Department of Engineering / Research / Academic Divisions / Civil Engineering / Research Facilities in Civil Engineering

Department of Engineering

Research Facilities in Civil Engineering

Research Facilities in Civil Engineering

The University of Cambridge Civil Engineering Division occupies a total of 4787m2 of space including the Schofield Centre for Geotechnical and Construction Process Modelling (1055m2) which houses the 10m beam geotechnical centrifuge.   We operate both at the Schofield Centre and on the main Engineering Department site, where we have the Structures Laboratory, the Geomechanics Laboratory and the Geo-environmental Laboratory. The Group has extensive facilities for laboratory testing, centrifuge modelling, and numerical analysis.

The Laboratory spaces and its facilities are available to be used by academic and industry users. If you are interested in accessing the Facility, please contact Dr Pieter Desnerck, who will be able to provide up to date information regarding access charges and training.

Available equipment includes:

Schofield Centre:

  • 10m beam centrifuge
  • Minidrum centrifuge
  • Servo-controlled 2-axis actuators for simulating a range of civil engineering operations
  • Servo-hydraulic shaking table for 10m beam centrifuge
  • SAM (stored angular momentum) earthquake actuator
  • Computer controlled sand pourer
  • Tekscan pressure and force measurement system
  • Texas A&M Multi-directional direct simple shear testing device (TAMU-MDSS)
  • Nicomp dry accusizer
  • Nikon microscope
  • 1g shaking table
  • Triaxial testing apparatus
  • Calibration facilities for pressure transducers and load cells
  • Facilities for calibrating strain gauges
  • High speed cameras
  • PIV (particle image velocimetry)
  • Oven
  • Gas and hydraulic consolidometers
  • Incubators

Structures Laboratories:

  • Datalogging equipment
  • Large-scale test equipment with capacities ranging up to 5000kN in compression

Geo-environmental Laboratory:

Sample preparation and curing facilities:

  • Bottle shaker and roller
  • Centrifuge
  • CO2 incubator
  • Deionised water generator
  • Electric furnace and ovens
  • Pelletiser
  • Sample trimmer

Characterisation and testing equipment:

  • Automated setting time tester
  • Automated sieve shaker
  • Compressive strength test machine
  • Dispersing instrument
  • Electronic length comparator for sample size of 40 × 40 × 160 mm and 100 × 100 × 500 mm
  • Flow table
  • Gas chromatography (GC)
  • Inductively coupled plasma- Optical Emission Spectrometry ( ICP-OES)
  • Permeameter set up for 50mm and 100mm diameter samples
  •  Peristaltic pumps and flow-through column test set-up
  • Rheometer
  • Integrated TGA and FTIR set up with a Spotlight 200 FTIR microscope to be added soon
  • Laboratory scale auger setup

Geomechanics Laboratory:

  • Triaxial testing apparatus
  • Direct shear testing apparatus
  • Cam-Tor
  • Cam-shear
  • Photoelastic/granular experiment equipment
  • Microscope
  • Microphotography equipment
  • Mobile datalogger
  • Sieves and an electronic sieve cleaner
  • Engineering Geology rocks and mineral samples
  • Constant-temperature incubator
  • Autoclave
  • Shaking incubator
  • Low-temperature fridge
  • Spectrophotometer (wavelength: 300-800 nm)
  • Turbidity meter
  • Rigid-wall permeability cell
  • Flexible-wall permeability cell
  • Bend element test device
  • Electronic conductivity meter
  • Electronic balance (0.01g)
  • Shaking table
  • pH meter
  • Ammonium ion selective electrode
  • Oven
  • Syringe pumps
  • Peristaltic pumps
  • Digit pressure indicator

CSIC Laboratory:

  • The UHF-120 Laser Doppler Vibrometer
  • Neubrex BOTDR
  • Omnisens BOTDA
  • Yokogawa BOTDR
  • Fibre Optics Splicers
  • GRANT optimum T100 water bath (0.1 degree accurate temperature control)
  • GRANT cooling station
  • Physik Instruments high-power linear actuator, M235.2DG
  • Mercury DC motor controller with wide-range power supply, C-862.11
  • CIF 852A++ air solder equipment
  • PACE ST30 solder station
  • HAMEG Triple power supply HM8040-3
  • Agilent data acquisition equipment 34972A
  • Keithley 2000 multimeter
  • TENMA72-7935 multimeter
  • HAMEG programmerable power supply HMP2030
  • Tektronik TDS 2004C oscilloscope
  • Agilent 33522A functional waveform generator
  • Elc AL841B Power sources
  • Monsoon power meter
  • 4260LX fume extractor
  • SEALEY industrial high velocity fan HVF18
  • AOL tilt calibration unit
  • WOLF Thermal meters
  • SVA-13 Signal vector analyzer
  • APEX AP2050A Optical Spectrum Analyzer
  • Thorlab Digital Fiber Power Meter, 800-1700nm