Civil and Structures

Civil and Structures brings together expertise in building physics, numerical modelling, structural stability and bridge hydraulics, with members from across civil and structural engineering disciplines. Our research applications are spread across a range of topics: from health and wellbeing in buildings to bridge structural management.

Group members

Our research

Current projects are on topics including flood risks to bridges, injury biomechanics, energy use in buildings, hydraulic fracturing (fracking) and seawater intrusion.

Funding for current and past research projects has come from a variety of sources including EPSRC, EU, NERC and British Council.

Civil Engineering

We maintain extensive links with the civil engineering industry including asset owners and operators, consultants, contractors, building engineers and architects, and have an excellent track record of generating impact. To cite a few examples:

  • Thermal models produced by the group enable UK building engineers and architects to investigate how their buildings perform in the current climate and in the future, in terms of both energy use and overheating.
  • An ongoing project into flood risks to bridges is producing novel industry guidance for evaluating and managing scour risks to masonry bridges from debris accumulation.
  • Work in modelling and control of saline intrusion was shortlisted for a Ground Engineering award for Technical Excellence in 2016.


We are also active in the biomechanics area, with ongoing projects on the development of orthosis (e.g. knee braces) and in the application of injury biomechanics to improve safety as part of healthcare facilities design in close collaboration with Arup, global leaders in this area.

Computational geomechanics »


We have access to laboratories for structural and geotechnical testing, and a 14m long recirculating flume for simulating sediment transport that is currently used for investigating flow around bridge piers. We also collaborate with other facilities such as St Luke’s motion analysis laboratory and Manchester Metropolitan University's instrumented stairway.