Forensic Structural Engineering (3 ECTS)

The main goal of this course is to understand and explain important structural failure mechanisms in various materials and to be able to come up with design measures to avoid these problems. Failure mechanisms can be collapse due to insufficient strength or stability, cracks, unacceptable deformations or settlements that are caused by inadequacies in design, detailing, unexpected circumstances or construction errors. The following topics are covered:

  • Structural damage: what is damage? Performance criteria and codes. How often does failure occur? What are technical causes? What are human and organizational causes?
  • Damage in concrete: e.g. temporary structures, reinforcement in ridges
  • Damage in steel: e.g. connections and instability
  • Damage in timber: e.g. connections
  • Damage in finishing structures: e.g. leakage and connections
  • Damage in foundations: e.g. deterioration of timber piles, unequal settlements
  • Methods and instruments for investigation: process of investigation. Analysis of factual data, testing of specimen, calculations, reporting.
  • Legal aspects: liability, Insurance, Court, expert witnesses

For more information, please contact: