Cabrera, M.A.

Profile summary

Miguel Angel Cabrera is the Assistant Professor of Experimental Soil Mechanics at the section of Geo-Engineering at TU Delft, working in the physical modelling of land instabilities and soil-structure interaction systems. Miguel is a member of the ISSMGE technical committees on Physical Modelling in Geotechnics (TC104) and Slope Stability in Engineering Practice (TC208).


Miguel’s research is in the area of geotechnical engineering with a focus on complex, multiphase, geophysical and environmental flows, and soil-fluid-structure interaction systems. His interests lie in linking the fundamental understanding of such physical processes with the current and future challenges of the natural, living and built environment. Towards this end, he develops and use a combined approach between physical modelling, advanced measuring techniques, and numerical modelling.

Some of his current research topics are:

  + Onshore, coastal, and offshore slope instabilities
  + Dense granular flows from initiation to deposition
  + Soil-fluid-structure interaction in cyclic and dynamic loading

Miguel has been involved in multiple trans-disciplinary collaborations and is an enthusiast on the exchange of ideas in his research. Please feel free to contact him if you are looking for a collaboration.


Miguel holds a Bachelor on Civil Engineering from Universidad Nacional de Colombia (2009) and a Master in Geotechnical Engineering from Universidad de los Andes, Colombia (2011). In 2016, Miguel received his PhD from the University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences, Austria, working on the simulation of granular flows in rotating systems an sponsored by a Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellowship through the MUMOLADE project. From 2016 to 2022 Miguel was appointed as Assistant and then Associate Professor at Universidad de los Andes, Colombia. Since August 2022, Miguel joined the section of Geo-Engineering at TU Delft.


Cabrera, M. A., Leonardi, A., & Peng, C. (2020). Granular flow simulation in a centrifugal acceleration field. Géotechnique, 70(10), 894-905.

Cabrera, M. A., Pinzon, G., Take, W. A., & Mulligan, R. P. (2020). Wave generation across a continuum of landslide conditions from the collapse of partially submerged to fully submerged granular columns. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 125(12), e2020JC016465.

Cabrera, M., & Estrada, N. (2019). Granular column collapse: Analysis of grain-size effects. Physical Review E, 99(1), 012905.

Cabrera, M. A., & Wu, W. (2017). Experimental modelling of free-surface dry granular flows under a centrifugal acceleration field. Granular Matter, 19(4), 1-10.

Leonardi, A., Cabrera, M., Wittel, F. K., Kaitna, R., Mendoza, M., Wu, W., & Herrmann, H. J. (2015). Granular-front formation in free-surface flow of concentrated suspensions. Physical Review E, 92(5), 052204.

Cabrera, M. A., Caicedo, B., & Thorel, L. (2012). Dynamic actuator for centrifuge modeling of soil-structure interaction. Geotechnical Testing Journal. ASTM International.


Cabrera M., Prada-Sarmiento L., Montero, J., Ramos, A., Gonzalez, A., & Rodriguez C. Proceedings of the XIII International Symposium on Landslides 2021, Cartagena, Colombia. ISSMGE Online Library. 

Educational activities

Miguel teaches the following courses (i.e., units) in the master track of Geotechnical Engineering:

  • Testing & Modelling of Soil Behaviour (CIEM 2000)
  • Experimental Soil Mechanics (CIEM 2220)

In both units, the role of laboratory activities is fundamental in providing a learning environment for the understanding of soil behaviour.



  • GEOLAB: Science for enhancing Europe's Critical Infrastructure’ (European Union’s Horizon 2020)


Scholarships and awards

ERASMUS+ funding a visit to the Universidad Politécnica de Cataluña (ES), 2022. Teaching in the course "Geomecánica de Roturas", led by Dr. Núria Pinyol.

Bienal prize on research for the work “The Mocoa Event on March 31 (2017): analysis of a series of mass movements in a tropical environment of the Andean-Amazonian Piedmont”, 2021. The award was given by the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Colombia.

2020 Editors’ Citation for Excellence in Refereeing - JGR: Oceans by American Geophysical Union, AGU (US).

Exploratory visit to the Univiersität Bonn (Germany) funded by the Universidad de los Andes, 2018.

Outstanding Student Poster and PICO (OSPP) Award at the EGU General Assembly 2016.

US National Science Foundation (NSF) Travel Award, to participate in the Engineering Mechanics Institute (EMI) Conference at Stanford University, Palo Alto, US. 16 -- 19 June 2015.

Marie Curie ESR Fellowship as part of the MUMOLADE project.



Miguel Angel Cabrera

Assistant Professor on Experimental Soil Mechanics

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