Prof Norman Jones and Dr Graham Schleyer from the University of Liverpool presented a three day course at WIT entitled ‘Structural Impact’.

The objective of the course was to acquaint professional engineers and others to procedures for the analysis and design of structural members subjected to large dynamic loadings produced by explosions and impacts, etc. The course examined fundamental aspects of the various types of dynamic loadings, studied the important relevant material characteristics in the dynamic range and, in particular, explored the response and energy absorbing properties of various structural systems, including damage and failure. Some reference to commonly used design codes and manuals for blast resistant design was included.

The course was designed for anyone interested in the structural impact field, structural crashworthiness, explosion mitigation, hazard assessment and safety calculations throughout the civil, mechanical, nuclear, transportation, petrochemical and process industries. Specifically the topics covered in the course were as follows:

  • Introduction to course and general considerations
  • Determination of dynamic loads (VCE and HE)
  • Dynamic material properties
  • Quasi-static versus dynamic behaviour and elementary impact considerations
  • SDOF analysis methods
  • Blast response of ductile structures
  • Human impact injury criteria and energy absorbing systems
  • Structural crashworthiness
  • Blast response of non-ductile structures
  • Structural failure, perforation and scaling laws
  • Blast resistant design
  • Structural assessment case study and conclusions


Professor Norman Jones, recently retired as AA Griffith Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Liverpool, has conducted theoretical, numerical and experimental studies over the past 35 years into the dynamic inelastic behaviour of structures and systems. These studies have clarified the influence of material strain rate sensitivity, transverse shear forces, finite deflection effects, rotatory inertia and other phenomena on the response of a wide range of structural members subjected to impulsive, dynamic and impact loads causing large inelastic deformations.

Professor Jones is Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Impact Engineering, Associate Editor of the Applied Mechanics Reviews, USA and the Latin American Journal of Solids and Structures, and is on the editorial boards of several other international journals.

He wrote the book ‘Structural Impact’ and has co-edited nine other books, as well as publishing over 250 journal articles. He has won two prizes from the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, another from the Royal Institution of Naval Architects, an Eminent Scientist Award from the Wessex Institute of Technology, and has been invited to serve on many international conference committees as well as delivering plenary and opening addresses. He was elected to the Royal Academy of Engineering in 1998 and a Foreign Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering in 2005.

Dr Graham Schleyer is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Engineering at the University of Liverpool. His current research interests lie in advancing the understanding of blast and impact performance of new and innovative structural materials and systems through novel testing and computer modelling. Dr Schleyer is a member of the UK Explosion Liaison Group (UKELG) Committee, and is also a member of the International Scientific Advisory Committee of the 9th International Conference on ‘Structures Under Shock and Impact’, to be held in the New Forest, UK in July 2006, organised by the Wessex Institute of Technology.

Dr Schleyer is a Global Research Award holder (formerly Engineering Foresight Awards, Royal Academy of Engineering), which has enabled him to work with leading research and technology organisations in the US involved in the damage assessment of buildings under explosive shock loading and ballistic impact testing and evaluation.

During 2005 he has been invited to speak at the Institute of Nanotechnology Seminar on Advanced Technologies in Crime Prevention and Detection at the Royal Society, and the Crime Science Network Seminar in the UK as well as the DYMAT Technical Meeting in Brussels. He has authored over 60 articles and reports submitted to journals, conferences, government organisations and industry.