The research activities of this group may be divided into two broad categories: experimental (laboratory and field-related) projects and numerical modelling.
Structural engineers are concerned with the conception, analysis, design and construction of components or assemblies to resist loads arising from internal and external forces. Solid mechanics is the study of the distribution of stresses that a given load produces when applied to a solid element, and the calculation of the resulting strains, given the characteristics of the materials that make up that element. The application of solid mechanics enables the structural engineer to assemble elements, such as beams and columns, into a structure that will
James A. Nicell, PhD, PEng (Professor)
Department of Civil Engineering and Applied Mechanics
In an attempt to overcome some of the problems associated with traditional chemical and biological waste treatment systems, recent research has focused on the environmental applications of pure enzymes that have been isolated from their parent organisms.
Research activities in geotechnical and geo-environmental engineering range from studies of the basic physics and chemistry of soil behaviour to applied field problems. The soil mechanics laboratories are equipped with the conventional permeability, direct shear, consolidation and triaxial systems necessary to determine the engineering properties of the materials under study.
Although the Department is not divided formally into sections, the fields of study and research can be grouped into four main areas: environmental engineering and water resources management, fluid mechanics and hydraulic engineering, geotechnical and geoenvironmental engineering, as well as structural engineering and construction materials. Selected courses are also available in the area of transportation engineering. Descriptions of the topics of research and facilities in the four major areas are presented under each section: