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Development Of An Innovative Structural Testing Laboratory To Enhance Experiential Learning

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2007 Annual Conference & Exposition


Honolulu, Hawaii

Publication Date

June 24, 2007

Start Date

June 24, 2007

End Date

June 27, 2007



Conference Session

Unique Laboratory Experiments and Programs Poster Session

Tagged Division

Division Experimentation & Lab-Oriented Studies

Page Count


Page Numbers

12.524.1 - 12.524.13



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Paper Authors


Manar Shami University of the Pacific

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Manar Shami, Ph.D., PMP., is a Faculty at the School of Engineering and Computer Science, University of the Pacific, Stockton, California. Professor Shami received M.Sc., M.Eng., and Ph.D. degrees in Civil Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley. He did extensive research and consulting in project management in the U.S. and internationally. He was a Faculty at the University of Cincinnati. He was also a senior aviation engineer with ATAC Corporation in Sunnyvale, California working on NASA and DOD projects. He provided executive project management training and PMP exam prep courses for over 100 senior managers at Consolidated Contractors Company (CCIC) in Dubai and other major companies in Kuwait since 2004. He published numerous journal papers and research reports in the areas of airport engineering, sustainability, green construction, deconstruction, etc.

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Ed Pejack University of the Pacific

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Edwin R. Pejack, Ph.D., PE, is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the School of Engineering and Computer Science, University of the Pacific, in Stockton, California. Prior to joining Pacific, Professor Pejack held positions at Aptech Engineers, Sunnyvale; Teledyne, Palo Alto; NASA Ames Research Center; and others. He was also a Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Youngstown State University, Ohio. Professor Pejacs fields of expertise include Solar Energy, Thermodynamics, Vibrations, etc. Throughout his academic career, Dr. Pejack published numerous scholarly journal and conference papers. Dr. Pejack is the founder of Solar Cookers International, a Nonprofit
Corporation in the U.S.A.

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Ravinder Jain University of the Pacific

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Ravi Jain, PhD., PE, is Dean of the School of Engineering and Computer Science at the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California. Prior to this appointment, he has held research, faculty, and administrative positions at the University of Illinois (Urbana-Champaign), Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the University of Cincinnati. He has been a Littauer Fellow at Harvard University and a Fellow of Churchill College, Cambridge University. He has published thirteen books and over 100 scholarly papers and research reports.

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Development of an Innovative Structural Testing Laboratory to Enhance Experiential Learning Abstract

At the advent of the third millennium, more demand has been placed on the civil engineering profession to tackle the complex activities of renovating aging infrastructures. The structural design of such facilities has to be multidisciplinary and robust so that integration with advanced technological developments can occur. To prepare the next generation of engineers so that they can meet these challenges, the School of Engineering and Computer Science at the University of the Pacific has committed to build an innovative structural testing lab to support the civil and mechanical engineering programs.

This paper addresses the development of a new lab that is to be used collaboratively by students, faculty, and industry. This lab is planned to support experiential learning and traditional classroom pedagogy including lab instruction. Currently, the civil engineering curriculum covers four areas: construction, environmental, hydraulics, and structures. Three of which are supported by hands-on labs except for the structural engineering area. The new lab will support structural engineering and integrate teaching and research in structural and construction engineering.

This paper also summarizes the lessons learned and the innovative aspects of the planning and design phases of this laboratory. This lab facility will be providing valuable information about the economics and technical challenges to support its mixed use of teaching and research. Students will benefit from this facility by having education in an applied structural and materials testing environment.

The lab features a unique layout and spacing arrangement of anchors to fully take advantage of the limited floor area. We are currently in the process of procuring the structural testing equipment, which will include innovative systems to integrate teaching and research. Upon its completion, this lab will become a benchmark for integration of teaching and research in the United States.

The lab is also needed to support two tiers of courses; one tier includes the engineering science courses statics and strength of materials; and the other tier includes engineering analysis and design courses, such as structural analysis, steel and concrete design, earthquake engineering, materials for construction, heavy construction, and the capstone/synthesis course. This lab will boost instruction in structural engineering, construction, materials science, and mechanical engineering; and will cultivate research and collaboration with industry partners for technology transfer and to bring solutions from lab to practice. Undergraduate and graduate students and researchers will be able to invent, plan, assemble, build, test, study, analyze, learn, and discover innovative solutions to some of the most pressing problems facing our aging infrastructure. This will significantly enhance integration of the pedagogy and scholarship in the civil and mechanical engineering programs.

Key words: Anchors, strong floor, pedagogy, construction engineering, structural engineering, technology transfer, and integration.

Shami, M., & Pejack, E., & Jain, R. (2007, June), Development Of An Innovative Structural Testing Laboratory To Enhance Experiential Learning Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--2745

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