Sunday, 4 February 2018

Getting my skills up in computational geotechnics

Hallo Leute :)

Recently I participated to a 4 days training organized by PLAXIS. PLAXIS is a computer program, which is used by geotechnical engineers. It is a finite element software which can be used for different geotechnical problems such as deformation analysis, stability assessment, groundwater flow and consolidation.

The training venue was close to Schiphol airport, therefore far from the possible distraction of Amsterdam :). I was very surprised that in this training were participating so many people, we were in fourty. It was a very nice group with people from different part of Europe. The participants were from consulting and contracting companies with different background and expertise.

I chose to attend this course because it was mainly focused on the knowledge of soil behavior and advanced methods in geotechnical engineering, therefore it was more theoretical and it will reinforce my basic knowledge on soil mechanics. My research involves the use of PLAXIS therefore was also a good chance so ask some questions :)

Different lectures were held by different Professors such as, Gioacchino Viggiani (Université Joseph Fourier, UJF), Antonio Gens (Technical University of Catalonia, UPC), Prof. Steinar Nordal (Norwegian University of Science and Technology, NTNU), and different Plaxis experts such as Dennis Waterman (Plaxis bv) and Dr Paul Bonnier (Plaxis bv).

GuD Newsletter 2017

Hallo Leute :)

Every year GuD pubblishes a newsletter about what the company achived throughtout the year and interesting challenges they faced during different projects. Last year I had the honor to present our INFRASTAR project.

The language of the newsletter is German so I translated it for you :) 


GuD is a partner in the research project INFRASTAR (, which receives € 3 million from the European Union over a period of 4 years. INFRASTAR stands for "Innovation and Networking for Fatigue and Reliability Analysis of Structures - Training for Assessment of Risk ".

The project aims to gain knowledge and experience for optimizing structural design and lifetime monitoring of cyclically and dynamically loaded structures such as bridges and wind turbines. In total, the project sponsors twelve junior scientists from different countries with the aim of achieving the PhD title in the end of the project. Gianluca Zorzi from Padua (Italy) is a PhD researcher at GuD Consult. His research is related to the lifetime prediction of offshore foundations.

How is working as a phd student in GuD?

Conducting full time research in a company is very challenging, but holds tremendous opportunities. The team of GuD helps me to focus on the essential issues and key aspects to be improved in real projects.

What is exactly your research about?

The focus of my research is to develop methods to predict the behaviour of offshore wind turbine foundations under cyclic loadings. This is still one difficult main challenge in the foundation design. At GuD we are collaborating closely with different universities such as the University of Padova and Technical University of Berlin. We also exchange ideas with others Universities and companies involved in the INFRASTAR project.

What is so fascinating about wind turbines?

Wind turbines, especially in the offshore sector, are definitely playing a major role in fighting the challenges that the climate change poses to our society. As an engineer researching on wind turbines, I am dealing with highly dynamic structures, which are not comparable in other areas of civil engineering. I hope my research can do their part to further optimize the design solutions and make them even more economically interesting.


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