Researcher re-thinking building safety
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A novel non-destructive inspection (NDI) technique invented by CityU's Professor Michael Hung, Chair Professor in the departments of Electronic Engineering, and Building and Construction, may provide the answer to detecting faults in building structures.
Building safety is a serious concern in Hong Kong, where there are around 50,000 high-rise buildings, with more on the drawing board. "Our spectacular high-rises are a unique feature of Hong Kong," Professor Hung said, "but our other unique features--steep slopes and reclaimed land--mean our tall buildings are prone to foundation movement caused by landslides or land settling." In addition, our yearly typhoons cause cyclic action, bending the buildings back and forth and possibly loosening the foundations. And deterioration due to aging is a further concern.
Professor Hung has recently received a Research Grants Council award of HK$4 million for his group research proposal, "Non-destructive Inspection of Buildings and Structures Using Shearography". Specifically, Professor Hung intends to develop shearography as a full-field measurement tool of static and dynamic deformation; as a tool to evaluate structural deterioration, such as steel corrosion and concrete degradation; and as a device to remotely inspect building exteriors.