Damage Information Modelling and Retrofitting Solutions for Substandard Rc Bridges

A PhD scholarship in structural engineering is available at The University of Nottingham. Applications are welcome before April 30, 2020.

Bridges are playing a key role in the development of modern economy worldwide by facilitating transportation and commerce. Most of the concrete bridges in Europe were built in the 1950s following the design codes and construction practices of that era. A significant proportion of those bridges have reached, or are about to reach, the end of their design life. Ageing of materials (e.g. corrosion of the steel reinforcement), poor quality of construction, fatigue and aggressive environmental conditions accelerate structural deterioration rendering existing bridges susceptible to future collapses. This project aims to develop a new tool that will combine the BIM environment with advanced numerical modelling to assess the severity of damage and provide adequate retrofitting design solutions.

To this end, a digital BIM model of an existing asset will be used to collect, process and visualize the monitored bridge condition. Moreover, a fully automated link will be developed to enable the generation and execution of computational models based on geometry and semantics of BIM models, as well as the effective visualisation of simulation results back in the BIM environment. Based on the model results, the damage level will be assessed, and alternative retrofitting scenarios will be proposed based on the constraints of each project. To enable effective and user-friendly application of retrofitting solutions for practical applications, an object library with retrofitting parametric classes/families will be developed for commercial BIM tools according to NBS BIM Object Standards and BS 8541.

Applicants should have, or expect to obtain, a 1st class or 2.1 honours degree (or international equivalent) in Civil Engineering. An MSc in Structural Engineering would be advantageous. Students with experience in FE analysis and Matlab/Python software are encouraged to apply.

If English is not candidate's first language, he/she must provide evidence that he/she meets the University's minimum English Language requirements.

Due to funding restrictions this position is only available for UK or EU candidates.

The position is available to start in December, February, April or June (subject to date of application)

This project will include the payment of tuition fees as well as a stipend equivalent to RCUK rates (currently at 15,009 p.a. tax free for 2019/20) awarded to the suitable candidate.

Informal contact can be sent to Dr Georgia Thermou ( or Dr Jelena Ninic ( before submitting an online application. Please send a cover letter and a copy of your CV with your up to date relevant experience.

Online application can be made via Please quote the studentship reference and Dr Georgia Thermou or Dr Jelena Ninic.

When applying for this studentship, please include the reference number (beginning ENG) within the personal statement section of the application. This will help in ensuring your application is sent directly to the academic advertising the studentship.


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