Civil Engineering

Acoustic Emission Testing

63_mBefore acoustic emission testing, oil storage tanks could only be checked for leaks by visually inspecting the inside tank floor. Most companies are usually required to have this done every five years. To do this, all oil in the tank would have to be drained. Following drainage, the whole tank would have to be sandblasted. Inspectors could then go inside the tank and check the floor for damage. This type of damage testing had several draw backs. All the oil that was in the tank upon draining would have to be disposed of; it could not be reused in any way. The price of this procedure could range from 15 to 20 lakh depending on the size of the tank. On top of the high price, the tank itself would be offline and unusable for about 3 months.

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Functional Dormitory Design

37This case study describes a design problem faced by the Indian Institute of Technology-Madras (IIT-Madras), a preeminent engineering institution in India, and Larsen & Toubro (L&T), one of India’s largest construction firms. Due to the rapidly increasing student population, IIT-Madras needs to construct more on-campus residences (hostels). However, because it is situated on the beautiful Guidny National Park, the university is restricted to 24% land use.

L&T recently completed a new group of high-rise hostels for IIT-Madras, but the older, sprawling-style hostels remain a popular choice among students. The two designs vary greatly in the areas of thermal comfort and social function. This case study explores how to design thermally comfortable and socially functional spaces while minimizing university land use.

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Glazing Case Study

66The project head for the construction of an IT park (about four million square feet) in Chennai, India has to finalize the glazing system for his project. This glazing system must comply with the energy code requirements that are outlined in his contract. He turns to the project’s architect, along with Mr. Nandakumar, the Façade Engineer from the Center for Excellence and Futuristic Development (CEFD) at the Chennai branch of Larsen and Toubro, to arrive at a solution.

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Life Cycle Cost Analysis Case Study

67During summer 2011, students from Auburn University traveled to India as part of a NSF International Research Experience for Students (IRES) project to work with Larsen and Toubro to assist in the development of a Life-Cycle Cost Analysis research project. Life-Cycle Cost Analysis (LCAA) is an important tool for businesses to use when evaluating total cost of a project in relation to how much cost would the business acquire over a period of time. Factors that the business evaluates include replacement costs and operation, maintenance, and repair cost. Larsen and Toubro, a leading construction company in India, understands this and uses Life-Cycle Cost Analysis to evaluate the lifetime cost of elements, such as lighting of a building.

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Thermal Comfort Case Study

21The Patels are looking for a new home in Chennai, a large city in India. Many homes there are not equipped with air conditioning, so they want to learn about which building materials provide the highest level of thermal comfort for their money. You are a project manager with Larsen and Toubro, India’s largest construction conglomerate, and it will be your job to analyze the materials and report back to the Patels.

This case study helps students achieve the following:

  • Be introduced to the concept of thermal comfort and its importance
  • Have a general understanding of how thermal comfort analysis is performed at a residential site
  • Be able to analyze the cost and benefits of many different materials and decide whether they should be used on specific problems
  • Present their findings in a short, specific, and relevant manner and defend them against other alternatives

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