skip to main content

Short Courses

Guidelines for Failure Investigations, Volume 2

Friday, November 4
8:00 a.m.– 12:00 p.m.

Instructors: Randall P. Bernhardt, P.E., S.E., F.SEI, F.ASCE; Richard S. Barrow, P.E., S.I.; Chase Anderson, P.E., M.ASCE

“Guidelines for Failure Investigation” Volume 1, written by the Committee on Forensic Investigation of the Forensic Engineering Division, American Society of Civil Engineers, provides an overview of the planning, analysis, and reporting components of a successful civil engineering failure investigation. This workshop will address the content in Volume 2 of the “Guidelines” which is currently being written. Volume 2 will provide guidance for conducting a forensic investigation based upon the type of construction materials or structures involved in the failure. This workshop will provide a description of unique material properties, construction and fabrication techniques, common failure modes, means of deterioration, inspection techniques and laboratory tests for common construction materials. Additionally, the workshop will address building envelopes and construction practices as they relate to failure investigations.

Resources for Practitioners to Reduce Claims

Friday, November 4
1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Instructors: John Tawresey, Jim Harris, and Ron Anthony

The workshop will take the attendees through a hypothetical claim from project conception through claim resolution, blending issues from many real claims, and focusing on the involvement of the structural engineer. The attendees will be active participants in that the proposal, relations specialty subcontractors, design firm management during the construction phase, and claims resolution decisions will involve discussion by all. The Committee on Claims Reduction and Management (CCRM) aims to both reduce the incidence of claims and improve the management of claims by providing more information about claims to practitioners. Cryptically, it is less costly for the practicing engineer to learn from the mistakes of others than to learn by making the same mistake on their own. Recent activities of CCRM, such as the Agreement Basics guide will be included in the discussion.

Workshop Leader: John G. Tawresey, SE, FSEI, FTMS, Hon. M. TMS, Dist. M. ASCE, KPFF Consulting Engineers, CFO, Retired

Additional Speakers: James Robert Harris, PE, Principal, J. R. Harris & Company, Denver, CO; Ronald Anthony, President, Anthony & Associates, Inc., Fort Collins, CO

Machine Learning and Emerging Technologies for Forensic Engineering

Friday, November 4
8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Instructors: Rui Liu, Ph.D, P.E., M.ASCE; Mirian Velay-Lizancos, Ph.D.

Machine learning, deep learning, and other emerging technologies, e.g., virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and mixed reality (MR), have been reported to boost architects, engineers, construction managers, and builders’ decision-making capacities. For example, artificial intelligence systems, i.e., computer vision algorithms, have been developed to analyze drone images taken after earthquakes or hurricanes to evaluate damages and identify critical areas quickly. Inspection images could be processed to detect defects in civil infrastructure. Natural disasters could be simulated and experienced in a virtual environment. Mixed realities have the potentials to enable inspectors to “visualize” hidden construction components. The workshop offers an opportunity for participants to learn fundamental concepts of machine learning, deep learning, mixed reality, and their potential applications in forensic engineering. Workshop participants are expected to receive hands-on training on coding with algorithms of machine learning and deep learning to process various data, including material properties tested in the lab, inspection images, and typed reports. The workshop will engage participants to discuss the impacts on the future practices of forensic engineering and how to be prepared for the potentially dramatic changes. The one-day workshop is composed of three parts:

  1. Machine learning and deep learning for forensic engineering (4 hrs)
  2. VR, AR and MR for forensic engineering (2.5 hrs)
  3. Discussions on future practices of forensic engineering driven by emerging technologies (1.5 hrs)

Learning outcomes

  • Fundamentals of machine learning, deep learning, and artificial intelligence
  • Hand-on coding using Tensorflow to build a convolutional neural network for image processing
  • Understanding of VR, AR, and MR technologies
  • Learning the workflow to deploy a virtual model onto MS Hololens
  • Interpreting impacts of emerging technologies on future practices of forensic engineering
jump to top