The International Information Center for Structural Engineers

The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat announced Tuesday that One World Trade Center is now the tallest building in the United States, at 1,776 feet tall. Previously the tallest building honor went to the Willis tower in Chicago, IL, which stands 1,451 feet tall. The debated issue was whether or not the mast atop the new WTC building should be counted toward the architectural height. The council decided that since the 408 foot spire is a permanent architectural fixture, and not used for technical purposes, its length would be added to the total height of the building, therefore making it taller than the Willis Tower.

Thursday, 14 November 2013 09:46




Thursday, 14 November 2013 08:58

Organizations & Associations


ACI - American Concrete Insitute, founded in 1904 and headquartered in Farmington Hills, MI, USA, is a technical and educational consensus organization whose purpose is to advance engineering and technical education, scientific investigation and research, and development of standards for the design and construction of concrete structures.

ADRC, Asian Disaster Reduction Center, Japan.

AESS - Australian Earthquake Engineering Society: The Society aims to promote the practice of earthquake engineering and engineering seismology.

Agrement, South Africa: Established in 1969. Its primary business is the certification of non-standardized construction products.

AIJ, Architectural Institute of Japan.

AISC - American Institute of Steel Construction, headquartered in Chicago, is a not-for-profit technical institute and trade association established in 1921 to serve the structural steel design community and construction industry in the United States. AISC’s mission is to make structural steel the material of choice by being the leader in structural-steel-related technical and market-building activities.

ANSS - Avanced National Seismic System, USA: The mission of ANSS is to provide accurate and timely data and information products for seismic events, including their effects on buildings and structures, employing modern monitoring methods and technologies. This mission serves a basic function of the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP).

ASI - Australian Steel Institute was formed in 2002 by the merger of Australian Institute of Steel Construction (AISC) and Steel Institute of Australia (SIA). The new body is Australia’s peak steel industry association, completely focused on serving the industry interests and the steel sector’s future success.

ASME - American Society of Mechanical Engineers: Founded in 1880. Well known for its codes and standards.

ATC, Applied Technology Council: This organization is quite active in many earthquake fields and has produced many reports and conference proceedings in the last few years.

AWS - American Welding Society was founded in 1919 as a multifaceted, nonprofit organization with a goal to advance the science, technology and application of welding and related joining disciplines. From factory floor to high rise construction, from military weaponry to home products, AWS continues to lead the way in supporting welding education and technology development to ensure a strong, competitive and exciting way of life for all Americans.

BCA - British Cement Association.

BIA - Brick Industry Association: Many brief reports on building construction can be found in this site.

Blume Center, Stanford University: This site contains a wealth of information in the forms of reports and articles. 

BMS - British Masonry Society

British Concrete Society.

CAEE - Chinese Association for Earthquake Engineering: The objective of the Association is to promote nationwide cooperation in the field of earthquake engineering through interchange of knowledge, ideas, research results and practical experience among scientists and engineers, to popularize the knowledge of resisting earthquake to the people in seismic area and to strengthen the international friendship and cooperation between scientists and engineers of China and other countries. 

California Seismic Safety Commission: Established in 1975, its main task is to investigate earthquakes, make research on earthquake-related issues, and make recommendations to the Governor and Legislature of California. It has published many reports on earthquake engineering. 

CCA Cement Concrete & Aggregates Australia is the peak body representing the interests of Australia's five billion dollar cement, pre-mixed concrete and extractive (quarrying) industries. CCAA is a not-for-profit organisation. 

CCANZ, Cement & Concrete Association of New Zealand. 

SEAOC - The Structural Engineers Association of California. SEAOC's mission is to advance the structural engineering profession; to provide the public with structures of dependable performance through the application of state of the art structural engineering principles; to assist the public in obtaining professional structural engineering services; to promote natural hazard mitigation; to provide continuing education and encourage research; to provide structural engineers with the most current information and tools to improve their practice; and to maintain the honor and dignity of the profession. SEAOC is divided into 5 different organizations. 

CERI, Center for Earthquake Research and Information, the University of Memphis: This site contains useful information on recent earthquakes. 

CIB, International Council for Research and Innovation in Building and Construction: established in 1953 to stimulate and facilitate international cooperation and information exchange between governmental research institutes in the building and construction sector. 

CISC - Canadian Institute of Steel Construction is the national industry organization representing the structural steel, open web steel joist and steel platework fabricating industries. CISC operates as a technical, marketing and government relations organization. CISC promotes good design and safety, together with efficient and economical use of steel as a means of expanding the construction markets for structural steel, joists and platework. CISC services encompass, amongst others, information services related to design and costing of steel structures and preparation of design aids such as the Handbook of Steel Construction and marketing activities to promote the use of steel in construction. 

CISN, California Integrated Seismic Network: This site contains useful information on recent earthquakes. 

COMET, Centre of Observation and Modeling of Earthquake and Tectonic, England: COMET is a collaborative centre involving scientists from three universities: the University of Oxford, University College London, and the University of Cambridge. COMET scientists use satellite observations to model how the Earth's crust has deformed. 

Concrete Centre, UK: The Concrete Centre is the central development organisation for the UK cement and concrete industry. Its aim is to assist all those involved in design and construction to realise the full potential of concrete. 

Concrete Institute of Australia is an independent, non-profit organisation made up of many members who share a common interest in staying at the forefront of concrete technology, design & construction throughout Australia. 

CRSI - Concrete Reinforcing Steel Institute — Founded in 1924, the Concrete Reinforcing Steel Institute (CRSI) is a trade association that stands as the authoritative resource for information related to steel reinforced concrete construction. Serving the needs of architects, engineers and construction professionals, CRSI offers many technical publications, design aids, software programs, educational seminars, promotional activities, membership functions and design award programs. 

CUREE: Consortium of Universities for Research in Earthquake Engineering. This site contains, among other material, information on structure in architecture and recommendations for earthquake resistance in the design and construction of wood frame buildings. 

DPRI - Disaster Prevention Research Institute, Kyoto University: It was established in 1951. It carries out research on a variety of problems related to the prevention and reduction of natural disasters. 

Earthquake Research Institute, University of Tokyo: Established in 1924, its main task conducting scientific research on earthquake and volcanic eruption. 

ECCS - European Convention for Constructional Steelwork is the federation of the National Associations of Steelwork industries and covers a worldwide network of Industrial Companies, Universities and Research Institutes. The aim of ECCS is to develop the market for constructional steel in the service of its members by reaching consensual views on Eurocodes and standards, Products and technologies, Education and training methods, Merits of steel construction, Qualification of enterprises and Environmental aspects. 

EUCENTRE, European Centre for Training and Research in Earthquake Engineering, Italy: The primary mission of EUCENTRE is the development of applied research and carrying out training personnel in the field of seismic engineering. 

FEMA - Federal Emergency Management Agency, USA: The primary mission of the Federal Emergency Management Agency is to reduce the loss of life and property from all hazards, including natural disasters. 

IAEE - International Association for Earthquake Engineering was established in February 1963 with its Central Office in Tokyo. The IAEE aims to promote international cooperation among scientists and engineers in the field of earthquake engineering through interchange of knowledge, ideas, and results of research and practical experience. 

ICC: The International Code Council (ICC) was established in 1994 to produce a single set of comprehensive and coordinated national model construction codes for USA. Since then, it developes many of the codes used in construction industry. ICC-ES is as a subsidiary of the ICC, and it works as a leading agency in evaluating building products for compliance with code. Click here for more information about ICC-ES. 

ICI - Indian Concrete Institute, is a registered professional body of more than 8500 individuals and organizations from India, devoted to betterment of structural concrete and interested in the advancement of concrete and construction technologies, concrete products, Research & Development and Technical education. 

INSDAG - Institute for Steel Development and Growth, India, is a member-based non-profit making organization. The institute primarily works towards the development of technology in steel usage and the market for the steel fraternity.

International Federation for Structural Concrete (fib - fédération internationale du béton) is a non-profit organisation created in 1998 from the merger of the Euro-International Concrete Committee (CEB - Comité Euro-International du Béton) and the International Federation for Prestressing (FIP – Fédération Internationale de la Précontrainte). The parent organisations CEB and FIP existed independently since 1952. 

International Union of Testing and Research Laboratories for Materials and Structures (RILEM): The mission of RILEM is to advance scientific knowledge related to construction materials, systems and structures and to encourage transfer and application of this knowledge world-wide. This mission is achieved through collaboration of leading experts in construction practice and science including academics, researchers, testing laboratories and authorities. 

IRIS Seismic Monitor: Developed by IRIS Consortium, U.S. Geological Survey, University of Colorado, and Reel Illusions Inc. It provides information on global earthquakes around the world. 

IStructE - Institution of Structural Engineers (UK & International). 

JCI - Japan Concrete Institute: The Institute, as the parent body for promoting research concerning concrete, has the purpose of carrying out investigation and research on concrete, reinforced concrete, other types of concrete and various materials and equipment related to concrete, and through coordination of investigations and research and dissemination of the results, aims to further research and advances in technology concerning concrete. 

Mid-America EQ, Mid-America Earthquake Center, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign: A research Center founded in 1997. Since then, it has published many reports on earthquake engineering. 

NAHB Research Center:  Created in 1964 as a subsidiary of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), USA. The aim of this organization is to improve the Quality and Affordability of Housing. 

NCEDC - Northern California Earthquake Data Center: The Northern California Earthquake Data Cente is a joint project of the University of California Berkeley Seismological Laboratory (BSL) and the United States Geological Survey (USGS). The NCEDC is a long-term archive and distribution center for seismological and geodetic data for Northern and Central California. 

NCSEA - National Council of Structural Engineers Associations. 

NEES, George Brown Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation Program of the National Science Foundation: NEES is a shared national network of 15 experimental facilities, all linked by the ultra-high-speed Internet2 connections of NEESgrid. 

NISEE - National Information Service for Earthquake Engineering, University of California, Berkeley: Since 1972, it has been one of the major earthquake engineering information resources. 

NZSEE - New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering: The New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering was formed in April 1968, and through study projects, seminars, conferences, and publication of the BULLETIN, has made a significant impact on attitudes and practices for earthquake engineering. 

PEER, Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research Center, University of California, Berkeley: Plenty of information on different topics of earthquake engineering can be found in PEER's reports. Earthquake records can be found in the PEER Strong Motion Database. Papers, reports and other information on performance-based seismic design are also available online. 

SCI - Steel Construction Institute, UK, is an independent, technical, member-based organisation, which was founded in 1986. The objective of The Steel Construction Institute is to develop and promote the effective use of steel in construction. SCI offers technical services to all professionals within the steel construction industry. SCI is probably the world's largest research and technical organisation supporting the use of steel in construction. 

SEA - Structural Engineers Association: Lot of interesting stuff and news from the USA Engineers. 

SEA - Structural Engineers Association International: contains, among other material, links to Structural Engineers' Associations worldwide. 

SED - Schweizerischer Erdbebendienst: Swiss Seismological Service. 

SESOC - Structural Engineering Society New Zealand: The objective of SESOC is to promote the science, art and practice of structural engineering; to ensure the advancement and dissemination of knowledge relating to structural engineering and to provide a forum for structural engineering practitioners to communicate amongst themselves and to the public at large. 

SSSS - Singapore Structural Steel Society was formed with the objectives of constituting an association of engineers, architects, industrialists and others concerned with and interested in the analysis, design, construction, research and other aspects of structural steels. The Society provides a forum for its members, guests and others, for discussion, education, collaboration and other mutually beneficial activities including seminars, invited lectures, short courses, and publications.

Steel Reinfrorcement Institute of Australia - The website of the Steel Reinforcement Institute of Australia offers a wealth of technical resources on reinforcing steel including special research and publications written by experts and developed specifically for use by practising engineers, architects, builders and government.

The Canadian Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute (CPCI) - is headquartered in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada with membership throughout the North America. CPCI, is an organization dedicated to fostering greater understanding and use of precast and prestressed concrete, maintains a staff of technical and marketing specialists.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013 10:35

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Wednesday, 13 November 2013 10:21

Contributors Hall of Fame

The founder and the visitors of the website are grateful to the following engineers for providing useful information to us, enhancing the content and improving the quality of the website. These engineers have contributed by proposing useful links, sending photos, papers or other material. This page provides a list of these people who enjoy sharing their experiences, and thus educating their colleagues. We hope that more visitors will follow their example.

Many thanks to (alphabetically):

  • Elkadi Ahmed, PhD, Former Application Engineer at TNO DIANA BV.
  • Mohan Gupta, PhD, Associate Professor, Dept. of Civil Engineering, Bhilai Institute of Technology. India.
  • Subramanian N., PhD, F. ASCE, M.ACI, Computer Design Consultants, Maryland, USA.
  • Sundt Peter, BSc in Electrical Engineering, Rice University, Houston, Texas.
  • Tarik Mahdi, PhD, Assistant Professor, Building and Housing Research Centre, Tehran, Iran.

A deal was finalized between the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and a team of private companies to replace and demolish the existing Goethals Bridge connecting Staten Island and New Jersey. The team, named the NYNJ Link Partnership, is comprised of Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets Inc., Kiewit Development and Infrastructure, Weeks Marine, and Massman Construction. This is the Port Authority’s first public-private partnership and will be financed through tax-exempt bonds, loans, and developer contributions. The NYNJ Link Partnership is responsible for designing, building, financing, and maintaining the bridge. The replacement  bridge will improve the existing bridge by having 6 12-foot wide lanes, interior and exterior shoulders, a pedestrian and bike path, and a lane to be developed for buses, HOV, or light rail in the future.

Monday, 11 November 2013 19:15

Philippines Devastated After Typhoon Haiyan

Typhoon Haiyan made landfall in the Philippines on Friday as one of the strongest storms on record.  Sustained winds of 145 mph with gusts up to 235 mph, as well as waves topping 40 feet in height, destroyed many of the country’s costal towns. Tacloban, one of the hardest hit areas, has nearly no structures left standing, including its airport. Many other villages in the Philippines are facing similar devastation, and it is reported 70% to 80% of the structures in Haiyan’s path were destroyed.

Upon completion, the 369-meter tower will be the 26th tallest building in the world and one of the top ten tallest buildings in the United Arab Emirates. Arabtech construction, the same company that built the Burj Khalifa, was awarded the contract on Wednesday to build the 23,000 square meter building.  The tower plans include 18 floors of office space, a 350-room hotel, 180 luxurious apartments, and 9,008 meters of retail space.  Construction will begin this month and is expected to be finished in May 2017.

A new chart released by BCA, an independent investment research company, shows that infrastructure spending on non-defense structures has seen a significant drop from roughly $325 billion in 2002 to under $250 billion in 2013.  It is important to note that this data includes both state and federal spending.  State investment in infrastructure has been very low since the recession began, and it is expected that this spending will increase in the future.

Saturday, 09 November 2013 17:16

4 Dead in Nigerian Building Collapse

A four-story residential building under construction in one of the most expensive communities in Africa collapsed on Tuesday.  Four people are confirmed dead and it is believed that as many as 50 people were still trapped in the building as of Tuesday night.  All of the victims were construction workers who were working on the building.  The Nigerian Department of Occupational Safety and Health are investigating the cause of the collapse and have sent representatives to the site.  The building contractor has also submitted a report about the collapse.  According to the Associated Press, building collapses are not uncommon in Nigeria.