All the articles published in the February 2016 issue.
Publish Date ‐ 1 February 2016
In his inaugural address, 2016 President of The Institution of Structural Engineers, Alan Crossman, discusses his own education and formative career, and reflects on how it compares to today’s education and career routes. He also outlines his priorities as President, which include the importance of promoting opportunity and flexibility in career development; the Institution’s vital global role (including his own interest in forging new links with the Indian profession); and the need to make sustainability a key element in the profession’s thinking.
Seismic design is often seen as a very specialist area in the UK, but a basic understanding of seismic design by structural engineers is very important in order to design a cost-effective structure where there is a seismic hazard. This paper aims to provide a simple explanation of some seismic design and analysis techniques for bridges adopted in Japan, which is located in one of the most seismically active zones in the world. The paper focuses particularly on the bearing and articulation systems of bridges because this is where there is a significant difference in the standard form of construction between non-seismic and seismic areas.
Our series on professional indemnity claims from Griffiths & Armour reviews the value of “without
prejudice” communications and how they can assist in resolving a dispute.
Paul Bell, of the ICE Structures Expert Panel, explains the relevance of the Party Wall etc. Act to structural engineers.
Working on fragile roofs is hazardous. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) reports that falls through roofs and roof lights account for about 20% of all fatal accidents within the category of “falls from height”. These result in about seven deaths a year, with many other serious injuries. Most of these instances occur during roof maintenance. The hazard and risks are foreseeable – and in severe incidents, where employees have not been properly protected, corporate manslaughter charges have been brought. All parties to the project, such as designers, contractors and the owners themselves, have a duty to be aware of the risks and cooperate in preventing accidents. Owners need to be familiar with the condition of their property and ensure that competent contractors are employed for any work required.
In conservation work and like-for-like repair on older masonry, lime mortar is the only recommended material. The thick, plain or lightly punctured walls that make up most historic buildings have few concentrations of load. Calculations of stress in such cases are often needless and, subject perhaps to the check of any critical element, we can generally lay aside our concerns about mortar strength.
In contrast, the need to maintain a balance of moisture and flexibility in the body of an old wall is essential. Ignoring this will lead to the classic error of repointing old structures in brittle, impermeable Portland cement
(OPC) mortar. The mortar provides the route for evaporation from the core and should be more permeable than the brick or stone. To reverse this by sealing the joints with a hard finish can only lead to trouble.
After years designing for cold climates, first with the multiple award-winning Halley VI ice station and then Spartak Moscow’s Otkritie Arena football stadium, AECOM’s head of sports engineering, Peter Ayres, is now bringing some of his cool to the extreme heat of Qatar to create a chilled stadium for the 2022 World Cup. He talks to Jackie Whitelaw.
With the UK hit by snowfall again, Stewart Macartney responds to a recent Viewpoint and calls for the Eurocodes to be revised to avoid snow loads being underestimated.
Richard Haigh finds this book to be a useful introduction to volumetric modular construction for structural engineers, although more in-depth publications are available for individual materials.
This is a succinct and valuable textbook that, together with the accompanying online resources, will serve students well into their first years in industry, says Jennie Gates.
This month's letters cover Barnes Wallis and the R100 airship, the importance of temporary works, CDM 2015, and web buckling.
Upcoming events at Institution 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.
We continue this section with another steel quiz brought to you by the SCI. This month’s topic is bracing/restraint. Answers will be published in the March issue.