The Institute of Structural Mechanics and Design deals with theoretic fundamentals and applied research and development, carried out by the work groups Methods, Materials, Technologies and Energy. This is done in cooperation with partners from science and research, the industry and administration. Fundamental research and applied research and development take up equal shares and are synergetically interlinked.

The research activities are oriented toward the material and construction spanning approach of the institute, and are not limited to buildings, building parts and materials; but reflect the entire spectrum of engineering.

With regards to building structural mechanics and building dynamics they encompass modelling of load-bearing structures to record their structural and dynamic behaviour, mechanic modeling and simulation of the deformation, damage and failure behaviour of materials, building parts and load-bearing structures, the development of new materials and their application in the building sector including safety theoretical considerations, structural aspects of environmental protection, energy-related questions about the construction, simulation and experimentation of shock, explosion and contact, the simulation and measurement of the vibration behaviour of load-bearing structures as well as structural building with glass and polymer mechanics.

With regards to the building envelope they encompass the development of skeletal structures all the way to massive constructions as well as their back coupling into the overall building structure and the energetic performance. Current focus lies on the integration of building services and the building envelope; evaluation of the construction against the background of material-bound energy and the here from resulting new conception of constructions and joining techniques as well as the material and construction development using the example of additive manufacturing.

The different scientific areas are horizontally linked, and the work groups work interdisciplinary; enabling them to react to changing research questions and contexts. Through cooperation with other institutions and own investments, the Institute of Structural Mechanics and Design has access to various experimental facilities and owns a broad set of tools to conduct experiments and measurements, in-house as well as on-site.