International geomechanics association honors Patrick Fox with two accolades

September 26, 2017

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Patrick J. Fox, the John A. and Harriette K. Shaw Professor and head of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Penn State, has recently been named the recipient of both the John Booker Medal and the Excellent Paper Award from the International Association for Computer Methods and Advances in Geomechanics (IACMAG).

The John Booker Medal recognizes researchers who have made significant contributions in geomechanics for nonlinear and time-dependent problems. These include analytical and computational methods, constitutive modeling, consolidation and contaminant transport. Consideration is given to mathematical rigor that leads to a fundamental understanding and insight into engineering and physical phenomena.

Fox was awarded this medal for research contributions on computational modeling of flow, transport and consolidation in porous media. He and his research group used an astrophysics method called Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics to develop a novel particle-based modeling approach for fluid flow and transport in porous media, such as sand or bone tissue. The resulting papers have guided related numerical modeling efforts in wide-ranging fields including physics, fluid mechanics, solid mechanics, biomechanics, geology and various fields of engineering.

Fox and his research group have also developed a family of numerical models for soil consolidation that are now being adopted worldwide for a wide variety of applications, including surcharge loading, radial consolidation, centrifuge conditions, coupled solute transport, layered systems, dredged sediments, mine tailings, electro-osmosis and unsaturated soils.

Professor Musharraf Zaman, the David Ross Boyd Professor and Aaron Alexander Professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Oklahoma and chief editor of the International Journal of Geomechanics, nominated Fox for the John Booker Medal.

The Excellent Paper Award was given to Fox and co-author Hefu Pu, professor of civil engineering and mechanics at the Huazhong University of Science and Technology. The award recognizes excellent research contributions published through refereed papers in archived journals. The nominated research needs to be of high quality and may involve a wide range of subjects in geomechanics or geotechnics.

Fox and Pu were given this award for their paper titled “Model for coupled large strain consolidation and solute transport in layered soils,” which was published in the International Journal of Geomechanics in 2015.

The paper presents the development and performance of the numerical model CST3 and represents a significant breakthrough for analysis of consolidation-induced contaminant transport in layered soil systems, and provided the framework for analysis of transport modeling in landfill-compacted clay liner and geosynthetic clay liner systems under time-dependent loading. This subsequent work was later published as two papers in the Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering.

Pu took the lead in development of the CST3 model and was the primary writer of the winning paper.

"I am sincerely grateful to the IACMAG Awards Committee for recognizing our research with two awards,” Fox said. “This high honor would not have been possible without the assistance of my many excellent research students over the past 20 years."

Fox will receive these awards at the 15th International Conference of IACMAG, which will be held in Wuhan, China on Oct. 19-23.

Established in 1988, the International Association for Computer Methods and Advances in Geomechanics is the leading international society devoted to behavior and mechanics of earth materials, including statics and dynamics of interacting structures and foundations, oil and fluid flow through porous media, environmental geotechnology, offshore and marine technology, geothermal energy and ice mechanics.

  • Patrick Fox

    Patrick Fox

    IMAGE: Penn State
Last Updated September 26, 2017