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SANRAL (South African National Roads Agency), the University of Pretoria (UP) and CSIR have agreed on the development of an Integrated Education, National Certification, National Reference and Research Laboratories Facility. The objective is to ensure maximum co-operation between the parties in order to create the critical mass in laboratory facilities and human resources to address the above challenges efficiently and avoid further erosion of current remaining skills. This will enhance the quality and quantity of the outputs as well as avoid costly duplication of laboratory facilities.
The facility will be housed in the newly developed Engineering 4.0 facility, and will consist of the SANRAL National Road Materials Reference Laboratory, SANRAL Training laboratory, an Accelerated Pavement Testing facility, an Active traffic track and an upgraded Concrete research laboratory. The facility also provides for a small reception and auditorium area, with following phases focusing on expansion of the laboratory to other Civil Engineering disciplines, as well as related disciplines.
The vision with the facility is to provide an internationally renowned platform for academic and vocational training support in transportation infrastructure materials testing, a national transportation materials reference testing platform and high quality research facilities and skilled staff.
The University of Bologna, Italy in collaboration with 12 other Universities from across the EU and UK have started a major initiative on research and education in the area of pavements and materials: SAFERUP! The initiative also includes several partner universities from across the world.
SAFERUP! aims to provide cities with innovative solutions that will form the future urban paved environment, by training talented researchers in the fields of: smart, recycled and durable paving materials; provision for vulnerable users (e.g. elderly & disabled) accessibility and protection; studying user behaviour; life cycle analysis; wash-off water management and bioremediation; tempered and acoustic pavements; energy harvesting and self-sensing technologies.
Prof. Cesare Sangiorgi can be contacted for more details.
Prof. Imad Al-Qadi introduced APSE during the opening of the BCRRA conference in Athens, Greece.
Several of the APSE founding members meet in Dallas, Texas on April 1 to finalize the bylaws and formally launch APSE.
APSE will be open to the world for membership by the end of June 2017.