University of the District of Columbia (January 11, 2016): A group of approximately 30 people, both young and old, gathered at UDC for the ASCE-NCS Transportation Committee meeting this evening. A civil engineering student was overheard asking, “How much load should a bridge be designed to carry?” The answer he received from an engineering practitioner helped guide his thoughts away from the “should” he struggled with, to the identification of relevant design loads through planning activities. The intermingling of students, practitioners and educators while dining over pizza indeed delivered several insights of value to attendees.
Larry Olson of Olson Engineering, widely known for his expertise in nondestructive evaluation (NDE) and performance monitoring of civil infrastructure including dams, bridges, buildings, foundations, pavements, and tunnels presented the topic “Assessing Concrete Decks: GPR & Impact Echo Scanning”. His skill and experience as a trainer was evident. He kept the audience engaged by pausing to ask questions when he saw attention wavering and adjusted his content delivery. His key message was that a deck evaluation method that is both comprehensive and economical is the use of non-destructive evaluation techniques that can look well below the surface. He showcased Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) and similar NDE techniques, such as Impact Echo Scanning. He noted that when armed with the results of such evaluations, engineers can develop appropriate mitigation strategies more confidently and cost effectively.
The next presentation by the Transportation Committee of ASCE-NCS will be held on March 8th, 2016. The speaker Hugh Weaver, PE is an expert on aviation pavement with over 30 years of experience at airports across the country will be presenting on “Recent Innovations in Airport Pavement Design”. Please look forward to details on the ASCE-NCS website. http://www.asce-ncs.org/index.php/committees/transportation.