Mervyn Kowalsky

Christopher W. Clark Distinguished Professor

Mervyn Kowalsky is the Christopher W. Clark Distinguished Professor of Structural Engineering in the Department of Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering at North Carolina State University. He is a registered Professional Engineer in North Carolina and an active member of several national and international committees on Performance-Based Seismic Design.

Dr. Kowalsky is currently serving on the editorial board of Earthquake Spectra (the journal of the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute), and has received the American Concrete Institute Structural Research Award for his work on the seismic behavior of lightweight concrete bridges and the ASCE Journal of Cold Regions Engineering Award for his work on seismic behavior of bridges in extreme environments.

Dr. Kowalsky is co-author of the textbook, Displacement-Based Seismic Design of Structures, and also teaches and maintains research collaborations with the School for Reduction of Seismic Risk (ROSE School) at the IUSS-Pavia, Italy. Dr. Kowalsky’s students are usually involved in a combination of large-scale structural experimentation and non-linear dynamic analysis aimed at developing solutions to problems facing the earthquake engineering community. His students conduct their research at the Constructed Facilities Lab on Centennial Campus, using several of the unique facilities at the lab, including a shake table, environmental chamber, and soil-structure interaction pit.

Education

Ph.D. 1997

Structural Engineering

University of California San Diego

M.S. 1994

Structural Engineering

University of California San Diego

B.S. 1993

Structural Engineering

University of California San Diego

Research Description

Dr. Kowalsky is interested in earthquake engineering design and analysis, behavior of reinforced and pre-stressed concrete structures, development of alternative performance-based seismic design procedures, and soil-structure interaction. His research, which has largely focused on the seismic behavior of structures, has been supported by the Alaska, California, and North Carolina Departments of Transportation, the Alaska University Transportation Center, the National Science Foundation, the US Army Corps of Engineers, and several industrial organizations.

Publications

Comparison of Seismic Demands on RC Bridge Columns Using the AASHTO Guide Specification, DDBA, and Nonlinear Analysis for Shallow Crustal and Subduction Tectonic Regimes
Martinez, D. R., & Kowalsky, M. J. (2022), JOURNAL OF BRIDGE ENGINEERING. https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)BE.1943-5592.0001868
Tensile Behavior of Large Diameter Carbon Fiber Anchors
Tasdemir, E., Seracino, R., Kowalsky, M., & Nau, J. (2022), 10TH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON FRP COMPOSITES IN CIVIL ENGINEERING (CICE 2020/2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-88166-5_104
Seismic Performance of Circular Concrete Columns Reinforced with High-Strength Steel
Barcley, L. B., & Kowalsky, M. J. (2020), Journal of Structural Engineering, 146(2), 04019198. https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)ST.1943-541X.0002452
Critical Bending Strain of Reinforcing Steel and Buckled Bar Tension Test
Barcley, L., & Kowalsky, M. (2019), ACI Materials Journal, 116(3), 53–61. https://doi.org/10.14359/51715583
Out-of-plane buckling instability limit state for boundary regions of special RC structural walls
Haro, A. G., Kowalsky, M., & Chai, Y. H. (2019), Bulletin of Earthquake Engineering, 17(9), 5159–5182. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10518-019-00667-4
Seismic Repair of Circular Reinforced Concrete Bridge Columns by Plastic Hinge Relocation with Grouted Annular Ring
Krish, Z. F., Kowalsky, M. J., & Nau, J. M. (2019), Journal of Earthquake Engineering, 1–35. https://doi.org/10.1080/13632469.2019.1688205
Boundary Elements of Special Reinforced Concrete Walls Tested under Different Loading Paths
Haro, A. G., Kowalsky, M., Chai, Y. H., & Lucier, G. W. (2018), EARTHQUAKE SPECTRA, 34(3), 1267–1288. https://doi.org/10.1193/081617EQS160M
Seismic performance of reinforced concrete filled steel tube drilled shafts with inground plastic hinges
Aguirre, D. A., Kowalsky, M. J., Nau, J. M., Gabr, M., & Lucier, G. (2018), Engineering Structures, 165, 106–119. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.engstruct.2018.03.034
Closure to "Modified Plastic-Hinge Method for Circular RC Bridge Columns" by Jason C. Goodnight, Mervyn J. Kowalsky, and James M. Nau
Goodnight, J. C., Kowalsky, M. J., & Nau, J. M. (2017), Journal of Structural Engineering (New York, N.Y.), 143(9). https://doi.org/10.1061/(asce)st.1943-541x.0001867
Out-of-Plane Buckling of Ductile Reinforced Structural Walls due to In-Plane Loads
Kelly Herrick, C., & Kowalsky, M. J. (2017), Journal of Structural Engineering, 143(3), 04016182. https://doi.org/10.1061/(asce)st.1943-541x.0001660

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Grants

Impact of Response Spectra Definitions and Direct Displacement-Based Design Simplification for Multi-Span Bridges
State of Alaska, Department of Transportation(10/21/21 - 6/30/25)
Rapid Post-Earthquake Displacement-Based Assessment Methodology for Bridges
State of Alaska, Department of Transportation(1/10/22 - 6/30/25)
Condition Dependent Performance-Based Seismic Design – Phase 1
State of Alaska, Department of Transportation(1/05/22 - 6/30/25)
Seismic Behavior of High Strength Reinforcing Steel at Low Temperatures
State of Alaska, Department of Transportation(2/24/21 - 12/31/24)
Development of Updated Seismic Hazard Definition
American Association of State Highway & Transportation Officials(7/31/20 - 12/31/22)
Seismic Retrofit of Anchorage Port Access Bypass
US Dept. of Transportation (DOT)(7/23/20 - 12/31/23)
Development of Optimized Decked Bulb-Tee Girders for Alaska
State of Alaska, Department of Transportation(4/22/20 - 12/31/23)
External Pocket and Socket Connections for the Seismic Design of Alaska Bridges
State of Alaska, Department of Transportation(12/09/19 - 2/28/23)
Rapid Seismic Repair of Column to Footing Connections – Phase 2
US Dept. of Transportation (DOT)(1/17/19 - 12/31/22)
Seismic Assessment of Anchorage Port Access Bypass
State of Alaska, Department of Transportation(12/01/17 - 12/31/20)