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Structures Research Group

 
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The Engineering Department (CUED) hosts a series of Structures seminars for post-graduates, undergraduates and staff. Non-CUED university people are also welcome to attend. The seminars will be at the Seminar room, Civil Engineering building in West Cambridge at 3pm, unless otherwise stated.
Updated: 6 min 37 sec ago

Mon 27 Jul 15:00: Automation for the circular economy in the built environment

Tue, 21/07/2020 - 19:27
Automation for the circular economy in the built environment

When using digital innovation to apply circular economy principles to the built environment, we can consider two research areas: design and manufacturing (3D printing, optimization, robotics, parametric design, CNC machinery, etc.) and logistics (BIM, circular business models such as leasing, connected supply chains, digital platforms, the use of blockchain technology, the internet of things, etc.). This lecture will discuss research questions that need to be addressed in order to use automation innovations towards a paradigm shift from a linear to a circular economy in the construction sector

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Mon 27 Jul 15:00: Automation for the circular economy in the built environment

Mon, 20/07/2020 - 17:03
Automation for the circular economy in the built environment

When using digital innovation to apply circular economy principles to the built environment, we can consider two research areas: design and manufacturing (3D printing, optimization, robotics, parametric design, CNC machinery, etc.) and logistics (BIM, circular business models such as leasing, connected supply chains, digital platforms, the use of blockchain technology, the internet of things, etc.). This lecture will discuss research questions that need to be addressed in order to use automation innovations towards a paradigm shift from a linear to a circular economy in the construction sector

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Tue 21 Jul 15:00: Structural Engineering and Sustainable Heritage: beyond conservation of historic buildings

Mon, 20/07/2020 - 11:41
Structural Engineering and Sustainable Heritage: beyond conservation of historic buildings

The role of structural experts in the conservation of heritage is unquestionable to ensure integrity of historic buildings. As the sustainability of heritage becomes a key goal within the heritage sector, the potential of the structural engineering discipline to engage with heritage is broader. Sustainability of heritage is understood as a holistic objective that integrates environmental, social, economic and cultural aspects. It is a multidisciplinary challenge where engineers can have significant input in diverse ways, ranging from structural advice to disaster response, from values assessment to preventive conservation strategies. This webinar will provide an overview of the links between Structural Engineering and Sustainable Heritage, explored through two case studies: management of Ancient Roman archaeological sites and post-disaster recovery of historic urban areas in Nepal. The concept of Sustainable Heritage will be examined, seeking to generate new ideas for engineering engagement with future heritage management.

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Fri 19 Jun 15:00: Wind Effects on Structures: Fundamentals to Emerging Frontiers

Mon, 15/06/2020 - 13:00
Wind Effects on Structures: Fundamentals to Emerging Frontiers

A multidisciplinary approach rooted in structural engineering, fluid, and structural dynamics, turbulence, stochastic modeling, computational and experimental methods, and micrometeorology is needed to address the challenges we face concerning wind effects on structures. Notwithstanding the developments made in recent decades in this area, which have indeed enhanced our abilities to better understand and capture the effects of turbulent winds on structures, we are at an appropriate juncture to identify the need for embarking on different physical and computational modeling philosophies and paradigms to meet the emerging challenges. A general overview of the basic techniques for quantification of wind loads and their effects using analytical, computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and model-based and data-driven simulation schemes, code and standards-based procedures, and experimental and full-scale monitoring and their hybrid combination and a synopsis of the emerging frontiers will be presented. Recent advances in analysis, optimization, modeling, simulation, and identification tools, modeling frameworks, data analytics, the fusion of machine learning, stochastics and CFD and beyond, and cyberinfrastructure enabled platforms hold the promise of offering better understanding in solving these complex problems. The seminar will provide a guided tour of the state-of-the-art and the next frontiers in the wind effects through the eye of a cyberinfrastructure enabled platform

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Fri 29 May 15:00: Offshore Wind Farm Construction

Tue, 26/05/2020 - 19:07
Offshore Wind Farm Construction

Offshore wind turbines are the world’s largest rotating machines, with the latest models having rotor diameters of over 200 metres The majority are constructed with monopile foundations, though jackets, suction buckets and other types of support structure are increasingly being adopted Construction techniques and logistics continue to evolve as projects are being built in ever more challenging locations

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Fri 22 May 15:00: New models for highly deformable structures

Mon, 18/05/2020 - 11:25
New models for highly deformable structures

Flexibility is becoming a key feature in structural engineering, used for the design of multi-stable, reconfigurable space structures, sensors or soft robots. Thin, deformable structures invade materials science: recent additive manufacturing techniques combine active materials with microstructural design, paving the way towards engineering materials with properties tunable in time. There is a strong need for theoretical and numerical tools that can efficiently predict the mechanical response of these advanced structures. The example of localization highlights this need: it occurs in a variety of slender structures, from necks in polymer bars under traction to bulges in cylindrical party balloons and folds in tape-springs. In all these systems, distinct states of deformation may coexist, and classical one-dimensional (1D) models fail to describe interfaces, or finite size effects. I will first present a discrete, geometrically exact beam formulation that can efficiently and accurately capture the nonlinear deformation of slender beams featuring complex material behaviour. It fully decouples the kinematics from the material behaviour and can thus handle a wide class of constitutive laws depending on the stretching, flexural and torsional strain and strain rates. In a second part of the talk, I will introduce a systematic method to establish 1D models depending on strain and on strain gradient, thus accurately capturing interfaces during localisation. It consists in a formal expansion performed near a finitely pre-strained state and therefore retains all sources of nonlinearity, coming from the geometry and from the constitutive law. I will illustrate the method on the example of elastocapillary necking.

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Fri 15 May 15:00: Insight into the fire spalling behaviour of concrete and challenges of its experimental assessment.

Mon, 11/05/2020 - 14:45
Insight into the fire spalling behaviour of concrete and challenges of its experimental assessment.

Fire accidents result in a rapid increase of temperature especially in underground structures such as tunnels where temperatures of 1400 °C within 5 min can occur. This leads to severe damage of concrete due to strength loss and explosive fire spalling. The prediction of the process and final extent of explosive spalling is crucial for the designing and retrofitting of structures but accurate models and experimental procedures are still lacking.

In this presentation we will talk about the challenges of fire testing and address the following:

The application of the thermal loading in fire tests is of crucial importance, as the temperature history strongly affects the risk and extent of explosive spalling. The range of material and environmental properties present in real-life situations needs to be captured and considered for the experimental planning of fire tests.

Furthermore, we will discuss results obtained from fires test on different concrete mixtures and try to answer the following questions:

Is it possible to identify key parameters triggering explosive spalling? How does the water content and the permeability influence spalling? How can we proceed to assess the risk and extent of spalling?

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Fri 01 May 15:00: Post tensioning for structural innovation: an overlooked perspective

Tue, 28/04/2020 - 10:42
Post tensioning for structural innovation: an overlooked perspective

This talk discusses the major impact of post tensioning as a powerful tool, which has yet to be fully exploited at the design stage by the structural engineer To support this idea three different topics of the on going research are presented 1 – Post tensioned masonry structures This research claims the high potential of masonry as a primary load bearing material when combined with post tensioning.Both the design and the construction of a reduced scale arch footbridge are presented 2 – Post tensioned free form structures Non structural design criteria (e g usability, architectural needs, aesthetics) often prevents the selection of a bending free shape This research illustrates how external post tensioning can convert any geometry into a bending free one This opens up new possibilities for designs that combine high efficient solutions with architectural freedom 3 – Post tensioned responsive structures External post tensioning has proven to be an effective solution to introduce intermediate supports in structures in order to decrease their spans. However, the maximum system efficiency is only achieved for a specific loading. This research presents the possibility of using a responsive external post tensioning system, where the responsive behaviour is materialized through an actuator located between the beam and the post tensioning system. In summary, post tensioning offers to the designer the ability to control the structural behaviour and, as a natural consequence, may provide a considerable level of innovation in structural engineering

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Fri 01 May 15:00: Post tensioning for structural innovation: an overlooked perspective

Mon, 27/04/2020 - 12:51
Post tensioning for structural innovation: an overlooked perspective

This talk discusses the major impact of post tensioning as a powerful tool, which has yet to be fully exploited at the design stage by the structural engineer To support this idea three different topics of the on going research are presented 1 – Post tensioned masonry structures This research claims the high potential of masonry as a primary load bearing material when combined with post tensioning.Both the design and the construction of a reduced scale arch footbridge are presented 2 – Post tensioned free form structures Non structural design criteria (e g usability, architectural needs, aesthetics) often prevents the selection of a bending free shape This research illustrates how external post tensioning can convert any geometry into a bending free one This opens up new possibilities for designs that combine high efficient solutions with architectural freedom 3 – Post tensioned responsive structures External post tensioning has proven to be an effective solution to introduce intermediate supports in structures in order to decrease their spans. However, the maximum system efficiency is only achieved for a specific loading. This research presents the possibility of using a responsive external post tensioning system, where the responsive behaviour is materialized through an actuator located between the beam and the post tensioning system. In summary, post tensioning offers to the designer the ability to control the structural behaviour and, as a natural consequence, may provide a considerable level of innovation in structural engineering

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