9 luglio 2018
10 luglio 2018
11 luglio 2018
12 luglio 2018
13 luglio 2018
9 - 13 July, 2018

Preface and Objective

The tremendous impact of natural hazards, such as earthquakes, tsunamis, flooding, etc., which triggered technological accidents referred to as natural-technological (NaTech) events, was demonstrated by the recent Tohoku earthquake in 2011 and the UK’s 2015 winter floods which topped £5bn.  Therefore, today there is a stronger need than ever to grow researchers/practitioners that combine a robust academic foundation in FE modelling of complex dynamic systems, seismic reliability and new protection systems with practical experiences and technological expertise.
Hence, the objective of the PhD training module is to offer innovative training ground, experience in linear/nonlinear finite element analysis of mechanical and structural systems and implementation, probabilistic seismic risk analysis, theory and implementation of mechanical metamaterials for vibration reduction as well as numerical laboratory experience.

International lecturers

Giuseppe Abbiati, ETH, Switzerland
Marco Broccardo, ETH, Switzerland
Giorgio Carta, Liverpool John Moores University, UK

Italian lecturers

Oreste S. Bursi, University of Trento, Italy

Course outline (34 hours)

Linear and Nonlinear Dynamic Analysis including Substructuring (10 hours). Nonlinear finite element modelling. Thermomechanics. Plasticity models. Displacement- and force-controlled static analysis. Dynamic relaxation. Transient analysis. Damping models. Monolithic time integrators (accuracy and stability) with and without algorithmic damping. Model reduction. Partitioned time integrators. Experimental dynamic substructuring. Implementation of a simulation framework (class diagram, code policies, code subversion). 

Probabilistic seismic risk analysis for civil systems (10 hours).  Probabilistic seismic risk analysis for civil systems.  Basic concepts of probability theory and statistics. Bernoulli and Poisson Process. Principles of PSHA analysis. Hazard disaggregation and ground motion selection. Synthetic vs Natural acceleration ground motions. PEER-PBEE integral. Principle of Fragility analysis.

Mechanical metamaterials and multiple-tuned mass dampers for effective seismic isolation (14 hours) Introduction to mechanical metamaterials. Mathematical fundamentals of wave propagation in periodic structures. Dispersion properties of spring-mass systems. Theory and applications of homogeneous and heterogeneous flexural waveguides with different connections. Seismic random vibrations. Multiple tuned mass dampers. Design of a bridge as a phononic structure. Gyrobeams for the vibration reduction of a bridge subjected to seismic loads. Physical interpretation and design of a gyrobeam. Earthquake protection of new and existing broad and slender fuel storage tanks in industrial plants. Design of multi-scale high-contrast resonators.


PhD Course Chair
prof. Oreste S. Bursi
oreste.bursi [at]
tel. +39 0461 282521

PhD Course Secretariat
Irena Jatro
irena.jatro [at]
tel. +39 0461 281927


application/pdfLecture plan S2018 Abbiati(PDF | 156 KB)
application/pdfLecture plan S2018 Broccardo(PDF | 222 KB)
application/pdfLecture plan S2018 Bursi(PDF | 114 KB)
application/pdfLecture plan S2018 Carta(PDF | 142 KB)
application/pdfCourse Schedule(PDF | 48 KB)