Structural Engineering

Structural Engineering


As defined by the International Association for Bridge and Structural Engineering, structural engineering is the science and art of planning, design, construction, operation, monitoring and inspection, maintenance, rehabilitation and preservation, demolishing and dismantling of structures, taking into consideration technical, economic, environmental, aesthetic and social aspects. Structural engineering research at the University of Houston focuses on large scale testing of concrete and steel members with companion analytical studies.


The Structural Research Laboratory is located in the South Park Annex of the University of Houston. The facility includes 30 ft. by 60 ft. and 20 ft. by 60 ft. strong floors and houses over two million dollars worth of test equipment, including a biaxial fatigue testing machine, a 2.5 million pound MTS test system, and a universal panel tester. The universal panel tester can be used to perform biaxial and triaxial tests and is the only one of its kind in the United States and the most versatile of the three panel testers in the world. The laboratory also offers a fully equipped welding shop and concrete casting room, as well as student and faculty office space and a conference room.

Since its inception in 1983, the laboratory has conducted over two million dollars worth of research for the National Research Foundation, multiple projects for the Texas Department of Transportation, and has produced major research results that have attracted national and international attention.

Examples of Specific Research Projects:

  • STEP-AHEAD: Access to Higher Education through Academic Retention and Development at the University of Houston
    - National Science Foundation
    - S. Long, F. Claydon, R. Herman, D. Roberts, and C. Waight (2003-2008)
  • Doctoral Training in Infrastructure Engineering
    - Department of Education — Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need (GAANN) Program
    - Y. Mo, R. Herman, D. Roberts, K. Wang, and J. Freiburg (2004-2008)
  • Rational Shear Provisions for AASHTO LRFD Specifications
    - Texas Department of Transportation
    - Y. Mo and T.T.C. Hsu (2003-2006)
  • Correlation of Texas Cone Penetrometer Test Values and Shear Strength of Texas Soils
    - Texas Department of Transportation
    - C. Vipulanandan and Y. Mo (2003-2006)
  • Develop a Remote Smart Structures Laboratory
    - University of Houston
    - Y. Mo and G. Song (2005-2006)
  • Development of Computer Simulation for Tilt-Up Design and Construction
    - Shepler's
    - Y. Mo (2005-2006)

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