A large research project, Recommended Specifications for Large-Span Culverts, is underway at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst under the direction of Prof Ernest T Selig. The objective is to develop reliability-based design specifications and construction criteria, for flexible and rigid large-span culverts. Funding is provided by the Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and conducted through the National Co-operative Highway Research Programme.
A five-year plan to achieve a quality roads industry evolved at this workshop The fourth workshop of the Asphalt Research Strategy Task Force (AREST 4) is a continuation of the process that began in 1987 when Sabita (SA Bitumen and Tar Association) restructured itself to invest substantially in research and development programmes and in education. The intention was that Sabita's programmes would take the needs and interests of all stakeholders into account. Consequently, a consultative process was started with the holding of the first AREST workshop in 1988.
Ranking just behind death and taxes among life's most exasperating inevitabilities is the urban traffic jam. Here is one possible solution. As is the case in the modern city, efforts to solve this logistical problem have met with indifferent success; just as Peter's Principle dictates that wider roads merely spawn more traffic, so do larger airports generate even greater demand on the landside infrastructure.
A new archaeological publication - 'The Vindolanda writing tablets (Tabulae Vindolandeses II)' - reveals the latest findings by scientists digging at the much-researched Vindolanda site in northern Britain. The site was occupied by a large Roman garrison almost 2 000 years ago.
Consulting engineers show they can playa leading role in a field traditionally dominated by other professions Subsequent to the implementation of the new housing subsidy scheme in 1994, demands for housing amongst the previously disadvantaged communities grew. High demands were placed on local authorities to take advantage of this scheme to develop housing for homeless communities and in the process to create jobs.
Research is becoming increasingly important in all academic institutions. This report gives an overview of that being conducted at the technikon in Port Elizabeth. During the last few years research has increasingly become an expected component of a technikon's activities. Thus the Department of Civil Engineering at the PE Technikon has also gradually moved towards greater involvement in research. Both staff and students studying towards higher qualifications have become participants in these research activities and a small, but fairly robust infrastructure has been developed to support these research endeavours.
Perceptions and expectations regarding any individual's career change periodically during his working life. Johan de Koker believes that this should be borne in mind in curriculation for the various technikon engineering courses. No matter how good the career guidance available to students, very few students know what the real conditions are at the coal face of their chosen careers. Students choose their careers because of peer pressure or because a particular career is fashionable, because their parents want them to study (sometimes in a particular career) or because of the availability of a bursary. Only a relatively small number of students make good informed choices.
In 1992 the international water fraternity proposed four basic principles formulated at the Dublin International Conference on Water and the Environment to the United Nations (UN) Conference on Environment and Development. This contributed to the adoption of Agenda 21 and specifically Chapter 18, which deals with water. Since then the UN agencies have pursued a number of initiatives and in 1997 the Earth Summit +5 was held.
For many years South African Railway Engineers have felt that the curvature through existing turnouts is too sharp, resulting in undue discomfort to passengers. In this paper new designs are evolved in which switch angles are reduced, curvature flattened and permissible speeds selected to provide for reasonable passenger comfort throughout the turnout. Attention is also given to the improvement of existing sets. Gauge widening and flangeway clearances are arranged to suit all the locomotives in use, and switches are selected accordingly. In addition suggestions are advanced for the use of a high speed superelevated turnout. Many improvements in design detail are recommended, particularly in regard to planing of switches, noses of crossings and guard rails. Methods are also evolved for improving obtuse crossings of diamonds and slips.