Tuesday, 7 August 2018

Attendance and presentation at IABMAS 2018 and 7WCSCM

Hey everybody!

How has this blistering summer been treating you? Hopefully not too bad.

Today I'm going to write about two great conferences that I was able to attend and present some of the latest findings of my project in the last month.

The first one was the 9th International Conference on Bridge Maintenance, Safety and Management (IABMAS 2018). This is a conference held every two years, that brings together some of the world's highest authorities in bridge monitoring and maintenance both from industry and academia. As some of you may recall, I had participated in the previous edition of this conference in Foz do Iguazu, Brazil back in June 2016 as I wrote about it in this blog post.

This time, this conference was held at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre in the amazing city of Melbourne, Australia between July 9-13.
General view of Melbourne
Bridge next to IABMAS 2018 venue

Melbourne Convention Exhibition Centre

Opening ceremony at IABMAS 2018
In this conference, I had the chance to present a paper entitled "Performance analysis of distributed optical fiber bonding adhesives to concrete" where I described some results of a laboratory experiment conducted last winter in UPC's structural technology laboratory. 

Presenting at IABMAS 2018
This was a great event where I was able to get to know some of the most interesting and innovative research being conducted currently in the field of bridge monitoring and the people behind that research. For those of you interested in attending the next edition of IABMAS conference, it will be held in Sapporo, Japan between June 28 and July 3 of 2020.

The second conference was the 7th World Conference on Structural Control and Monitoring (7WCSCM) which was held between July 22-25 at the Shangri-La Hotel in Qingdao, China. This conference is held every four years and organized within the Internationa Association for Structural Control and Monitoring (IACSM). In fact, the last edition of this conference was held precisely in Barcelona in 2014.

Qingdao location in China (credits)
General view of Qingdao (credits)

Welcome reception of 7WCSCM

Conference dinner of 7WCSCM
In this conference, I was also able to present a conference paper, this time with the title: "Long-term reliability assessment of OBR based DOFS on reinforced concrete elements".

Presenting at 7WCSCM
Furthermore, this conference was held together with the APESS edition of this year which was held between Qingdao and Harbin in China. As some of you might recall, I had participated in last year's APESS at Yokohama National University in Japan as I described in this post, together with three of my fellow TRUSS ESRs. In this way, it was very pleasant to see several known faces and reconnect with them after this year.

Reconnecting with fellow participants of APESS 2017 at Qingdao, China
Finally, at this conference, I had the opportunity to visit together with all other participants of the 7WCSCM the Shandong High-speed Jiaozhou Bay Bridge which has a total of 41.58 Km among which 28.88 km are over water, being the longest cross sea-bridge in the world at the time of its opening back in 2011.

Shandong High-speed Jiaozhou Bay Bridge (credits)
As you might imagine, these were two great events that I really enjoyed and whose learnings and memories I will cherish for a long time.

This is all from me now, and stay tuned for more posts as I get close to the end of my project within TRUSS.


Monday, 12 February 2018

Attendance of EURODYN'17 and 2017 IABSE Symposium

Hey guys! How have you been doing?
I know it's been quite some time since I posted something but these have been incredibly busy months of my PhD project. Fortunately, everything is on track and now I've finally found some time to write again on this blog.

In this way, today I'm going to write to you about two extremely exciting conferences that I had the pleasure to attend last September and where I presented some of the results obtained during the conduction of my project.

The first one was Eurodyn 2017 - X International conference on structural dynamics, that was held at the magnificent Sapienza University of Rome in Italy between the 10 and 13 of September.

Entrance of the Faculty of Civil and Industrial Engineering where the majority of the conference sessions were held

This conference was organized by the European Association for Structural Dynamics (EASD) and was focused on the theoretical, computational and experimental developments in structural dynamics and their application to all types of structures and dynamical systems.

Opening ceremony venue
Conference group photo

This was an extremely pleasant event which I had the chance to share with my fellow ESRs JJ Moughty (ESR 10) and Giulia Milana (ESR 6) as well as both other acquaintances from previous conferences and workshops and new colleagues that I got to meet and exchange experiences and ideas.

The second conference was the 39th IABSE Symposium at the beautiful city of Vancouver in Canada between the 21 and 23 of September.

I've written before in this blog about IABSE (International Association for Bridge and Structural Engineering) which is one of the most important and active associations related with all aspects of structural engineering.

Opening ceremony and Keynote Lecture

Networking during this event

In this event, I also had the opportunity of attending  a practice-oriented workshop on Bridge Dynamic Response by Design targeted for Young Engineers which was a great moment to get to know more about the importance of the dynamic considerations and implications at each stage of the design process and learn from great practicing engineers and real-world structures examples.

This was an incredible and extremely rewarding experience where I got to learn a lot from what is being done regarding structural engineering not only on the academic side but also through an elite level of what is being done by practicing structural engineers. Furthermore, it was great to visit the city of Vancouver which is now one of my favorite cities in the world.

Vancouver (photo credits: yours truly ESR 11)
So this is all for now and hopefully, I will get back to you very soon with more news and developments regarding my project and my life as an ESR so stay tuned!


Wednesday, 27 September 2017

APESS'17 summer school attendance in Yokohama, Japan

Hello guys!

How is the beginning of the fall season been treating you?

In this post, I will write about an extremely exciting and enriching activity in which I participated for three weeks. I'm talking about the 2017 edition of the Asia-Pacific-Euro Summer School on Smart Structures Technology (APESS) that took place at the Yokohama National University in Japan between July 17th and August 4th.

In this event, together with my colleagues ESR7 (Farhad Huseynov), ESR9 (Matteo Vagnoli) and ESR10 (JJ Moughty), I attended three-week lectures given by experts in civil engineering, structural dynamics and control, smart structures technology and structural health monitoring.

This was the tenth edition of this summer school, being that the first edition was held in 2008 in KAIST South Korea and the last edition held at Cambridge University, U.K. in 2016. Other editions of this summer school were held in different locations including the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) in the U.S., the University of Tokyo in Japan, Tongji University in China, Indian Institute of Science in India and the National Taiwan University in Taiwan.

This edition was the biggest so far with 60 young researchers enrolled in the program from all over the world. Coming from China, Japan, South Korea, Europe, India, United States of America, Taiwan, Canada and Hong Kong.

APESS'17 group photo
This was a program full of incredibly interesting lectures with distinguished speakers from all over the world covering topics from advanced structural engineering and dynamics, structural control and applications, smart structures technology, sensing and materials, structural health monitoring and assessments. The activities program can be found here.

Attending lectures
Group photo after one of the lectures
Furthermore, we were able to participate in compelling technical visits. One of these visits was to the Shinjuku Mitsui Building in the heart of Tokyo, where we attended a presentation on the seismic upgrading project of this building and were able to then visit the TMD's (Tuned Mass Dumpers) allocated on the top of building as a result of this project! You can see some pictures bellow.

Another visit was to the Kajima Technical Research Institute. Kajima Corporation is one of the four biggest construction companies in Japan, and its technical research institute department was established as the construction industry's first research institute in Japan in 1949.
In this visit, we attended a presentation where the main goals and line of work of this company were demonstrated followed by a visit to its laboratories and research facilities which included a wind tunnel and a large scale shaking table. Unfortunately, there are no photos of this visit.

Furthermore, during the time of this summer school, we attended the ANCRiSST 2017 - 13th International Workshop on Advanced Smart Materials and Smart Structural Technologies - at the University of Tokyo, where many lecturers of our summer school were also presenting. Here you can see some photos of this event as well.

Group photo of ANCRiSST 2017 attendees

Attending one of the presentations

In addition, for this conference dinner, we were treated to a cruise on the Tokyo Bay with incredible views of the city and some cool structures such as the Rainbow Bridge that you can see in the following picture.

Moreover, during this summer school, we attended a demonstration on trials of method and practice of bridge inspection area. Here three different methods of damage identification were demonstrated: two based on camera images and one based on visual inspection. This was a highly interactive and enticing way to see in first hand the used practices in bridge inspection from the more traditional to the more recently developed techniques. You can see some images of this visit below.

Finally, as one of the main tasks of this summer school, we were sorted into different groups where we were to apply some of the knowledge we took during the lectures and technical visits into two laboratory projects. The first laboratory experiment consisted on the operational model analysis of a bridge located in the Yokohama National University campus. 

Instrumented YNU bridge

My group for the laboratory experiments

The second experiment consisted on the load estimation of an aluminium beam structure using static strain data acquired by Fiber Bragg Grating (FBG) sensors. 
Dimension of the beam structure and FBG sensor location 
Photo of the instrumented beam

Afterwards, on the final day of the summer school, each group made a presentation on its results.

Presenting the group project
Overall this was an incredible experience, where a great deal was learned and witnessed firsthand on the topic of structural health monitoring. Furthermore, we got to know and befriend young researchers from all over the world with different backgrounds and cultures and also get to know some of the biggest established researchers on the topic of civil engineering SHM.

Receiving the certificate of participation on APESS' 17 from Prof. Yozo Fujino
So, this is all from me now and I hope to have the time to write here again in a near future to tell you more about the latest activities regarding my project so please stay tuned.


Friday, 28 July 2017

UPC's Doctoral School open day

Hey guys!

How's everything going? Hope everything is going great and you guys are ready to read some of the latest developments regarding my life as an ESR.
So today, I will talk with you about the UPC's Doctoral school open day that occurred some weeks ago and where I and JJ Moughty (ESR 10) were able to participate.

This was an event held at the main auditorium of the Vertex building in UPC north campus on the 8th of June and was mainly attended by master students. The layout of the program for this event is visible in the next picture.

Program of UPC's doctoral school open day

The main goal was to present to these students the advantages of obtaining a doctoral degree while displaying the needed requirements and the different ways that are possible to undertake in order to obtain such degree. Furthermore and as part of this initiative, the testimony of two PhD students was presented in order to give a more personal and real view of taking this choice. It was in this part where I participated by doing a small presentation about my own personal experience while conducting my PhD studies in UPC.

Talking about my personal PhD experience to prospective students

In this presentation, I talked a little bit about my arrival to UPC from Portugal, introduced the topic of my project while also explaining how Marie-Curie ITNs (more specifically the TRUSS ITN) work and finally described how this experience is being on a more personal level. Bellow, you can see some photos of this presentation.

In the second part of this event, both I and JJ answered to questions and doubts presented by some students regarding our experience while doing the PhD and more directly related to the civil engineering field. Unfortunately, there are no photos of this part of the open day.

All in all, it was a delightful and engaging experience where hopefully a large number of students got inspired and encouraged to pursue a doctoral degree, and in this way, help us in continuing to advance the knowledge of science.

So this is all from me now. Next month I will get back to you with some more stories and developments of my project so please stay tuned!


Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Last TRUSS meeting and ESREL conference

Hey guys!

How's everything? I know I haven't written anything here in a while but time has been quite short on the past months. However, I will try to write again more often and keep you updated on the latest developments and events happening in my project.

So to start, today I'm going to talk with you about a TRUSS meeting that we had some weeks ago in London and my attendance with the rest of my ESR's colleagues in the ESREL 2017 conference just last week.

The TRUSS meeting corresponded to the planned annual plenary meeting which also included a Workshop on the topic of Structural Safety & Infrastructure Management. This event took place at the beautiful headquarters of Lloyd's Register in Fenchurch Street in London, UK on the 24th and 25th of May.

The workshop took place on the first day with the following keynote speakers:

  • Robert Dean, Principal Engineer (Structures) at Network Rail, UK, “Bridge Asset Management at Network Rail”
  • John Doran, Chair of the Infrastructure Operators Adaptation Forum and Infrastructure Expert at John Dora Consulting Limited, UK, “Thoughts about the Risks in Adopting Risk-Based Strategies”
  • Mark Girolami, Professor at Department of Mathematics, Imperial College London, UK, “Data Centric Engineering”
  • James Brownjohn, Director at Full Scale Dynamics Limited and Professor at University of Exeter, UK, “Resilient Infrastructure: the Role of Structural Health Monitoring”
  • Michael Habvro Faber, Professor at Department of Civil Engineering, Aalborg University, Denmark, “Decision Theoretical Framework to Offshore Structural Integrity Management”
  • Alan O’Connor, Director at Roughan & O’Donovan Innovative Solutions and Associate Professor at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland, “Probabilistic Assessment of Bridges – Case Study Presentation –”
  • Thierry Yalamas, Director at Phimeca Engineering, France,“Methods and Tools for Reliability Assessment”
Furthermore, a poster exhibition by all the ESR's on their respective topics was also present at this event. 
The next day was followed by short presentations by all the ESR's on their research progress and the usual doctoral study panels meetings.

Below you can see some photos of this.

Workshop on Structural Safety & Infrastructure Management

ESR's posters exhibition

Presenting research progress

Group photo

More recently, i.e., last week all of the ESR's participated in the annual European Safety and Reliability Conference ESREL 2017. Here, as planned in the beginning of this project, a mini-symposia of TRUSS was organized within the topic of this conference. This event took place between the 18 and 22 of June in the city of Portoroz in Slovenia. 

Here are some pictures of the conference.

ESREL 2017 conference

Some of the members of the TRUSS ITN

Attending other ESR's presentation 
Presenting at ESREL 2017

This, as always, was a great opportunity to network and observe and get to know some interesting and innovative research that is beeing conducted throughout the world on the topic of safety and reliability.

So this is all from me right now. Time to get bet to work and I promise I will take less time to write another blog post with the latest developments of my project.