22 January 2012

Engineering humanitarian steel, by Roel Gijsbers, TU/e

Part of TU/e is the Shelter Research Group whose goal is to actively support the humanitarian aid world with the development of innovative solutions for post-disaster sheltering. The TU/e developed this presentation for the conference upon request of the IFRC SRU. The goal of the presentation was to focus on engineering of steel in humanitarian disaster response contexts, versus best practice approaches as often practiced on the field.
The presenter gives an overview of engineering methods; those based on intuition, rules of thumb, basic and detailed calculations. Five vital structural elements are given (material quality, stability, connection stiffness, foundation, risk reduction and hazard resistance) and elaborated upon. The audience is presented with the question: What level of risk is acceptable and which standards are applicable? In Western countries, acceptable risk is set quite low and comes with high cost. This issue is quite crucial and the challenge is to reconcile acceptable risk with the reality of humanitarian sheltering that is often low-cost and for temporary use.
Several common problems related to engineering for humanitarian shelters are presented, such as a lack of appropriate structural norms and calculation methods. To demonstrate some of these issues, examples of research done by the TU/e in Pakistan and Haiti are given. Some suggestions, (such as different risk profile for different types of loadings) are given as suggestions for solving the problems presented.

No comments:

Post a comment