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Dr Wendel Sebastian

Dr Wendel Sebastian

Dr Wendel Sebastian
MA, PhD(Cantab)

Reader in Structural Engineering

Office 2.34
Queen's Building,
University Walk, Clifton BS8 1TR
(See a map)

+44 (0) 117 331 5733

Summary

Dr. Sebastian’s research integrates the following :
Theories for nonlinear behaviours of structures
Algebraic analysis
Numerical computations
Laboratory experiments incorporating novel instrumentation layouts.

This integrated approach is used to provide penetrative insights into the complex behaviours under load of composite structures, namely structures comprising components of different materials connected to each other. The role of the connections in transferring loads between components can be as important as the actions of the components themselves, so his modelling work has dual focuses on connections and components. To that end, he has developed a nonlinear finite element program (e.g. see [11] from select publication list below) for analysis of composite structures.

Key features of the program include :
A special element for nonlinear behaviour of both discrete and continuous connectionsModels for nonlinear behaviours of materials (e.g. cracking of concrete, plasticity of steel)Techniques to stabilise computations in nonlinear regimes of behaviourAbility to model different types of composite structure, e.g. see publications [1, 6, 7, 8, 9] below.One of Dr. Sebastian’s key research themes centres on the uses of (commonly carbon or glass) fibre reinforced polymers (FRPs) to strengthen existing bridges and buildings. Relative to traditional construction materials, FRPs exhibit significant advantages including corrosion resistance, superior strength-to-weight ratios and superior stiffness-to-weight ratios.

New design paradigms are needed to enable creative and cost-effective uses of FRPs in Civil Engineering applications, because these “new” materials behave differently from steel, concrete and timber. Dr. Sebastian’s research seeks to develop the fundamental science which underpins these new paradigms.

For example, his work has led to the following :
Identification / elucidation of a complex failure mode of FRP-strengthened concrete beams [10]Insight into nonlinear interfacial and adherend stress profiles in FRP-steel composite members [6, 8, 9]Optimisation of FRP layouts along hyperstatic members with variable boundary conditions [4, 5]He also conducts research into uses of FRPs in new bridges. For example, he is working on novel joints for FRP bridge decks [2]. Also, he currently leads a project – supported by collaborators including the Highways Agency and the Institution of Civil Engineers – to characterise the fatigue performance of bridges using glass FRP decking.

Keywords

  • Algebraic analysis
  • Numerical computations
  • structures
  • Laboratory experiments

Recent publications

View complete publications list in the University of Bristol publications system

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