3-D Soil Structure Interaction

These studies are looking into the effects on soil as well as structural bridge members caused by a disaster. In any disaster, the largest concern is the civil infrastructure. Buildings must stay standing and roads need to be open for emergency personnel or evacuations. Part of the study looks into any bearing failures of loss in stability in the soil during an extreme loading. For a brief look into the task click the image below:

The other part of the study is how the bridge reacts. For a bridge to remain operational it must be able to act in an elastic manner to extreme loading as well as have little permanent displacement. A common foundation used in bridges is the HP piles. First the pile orientation was observed using the ANSYS finite element modeling program. This task is summarized in the image link below:

3-D models looking at single span, multi-span, and curved bridges are being built in the ANSYS program to find combined loads on the HP piles, reactions of the bolts, stress in the plates, and the response under extreme loading. This study will help in the future for more economical designs for bridges.


Nano-fiber concrete

This study compared attributes of concrete mixes using single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNT) multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWNT) as well as the use of micro-synthetic fibers. Images of the Carbon Nanotubes can be seen here:

In this study, a simple concrete mix was observed by itself, with micro fibers, with MWNT, and a mix of MWNT and fibers. The first factor looked into was the concrete strength in compressive tests. Then using Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM), the concrete microstructures were observed. The SEM is able to produce nanoscopic images for comparison. Examples of these images are shown below:

The study compared the compressive and buckling strength, stiffness, cracking patterns, microstructures and cost. This investigation has applications in bridges, roadways, pipes, precast/prestressed concrete structural members, where strength as well as cracking control is critical.


PLIG Teaching Innovation

With the upcoming change from the Quarter System to the Semester System at Rochester Institute of Technology, Amanda Bao has proposed the use of Screencast technology in her Structural Analysis and Dynamics. The goal is to add classroom supplements to the internet. These supplements will assure that all students will have access to important concepts in the courses. This benefits all students, including the large population of deaf and hard of hearing students having a step by step caption lesson at the tip of their fingertips. The goal is to increase student’s understanding in Dynamics and Structural Analysis as well as prepare for the semester conversion.