High Level Review of Recent and Anticipated Seismic Research Activities at the NRC

Wednesday, April 19, 2017, 11:00 am – 12:00 pm, 1233 NCEL

Dr. Thomas Weaver

(Geotechnical Engineer/Seismologist at US NRC)

Biographic Information

Thomas Weaver works in the Office of Research at the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).  His responsibilities include conducting and managing research with the goal of assisting staff in performing regulatory reviews and updating regulatory guidance.  Recent work activities include performing regulatory reviews of seismic hazard re-evaluations for US nuclear power plants and developing computational tools to assist staff with seismic and flooding hazard analyses.  Prior to joining the NRC, Thomas worked on the civil engineering faculty at the University of Idaho where he participated in research projects focusing on deep foundations and biologic induced cementation in soils.  Thomas has also worked as a consulting geotechnical engineer.

Thomas earned B.S. and M.S. degrees in civil and environmental engineering from Brigham Young University and a Ph.D. in structural engineering from the University of California, San Diego.

Presentation Abstract

Seismic research at the NRC spans the fields of seismology, geotechnical engineering and structural engineering.  Research projects support evaluating the safety of existing and proposed nuclear power plants.  Current research projects include developing Next-Generation Attenuation models for the central and eastern U.S. (NGA-East), NRC Shake-Cast, developing a community liquefaction triggering database in collaboration with the Next Generation Liquefaction project, updating senior seismic hazard analysis committee (SSHAC) guidelines, behavior of dense sands under multi-directional loading, site response analysis topics and developing guidance on hazard consistent seismic soil-structure interaction analyses.   This presentation will review some of these current research projects.

Please view the flyer and bio attached for further details: GESO Guest Speaker – Thomas Weaver

Tunneling: Not Your Average Civil Engineering Job

Monday, April 10, 2017, 5:00 – 7:00 pm, 3310 Yeh Student Center

Adrian Naranjo (BSCE ’09 UCR, MSCE ’15 UIUC)

Erin Sibley (BSCE ’11 VU, MSCE ’13 / PhD ’16 UIUC)

Shih-Han Su (BSCE ’12 NCTU, MSCE ’13 UIUC)

Are you about to complete your degree in Civil Engineering? Have you considered embarking on a career in Geotechnical Engineering or Tunneling?  Do you know the difference? Tunneling is one of the most beneficial professions in terms of improving human health and sustainability.  There is a place for all Civil Engineering disciplines in Tunneling, but perhaps none more so than geo-structural engineering.

Join our presenters as they share their experiences as young professionals pursuing a career in tunnel engineering. Learn what to expect from the first years of a career in tunneling, the main challenges that you will face, the critical skills that can help you strengthen your professional life, and many other tips that will help you prepare for taking the next steps towards a career underground.

You can virtually feel the excitement!  Stay after the presentation for a 360 VR headset tour of a live tunnel project.


The DigIndy Tunnel System – A Boring Solution to Solve Indianapolis’ Combined Sewer Overflow Problem

Wednesday, Novemeber 30, 2016, 12:00 – 13:00 pm, 2312 Yeh Student Centerjeremy-kosegi

Mr. Jeremy Kosegi is currently an Engineering project Manager at the Citizens Energy Group. He got his B.S. in Civil Engineering from Purdue University and later a Masters in Environmental Engineering from University of Illinois Urbana-Champagin.

The DigIndy Project is a nearly 28-mile long network of 18 foot diameter deep rock tunnels being built 250-feet beneath the city. Beginning near the Indiana State Fairgrounds on the north, and ending on the south side of Indianapolis, DigIndy will be the largest public works project in the city’s history.

Tunnel system will extend along Fall Creek, White River, Pogues Run, Pleasant Run and Bean Creek to create a collective, underground storage and transport facility for wastewater (sewage). All sewage stored and transported in the tunnel system is sewage that otherwise could have gone directly into our waterways. The tunnel system is a component of the federally-mandated plan to reduce raw sewage overflows into our waterways.

Please view the flyer and bio attached for further details:16-11-30-jeremy-kosegui

Deep Plastic Concrete Cut-off Walls & Mixed In-Place and Cutter Soil Mixing Technique and its Application

Tuesday, September 27, 2016, 08:00 – 09:20 am, 1311 Yeh Student Center  

Tuesday, September 27, 2016, 12:30 – 02:00 pm, 2310  Yeh Student Center
500px-Bayer-process-en.svgBauer logo

Dr. Beckhaus completed his undergraduate degree in Civil Engineering in 1994 from the Technical University in Munich (TUM). He worked as a research assistant at the center for building materials at TUM from 1994 to 2003 where he also completed his PhD (Dr.-Ing.) in ground improvement in 2003 under Professor Bauer. Since 2003, Dr. Beckhaus has worked with Bauer Spezialtiefbau GmbH in Germany, a worldwide foundation and ground improvement contractor. He is the Director of the Technical Services Department for Bauer, which employs 25 people that specialize in geotechnical, measuring and surveying, and building materials engineering and testing, that support Bauer’s operative units by consulting on projects and improving their technical procedures by systematic close-to-the-job observations and research.

Dr. Beckhaus will discuss the use of mix-in place and cutter soil mixing techniques for constructing excavation walls and seepage barriers. His presentation will include several case histories, which illustrate these new construction techniques and important aspects of the design and execution of mix-in place and soil mixing techniques.

Dr. Beckhaus will discuss the use of deep plastic concrete for dam and levee seepage cut-off walls. His presentation will include several case histories, e.g., Peribonka Dam in Quebec, Canada, Herbert Hoover Dike in Florida, and Center Hill Dam in Tennessee, and important aspects of the design and execution of deep plastic concrete cut-off walls.

Please view the flyer and bio attached for further details: GESO-Guest-Speaker-Flyer-Karsten-Beckhaus

Embankment Dam Instrumentation and Dam Flood Case Histories

Glen Bellew, M.S., P.E.
Chief of Geotechnical Design and Dam Safety for the US Army Corps of Engineers
9 / 22 / 2016
8:00 – 9:20 am
1311 Newmark Civil Engineering Building


Since joining the Corps in 2004, he has worked extensively on flood risk management projects around the country including dams, levees, and floodwalls. Mr. Bellew has experience in design, construction, risk assessments, inspection, flood fighting, and rehabilitation of flood risk management projects. He is a double graduate of the University of Missouri – Columbia, receiving a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering in 2002 and a Master’s Degree in Civil Engineering with a Geotechnical emphasis in 2004. Mr. Bellew is a licensed Professional Engineer in the state of Missouri.

Please view the flyer and bio attached for further details: GESO-Guest-Speaker-Flyer-Glen-Bellew


Reopening I-65 using Micropiles in Artesian Conditions after Bridge Settlement

Brett Zitny, P.E, M.S.      &     Aaron Evans, P.E, M.S.

Nicholson Construction Company

9 / 21/ 2016

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

1311 Newmark Civil Engineering Building


Aaron Evans is the Chicago Area Manager for Nicholson Construction Company, where he is responsible for sales, business development, and project oversight in the Chicago metropolitan area, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Missouri. He began his career in 2006 with Nicholson, and his roles throughout his ten years with the company have included engineering, project management, estimating, and business development. He is experienced in Nicholson’s various geotechnical capabilities, with extensive experience in jet grouting and diaphragm walls. He has been intimately involved in major infrastructure projects, including the North Shore Connector in Pittsburg and the Second Avenue Subway in Manhattan. Mr. Evans holds a B.S. and M.S. degree in Civil Engineering from Purdue University.


Brett Zitny is a Project Manager for Nicholson Construction Company, where he is responsible for business development, estimating and project management for Nicholson’s Chicago office. His roles throughout his career have included operations, engineering, estimating, and management of geotechnical projects, including grouting, ground improvement, earth retention, and deep foundations. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois, with a B.S. and M.S. in Civil Engineering, both with an emphasis in Geotechnical Engineering.

Please view the flyer and bio attached for further details: GESO-Guest-Speaker-Flyer-Brett-Zitny