Experimental mechanics is a branch of engineering mechanics used to solve engineering problems using measurements, and can be defined as the investigation of the mechanical behaviour of an object under load or excitation by conducting experiments. The measured mechanical quantities conventionally associated with experimental mechanics are the following: deformations, which can serve as a basis for the determination of stresses or loads (forces, torques); accelerations, velocities, displacements, angles, etc. In addition to the conventional quantities, any aspect relevant to a given object can be measured or recorded by photographic or video recording, in order to determine more effectively the actual state by experimental methods, while knowledge of this actual state can subsequently facilitate a clearer description, i.e. the mathematical formulation of the phenomenon.
From remediation activities in soil to pancake formation in the antarctic ice shelf, environmental mechanics covers a large portion of natural activity surrounding us. Originating in the field of civil engineering, environmental mechanics concerns itself with a multitude of questions of mechanical nature, such as stability, structural analysis and the influence of coupled processes on these, such as bacterial activity or advection of pollutants.