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Proceedings Paper

Recent trends in nondestructive inspections in state highway agencies: can engineering education respond?
Author(s): Kevin L. Rens; David J. Transue; Albert Knott
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Paper Abstract

This paper presents how one university is addressing the problems of our deteriorating and failing infrastructure. Results of two recent questionnaires reveal that State Highway Agencies are beginning to shift their priorities to emphasize inspection and rating of infrastructure. While both public and private practices are responding, education as a whole tends to remain fixed to traditional analysis and design courses. While traditional courses are essential, new trends must be periodically injected into the curriculum. This paper will show the efforts of the Denver campus of the University of Colorado to educate both undergraduate and graduate engineers in these non-traditional aspects of Civil Engineering. The 3- credit course titled Condition Assessment and Failure Analysis of Civil/Mechanical Infrastructure included such topics as nondestructive evaluation (NDE), lock and dam inspections, bridge maintenance and inspection, structural failure analysis, vehicle accident reconstruction, engineering ethics, and the law. The design of new structures is being overshadowed by the need to maintain and rehabilitate existing structures. In addition, valuable educational material is found in our record of past engineering failures. It is hoped that by publishing information on this course other higher learning institutions will be encouraged to educate students as to the trends that are occurring in practice.

Paper Details

Date Published: 31 March 1998
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 3400, Structural Materials Technology III: An NDT Conference, (31 March 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.300077
Show Author Affiliations
Kevin L. Rens, Univ. of Colorado/Denver (United States)
David J. Transue, Univ. of Colorado/Denver (United States)
Albert Knott, Knott Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3400:
Structural Materials Technology III: An NDT Conference
Ronald D. Medlock; David C. Laffrey, Editor(s)

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