University of Calgary

Undergraduate Minor in Structural Engineering

Structural engineers plan and design buildings, bridges, dams, towers, storage facilities and much more. Structural engineering involves:

  • Analysis of plates
  • Computer analysis of structures
  • Hollow and post - tensioned masonry
  • Design, serviceability and analysis of reinforced and prestressed concrete structures
  • Load-bearing structures in the human body
  • Shear strength of flat plates
  • Risk analysis
  • Ice structure interaction

Required Courses

Required Courses Fourth Year
ENCI 570 Group Design Project (two half-course equivalents)
Structural Engineering Technical Electives from Group A (four half-course equivalents)
One of:
a) EVDA 511 Building Science and Technology l
b) ENCI 513 Properties of Concrete Masonry
c) ENCI 523 Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering
d) ENCI 525 Applied Geotechnical Engineering
e) an approved course on the Design of Wood
f) an approved course on Structural Biomechanics
Structural Engineering Technical Electives from Group B (three half-course equivalents)
See University of Calgary Calendar for more information
2010/2011 Civil Engineering Curriculum Sheet

Structural Biomechanics

FEM model of a spinal motion segment FEM model of a spinal motion segment Dr. Neil Duncan is examining the loads and stresses in the spine and knee, from the organ level to the sub-cellular, to establish mechanotransduction pathways that link mechanical stress to gene expression. His work involves finite element modelling and mechanicaltesting of tissues, cells and cell components (cytoskeleton, membrane). This basic science research has application to understanding the pathogenesis of low back pain, disc degeneration, scoliosis and osteoarthritis, and to developing tissue engineered treatments which are being researched. In a more applied engineering research project, he is developing a virtual haptic simulator of spinal surgeries.

He collaborates with Drs. Peter Goldsmith (mechanical engineering), Rick Hu (surgery), Greg Kawchuk (kinesiology), John Matyas (anatomy and cell biology), Nigel Shrive (civil engineering) and Brian Wyvill (computer science).

A close-up of a cell depicting its cytoskeletal structure (a cell's scaffolding) Cytoskeletal structure of a cell Outer annulus cells in-situ Outer annulus cells in-situ  Inner annulus cells in-situ Inner annulus cells in-situ  

Dr. Richard Wan works with Dr. Ken Muldrew (surgery) on freezing and thawing of transplant tissues. Of particular interest are joints and bone-cartilage plugs. Cartilage is a particularly difficult tissue to freeze and thaw in such a way that cells remain alive.

Dr. Wan is developing a finite element to account for the progression of the ice front as the fiber-reinforced, fluid saturated, ionic matrix freezes. Internal stresses which burst cell membranes need to be avoided.

Dr. Nigel Shrive collaborates with Drs. Cy Frank (surgery) and Dave Hart (microbiology and infectious diseases) on in vivo tissue engineering. The emphasis is on healing and reconstructed ligaments, although the fundamental mechanisms by which load affects cell metabolism are also of interest.

Dr. Shrive also collaborates with Drs. John Matyas and Neil Duncan on the cartilage work. In the area of cardiac mechanics, Nigel works with Dr. John Tyberg (cardiovascular research group). His contributions relate to the development of simple finite element models to help explain the structural mechanics involved in abnormal motions of the septum and diastolic motion.

Confederation Bridge Ice Force Monitoring Research
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Introduction to the Confederation Bridge Building the Confederation Bridge Research on the Confederation Bridge Weather concerns on the Confederation Bridge