Computational Facilities

The Department has two instructional laboratories with PCs.

Materials of Engineering Laboratory

The Materials of Engineering Laboratory houses an Instron 8500 series Testing Machine. This is a computer controlled servo–hydraulic machine and capable of applying 55 kips (250 kN) dynamic loads. Supporting electronic control, data acquisition and computer software systems are available. Additional equipment for the static, dynamic and fatigue testing of materials include testing machines for tension, compression, transverse-bending and torsion investigation. The laboratory contains hardness testing machines, impact testers, strain signal conditioning consoles, and assorted peripheral equipment. Facilities for preparing and curing concrete include walk-in temperature humidity control chambers. Optical Systems for surface strain measurements using digital image correlation are available. Electrochemical facilities for determining the rate of corrosion of steel allow for potentiostatic, galvanostatic and frequency response analysis. Nondestructive testing facilities include 4-channel acoustic emission system for early detection of incipient defect growth, ultrasonic V-meter, ultrasonic signal generation, digitalization and analysis capacities.

Soil Mechanics Laboratory

The Soil Mechanics Laboratory is equipped to perform standard identification tests of soils, such as grain size distribution, liquid and plastic limits and compaction properties. In addition, facilities to perform detailed testing of undistributed samples (consolidation and triaxial shear) are available. A moist room is available for long term sample storage.

Fluid Mechanics Laboratory

The Fluid Mechanics Laboratory is equipped for studying both compressible and incompressible fluid media. Flow rates of up to 5 cubic feet per second of water are provided by each of the three independent high-pressure systems equipped with constant head controls. Two constant-head supply tanks located in the laboratory provide needed discharge capacities. The laboratory contains a tilting flume 52 ft. long, a water tunnel, pumps, turbines, a hydraulic bench, and various units for the study of frictional phenomena involving water and oil. A one-dimensional Laser Doppler Anemometer is used for the study of flow velocities in pipes and near boundaries. In addition, the Lab has a state-of-the-art wave tank. This tank is 6 feet wide by 4 feet high and 40 feet long. It is equipped with computer controlled five-paddle generator. This system can produce single waves, random waves, and angle waves. A two-dimensional Laser Doppler Velocimeter (LDV) equipped with computer controlled 3-D traverse and fully automated data acquisition system are used in the wave tank for studying beach hydraulics and off-shore similitudes. In addition, a Particle Image Velocimeter (PIV) is available for analysis of particles in a flow field. The Lab is also equipped with a titling sand flume for studying flow through porous media and groundwater contamination. A fully automated freeze and thaw machine is also available for graduate research work.

Environmental Engineering Laboratory

The Environmental Engineering Laboratory is equipped for experimental evaluation of unit processes and operations in water and wastewater treatment as well as analysis of all physical, chemical and microbiological water quality parameters. The experimental facilities include settling columns, suspended and attached growth biological reactors, computer controlled bioreactors for kinetic studies, a bench scale UV chamber, a 12 gpm 15-foot bubble contactor for ozone studies complete with ozone generator, gas and liquid phase ozone residual monitors and off-gas destructor, TOC/TN Analyzer, BIOFLO 310 Autoclavable Benchtop Fermentation System, IMAG System MULTIDOC-IT/LM-263, TF-7300 RT PCR System for DNA/RNA Analysis and all conventional experimental devices used in determination of chemical dose requirements for water and wastewater processing. An environmental chamber for temperature controlled experiments is also available.

The analytical capabilities of the laboratory include gas chromatograph-mass spectrometer/ECD with purge/ trap, inductive coupled plasma spectrometer (ICP) gas chromatograph with EC and FID detectors, total organic carbon analyzer, Dionex, dual channel ion chromatography system, water quality autoanalyzer, UV-visible double beam spectrophotometer with stopped-flow device, and phase contrast/epiflouresence research microscope. Field monitoring equipment include water quality monitors with multiple probes and flourometers.

Dynamics and Structural Control Laboratory

The Dynamics and Structural Control Laboratory (DSCL) facilitates advanced research in earthquake engineering, and the developmental of smart and intelligent structural systems. A smart and intelligent structural system has in–built capability to sense the vibration due to natural hazards such as earthquakes and extreme wind loads, and modify its behavior to minimize vibration, damage and discomfort to occupants of the structure. The DSCL is equipped with a 30 feet by 15 feet strong floor system with 100 kips inserts for static and dynamic testing of structures, a state-of-the-art 10,000 lb one directional (horizontal) shaking table system capable of simulating near-field ground motions with velocities up to 2 meters per second, a 6 story building frame model with replaceable elements to simulated nonlinear response of structures, 24 channel 2 MHz simultaneous data acquisition system, 24 channel d-space controller for real time implementation of controllers using MATLAB, and a computer based visualization and image correlation system for damage detection in structural systems being tested on the strong floor.