All the articles published in the October 2016 issue.
Publish Date ‐ 3 October 2016
I am delighted to have been invited to contribute an editorial to The Structural Engineer introducing a new series of articles on an important aspect of construction projects that does not always receive the attention it deserves.
We intend the “Temporary Works Toolkit” to describe the issues and current practice in temporary works and construction method engineering.
The Ironbridge Gorge in Shropshire, UK, is young in geological terms and is generally prone to slope instability. Jackfield is an area on the banks of the River Severn that has a record of known slippages; these are put into geological and historical context. A scheme was proposed to stabilise the slope, adopting a hybrid method of analysis and design. The evolution of this scheme is outlined with particular emphasis on the design of the piles that were a fundamental part of the solution.
Piles were used to stabilise the landslide by mobilising available passive resistance in the underlying stable ground mass and transmitting that resistance into the overlying slide mass, adopting the Viggiani method. The difference between the approaches of the geotechnical and structural aspects of the design is discussed in some detail as the design team was careful to avoid compounding factors of safety; this is illustrated by a numerical example. The determination of pile strength is outlined and a worked example for ascertaining pile spacing is included along with installation details.
Our series from Griffiths & Armour offers a brief introduction to reaching a negotiated settlement over a professional indemnity claim.
Sean Brady relates the failure of several box-girder bridges of the 1960s and 1970s and explains how these
led to new design rules and workmanship guidance.
Tim Lohmann of the Temporary Works Forum introduces this new series and summarises some key differences from permanent works.
Penny Taylor offers some practical advice to engineers who find themselves moving into management roles.
In recent news in the UK, the bodies of three workers killed when Didcot power station collapsed in February have finally been recovered, and the major central section on a new moveable bridge being built on the M60 ring road around Manchester collapsed under test. Major failures continue, so “structural safety” remains topical.
What is it that makes a structure safe and how can “safety” be tested? It is not just “compliance with codes” in the sense of keeping stresses low, for codes of practice also define (or implicitly try to promote) other useful attributes and it is incumbent on professional engineers to achieve those objectives within their designs.
Bamboo is a strong, fast growing and very sustainable material, having been used structurally for thousands of years in many parts of the world. In modern times, it has the potential to be an aesthetically pleasing and low cost alternative to more conventional materials, such as timber, as demonstrated by some visually impressive recent structures.
This second article presents the main causes of decay of bamboo and the different methods of protection and preservation available.
From earth bags to tensegrity pavilions, in his practice – StructureMode – engineer Geoff Morrow has created a place where creativity and innovation are paramount.
Peter Bullman finds this to be an excellent book in which concepts are presented with admirable simplicity and clarity. However, it is let down by poor production, with low-quality illustrations and numerous typographical errors.
This is an excellent general technical introduction to the issues facing the shipping and offshore industries, concludes Paul Frieze, but not detailed enough for more serious insights into the multifarious technological challenges that really exist.
Ian May finds this to be a useful book for undergraduate students in certain respects – its key points, conceptual questions and clear layout in particular – but feels it is let down by a lack of rigour.
This months letters consider the Eurocodes - both their current application and future; presentation skills when addressing a lay audience; responsibilities of structural engineers and steel detailers; and the value of creativity in a structural engineer's education.
Upcoming events at HQ and around the regional groups.
In this section we shine a spotlight on papers recently published in Structures – the Research Journal of The Institution of Structural Engineers.
Structures is a collaboration between the Institution and Elsevier, publishing internationally-leading research across the full breadth of structural engineering which will benefit from wide readership by academics and practitioners.
Access to Structures is free to Institution members (excluding Student members) as one of their membership benefits, with access provided via the “My account” section of the Institution website. The journal is available online at: www.structuresjournal.org
This month we bring you another question from the Institution’s Structural Behaviour Course. The topic is deflected portals. The answer will be published in November.