There is considerable research activity in the area of Structural Mechanics. A variety of practical problems ranging from the fundamental theoretical modelling of nonlinear behaviour of structural components to the development of computational techniques for the numerical simulation of complex structural systems are studied.

List of sub-topics within this research area

Nonlinear Structural Stability

Find out more on the Nonlinear structural stability group pages

Structural Biomechanics

Find out more on the Structural Biomechanics website

Computational Structural Mechanics

Research in Computational Structural Mechanics

Research Team: Prof. Bassam Izzuddin, Dr Lorenzo Macorini
Group Website:

The Computational Structural Mechanics (CSM) Group, led by Prof. Izzuddin, focuses oni) advanced nonlinear computational mechanics,ii) modelling of structures under extreme loading, andiii) progressive collapse assessment of building structures.Another major focus of the Group is the modelling and assessment of masonry structures, for which Dr Macorini acts as principal investigator. More details can be found at the CSM Group website.

Advanced Nonlinear Computational Mechanics

(Contact: Prof. B.A. Izzuddin)

A principal mission of the CSM Group is to undertake cutting edge research in nonlinear computational mechanics, which is often a prerequisite for applied structural engineering research in novel application areas. Recent research topics in nonlinear computational mechanics include i) coupled modelling for nonlinear soil-structure interaction, ii) mesh-free method for buckling analysis of cellular beams, iii) hierarchic partitioned modelling for high performance computing, iv) energy conserving algorithms for dynamic contact analysis, v) elasto-plastic buckling of plates and shells, vi) detailed modelling of reinforced concrete structures, vii) advanced modelling of curtain wall glazing, and viii) efficient modelling techniques for large-scale structural systems.

Modelling of Structures under Extreme Loading

(Contact: Prof. B.A. Izzuddin)

Another major focus of the CSM Group is the development of detailed as well as simplified models for structures subject to extreme loading, including blast, fire and earthquakes. In this respect, detailed modelling supports applied structural engineering research, while simplified modelling is aimed at structural engineering design and assessment practice. Recent research topics on structural modelling for extreme loading include i) advanced finite element formulation for composite floor slabs, ii) simplified modelling of floor slabs under fire loading, iii) SDOF models for steel members subject to extreme loading which are applied in offshore engineering practice, iv) modelling of steel framed buildings under global blast, and v) modelling of reinforced concrete buildings under earthquake loading.

Progressive Collapse of Building Structures

(Contact: Prof. B.A. Izzuddin)

Pioneering work has been undertaken within the CSM Group which led to the first rational framework for the progressive collapse/robustness assessment of building structures subject to sudden column loss. Further recent research in this area includes i) characterisation of sudden column loss in relation to local damage caused by blast loading, ii) significance of material rate sensitivity for structural robustness, iii) robustness of composite steel framed buildings under localised fire, and iv) influence of infill panels on building robustness.

Advanced Modelling of Masonry Structures

(Contact: Dr L. Macorini)

Despite its long history and universal appeal, the response of masonry structures remains one of the least studied and understood areas of structural engineering. Within this context, the CSM Group has recently undertaken pioneering research in an effort to redress this state of affairs, where advanced modelling approaches have been developed for masonry structures and components. These modelling approaches can be used for efficient and high-fidelity nonlinear analysis of whole URM structural systems under extreme static and dynamic loading. Recent and ongoing research projects have been focused on i) developing an accurate and efficient 3D mesoscale partitioned modelling strategy for masonry, ii) detailed analysis of heterogeneous systems with masonry (e.g. infilled frames, masonry arch bridges), and iii) validation of the developed models against the results of physical testing.