Fall is always such an exciting time here at Purdue University — both in what it brings and what it symbolizes.
For most, this season represents the winding down of the year, the last flash of autumn colors before the cold winter takes over. However, for students and educators, fall represents a new beginning — a chance to make an impact, to make new friends, to reach greater heights, and to start off fresh in a new setting.
For me, personally, I fall somewhere in the middle — between proudly looking back on our school's accomplishments over the past year and enthusiastically looking forward to what the upcoming semesters will bring. Thankfully, magazines such as this fall edition of Civil Engineering Impact allow me both to reminisce about the past and anticipate future feats.
Of course, I cannot mention the idea of nostalgia without acknowledging Purdue's year-long sesquicentennial celebration, which will reach its climax this Homecoming. For the past 12 months or so, we here in the Lyles School — along with the rest of Purdue — have been celebrating the University's 150th anniversary, which officially was May 6, 2019.
For 132 of Purdue University's 150 years, the School of Civil Engineering, now the Lyles School of Civil Engineering, has proudly joined the University on its achievement-filled journey. As one of Purdue's oldest programs, we have been able to share and celebrate each other's successes. This sesquicentennial has been no different — and I look forward to celebrating our school's future successes in the years to come.
Speaking of successes and accomplishments, this edition of Civil Engineering Impact showcases several of them — particularly those of our faculty and graduate students.
In the following pages, you will be treated to stories on new and continuing research, such as the latest updates on the Resilient ExtraTerrestrial Habitats Institute, which NASA selected to lead a $15 million grant to develop resilient habitats for establishing human settlement on the moon and Mars.
You also will learn how our faculty and students are studying natural disasters from coast to coast, ranging from floods to wildfires, and how they are utilizing new technology and smart systems to prepare citizens and emergency professionals for future events. And you will learn about unique, full-scale assembly of steel components — used for developing and teaching the latest inspection methods.
Much of the research in the pages ahead would not be possible without tremendous, multidisciplinary cooperation between our school and multiple other entities, at Purdue and around the nation. I look forward to sharing even more of our successful, cooperative stories with you in the future.
All the best,
Rao S. Govindaraju
Bowen Engineering Head of Civil Engineering and
The Christopher B. and Susan S. Burke Professor of Civil Engineering