Workshop IABSE sobre segurança, colapso e robustez de grandes estruturas

13-14 fevereiro, 2013, Helsínquia Finlândia.

IABSE workshop “Safety, Failures and Robustness of Large Structures” addresses one of the fundamental
scope of bridge and structural engineering, i.e. to build safe structures. Structural engineers has long tradition
for this by designing structures to resists little extra, to take into account uncertainties in various aspects
including design methods, mathematical models, material properties, loads, fire, fatigue, aging of structures
and quality of construction. Structural failures, however, occur time to time for varying reasons.
What comes to large structures, their collapses and failures are rare events, but they most often leads to big
consequences, worldwide news coverage and public reaction. They are fruitful to the self-learning process of
the profession in that respects, that thorough investigations are arranged for revealing the reasons behind.
Smaller failures may be big enough to jam the traffic of the city and more detrimental ones may be part of the
complex chains resulting in catastrophe-level disasters. While design, construction and maintenance errors
may well still occur, an important branch of catastrophic failures appears to be those, which are due to actions
not thought in advance. Such actions may for example be man-maid or due to extreme natural events where
the global climatic change may contribute.
Finland is one of the few countries in the World building new nuclear power plant at the times when Fukushima
disaster remembered the power of nature and limitations of engineering thinking for ultimate safety. Finland is
also a country where nuclear waste disposal system is currently build, deeply in the bedrock, with more than
250’000 years review period in risks assessments.
We believe that safety, failures and robustness of structures are something that benefit from thinking the both
old and new ways: learning from the failures that has occurred in the past and borrowing the ideas from other
disciplines, like the nuclear industry. From this viewpoint, we would like also to bring new, or at least
reinvented, ideas for arranging IABSE workshops. Namely, we have invited speakers among recognized
experts outside the IABSE family and discipline, by still providing traditional open call-for-paper sessions for
experts to publish their contributions to the theme. Our target is to deliver the creative opportunity for
professionals to learn new, and share ideas.
We heartily welcome you to join the workshop in Helsinki!

The workshop theme is “Safety, Failures and Robustness of Large Structures”. Large structures focused
in this workshop include tall buildings, bridges, power plants, dams, harbour structures, stadiums, sport halls,
public areas, malls and large urban developments, i.e., structures whose failure may cause the most significant
consequences in the terms of fatalities, injuries and economic losses. Aside with traditional safety-concept in
structural engineering, e.g. loads and resistance, the robustness issues for unforeseen and unexpected actions
are addressed. Relevant actions (including loads) include etc.
  •  fire
  •  seismicity, tsunamis, waves, wind effects, show drifting
  •  floods and landslides
  •  vehicle collisions
  •  progressive collapse
  •  excessive structural vibrations
  •  fatigue
  •  leakage, explosions
  •  man-made hazards
  •  loads due to construction and renovation.

An attempt will be made to highlight the importance of consequences that a structural failure may initiate
directly or indirectly.
The purpose of the workshop is to provide a meeting point and discussion forum to any professional interested
in the theme. Keynote speakers are invited as multidisciplinary bases and aim to present the best skills and
experience on their field. This gives the participants a possibility to learn new ideas and best practices, as well
as learning from the past collapses, failures and catastrophes.
This workshop includes four open call-for-papers sessions, in which experts will publish their scientific
contribution to the theme. The abstracts and papers have been revived by the International Scientific
Committee of the Workshop. Accepted papers will be published in the proceedings.
The workshop includes general closing discussions where the stage-of-the art can be reviewed. If urged, the
organizers on the behalf of workshop participants, can gather statements or recommendations towards IABSE
or openly to national structural engineering associations. These may include recommendation for arranging
future events or other modes of collaboration on specific topics.

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