials
    • Properties, microstructure, composition, manufacturing defects
    • Performance
    • Reliability
    • Ease of use in manufacturing and assembly processes
Session 4
  • Determining Whether Materials Satisfy Selection Criteria
  • Making the Final Choice

Instructor(s): Michael Pfeifer
Michael PfeiferMichael Pfeifer is President of Industrial Metallurgists, LLC and is a consultant in failure analysis and metallurgy. Previously, he worked for 13 years at Motorola as a manufacturing engineer in an integrated circuit factory and as a design/quality/cost reduction engineer for automotive electronics. At Motorola, Mike learned and applied the engineering techniques required to design and manufacture great products. He is author of the book, Materials Enabled Designs: The Materials Engineering Perspective to Product Design and Manufacturing, which discusses how to make design and manufacturing decisions in order to optimize the materials used in a product so that the product meets performance, reliability, and cost requirements. Mike received a B.S. and M.S. in Metallurgical Engineering from University of Illinois and a Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from Northwestern University.

Registration Information
Registration for this live web seminar is available on a per-person basis, similar to purchasing a seat in a classroom. Participants attend an online session from work or home; anywhere with a PC with internet access (at least 56K) and a telephone. The fee includes one connection to the conference calls (toll free telephone number provided for U.S. and select countries*) and assigned personal ID number; one connection to SAE's online training center (via WebEx); and access to a secure course in the SAE Learning Center that contains the presentations, class session recordings, supplemental materials, and assignments.

Registrations will be accepted until 5:00 p.m. the day before the start of the web seminar, but early registration is encouraged to allow for pre-course set-up and instructions.

*Global toll-free telephone numbers are provided for many countries outside the U.S., but are limited to those on the WebEx call-in toll-free number list. Check here to see if your country has a global call-in toll free telephone number for this web seminar. If your country is not listed, you may still connect using the US/Canada Call-in toll number or Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP).

Although WebEx Training Manager will automatically launch when you join the web seminar, you or your system administrator are encouraged to download the plug-in in advance to help ensure successful setup. Click here, then follow the onscreen instructions.

NOTE: The course presentation will be recorded and made available for 30 days to those who register by the deadline.

Multiple Seat Discount - Does your company have a group of employees who need this course? Register one individual at the appropriate member or list price, then register additional employees at half off the list price. Registration by phone with SAE Customer Service is required to take advantage of this discount. Register all individuals at the same time or mention the confirmation number for the first registrant. The offer is good for only the same web seminar offering. All registrants will receive a personal account and opportunity for CEUs.

Can't attend on the date/time above? The presentation will be recorded and made available for 30 days to those who are registered, regardless of availability for the live session. If you still need to cancel, transfer to a future offering, or designate a substitute, a full refund is issued if you notify SAE at least 14 days prior to the web seminar start date. If less than 14 days prior, please contact SAE Customer Service to discuss options*. NOTE: SAE reserves the right to cancel web seminar and cannot be held responsible for related costs incurred by registrants other than the registration fee.

*Cancellation penalties may apply.

Fees: $640.00 ; SAE Members: $512.00 - $576.00

.8 CEUs
You must complete all course contact hours and successfully pass the learning assessment to obtain CEUs.

For additional information, contact SAE Customer Service at 1-877-606-7323 (724/776-4970 outside the U.S. and Canada) or at

For a quote on bringing this course to your company site, fill out a Corporate Learning Solutions Request Form