Professor Evan Bentz is an expert in the development of structural software and is addressing the problem of how engineers can use new approaches in design to better assess and repair structures before catastrophe strikes.
Hypotheses on the mechanisms of building collapse are validated using the U of T-designed Shell Element Tester located in the Civil Engineering Structural Testing Facility. This is the only facility of its kind in Canada capable of testing full-scale shell elements subjected to all eight possible force components. Combined with the U of T-designed structural analysis software, “Response”, these researchers can predict the behavior of structures in extreme circumstances. The “Response” software has helped revolutionize building codes across Canada, the United States and Europe. The advances in testing scope and precision that these collaborators have made will help to make building assessment and maintenance faster and more efficient, enabling engineers to more accurately predict which structures are safe following seismic events, thereby saving lives and reducing costs.