This special issue of ASME Journal of Engineering Materials and Technology includes 14 papers on heterogeneous solids and composite materials, which are selected from those in the topical area orally presented at the 2011 ASME Applied Mechanics and Materials Conference (McMat 2011), May 31–June 2, 2011, Chicago and the 2011 International Conference on Heterogeneous Materials Mechanics (ICHMM 2011), May 22–26, 2011, Shanghai, China.

The 14 papers presented in this special issue reflect the current trends and latest developments in mechanics of heterogeneous solids and composite materials. The topics discussed in these papers are broad and diverse, covering analysis, modeling, simulation, experimentation, and design of heterogeneous and composite materials. It is believed that this special issue is a valuable and timely publication which is aligned with the Materials Genome Initiative for Global Competitiveness released by the White House in June 2011.

All of the 14 papers were rigorously reviewed and subsequently revised by following the established peer-review procedure of the ASME journals. The guest editors appreciate the contributions from and the cooperation of the authors. They are also grateful to the reviewers for their constructive and critical comments, which led to improvements in the technical quality and/or the presentation clarity in all cases.

Finally, the guest editors wish to thank Professor Hussein M. Zbib, the Editor of the journal, for entrusting them to edit this special issue.