Structural Engineering and Construction Management
Activity in the division is concentrated in four specialty areas:
- Structural engineering
- Construction management
- Building materials, performance and technology
The department prepares students for specialization in the fields of structural engineering, construction management, construction, building performance, building materials and geotechnology, so that they will be able to face the complex challenges of construction of the future. The educational approach aims at providing the undergraduate students with the ability to continue to develop professionally by self-education, and to instill an impetus to continue on to post graduate and continuing education studies during their career. These graduates, with a broad, professional education covering the various fields of structural engineering and construction, will become the leaders of the modern construction industry in Israel.
The undergraduate program allows students to study in the broad track of Civil Engineering, or in one of the two following additional, more specialized tracks which have recently been authorized. Each of the three tracks grants the degree of B.Sc. in the specific track name:
- Civil Engineering - Structures. This track trains engineers whose major activity will be engineering design of structures (e.g. housing structures, public structures, bridges, halls, industrial and storage structures, silos, water towers etc.). Although the structural engineer's activity is quite specific, his necessary interaction with other civil engineers and other aspects of civil engineering requires that he obtain a firm, general civil engineering education. This track is designed to prepare structural engineers who will be industry leaders, capable not only of designing and analyzing the complex structures of the future, but also of adapting to new requirements and loading conditions, and developing new design and analysis approaches.
- Civil Engineering - Management and Construction. This track trains Civil engineers who aim to develop a career in construction engineering, construction management, supervision, quality control and assurance, production and development of materials and technology. The major purpose of this study track is to prepare engineers for leadership positions in construction and management of complex building projects, becoming increasingly common in the Israeli construction industry. For this purpose, the program combines a focused basis in the technological, structural and managerial aspects of construction, with a broad basis in general civil engineering, while emphasizing the interaction between the three main activity fields: overall design, materials and technology, management and construction. In order to achieve the required levels of specialization, graduates of the program will be able to further their academic backgrounds through graduate studies in a variety of directions, including construction management, building materials and technology, performance and building physics, and geotechnology.
The study programs in these two tracks aim to both broaden the knowledge base, and to advance the specialization of the graduates, both analytical, and practical, so that they will obtain advanced tools which will enable them to design and construct reliable and safe modern buildings. At the same time they will have the background for development in new directions, and for creation of additional branches within the general scope of "structural and construction engineering".
With regards to graduate studies, the department offers four study tracks towards a second degree, parallel to the four departmental areas of specialization mentioned above ( structural engineering; construction management; building materials, performance and technology; and geotechnology). In each track, programs are available leading to M.Sc. and M.E. degrees.
The department strives to maintain and strengthen its standing as the leading source of construction engineering knowledge, research and innovation in the country, with an emphasis of the particular needs of Israel.
The National Building Research Institute is the operative research arm of the department, and serves as a platform for integration of the scientific and applied research carried out by the academic staff, and its application in Israel. The department and the institute operate through the academic staff of the department who are internationally recognized as experts in their fields. Much of the research is inter-disciplinary, in recognition of the need for integration in order to solve the complex engineering problems specific to Israel.
Area of structural engineering: Research covers a wide range of topics related to concrete and steel structures, composite materials, sandwich structures, tansegrity structures, sheet structures, structural strengthening for static and dynamic loading. The research methods make use of linear and non-linear analyses, applying numerical, analytical and experimental tools. The results of the research are published in the international professional literature, and form the basis for development of local codes and for engineering practice in the country.
Faculty are active in code development (e.g. reinforced concrete, prestressed concrete, steel structures, and structural design for earthquake loading). They are also active as consultants and experts for public bodies, and take part in governmental investigation committees for engineering failures.
Area of construction management: This group focuses on the following research activities: Project management through development, design and construction phases; lean construction; safety; management of construction companies and prefabrication facilities; economic analyses and evaluation of project alternatives; scheduling, estimating, control and construction methods; financing and economic viability of public and private projects; demand forecast for construction resources and products; quality management; risk evaluation and management; management of projects subject to uncertainty; human resources; mechanization and equipment; automation, robotics and industrialization in construction; building information modeling (BIM). The faculty play active roles in standards committees, state professional bodies, in consulting, in international research organizations, and have active research collaborations with international groups.
Area of geotechnology: Research is focused on the following topics: Laboratory and theoretical study of the mechanical behavior of saturated and unsaturated soils, behavior of soils under earthquake conditions, non-linear strength laws and their influence on slope stability, behavior of undisturbed sand under various loading conditions, development of a rheological model for behavior of piles under load, testing small models under conditions of similitude for study of geotechnical field problems, development of a rational approach for design and analysis of reinforced earth, development of pressure cells for accurate measurement of stresses in soil, use of optical fibres for monitoring response of geotechnical structures, influence of tunneling on existing underground structures.
Faculty are active in code preparation, consulting, international committees, and cooperative research with overseas groups.
Area of building materials, performance and technology: Focus of research activity includes: advancing new materials and technologies, improved materials (high performance concrete, composite materials), industrialized technologies (dry joint construction, curtain walls), overall performance of the building envelope, sustainable construction (utilization of by- products and wastes, recycling, energy conservation and efficiency, durability), mechanics of materials, building physics (heat-air-mass transport, behavior of buildings under fire conditions), overall building performance (tall buildings, special occupancy buildings), quality assurance and control (implementation of ISO 9000, non-destructive testing). The area faculty are active in international organizations (RILEM, ACI, CIB), international research projects, Israeli research projects, standardization committees, and special expert consultation.
Affiliated research institute
The National Building Research Institute
For further details:
The Division of Structural Engineering and Construction Management
Division Head: Professor Aviad Shapira
Division Secretary: Mrs. Nira Coda
Tel: 04-8292322; Fax: 04-8293323 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org