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Meet Professor Peter Dusicka
Meet Professor Peter Dusicka

Peter Dusicka, Associate Professor
Ph.D., Civil Engineering, University of Nevada, Reno, 2004
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Infrastructure, including bridges, towers, and large buildings, needs to be strong to withstand an earthquake or a sudden impact. But they also need to be flexible; they have to be able to move and absorb shock in order to survive.

Associate Professor Peter Dusicka's research revolves around the materials and engineering that promote survivability.

Dusicka came to Portland State in 2004 from the University of Nevada in part because of PSU's infraStructure Testing and Applied Research (iSTAR) lab. The lab features a large platform that reproduces the seismic shaking of real earthquakes and is used to test the resiliency of engineered structures and their materials. The laboratory's capability is of enormous value to public agencies and engineering firms that are designing structures for the earthquake-prone regions of the Pacific Northwest.

He is currently working with the Oregon Department of Transportation to determine the seismic vulnerability of more than 2,000 highway bridges in the state. He's also investigating new uses for high-performance materials such as fiber reinforced composites and flexible elastomers, which can be used along with more traditional building materials such as concrete and steel.

"Public safety is my primary concern," Dusicka says. "One of the gratifications of the civil engineering profession is its direct impact on society."

Read more about Dr. Dusicka's research here.