April 4 Kavanagh Lecture to present 'Ups and Downs of Suspension Bridges'

The Thomas C. Kavanagh Memorial Structural Engineering Lecture will feature "The Ups and Downs of Suspension Bridges: and the Highs and Lows of Their Builders" by Harry H. West. West, professor emeritus of civil engineering, at 7:30 p.m. on April 4, in 108 Forum on the University Park campus of Penn State.

The event, celebrating its 20th anniversary, is free and open to the public.

West will trace the developmental history of suspension bridges, identifying the major players and their struggles to gain approval for their plans. He also will examine theories used in suspension bridge structural analysis.

West also will provide observations of the resulting trends in design. He will present a full accounting of the chronology of the longest suspension bridges in the world. They range from the early nineteenth century to current times along with plans for new and longer spans.

West's suspension bridge research earned him the prestigious Moissieff Award in 1970 from the American Society of Civil Engineers. A member of the Penn State faculty for 35 years, West has been honored on five separate occasions for teaching excellence. His most recent award was the 1996 Alumni Teaching Fellow Award of the Penn State Alumni Association.

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Last Updated March 26, 2013