17.11.2011: The 2011 'Irish Flood Forum' is being held at the University of Limerick on Saturday 19th November. The forum aims to help and educate communities after the flooding on November and December 2009.
This year's event, which is a free event to the public, has a number of high profile speakers. The speakers on the day include Minister Brian Hayes, and experts from the ESB, OPW, academia, and flooded community representatives.
The forum starts at 09.45 in the Jean Monnett Theatre, University of Limerick. Full details can be found on the website of the Irish National Flood Forum.
01.11.2011: Cruth Curach is a dramatic temporary pavilion based on the shape of currach boats, creating a sheltered performance space that can hold around 40 people. Mounted on curved rails, the currachs can twist round and close up tight like a clamshell. On the UL campus this week, the pavilion will be the venue for a series of short talks and performances during lunchtime and evenings.
The School of Architecture at the University of Limerick (SAUL) with the support of the Faculty of Science and Engineering brings the Cruth Curach Pavilion to the UL campus as part of Design Week 2011. You will notice the installation work over the course of the day.
And in the evening, you are invited for the opening talk: “Designed. Crafted. Engineered.” Architect Merritt Bucholz, boat builder Jim Horgan, and engineer Tom Cosgrove (CIVIL @ UL) in conversation.Tuesday, 1 November 2011, from 6pm, Cruth Curach Pavilion, UL campus (off main plaza).
25.10.2011: Paul Hegarty BE CEng MIStrutE of FOUREM Consulting Engineers recently delivered a fascinating lecture to final year civil engineering and construction management & engineering students. The presentation was part of a CIVIL @ UL course in forensic engineering & ethics. In this course students learn from the mistakes of the past. In the process they debate the professional ethics of decisions made by engineers, architects and builders that ultimately resulted in failure of a structure or a project.
Paul focused on his extensive experience in sympathetically restoring the structure and fabric of historic and architecturally significant buildings.
Paul spoke of his formation as an engineer and outlined many significant projects that he has been involved with in both Ireland and the UK. Included amongst these was a five year period spent working on the restoration of Sir Christopher Wren’s St Paul’s Cathedral in London. The sketch shown is an original Wren drawing illustrating how he worked out a structure for the dome that would minimise its dead weight and fit onto the piers that were already constructed, while presenting differently to the interior and exterior.
Labels: Forensic Engineering
21.10.2011: Kimball Beasley P.E. a Senior Principal with WJE - one of America's leading forensic engineering firms recently visited with the CIVIL @ UL team.
The partial collapse of the Clarkson Hospital garage in Omaha, Nebraska, on April 14, 1970 was one of WJE's first major collapse investigations. WJE's findings led to fundamental changes in code provisions related to the detailing of reinforced concrete structures. WJE has investigated nearly every major structural collapse in the United States since this project.
Kimball spent time with final year civil engineering students sharing some highlights from his exciting and varied 40 year career in forensic engineering. He pointed to the importance of studying and learning from the mistakes of the past and the wonderful and engaging learning experience that such studies provide.
Labels: Forensic Engineering
17.10.2011: Kieran Ruane from RPS Consulting Engineers will be in UL on Tuesday 18th October to give an insight into the design and re-construction of the iconic Mizen Head Footbridge.
In 2005 the original bridge, which was built in 1908, was deemed unsafe and a temporary footway was installed. The construction of a new bridge commenced in 2009 and was officially opened in August of this year. The bridge, constructed from reinforced concrete using stainless steel reinforcement, spans 50m from the mainland to Cloghane Island at a height of 45m above the Atlantic Ocean.
The project has recently been shortlisted for the 2011 Institution of Structural Engineers' Heritage Award.
The talk will take place on Tuesday 18th October at 11.30 in SG-17 (Schuman Building).
12.10.2011: The 2011 UL Open Days take place on Friday October 14th and Saturday October 15th. The Open Days are a great opportunity to get a real sense of the UL experience: fun, opportunity, friendship and learning.
If you are interested in engineering solutions to the challenges of the 21st century and if you want to contribute positively to making the world a better place, make sure to call to the CIVIL @ UL stand and talk to our staff and students.
To find out a little more about how CIVIL @ UL's learning-by-doing approach prepares the next generation of engineers, have a look at some of our videos:
CIVIL @ UL - An innovative programme in Civil Engineering
CIVIL @ UL - What is Civil Engineering?
CIVIL @ UL - Our Process for developing great Engineers
02.10.2011: NASA Astronaut, Shane Kimbrough is to speak at the University of Limerick about his 16-day space mission on STS-126 Endeavour. During the mission Kimbrough performed two space walks logging a total of 12 hours and 52 minutes. STS-126 Endeavour returned to Earth after completing 250 orbits in over 6 million miles.
The link with Shane materialised through the relationship between UL’s Civil Engineering & Materials Science Department and its equivalent at the US Military Academy at West Point. We are absolutely delighted to be able share with Ireland’s future scientists and engineers, the wonder and reward that these careers have to offer and the benefits they bring to the world today.
Shane Kimbrough’s talk at the University of Limerick takes place on Tuesday October 4th in the University Concert Hall from 13.00 - 14.00.
To register for a place at the talk please email firstname.lastname@example.org, or phone 061-20 2301.
27.09.2011: Year 4 CIVIL @ UL student engineers will present their cooperative education experiences to staff and students on Wednesday from 16.00-18.00 in the Schuman Building. This is a great opportunity to gain an insight into the 8 month work experience programme which the students have just completed.
The event is organised similar to a brief symposium with talks running concurrently over three parallel sessions in rooms SG-15, SG-16 and SG-17. During the symposium, attendees may switch rooms, or come and go as they please between talks.
Click here to see the series of vignettes charting the exploits of students which appeared on the CIVIL @ UL blog over the summer months.
13.09.2011: A Limerick student has been named the recipient of the 2011 Michael Punch Scholarship which provides university registration fees of up to €4,500 for a student studying Civil Engineering at the University of Limerick. Padraig Sweeney a former pupil of Ard Scoil Ris was presented with the award by Mr Pat Hanley, Chairman of PUNCH Consulting Engineers at Plassey House UL on 8th September. The Punch family were represented at the presentation by Michael’s daughter Patricia Punch.
Pictured: Patricia Punch, Padraig Sweeney, Pat Hanley and Tom Cosgrove.
Padraig was among 6 prizewinners at the Engineers of the Future Blitz recently which tasked Leaving Certificate students to research an energy, environmental or infrastructural challenge and design a poster outlining the problem and providing a viable solution. The Engineers of the Future Blitz was a joint initiative between CIVIL @ UL and Engineers Ireland Thomond Branch.
Padraig was shortlisted for the scholarship based on his poster, which depicted new energy resources available to GAA clubs, and won having achieved outstanding results in the Leaving Certificate, with 520 points. A keen sportsman Padraig commenced his studies at UL this semester as a first year student of Civil Engineering in the Faculty of Science and Engineering.
Padraig was presented with his award by Mr Pat Hanley, Chairman of Punch Consulting Engineers. Speaking at the presentation Mr Hanley said "PUNCH Consulting Engineers are delighted to follow Michael’s lifelong commitment to the development of young talent through the Michael Punch Scholarship". The scholarship was named in honour of the late Mr Michael Punch, founder of the engineering company now known as PUNCH Consulting Engineers, who died on 26th April this year. Michael was an avid supporter of Engineering at University of Limerick.
Tom Cosgrove, Professor of Civil Engineering at University of Limerick congratulated Padraig on his award saying "Our team in Civil Engineering at UL enjoy the creative energy of Irish young people so much during our school visits. Our Engineers of the Future Blitz at UL is designed to allow students to express that creativity freely, away from exam pressures by choosing a problem from their own environment and solving it. Padraig expressed his creativity so well in his entry, worked hard in his studies and secured a place on the new learning-by-doing programme in Civil Engineering at UL. We are really looking forward to seeing him produce creative design work in his years at UL and in his future career and we would like to take this opportunity to thank Punch Consulting Engineers for their generous support in funding this scholarship".
13.09.2011: The University of Limerick welcomes the findings of the recent QS Stars™ report which awarded UL top scores across a number of key areas, in particular graduate employability and innovation and knowledge transfer. The QS Stars™ provides an independent evaluation of some of the world’s leading universities. The report also awarded UL 5-star ratings across the areas of infrastructure, teaching, engagement and internationalisation.
Click here for the further details.
09.09.2011: Kay Cullinane, a transport engineer with Malachy Walsh and Partners, is researching a community engagement strategy for Limerick Smarter Travel with Prof. Cosgrove in the Department of Civil Engineering and Materials Science at the University of Limerick. This research forms part of UL’s collaboration with Limerick City and County Councils on the Smarter Travel project.
Kay who presented at the recent Irish Transport Research Network conference at UCC is pictured receiving her award for best paper in section from Dr. Michael Murphy, President of UCC.
The Chancellor of UL, Mr. Peter Malone, addressed the closing plenary session of the conference where he outlined the story of his historic decade at the NRA, the organisational challenges he faced and the successful rollout of Ireland’s motorway network including the Limerick Tunnel.
Pictured: Mr. Peter Malone - Chancellor of UL, Kay Cullinane - Research Student CIVIL @ UL, Dr. Michael Murphy - President UCC and Tom Cosgrove - Prof. Civil Engineering, UL.
09.09.2011: After spending the week studying how their roller coaster would defy gravity, CIVIL @ UL Year 1 student engineers presented the output of their first project on campus today.
Video clips of the roller coasters can be seen on the CIVIL @ UL YouTube page. Well done to all.
Labels: What we do
08.09.2011: Year 1 CIVIL @ UL student engineers are nearing the end of an exciting first week in university. Designs for their roller coaster project have been completed, with construction and testing now entering its final stage!
Presentation of final designs will take place tomorrow (Friday 09 Sept) in B0-005. All are welcome!
01.09.2011: CIVIL @ UL look forward to the launch of the new academic year on Monday next, September 5th, at 10.00 in ER0-013.
The coming together of all four years and the staff affords an opportunity to review the many successes of the programme to date and to outline our plans for the forthcoming year - the year in which the first cohort of UL Civil Engineers graduate!
We look forward to seeing you all on Monday, CIVIL @ UL Team.
16.08.2011: The results of the 2011 Leaving Cert are released tomorrow, and the Faculty of Science and Engineering at the University of Limerick is reminding all students that it is offering a special entrance maths exam which gives students a second chance to pursue a course of study in science and engineering (including CIVIL @ UL).
This special mathematics examination is for students who achieve sufficient CAO entry points and satisfy all other entrance requirements, but who do not achieve the requisite grade in Mathematics (Ordinary or Honours) in the Leaving Certificate. It will take place Thursday, 25 August from 2.30pm – 5.30pm, Kemmy Business School, University of Limerick.
Applications for the Special Mathematics Examination must be sent to Special Mathematics Examination Administrator by 23 August 2011. For further enquiries regarding the Special Mathematics Examination contact Siobhan Harris, Faculty of Science and Engineering, (061-202421 or 061-202642) or visit www.ul.ie/admissions for further information.
15.08.2011: Year 3 student Eoin Leahy reports from site in Bantry, Co. Cork where he is into the final month of his CoOp placement working as a site engineer.
“I am working for John Sisk & Sons Ltd. who are the main contractor on this project. The project itself consists of the construction of two brand new schools on the same site – a new Community School and Gaelscoil. I have been on site since January and I have seen the works progress hugely since then.
My primary role when I first joined was overseeing concrete quality control. This involved making concrete cubes and then documenting the pre, actual and post- pour analysis of the structural concrete members onsite based on the results from the tested cubes. I also did a share of setting out and surveying in my first few months. Experience we gained from our professional practice module in college certainly helped with this. Recently I have been dealing with snagging one of the schools on the site as it reaches handover stage.
The range and level of field experience I have gained here has been broad and varied, and I think that it will stand to me for the rest of my engineering career.”
28.07.2011: In the latest of our reports from Year 3 CIVIL @ UL students, we hear from Declan Walsh who is helping Irish Rail maintain and improve our rail network:
"Working for Irish Rail on my Coop placement has been a great opportunity for me. I have learned a lot about Railway Engineering, a vast and interesting area, which I would probably never have discovered otherwise.
Based in the Limerick Junction Offices I have gained a lot of experience both in the office and out on the railway itself, doing things like surveying and curve alignment as well as inspecting a wide range of bridges and cuttings/embankments. The work can be very varied and there are many more aspects of railway engineering that I want to experience before I finish my placement.
During my placement so far I have had many opportunities to put what I have learned in college to use and one area which I have really seen the importance of is Health and Safety, and how good planning can be key to preventing or eliminating risks and hazards, which is crucial on the railway as you don't want to be taking risks when a train travelling at 100kph could arrive any minute!"
27.07.2011: Patrick Finucane, a Year 3 CIVIL @ UL student, reports with an insight into this work placement close to Wembley Stadium:
"I am working for Mitchellson who have the contract for building the whole structural frame for a new Wembley civic offices just across the road from Wembley Stadium. Skanska are the main contractors and Scott Wilson are the design engineers. Hopkins are the architects.
I’m very busy here every day – the learning never stops. Everything from setting out using EDM’s (electromagnetic distance measurement) for setting out to checking rebar before pouring concrete to health and safety procedures and creating as-built record drawings. I have learned how much easier life on site is if you plan ahead of time carefully for every task. I never would have imagined that health and safety is such a big issue on a building site. They are trying to eliminate the use of ladders as far as possible so you need a special permit to put a ladder up. Stair towers are safer.
There are people on the site from all over the world. I have been working on the fairface reinforced concrete wall pours. I will see the pouring of the first few big suspended floor slabs but will be returning to UL for final year in September."
18.07.2011: Year 3 CIVIL @ UL student Padraig Clery illustrates the wide range of opportunities available to engineers as he reports back from the Netherlands where he is working with Philips Healthcare during a very interesting co-op placement:
"I am undertaking my co-op with Philips Healthcare in Eindhoven, Netherlands. I am currently working in Logistics Optimisation for Philips Spare Parts Supply. It is slightly out of the ordinary compared to what is expected from the field of Civil Engineering. It does however show that jobs are out there for highly skilled graduates regardless of a certain specialized field - every industry needs people to solve problems!
The experience so far has been fantastic. Philips is truly a global firm employing over 119,000 people worldwide. Within this 119,000 I am working in a team of 12 people based across the globe from Singapore to Washington DC all the way to Sao Paulo. I work in analytics under various projects undertaken under by the team with respect to finding cost cutting opportunities in the Philips supply chain.
Projects include implementing a global transport provider (UPS) to manage all spare parts delivery's and also a project called blueprint which involves setting up IT systems to record all parts movements within the supply chain on a system called SAP. Not what you would expect coming from a civil background but very rewarding nonetheless. I have gained much valuable experience in detailed business analytics using various programmes such as excel, access, SAP etc. Business trips to Paris, Cologne, Dusseldorf and Amsterdam have been but one of the perks from working in the hub of Europe."
Pictured above: Padraig on a recent trip to the delta works. Famously built over a period of 50 years it guards Netherlands from the powerful tidal surges of the North Sea. The part of the Delta Works is in North West Holland in a Province called Zeeland. It is a storm surge barrier called Oosterscheldekering. It is named as one of the 7 modern wonders of the world.
13.07.2011: As we continue our series of vignettes charting the exploits of Year 3 CIVIL @ UL student engineers on their work placement programme, we hear from Robert O'Callaghan who gives a first hand account of his time with Kentz, a global engineering and construction firm:
"For the first spell of my placement with Kentz, I was situated in their engineering design office in Al Khobar, Saudi Arabia. While working there I was involved with a project encompassing the design and development of drilling platforms, in the West Qurma Oil fields in Iraq. By working with this project I gained large amounts of invaluable experience of operating in a professional office environment, and getting to put many of the skills I have learned in college into real world practice. It certainly was impressive to see the detailed organisation required to organise construction in such an unsettled environment.
To gain as much of a varied experience as possible, for my second rotation with Kentz I was given the opportunity to progress away from the design side of the company, and experience construction work in progress first hand, a prospect I certainly was not going to pass up. With this move am currently working on site on the Sidra Medical and research Center in Doha, Qatar. By leaving the comforts of the office behind I am gaining ample hands on experience in organising and supervising the labour on site, and coordinating with the offsite engineering office to ensure design becomes reality. With over 10,000 workers on site, it certainly is an eye-opener to not only observe, but to be involved in, the detailed planning and coordination required on a project of this scale.
As regards living in an area of the world so alien to the familiar green fields of home, while certainly a culture shock, I have found to be an amazing experience. With a close knit, friendly ex-pat community in all of the countries out east I have visited, one always feels a link to back home and never too isolated. While admittedly not for everyone, I would whole heartedly recommend Irish engineers to give a thought to the Middle East as it hard to get such great experience anywhere else."
12.07.2011: The redevelopment of the historic Milk Market in the heart of Limerick city has won the Public Choice prize at the 2011 Royal Institute of Architects of Ireland (RIAI) Awards.
The Milk Market saw off competition from a variety of entries, including the Aviva Stadium, to scoop the award. Limerick-based practices were to the fore on the project, with Healy Partners as project architects and Dennany Reidy Associates as consulting civil and structural engineers. L&M Keating Ltd. of Kilmihil, Co. Clare were the main contractors.
The redevelopment involved erecting a 1.8 tonne, half acre canopy over the market. The newly erected tensile structure does not come in contact with the existing market buildings or the city wall (located underground), both of which are protected. It has transformed the Market, originally built in the 1840s, into an all-weather, all year round market space.
This is the second time in three years that this prestigious RIAI award has been won by a project in Limerick city, with Thomond Park winning in 2009.
Labels: Industry News
30.06.2011: Year 3 CIVIL @ UL Student Niamh Cahill talks about her work experience to date with the Hydraulics and Maritime Research Centre (HMRC), a centre of excellence for ocean energy and coastal engineering research located in Cork city:
"As the HMRC works with a number of commercial companies I have had the opportunity to learn about many different methods of harnessing wave energy and the different devices currently being developed.
Highlights for me so far have been designing and constructing a small scale wave tank to demonstrate how wave energy can be harnessed and representing the HMRC at the 2011 Energy Show at the RDS.
I feel my experiences here to date has given me a great insight into the renewable energy sector."
23.06.2011: James Culhane, third year civil engineer gives an account of his eight month coop experience working with Keltbray in the UK.
"So far I have gained a great deal of experience from my time with Keltbray. I have been involved in various roles across the company such as a site engineer for a piling project at Bolsover St in central London where we had to install over 250 CFA or Augercast piles.
In the office I have been involved in implementing a new planning and resource management programme to improve efficiencies.
One of the most interesting part of my work experience to date has been able to see the engineering practices used by Keltbray to bring a project from design stage to completion and also being part of the decision making process when site conditions necessitate a design change."
10.06.2011: Year 2 students from CIVIL @ UL have presented their entry “The Siege of King John’s Castle” at an adjudication day for the prestigious Wood Marketing Federation Student Wood Awards hosted by UL.
The presentation given by Peter Power, Marie Murray, Sanju Thapa and Liam Grace was based on their experiences engineering and constructing a full-scale timber siege tower at the walls of King John’s Castle earlier this year, which formed part of the Year 2 Structural Steel and Timber Design module.
Entries were assessed on the day by the competition’s judging panel, including renowned architect Duncan Stewart. Other entries presented from NUIG, CIT and GMIT included prefabricated flat pack beds, jewellery in wood, embodied energy and carbon footprint studies and load sharing in flooring systems.
08.06.2011: A group of elite cadets from the US military academy at West Point are visiting schools in Limerick to share with hundreds of primary students the excitement that engineering and science have to offer.
The University of Limerick is hosting Colonel Stephen Ressler, Professor of Civil and Mechanical Engineering at West Point, two other West Point engineering faculty members and seven cadets.
The team visited seven primary schools around Limerick to show how civil engineers use maths and science to design the structures that are part of everyday lives.
Schools participating in the 10-day exercise include Corpus Christi, Our Lady of Lourdes, Our Lady Queen of Peace, Ahane NS, Model School and Milford NS. Gaelcholáiste Luimnigh students, the only secondary school involved, have postponed their holidays by one day to take part.
Col Ressler said: "This project provides us with a wonderful opportunity to contribute to the youth of Ireland through engineering outreach. But I must also emphasise that the youth of Ireland are contributing wonderfully to the development of our seven cadets. This is a fine learning experience for all of us."
RTE Nine O'Clock News were on hand in Ahane NS to report on an exciting day for all:
Labels: Outreach Activities
31.05.2011: John McKenna, third year civil engineer gives a brief account of his experience working with the energy and environment section of civil engineering company Denis Moriarty The Kerries Ltd.
"The experience thus far has exposed me to a number of varied projects; from site development in Ringaskiddy to engineering design projects in Tipperary. In Ringaskiddy we carried out a grid connection for the ESB which involved shore works and laying a submarine cable under Cork harbour.
At present my main focus in on a wind farm (pictured) project in Tipperary. The site has just one turbine at present but has been described as one of the most efficient turbine sites in Ireland. We have the contract to erect 17 additional turbines in the area.
To date I have encountered a vast range of engineering concepts and design techniques but the most enlightening part of my learning has come from experiencing the rigour and detail demanded by clients such as ESB International and Bord Gais."
31.05.2011 Declan Phillips, CIVIL @ UL Course Director recently completed two stages of the inaugural Race the Rás charity cycle. Starting three hours before 175 professional cyclists, Declan and 32 other amateur cyclists, drawn mostly from sporting life, departed Portumna for the 164 km journey to Kilrush. The gruelling cycle into head on gale force winds left little opportunity to enjoy the rugged beauty of the County Clare coastline!
The second stage involving Declan was from Tramore to Kildare; a stage dedicated to sporting legend and UL Alumnus, the late Lt Gen Dermot Earley. The eight day event has currently raised over €100,000 for the Irish Cancer Society and GOAL.
Pictured at the end of stage 7 are Captain Dermot Earley with his mother Mary, Declan Phillips and Paul Earley
On July 2, CIVIL @ UL lecturer Michael Quilligan will participate in the 180 km Ring of Kerry Cycle also raising money for charity.
24.05.2011: CIVIL @ UL are looking forward to working with faculty and cadets from West Point who are traveling to Limerick next week to share with children in local schools the excitement and joy that mathematics and science have to offer.
This high-energy team will work with students to show how engineers use maths and science to design the structures that are part of our everyday life.
The following national schools participating in the 10-day event include Ahane, Corpus Christi, Milford, Model School, Our Lady of Lourdes and Our Lady Queen Peace. In addition a group of transition year students from Gaelcholaiste Luimnigh secondary school will launch the extravaganza.
Over the 10 day period students will be involved in exciting in-class activities that demonstrate some basic science and maths concepts that engineers use in practice. The children will use interactive computer programmes to design structures and this will be followed by building and testing their designs in the playground.
The visiting team are part of the 'West Point Centre for STEM Education', a centre of excellence devoted to enhancing the effectiveness of Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) education in the United States. This initiative strives to highlight how these subjects can help overcome some of the greatest challenges facing the world today.
24.05.2011: As Year 3 CIVIL @ UL student engineers near the mid point of their eight month Cooperative Education programme, we hear from Co. Galway where Donal Kelly and Una O'Grady are working with Glan Agua Ltd who specialise in providing design, construction, operation and maintenance services to the water and wastewater industry in Ireland.
Pictured: CIVIL @ UL student engineers Donal Kelly and Una O'Grady at a recently completed project with their mentor from Glan Agua Ltd Alan Delaney.
Here Una gives a brief insight into her Co-op to date.
"As an experience so far it has been both an enjoyable and an eye-opening one. I have learned something new every day! Knowing that the work you do is necessary to progress a real job gives you a certain motivation that is unlike anything experienced in college.
My role in the company to date has been as an office based Junior Engineer. The work has varied from the preparation of tender documents for new build and upgrade works for both water and wastewater treatment facilities throughout Ireland to undertaking a cost analysis of the company’s energy usage in the running of 23 water treatment plants in Connaught, in order to establish important cost saving initiatives.
My educational experience to date has been undoubtedly helpful. I have found myself drawing on not only my technical knowledge of water and wastewater treatment systems, but also the people skills I have acquired through our many group projects. This has enabled me to interact with my colleagues well, which is always a help!"