Construction Engineering was founded in 1963 at Iowa State University. At the time, the university had an architectural engineering program, which trained students in both design and engineering of structures. Bill Klinger, owner of Klinger Construction at the time, approached the university with a rough outline of a curriculum which would provide graduates with skills valuable to employers in the construction industry.
Construction engineering is a professional discipline of civil engineering that deals with the planning, construction, and management of infrastructures such as highways, bridges, airports, railroads, buildings, dams, and utilities. Construction engineering involves planning and execution of the designs from transportation, site development, hydraulic, environmental, structural and geotechnical engineers.
A construction engineer supervises field work in a major infrastructure project. Construction Engineers are unique such that they are a cross between civil engineers and construction managers. Construction engineers learn the designing aspect much like civil engineers and construction site management functions much like construction managers. Construction Engineer is responsible for directing and planning the construction project and in conducting inspections, engaging in investigation, overseeing the project, analyzing results and sees that the entire construction process takes place efficiently. Construction engineers may select the materials used in the construction process, manage construction sites and supervise the implementation of mechanisms, such as hydraulic systems. Construction engineers may alternate between an office and outdoor work environments. These professionals may work with contractors, construction workers and urban designers during a project. They may also be responsible for reviewing project finances and keeping schedules on time.
Construction engineers are problem solvers, they help create infrastructure that best meets the unique demands of its environment. They must be able to understand infrastructure life cycles and have the perspective to solve technical challenges with clarity and imagination. Therefore individuals should have a strong understanding of math and science, but many other skills are required, including critical and analytical thinking, time management, people management and good communication skills. Engineers in this specialization:
Manage and plan a construction project.
Design the hydraulic systems and project structures.
Survey a construction site, give a description about how would like to complete the project and its consequences.
Liaise with federal entities, environmental agencies and local authorities on the implications of the construction.
Ensure the site sanitation and cleanliness.
Juniors are helped with appropriate information related to construction.
Address the concerns of the workers and advise them on the subject of the construction process.
Solve the construction problems efficiently.
Inform their employer about the progress in construction.
Conduct a study on the site of construction.
Provide quality control and quality assurance to make sure that the purposes of the project are achieved.
Make sure that the entire safety rules related to construction work are observed.
Obtain the materials required for construction and check them.
Structural engineering is a field of civil engineering that deals with the analysis and design of structures that would safely bear or resist the loads, stresses and other forces. Structural engineers must ensure their designs satisfy given design criteria (as per the guideline or code specified), predicated on safety (e.g. structures must not collapse without due warning) or serviceability and performance (e.g. building must not sway causing discomfort to the occupants). Buildings are made to endure massive loads as well as changing climate and natural disasters.
Structural Engineers have a duty to their clients and the public to provide safe designs. Typically, the Structural Engineer is responsible for the structural design of the overall project, including specification of the design loads, issuance of design documents, and review of submittals. Structural engineers are responsible for making creative and efficient use of funds, structural elements and materials to achieve these goals.
Structural engineers are licensed or accredited by different learned societies and regulatory bodies around the world (for example, the Institution of Structural Engineers in the UK). Depending on the degree course they have studied and/or the jurisdiction they are seeking licensure in, they may be accredited (or licensed) as just structural engineers, or as civil engineers, or as both civil and structural engineers.
One of the major responsibilities of a Structural Engineer is to design a structure that is friendly to the weather and climatic conditions and to the human beings. His responsibility is to deal with the problems related to the bend, twist, and collapse of buildings and houses. Role and responsibilties of structural engineers may be summarized in following point:
The structural Engineer is responsible for designing the structure of buildings and houses in a way such that, it can meet all the requirements of the client within the needed time span. He is also responsible for checking and examining of whether the structures and buildings are structurally well or not. He must calculate and estimate the pressure, weather and stress that the component of a house or building may face from different disasters such as earth quakes flood etc. He is responsible for analyzing the basic structures and several components of buildings and houses. He must be responsible enough to check out the quality of the numerous materials such as brick, steel, timber etc. that are used for the construction of buildings. His responsibility is to use computer and advanced technologies for constructing the best structure.
Geotechnical Engineering is the branch of civil engineering which deals with the study of behavior of earth materials like soil, rocks, underground water, etc. and their relation to design, construction and operation of engineering projects. Sometimes, it may also be referred as soil engineering, ground engineering or geo-technics as it is closely related to Engineering Geology. Engineering geologists (i.e. those with a first degree in geology) and geotechnical engineers (i.e. those with a first degree in civil engineering) work closely together to form a comprehensive ground engineering team for the investigation, design, and construction of major infrastructure projects.
Geotechnical engineering shares common interests with other disciplines such as structural engineering, ocean engineering, material science, or petroleum engineering as nearly all civil engineering structures are supported on or built into the ground. Geotechnical engineering is a truly multi-disciplinary field offering training and research possibilities ranging from material testing and analytical methods to nonlinear numerical modeling of multi-physics problems.
Geotechnical engineering uses principles of soil and rock mechanics to investigate subsurface conditions and materials (i.e. displacements, stresses and strains on soil); determine the relevant physical/mechanical and chemical properties of these materials; evaluate stability of natural slopes and man-made soil deposits; assess risks posed by site conditions; design earthworks and structure foundations; and monitor site conditions, earthwork and foundation construction. Geotechnical engineering is all about analysis and design of soil stabilization systems which would provide enough support to the structure laid on it and ultimately ensuring the safety of people using the structure. Geotechnical design focuses on ensuring that structure remains standing on unstable soil; establishment of safety measures to minimize the damage to the roads, buildings, etc. due to landslides or earthquake. Beside these, geotechnical engineers may work on projects which deal with under-water soil, such as those affecting marinas and offshore platforms.
Talking about the geotechnical design process, it basically starts with a subsurface investigation. In this process, geotechnical engineers first take the soil samples from the site using sampler (i.e. test pits or bores). Then geotechnical engineers analyze that soil sample to determine the stability, presence of air or rock pockets, and also evaluate the chemical makeup of soil. This investigation is useful for preparing the site for construction. If soil is not good enough it may have to be treated before construction. With the obtained data from investigation, geotechnical engineering professionals may design the stable footings and foundations. These structures (i.e. footings and foundations) are made using steel, concrete or masonry to support and distribute the weight or loading of the building. The design of such structures must be designed taking account of people that may reside in building, ground movements, impacts of weather, and other external forces if any. Typically more unstable the soil at project site, more complex will be the foundation system.
The basic responsibilities of a geotechnical engineer is to collect the soil samples from the site, analyze it and design the support structures for accommodating roads, buildings, dams, tunnels etc. They have to consider various factors like soil stress bearing capacity, stability of soil, design load, etc. to accurately design the supporting structures. The geotechnical engineer is responsible for establishment of earth-support structures like concrete or steel retaining walls which would prevent earth from collapse or caving holding the soil firmly. Temporary earth-support structures are provided for the safety of workers during the excavation work in the site.
Before any kind of construction can begin, a geotechnical engineer must conduct a detailed investigation of the area in question to ensure that it is safe and to determine the best way to go about building the structure in question. A geotechnical engineer is responsible for assessing the unique risks posed by any given area and is usually also responsible for helping to design earthworks and foundations to use in a given set of conditions.
Usually, geotechnical engineers don't have to perform much of the work at construction site, as computers have offered much more effective and accurate methods for analyzing the site. There are lot of softwares available for analyzing and modeling site conditions. Computer modeling allows engineers to run tests and simulations of an area based on information they gather and program into the computer. From this mathematical modeling and simulation, they can predict things such as slope stability and earthquake potential, which are very essential for designing buildings or any other structures.