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August 2016

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This month’s newsletter includes information about:

    • Charles J. Carter to Become New AISC President and NSBA Executive Director.
    • Fall 2016 AASHTO/NSBA Steel Bridge Collaboration Meeting Schedule Released.
    • NSBA Mourns the Passing of Dennis Mertz.
    • Purdue’s SBRITE Center Offers Hands on Training for Bridge Inspectors.
    • Mark your Calendar for these Upcoming Events.


Charles J. Carter to Become New AISC President and NSBA Executive Director

Charlie Carter 
Charles J. Carter, SE, PE, PhD, has been named the new president of the American Institute of Steel Construction effective December 5, and also will assume the role of executive director of the National Steel Bridge Alliance, AISC’s bridge division. Previously, Carter was Vice President and Chief Structural Engineer for AISC.

“AISC is one of the premier standard setting organizations in the U.S. and I’m proud and honored to be offered this opportunity,” Carter said. AISC, which was founded in 1921, writes the standards to which all steel buildings in the U.S. are designed and constructed. Its mission is to promote the use of structural steel in buildings and bridges. AISC’s membership includes more than 900 of the major domestic steel fabrication firms, all of the significant U.S.-based structural steel producers, the dozen leading U.S. steel service centers, around 2,500 general contractors, more than 10,000 engineering students and professors, and more than 27,000 professional engineers.

“I’ve been fortunate to have a number of very strong mentors,” said Carter, “particularly Jerry Haaijer, who was AISC’s Vice President of Engineering & Research when I started, and my friend Lou Geschwindner, who was my immediate predecessor as vice president as well as my professor and faculty advisor when I was a student at Penn State. So many of AISC’s fine and dedicated volunteers also have helped and guided me.”

Carter has a bachelor and master of science in Architectural Engineering from The Pennsylvania State University as well as a doctorate in civil and architectural engineering from Illinois Institute of Technology.

While at AISC, Carter has spearheaded a number of important initiatives, including the revitalization of the AISC Code of Standard Practice, the development of a unified Steel Manual combining both ASD and LRFD, the development of AISC’s first Seismic Design Manual, and the expansion of AISC continuing education programs into the online realm. He’s also a well-known speaker and the author of numerous papers as well as AISC Design Guides on Torsional Analysis of Structural Steel Members and on Wide-Flange Column Stiffening at Moment Connections. “I’m grateful to have worked closely with and learned from some of the top fabricators, structural engineers, researchers and educators throughout the country,” Carter added.

“AISC stands in such a good position thanks to its recent leaders, and especially my immediate predecessors Roger Ferch and Lou Gurthet. We need to continue to develop, promote and advance the use of structural steel, and help educate professionals and students. Our challenge for the future is to enhance the benefits we provide to the customers of the steel industry and tune our market development efforts to successfully communicate the advantages of structural steel to designers, constructors and owners,” Carter explained.

Carter succeeds Roger E. Ferch, PE, who is retiring this December. Ferch, who previously was vice president of Herrick Corporation (the largest structural steel fabricator on the west coast), has served as president since 2006. “I’m proud of the role I’ve played in bringing together the entire structural steel industry to communicate our technical and marketing message of economy, efficiency, and beauty when you construct with structural steel,” Ferch said. “AISC has the best staff of any trade association in the industry and I’m happy that our board has recognized our staff’s quality by promoting our next president from within for the first time in our nearly 100-year history. I think Charlie will do an outstanding job of leading AISC and the structural steel industry.”

Fall 2016 AASHTO/NSBA Steel Bridge Collaboration Meeting Schedule Released

The fall AASHTO/NSBA Steel Bridge Collaboration Meeting will be November 1-3 at the Hilton at the Ballpark in St. Louis, MO. All collaboration meetings are free and open to anyone interested in attending. So that we can better plan/schedule the event we request that you register using the following link before October 7, 2016.

Meeting Registration Link

Tuesday November 1 (1:00pm to 5:00pm)

Time      Meeting  Room 
 1:00pm to 4:00pm TG16 Orthotropic Deck Panels  Gateway 2 
 1:00pm to 4:00pm TG1 Detailing  Gateway 3&4 
 3:00pm to 5:00pm TG15 Data Modeling for Interoperability              Gateway 3&4            
5:30pm to 7:30pm     Collaboration Executive Meeting Gateway 3&4 

Wednesday November 2 (8:00am to 5:00pm)

Time      Meeting  Room 
8:00am to 12:00pm TG2/TG5 Fabrication Specification Gateway 2 
8:00am to 10:00am  TG12 Design for Economy & Constructability  Gateway 3&4 
10:00am to 12:00pm TG11 Steel Bridge Handbook  Gateway 3&4 
12:00pm to 1:00pm Working Lunch (provided)   
1:00pm to 5:00pm TG8 Coatings  Gateway 2                 
1:00pm to 5:00pm TG10 Erection Gateway 3&4
6:00pm to 10:00pm Dinner (registration requested) TBD

Thursday November 3 (8:00am to 4:00pm)

Time  Meeting  Room 
8:00am to 12:00pm  TG4 QC/QA      Gateway 2                 
8:00am to 12:00pm  TG13 Analysis of Steel Bridges  Gateway 3&4
12:00pm to 1:00pm  Working Lunch (provided)   
1:00pm to 4:00pm  Collaboration Main Committee                             Gateway 2 

Hotel Information
This meeting will take place at the Hilton at the Ballpark

Address: 1 S Broadway, St. Louis, MO 63102
Rate: $125 plus applicable taxes
Reservations: Reservations may be made online through the following link:  http://www.hilton.com/en/hi/groups/personalized/S/STLBVHF-AAS-20161101/index.jhtml

Cut-off Date: 5pm ET October 17, 2016

About the Collaboration
The mission of the Collaboration is to achieve quality and value in steel bridges by standardization of design, fabrication, and erection, and by the sharing of resources. Through the Collaboration, steel bridge professionals work together in a spirit of cooperation and mutual respect to develop details, specifications and practices and to exchange knowledge, technology and expertise.

For additional information visit: www.steelbridges.org/CollaborationStandards 

NSBA Mourns the Passing of Dennis Mertz

It is with great sadness that the NSBA has learned of the passing of Dennis Mertz, PhD. Mertz, passed away Friday, August 12 after a prolonged battle with cancer.

Mertz, a professor at the University of Delaware,dedicated a large portion of his professional career to advancing the state of the art in bridge engineering. The research he conducted combined with his efforts on numerous technical committees helped shape the industry into what it is today. Mertz’s contributions were recognized earlier this year by the bridge community, who presented him with the John A. Roebling Medal for his lifetime achievements in bridge engineering. He previously earned a Steel Bridge Forum Award in 1997, an Innovation in Steel Bridge Award from AISI in 1998, a Special Achievement Award from AISC in 2000, the Richard R. Torrens Award from ASCE in 2003 and the Richard S. Fountain Bridge Task Force Award from AISI and AASHTO in 2005. Mertz touched the lives of hundreds of students and directly shaped the career of many bridge engineers practicing today. He also mentored many young professors throughout the United States, providing them sound advice and guidance as they moved forward in their own academic careers.

“Dennis was a well-regarded leader and noteworthy contributor amongst his colleagues,” said Bill McEleney, NSBA’s Managing Director . “In addition to his superlative technical skills, his quick wit, upbeat personality and genuine friendship drew many to him. He was great friend to many of us and he will truly be missed.”

Purdue’s SBRITE Center Offers Hands on Training for Bridge Inspectors

At first look, the Steel Bridge Research, Inspection and Training Engineering Center( or S-BRITE Center), commonly called the bridge gallery, isn’t remarkable.

The grassy field next to the Purdue University Airport has a wide gravel path cutting through its middle, with slabs of concrete dotting the field.

On top of the slabs are pieces of steel, dozens of feet long, most of them a few feet off the ground, elevated by concrete blocks.

As S-BRITE Center director Robert Connor points out, these pieces of steel – parts of decommissioned or collapsed bridges – have been collected from across the country, including a railroad bridge from Lansing County, Mich., and a highway bridge that spanned I-65 on the east side of Indianapolis.

The bridge gallery is Robert Connor’s brainchild. Its purpose is to educate and train bridge inspectors, and to improve the practice of inspecting.

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