Reducing the cost of reinforced concrete development through mechanics, London

27 October, 2015 | 18:00 - 19:35

Reinforced concrete structural engineers are frequently asked to find solutions to problems that fall outside the confines or safety net of codes.
Reinforced concrete structural engineers are frequently asked to find solutions to problems that fall outside the confines or safety net of codes.

About this event

Due to unforeseen circumstances, the Thomas Telford award winning author Professor Deric John Oehlers is unable to present his paper at the planned evening lecture on 27 October 2015.

Without Professor Oehlers available to present his paper it is with regret that we have had to take the decision to cancel this evening lecture.

The related paper is available to read online here. If you would like to receive further information on the topic from Professor Oehlers, please register your interest here

Reinforced concrete structural engineers are frequently asked to find solutions to problems that fall outside the confines or safety net of codes. For example, they may be asked to help develop a new type of reinforced concrete (RC) product such as the use of concrete with a new type of
fibre or an FRP reinforcement with a new type of bond. They may be asked to assess the remaining strength of an impact damaged structure or one that has been subjected to corrosion with time. Or they may be asked to help develop more accurate design rules, or design rules for new RC products.

To work outside the bounds of codes, in theory only one design tool is required. All that is required is a numerical model that simulates all the local and global mechanisms that occur in RC; simply put, a numerical model that can simulate all the RC behaviours that can be seen and measured in practice. In theory all that is required experimentally are the material properties for use in the numerical model. This type of numerical model would significantly reduce the cost of development or assessment by eliminating all other types of experimental testing which is the bane of current development.

This presentation explains:

  • Why, in general, currently available numerical models cannot do this and consequently why a huge amount of costly experimental testing is require to develop safe design rules
  • The localised reinforced concrete mechanisms that need to be simulated in global RC mechanisms for a numerical model to truly simulate an RC structure
  • How a segmental approach, which is simply based on the fundamental Euler-Bernoulli theorem of plane sections which is already universally accepted, can achieve this true simulation which in itself will save costs
  • How a segmental analysis can be used to develop fundamental mechanics models that can be used directly in design or used to develop simplified design approaches.
  • How to further reduce the costs of development as well as achieve more accurate and therefore more efficient design rules



Professor Deric John Oehlers
DEng, PhD MSc, BSc

Deric Oehlers obtained his undergraduate degree in civil engineering from London University which was followed by four years as a site engineer and three years as a consulting structural engineer. He then completed a PhD at Warwick University under the supervision of Professor R.P. Johnson, after which, he lectured at University College Cork, Ireland for six  years before taking up a position at The University of Adelaide in Australia.

He has published two books on composite steel and concrete structures, and two books on retrofitting RC structures that includes a design guideline for retrofitting RC structures with FRP and metal plates for Standards Australia. Professor Oehlers has further published 170 journal papers for which he was awarded the Doctor of Engineering by The University of Adelaide for his work on partial interaction theory and partial interaction material properties.

At the turn of the century whilst trying to quantify the ductility of FRP reinforced RC member, it gradually dawned on him the incredible dependency of RC design on empirical models. Thus started his search for a mechanics solution, an overview of which has been documented in his journal papers ‘The Hunt for the Elusive Concept’, ‘Our Obsession with Curvature in Reinforced Concrete Modelling’ and recently ‘A Generic Unified Reinforced Concrete Model’.

Following his retirement in 2012, Professor Oehlers has maintained active involvement in research and is now an Emeritus Professor of Structural Engineering at The University of Adelaide.


Ashraf Ashour
BSc(Hons), MSc, PhD(Cambridge), CEng, FIStructE, FHEA

Ashraf Ashour is a Professor of Structural Engineering at the University of Bradford. He is a Fellow of the Institution of Structural Engineers (FIStructE), the Editor-in-Chief for the Structures and Buildings Journal (ICE), a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA) and served in many other scientific/technical committees. He has an extensive research experience in the development of new construction materials and their use in structural engineering.

His research expertise covers the testing and simulation of reinforced concrete structures, concrete technology and the use of FRP bars as internal reinforcement for concrete structures. He is also researching on techniques suitable for repair and strengthening to extend the life of concrete and masonry structures, including externally bonded fibre reinforced polymer (FRP) laminates, near surface reinforcement and wire rope unit system. He has successfully supervised many international research fellows and PhD students.

Professor Ashour has authored more than 150 journal and conference papers in the area of structural engineering.


ICE in association with The Corporate Team has arranged discounted hotel rates at hotels close to One Great George Street should you require overnight accommodation.

If you wish to contact The Corporate Team by phone or email please quote ID Number: 10198

t: +44 (0) 20 7592 3050
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