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Academy Fellows Speaker Series: Randall Poston, Ph.D., P.E., S.E., NAE

April 16 @ 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm CDT

| Free

Presented by the Presidential Task Force on Research Excellence

In partnership with the President and Academic Affairs, the Office of Research, Economic Development, and Knowledge Enterprise (REDKE) has launched a series of lectures by prominent Academy Fellows. The series began in spring 2019 in concert with the celebration of UTSA’s 50th anniversary with the goal of exposing the campus community to the internationally recognized innovations of these scholars while showcasing the talent and expertise of our own faculty, staff and students. Becoming a member of a national or international academy solidifies a faculty member’s scholarly and research accomplishments, celebrating not only the scholar’s accomplishments but also the institution in being recognized as a premier academic and research university.

Speakers represent a variety of disciplines that intersect with research specialties across the UTSA knowledge enterprise.

APRIL 16, 2020 |  6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Location:  JPL 4.04.22 – Assembly Room

Randall W. Poston, PhD, PE, SE, NAE
Sr. Principal – Pivot Engineers, Austin, TX
President – American Concrete Institute
Neil Armstrong Distinguished Visiting Fellow – Purdue University College of Engineering

Biography:  Randall W. Poston, Ph.D., P.E., S.E., is a structural engineer and the founding senior principal of the consulting engineering firm Pivot Engineers in Austin, TX. He is currently also the President of ACI, and is a Neil Armstrong Distinguished Visiting Scholar at Purdue University College of Engineering.

Poston received his bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in civil engineering from the University of Texas at Austin in 1978, 1980 and 1984, respectively. Poston was elected to the Academy of Distinguished Graduates of the Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering in 2008, and was named a Distinguished Engineering Graduate of the Cockrell School of Engineering in 2014. Poston was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2017.

From 2006 to 2014, he chaired the American Concrete Institute (ACI) Committee 318, which was responsible for the first comprehensive reorganization of building code for structural concrete in 45 years. For his work leading the effort, ACI recognized Poston with the 2014 ACI Henry L. Kennedy Award and the 2015 Delmar Bloem Distinguished Service Award, and was recognized by Engineering News Record (ENR) as a Top 25 Newsmaker in 2015.

Lessons Learned from Structural Failures

It is often said that in order to have a structural failure, more than one thing has to go wrong. In investigating numerous structural failures, this has in fact been found to be a “truism”. Some general lessons that are common to structural failures are that failed structures are often result of small details, not primary members, that there are often signs preceding catastrophic failures, but not always, and that unless a structure has experienced a catastrophic collapse, almost any structure can be fixed after appropriate investigation. This presentation will examine various high-profile structural failures, will delve into the probable cause(s) of the collapse in each instance, and review what specific lessons were learned from the investigation of each of the failures presented. These lessons learned can be important to the profession for changing building codes and modifying construction practice to ensure that the same type of failures do not occur again.


April 16
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm


JPL 4.04.22 | John Peace Library
1 UTSA Circle
San Antonio, United States
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