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Stanley Hirschi
Professor of Physics

S.B.  Applied Mathematics, MIT (1964)
DAAD Fellow, Göttingen (1964-66)
Ph.D. Physics, MIT (1971)

Contact Information
222 Dow Science, Dept. of Physics
Phone: 989.774.3329; Fax:  989.774.2697
e-mail: stanley.hirschi [at]

Professional Experience
Central Michigan University, Department of Physics, since 1976. Department chair 1991-2006.  Emeritus since August 2014.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Staff Scientist, Education Research Center, 1971-73 and Department of Physics, 1973-76.

Current/most recent semester schedule.  Course information for enrolled students is available on Blackboard.

Research Fields
Rheology--Experimental and computational characterization of fluids under stress.

Electro- and magneto-rheology.

Dielectric spectroscopy.

Current Research Projects
Rheology is the study of the flow and deformation of a fluid under an applied force or stress. Air, water, paint, honey, mayonnaise, tooth paste, Silly Putty, molten plastic, and asphalt are all fluids, that is, they all can be made to flow, but they exhibit a huge range of properties. Knowing about the flow properties of materials (viscosity, elasticity, etc.) is important for many industrial and engineering applications. These sometimes exotic properties of a fluid must depend in a fundamental way on its structure at the atomic and molecular scale, so by examining the fluid’s response to stresses we can learn something about its structure. It is possible to further exploit this structure-property relation by using computer simulation techniques to predict the flow properties of new materials before they are actually made, thus shortening substantially the development time needed to bring modern materials to market.

Materials of current interest involve nanocomposites, polysaccharide solutions, and food rheology related to dysphagia.  

Prior funding sources included NSF, ARL, CMU and several industrial partners.

Selected Publications
N. Almeida, L. Rakesh, A. Mueller and S. Hirschi, "The effect of salt on gelation of Konjac Glucomannan," in review, Carbohydrate Polymers.

N. Almeida, A. Mueller, S. Hirschi and L. Rakesh, "Rheological studies of polysaccharides for skin scaffolds," J. Biomed. Mater. Res. Part A, 102A (2014), 1510-1517. Online at

N. Almeida, S. Hirschi, A. Mueller and L. Rakesh, "Viscoelastic Properties of κ-Carrageenan in Saline Solution," J. Therm. Anal. Cal., 102 (2010) 647-652. Online at

M. Lalko, L. Rakesh, S. Hirschi, "Rheology of Polycarbonate Reinforced With and Without Functionalized Single-walled Carbon Nanotubes" J. Therm. Anal. Cal., 95 (2009) 203-206. Online at

E. Don Almeida, S. Hirschi, A. Mueller, L. Rakesh,  “Computer Simulation and Rheological Study of Xanthan Gum” SIAM Conference on Computational Science and Engineering, Costa Mesa, CA (2007)

M. Kujawski, L. Rakesh, S. Hirschi, B. Fahlman, E. Don Almeida, N. Bullard, J Hiller, “Steady Shear and Linear Viscoelastic Properties of Melt Mixed and Injection Molded Samples of Polypropylene, Polystyrene, and Polyethylene Nanocomposites with Carbon Black, Vapor Grown Carbon Fibers, and Carbon Nanotubes” Proc. IMECE2006-15814, ASME, Chicago, (2006)

Recent  publicationsHere

Picture below: AR2000 rheometer fitted with Helmholz coils for magnetorheology

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Source: Miller, J; Hirschi, S.; Rakesh, L., "The Development of Magnetorheological Capabilities, SRCEE-2007.

Lab Website
Under construction.