The Marine Technology Society Houston Section is a strong supporter of the Texas A&M's (TAMU) Ocean Engineering programs. Each year the Section awards a number of scholarships to students, as well as supporting student activities.

TAMU students are encouraged to join the MTS Houston section and to participate in the Section's many events.

The following provides a brief introduction to the Ocean Engineering faculty and the courses offered. For more information, please contact

Head, Ocean Engineering Program
Texas A&M Environmental
Ocean and Water Resources Division
Department of Civil Engineering
Texas A&M University
College Station, TX 78943-3136
Phone: 409.845.4515
Tel: 409.862.1542


Environmental, Ocean and Water Resources Division

Department of Civil Engineering Texas A&M University

Texas A&M University is the oldest public institution of higher learning in the state of Texas with an enrollment of approximately 43,000. Located on more than 5,000 acres in the university town of College Station, its main campus is within easy reach of the state’s largest cities – Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, Austin, and Fort Worth. Tuition, fees, and cost of living compare favorably with other major universities in the United States. The College of Engineering at Texas A&M has one of the largest student populations in the nation. Approximately 1,550 students are enrolled in the Department of Civil Engineering, including 360 graduate students. The Ocean Engineering Program has approximately 120 undergraduate students and 50 graduate students. Ocean Engineering is the application of basic engineering principles to the design, construction, planning, and management of engineered systems that operate within the marine environment. Ocean engineering is a hybrid technical area utilizing techniques from many branches of engineering. Typical application areas involving ocean engineers include: offshore and coastal structures, mooring systems, submersible vehicles, underwater acoustics, underwater construction, offshore petroleum recovery, dredging, monitoring of the ocean environment, man-in- the-sea operations, search and salvage, port and harbor design, offshore pipelines, instrumentation, and development of underwater systems and ocean energy resources.


Texas A&M University offers both undergraduate and graduate degree programs in ocean engineering. The undergraduate degree program leads to the bachelor of science degree in ocean engineering. The graduate degree programs include course-work leading to the master of science, master of engineering, doctor of engineering, and doctor of philosophy degrees in ocean engineering. Students entering the graduate degree program often possess widely varied engineering backgrounds. When- ever possible, allowances are made for their special interests. However, each graduate student is expected to become well versed in the appropriate support disciplines, particularly mathematics and hydro-mechanics. Depending upon the particular degree program and the student’s interests, the student will be expected to achieve reasonable competence in the principal areas of sediment trans- port, wave mechanics, offshore structures, estuary and coastal engineering, dredging and/or mining processes, or naval architecture. The graduate program is designed to provide students with a knowledge of engineering in the ocean environment and to establish a base for ocean engineering research. In addition to the areas of study available in the undergraduate program, advanced courses are given in the fields of hydro-mechanics, oceanography, mathematics, coastal engineering, estuary hydrodynamics, offshore structures, marine foundations, marine dredging, port and harbor design, and numerical methods in ocean engineering.


Research facilities for the ocean engineering program are located in the Hydromechanics Laboratories, Civil Engineering Laboratory Building, and Offshore Technology Research Center on the main campus of Texas A&M. Equipment housed within these laboratories includes the following:

  • Three-dimensional deep water wave basin
  • Two long two-dimensional wave channels
  • Three-dimensional shallow water wave basin
  • Long towing tank
  • Two variable slope open channel flumes
  • Dredge pump test loop
  • Automatic data acquisition systems
  • Laser and Acoustic Doppler Anemometers

The Texas A&M University System also has campuses at Galveston and Corpus Christi which provide field research opportunities. These campuses have their own faculty and students with a host of equipment for field experiments. They provide excellent opportunities for ocean engineering students wishing to focus on field research. Students also have access to computer equipment ranging from PCs to workstations to CRAY Supercomputers.


Offshore Technology Research Center

The Offshore Technology Research Center is a joint venture between the University of Texas at Austin and Texas A&M University. It was founded in 1988 to undertake basic engineering research to support economical resource development in deep offshore waters. Research is performed in three major research thrust areas: Fluid/Structure Interactions, Materials/Structural Integrity, and Seafloor/Foundation Engineering. One of the primary missions of the Offshore Technology Research Center is to provide a strong educational program related to offshore technology, including the allied branches of science and engineering. The Center is committed to providing students with cross-disciplinary team research experience, industrial interaction, and an integrated engineering systems approach to the field of offshore technology. These educational goals are accomplished through active student involvement in the research programs of the Center, enhancement of the instructional program, the development of instructional materials, and a broad educational outreach program.

The Center for Dredging Studies

The Center for Dredging Studies was established in 1968 as a result of conferences held between educators, representatives of the dredging industry, manufacturers, and officials at Texas A&M University. The Center is part of the Department of Civil Engineering and the Texas Engineering Experiment Station and is supported by gifts and research grants from the dredging industry and the government. In addition to research and industrial testing, the Center’s activities include teaching university courses and providing annual seminars and short courses concerning advances in dredging engineering technology.

WES Graduate Institute

The Ocean Engineering Program is a partner with the Waterways Experiment Station Graduate Institute with approximately six students from the Corps of Engineers attending the program every two years. These students study at Texas A&M and at WES and receive their graduate degree from the Ocean Engineering Program. About four or five visiting faculty are appointed from WES each year.

Center for Texas Shores and Beaches

Established by the state legislature in 1993 in recognition of the state’s eroding shoreline, the Center focuses research on the erosion problem. The Center is an entity consisting of the capabilities at the Galveston, Corpus Christi, and College Station campuses.


Arctic Offshore Engineering OCEN 620

Arctic and sub-arctic cold regions engineering; ice mechanics, sea ice formation, material properties and ice forces; limit load concepts, probabilistic methods, offshore structures; islands, mobile and fixed platforms, new concepts and optimal design.

Dynamics of Ocean Vehicles OCEN 630

Dynamics and stability of motion of immersed and floating structures and ocean vehicles; maneuverability and control; behavior of ocean vehicles and stationary platforms in waves. Design considerations leading to motion reduction; applications to surface vessels, submersibles and drilling rigs.

Ocean Wave Mechanics OCEN 671

Wave theory and applications to engineering problems; linear and nonlinear theories of regular gravity waves; wave proper- ties and transformation in shoaling water; spectral analysis of irregular waves; forecasting, hindcasting and theoretical spectra.

Coastal Engineering OCEN 672

Effects of waves on coastal structures; design of seawall break- waters, jetties, harbors, ship channels and pipelines; intentional and accidental discharge of pollutants; diffusion and spreading; oil spill containment and collection.

Dynamics of Offshore Structures OCEN 676

Review of concepts of linear structural dynamic analysis for time and frequency domain simulations, functional design of offshore platforms, pipelines, floating structures and moorings; environmental loading problems; hydrodynamic phenomena including wind and current interaction, vortex shedding and wave forces; structure-fluid interaction models.

Hydromechanics OCEN 678

General conservation laws; Euler’s equation, forms of the Bernoulli’s equation; potential flow of an incompressible fluid; flow past a body of any shape, source and vortex distribution; lift for a slender body; linear and nonlinear water waves; small amplitude oscillations in a compressible ideal fluid or viscous flow theory.

Seminar OCEN 681

Reports and discussion of current research and of selected published technical articles.

Coastal Sediment Processes OCEN 682

Sediment properties and size distribution, fluvial sediment transport equations, movement of material by the sea, review of pertinent wave theories, littoral drift, inlet stability, coastal protection structures, similarity in sediment transport, movable bed models, sediment tracing, Aeolian sand transport, case studies.

Estuary Hydrodynamics OCEN 683

Development of applicable equations for tidal dynamics applied to real estuaries; technology for determination of mean velocities, circulation patterns, water depth, turbulent dispersion patterns, etc., for solution of environmental problems in estuaries; physical and mathematical models.

Problems OCEN 685

Special topics not within scope of thesis research and not covered by other formal courses.

Offshore and Coastal Structures CVEN 686

Fundamental design and analysis techniques; offshore platform analysis by computer (STRUDL, STRAN); pile driving analysis of large offshore piles by the wave equation; finite element analysis of underwater shells of revolution; solutions to problems submitted by industry to the class during the semester.

Marine Foundation Engineering OCEN 687

Foundation engineering problems associated with a marine environment; settlement and bearing capacity and analysis of near- shore and offshore foundations; computer programs used to analyze axially-loaded piles, laterally-loaded piles and sheet-pile walls.

Marine Dredging OCEN 688

Dredge pump selection; pump and system characteristics; cavitation; types of dredges; continental shelf and deep-ocean dredging; head loss in horizontal and vertical pipes for two and three-phase flow; design of disposal methods for dredged material; environmental effects of dredging.

Special Topics in Ocean Engineering OCEN 689

Selected topics in an identified area of ocean engineering.

Dynamic Fluid-Solid Interaction MEMA 650

Dynamic interaction between fluid and solid systems with applications to space vehicles, nuclear reactors, heat exchangers and structures in general; hydro-elasticity, hydrostatic divergence, flow induced vibrations, instability and compliant surfaces.

Theory of Fluid Mechanics Models CVEN 679

Dimensional analysis; model laws; mathematical techniques; applications to fluid mechanics and coastal engineering models; fixed-bed; movable-bed, geometric and distorted models for flows with free surface; sediment transport; waves, tides and estuary models.




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