This semester the School of Civil Engineering at The University of Queensland has started imparting the course CIVL4334 – Design of Timber Structures for the first time as an elective subject at UQ. This new course represents the flagship of the educational mission in timber engineering promoted by the Centre for Future Timber Structures and the School of Civil Engineering.
This course is taught by several UQ lecturers and guest lecturers from the Australian timber and civil engineering industry, who help to provide civil engineering students with state-of-the-art knowledge in the design of timber structures and technology. The scope of this course does not only cover the use of codes and standards to design timber structures, but also extends to fundamentals and novel outcomes in timber research developed by the Centre for Future Timber Structures.
So far we had the pleasure of having talks and lectures given by distinguished guest lecturers such as Richard Kirk (KIRK), Craig Gibbons (Arup), Geoff Stringer (Hyne), Richard Neuhercz (Lend Lease) and Prof. Phil Evans (University of British Columbia).
As part of the course programme, which covers subjects such as wood science, the design of timber elements and connections or the fire performance of timber, the students were taken today for a site visit to the research facility of the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) at Salisbury. The Salisbury research facility is a dedicated wood products research and development facility working with the forest products and construction industries. The centre has the capacity for developing wood composites, processing solid wood, seasoning timber, testing wood properties, preserving timber and a fully-equipped wood processing and conditioning workshop.
The civil undergraduate students had the chance to learn first-hand about wood processing and manufacturing of timber products, mechanical testing of timber elements, and treatment for controlling the decay of timber.
We would like to thank Rob McGavin and his colleagues at DAF for helping to organise this visit and their hospitality. We would also like to thank the School of Civil Engineering at UQ for supporting this educational programme that aims at training the next generation of competent timber engineers.