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50 years of research in construction engineering

Published: 10 June 2022

To celebrate 50 years of research in construction engineering at Luleå University of Technology, an event was held with representatives from the construction industry and former doctoral students with lectures, a demonstration of the lab and a joint dinner.

The subject of construction engineering has been around since the start of Luleå University of Technology and the pioneer professor Lennart Elfgren has been involved since the beginning. He began by telling a little about his time at the university on the subject that is today called Structural Engineering.

"When I came to Luleå University of Technology, there were a few civil engineers here," said Lennart Elfgren.

Lennart Elfgren was appointed senior lecturer in construction engineering in 1972 and over the years built up an internationally recognized business in the field of construction.

"With his energy and his open way, Lennart Elfgren has meant a lot to the collaboration with industry and other Swedish universities, and after 50 years he is still a very important for Luleå University of Technology," says Peter Collin, professor in Structural Engineering at the university.

Mingle in the lab Photo: Richard Renberg
Mingle in the lab. Photo: Richard Renberg

Large lab

A major asset for research in Structural Engineering has been the availability of the large laboratory that was previously called Complab but today is called the Mining and Civil Engineering Lab, the MCE lab. The celebration took place with the lab as a backdrop and a concrete bridge span as a lectern for Eva Petursson, SSAB, who spoke about SSAB's green steel , Lars Bergdahl, the Swedish Transport Administration, about the work with the Norrbotnia line and Kyösti Tuutti, professor at Lund University, about tomorrow's concrete. The MCE lab is the only large construction engineering laboratory at Sweden's universities, and is prominent in, among other things, for testing and strengthening existing bridges, as well as in building materials research with a focus on concrete.

Concrete bridge cast 2022 Photo: Richard Renberg
Concrete bridge cast 2022. Photo: Richard Renberg

Ongoing research

Professor Gabriel Sas is today's Head of Subject in Structural Engineering at Luleå University of Technology, where several exciting research projects are currently being conducted.

"Much of our research today is focused on extending the life of existing bridges trough tests. In this way we learn more about their codition and how can we extend safely their use. Two of our flagship projects are based on the full-scale tests of the old bridge in Kalix and the upcoming test of two trough bridges. I’m an honored and proud to carry on the torch of bridge testing at Luleå University of Technology that was established by my mentor Prof. Emeritus Lennart Elfgren," says Gabriel Sas.

Gabriel Sas

Gabriel Sas, Professor and Head of Subject

Phone: +46 (0)920 493835
Organisation: Structural Engineering, Structural and Fire Engineering, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering
Lennart Elfgren

Lennart Elfgren, Professor, Professor

Phone: +46 (0)920 493660
Organisation: Structural Engineering, Structural and Fire Engineering, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering
Martin Nilsson

Martin Nilsson, Associate Professor

Phone: +46 (0)920 492533
Organisation: Structural Engineering, Structural and Fire Engineering, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering
Peter Collin

Peter Collin, Professor

Organisation: Structural Engineering, Structural and Fire Engineering, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering

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