Focus on CIES

Each of Missouri S&T’s interdisciplinary research centers is required to submit a five-year report. This executive extract from the CIES report highlights the accomplishments on the Center of Infrastructure Engineering Studies and will give you a relational idea of the labs, centers, signature area and conferences that such a diverse and well-organized effort creates.  Well done CIES!

Objective 1: Provide leadership in research and education for solving society’s problems affecting the nation’s infrastructure systems.

1)      The Center for Transportation Infrastructure and Safety National University Transportation Center grant that was awarded to the University in 2006 was fully expended by the grant’s deadline of June 30, 2014 in the amount of $16.8M, with non-federal match in the amount of $20M. The 8-year grant funded a total of 174 research, equipment, and education/technology transfer projects in addition to the allocation of some funding to enhance faculty recruitment in the transportation field.

2)      CIES led a major effort consisting of a team of investigators from Missouri S&T to lead a Tier-I University Transportation Center. Missouri S&T was selected as a Tier 1 UTC in the last round of competition in CY2012.  Our UTC, named RE-CAST (Research on Concrete Applications for Sustainable Transportation), receives $1,414,100 per year, for an anticipated period of 3 years. The grant is shared with Rutgers University, Southern University, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and University of Miami. The grant has a period of execution ending September 2018.

3)      CIES was selected to lead a Best-in-Class Strategic Area of Investment effort in the area of Advanced Materials for Sustainable Infrastructure, which involves four research centers, six academic departments and 11 faculty members from across campus.  This effort necessitated serious planning and evaluation of critical needs and alliances across campus to transform existing strength on campus to new heights.  Our proposal was selected to one of the University’s four signature areas.  The faculty hiring search has begun for this initiative, and the appointments for the first three faculty hires are anticipated to begin Fall 2015.

Objective 2: Foster multi-disciplinary R&D activities in infrastructure engineering with well-focused projects tailored to address the needs of local, state, and federal agencies, and the private sector.

4)      In 2013, the CIES grew to 48 faculty members in 13 different departments / programs, from 27 different faculty members from seven different departments in 2012. In 2014, this trend continued with a total of 38 faculty from 13 departments.

5)      On April 24-25, 2014, the Advanced Construction Materials Laboratory was officially inaugurated by Chancellor Schrader.  This event was the culmination of nearly a year and a half spent procuring specialized equipment, transforming and re-purposing existing laboratory space and acquiring new space to house all of the equipment. The CIES purchased over 35 pieces of specialized equipment made possible by a major equipment grant in the amount of $2.25M from the U.S. Department of Transportation.

6)      The CIES GRA Support Funding program was initiated in CY2012 to promote interdisciplinary and collaborative research projects leading to joint publications and/or submittal of proposals and to encourage young faculty members to recruit high-quality Ph.D. candidates. Each project required faculty from at least two departments to collaborate and co-advise the project. In total, four graduate students received 0.25 GRA funding via this program with the requirement to provide a 1:1 match towards the funding of the student in CY2014, 15 graduate students received funding CY2013, and over 15 students received funding in CY2012.  The efforts put forth to encourage interdisciplinary projects is reflected in the award projects that led to multi-Investigator projects, which accounted for 17% of the Center’s project expenditures in CY2014, 25% of the Center’s project expenditures in CY2013, 36% of the Center’s project expenditures in CY2012.

7)      In CY2013, the campus support and external expenditure that CIES received were approximately $0.242M and $6.312M, resulting in a ROI of 26:1, which was the highest of all Missouri S&T research centers that year.

Objective 3: Promote technology transfer and continuing education opportunities to the engineering community.

8)      In an effort to further foster interdisciplinary synergism on campus, CIES organized and chaired the Transportation Infrastructure Conference in September 2012 at Missouri S&T, September 2013 at the Capitol Plaza Hotel in Jefferson City, MO, October 2014 at Missouri S&T and is schedule for October 2015 at St. Louis University.  This conference is hosted in partnership with the Missouri Department of Transportation.

9)     The CIES has teamed together RILEM and the National Ready Mixed Concrete Association to host the combined 8th International RILEM Symposium on Self-Compacting Concrete, 6th North American Conference on Design and Use of Self-Consolidating Concrete, otherwise referred to as SCC2016 and the 11th Annual International Concrete Sustainability Conference.  The conference will take place May 15th-18th, 2016 at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City in Arlington, VA, which is situated near the Ronald Reagan National Airport. We are expecting over 125 presentations from leaders in the cement and concrete field representing industry, academia and government agencies.

Speak Your Mind