Shining the Spotlight on Material Innovations to Improve Structural Safety

This week at the Australasian Structural Engineering Conference in Adelaide, WSP technical leaders will demonstrate the cutting edge materials and methodologies that are helping to shape safer transport and property structures in Australia.

WSP’s Wolfram Schwarz, Technical Executive and Neil Westmacott, Senior Principal Engineer will describe the innovative composite steel concrete girders used on Main Roads Western Australia’s bridge over the Tone River. The technology – based on a Technical Approval from the German Institute for Construction Techniques – was successfully applied for the first time in Australia. In comparison with traditional construction methodologies, the benefits include detailing, constructability, safety in design and cost efficiencies.


Larry Yang, a former representative of the Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure, now a Senior Structural Engineer with WSP,  will outline the application of  unique near-surface-mounted, carbon fibre reinforced polymer rods on the project to strengthen Adelaide’s Hackney Road Western Bridge, support safety and enable a fast turnaround by simplifying construction.


Joshua Madden, Graduate Fire Safety Engineer, will share his latest findings and outline the direction of future research into the structural performance of laminated bamboo columns during fire events. In addition, Freddy Smyth, Graduate Civil Engineer, will join the panel discussion on ‘Bridging the gap between engineering education and practice’, exploring technology and generational differences, and critical impacts to the profession.


David Cruickshanks-Boyd, National Director for Sustainability will chair the panel discussion. He commended the high-calibre of conference speakers, “Our people, who are thought-leaders, join a strong line-up of presenters demonstrating technical excellence and innovation in structural engineering across all disciplines including transport, property and environment.


“At a time of rapid change, our willingness to venture into new avenues, leverage international methodologies and redefine how we approach bridge and building design is the way forward to safer and more sustainable engineering structures that are often also more cost effective.


“These case studies offer a compelling incentive to investigate and trial the application of alternative options and technologies on future structures,” says Mr Cruickshanks-Boyd.


The conference runs from 25 – 28 September 2018 at Adelaide Convention Centre.


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