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Accolades

CoMSIRU's team, including graduates and students, has been awarded recognition from academia and industry over the years. Here are some of the highlights.

2019

  • CoMSIRU’s PhD student Alice Titus Bakera received the UCT Faculty of Engineering & the Built Environment (EBE) Student Research Award; she is the lead author of a research paper accepted for publication in a peer-reviewed journal prior to graduation. Alice also won The Joseph Arenow Prize for Best Master’s Dissertation at the faculty in 2018.
  • CoMSIRU embarked on an international collaboration with the India Institute of Technology Madras (IITM) in India. The SPARC programme is concerned with the recycling of concrete aggregates and intends to produce educational materials on the topics. Prof. Mark Alexander and Prof. Hans Beushausen are involved in the project which includes student and staff exchanges between the partner institutions over the next two years.
  • CoMSIRU's professional Master's programme in Civil Infrastructure Management and Maintenance (CIMM) has been accepted by the Department of Higher Education of South Africa (DHET). The programme is offered at UCT's Department of Civil Engineering and commenced this year with its first intake of ten students. 
  • The directors of CoMSIRU – Prof. Mark Alexander, Prof. Pilate Moyo and Prof. Hans Beushausen – were appointed members to the research panels of the South African National Roads Agency SOC Ltd (SANRAL). The research panels are considered national think tanks for a range of areas of SANRAL operates in.
  • By invitation of the Uganda Electricity Generation Company Limited, Prof. Pilate Moyo joined an international panel of experts comprising five members from Canada, France, the UK and South Africa to review the implications of alkali-aggregate reaction (AAR) on a Ugandan hydro plant.
  • Prof. Mark Alexander joined the Engineering Panel PE8 of the European Research Council (ERC), which deals with Starting Grants for young researchers. He was also invited by the Research Foundation Flanders (FWO) to join the W&T9 Fellowship Panel on Science and Technology of Constructions and the Built Environment.
  • Prof. Hans Beushausen was appointed Chair of the Development Advisory Committee (DAC) at RILEM, the International Union of Laboratories and Experts in Construction Materials, Systems and Structures. The DAC advises the bureau on international development, activities and relations. He was also appointed lead of a task group at fib, the International Federation for Structural Concrete, to develop updated exposure classes for concrete durability which are to be included in the fib Model Code 2020.
  • Prof. Moyo has been appointed Co-Chair of the South African Heavy Haul Association (SAHHA) Technical Conference, which will be held in April 2020 in Johannesburg. He has also been appointed Associate Editor of The Monitor, the magazine of the International Society for Structural Health Monitoring and Intelligent Infrastructure (ISHMII).
  • The Department of Water and Sanitation of South Africa appointed Prof. Beushausen as a concrete materials expert to join a professional team and perform a safety evaluation of the Clanwilliam Dam wall in the Western Cape, South Africa.
  • Prof. Mark Alexander was invited to the Centenary Celebrations of the Faculty of Civil Engineering, University of Zagreb, themed "The Future of Civil Engineering"; he was honoured with a certificate of recognition for his "contribution to the international promotion and affirmation" of the Faculty.

2018

  • Prof. Pilate Moyo was appointed Head of Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Cape Town for the period 2018–2022.
  • CoMSIRU's Master's students Joanitta Ndawula and Alice Titus Bakera were awarded each a scholarship of RILEM, the International Union of Laboratories and Experts in Construction Materials, Systems and Structures, for the years 2018/19 in recognition of their research work. Bakera also received an award for best research poster at Rilem Week.
  • The 5th International Conference on Concrete Repair, Rehabilitation and Retrofitting (ICCRRR), a collaboration between CoMSIRU and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Germany, was held in Cape Town, South Africa. 
  • Prof. Hans Beushausen was appointed Bureau Member of RILEM, the International Union of Laboratories and Experts in Construction Materials, Systems and Structures.

2017

  • CoMSIRU's PhD student Matongo Kabani received the Outstanding Student Engineering Award of the International Heavy Haul Association (IHHA) for his work on live loading for assessment of railway bridges in heavy haul lines. 
  • Prof. Mark Alexander was a guest of the India Institute of Technology Madras (IITM) in India for several weeks to deepen the collaboration between CoMSIRU and IITM in the areas of research, teaching and student supervision.

2016

  • Hans Beushausen became a full Professor in January 2017
  • Mark Alexander was made a RILEM Honorary Member at the RILEM Annual Week, Copenhagen, Sep 2016
  • Philemon Arito received a Carnegie scholarship
  • Mark Alexander was appointed Associate Editor of the international journal Cement & Concrete Research, 2016–2018
  • Mark Alexander became a member of International Expert Panel for a French National Research Project, ‘Perfdub’ (“Performance-based approach for concrete structures durability”) aimed at defining suitable methodology for justifying concrete durability through performance tests and corresponding criteria (for the different exposure classes of European Standard EN 206).
  • Dr Moses Kiliswa receiving The Joseph Arenow Prize for the best PhD thesis in the EBE faculty in 2016

2015

  • Prof. Pilate Moyo was appointed Deputy Dean, Research and Postgraduate Studies in the Faculty of Engineering & the Built Environment
  • Prof. Mark Alexander was appointed as a senior research scholar in the Faculty of Engineering & the Built Environment. His period as President of RILEM came to an end in September 2015, and he is now the Immediate Past President of RILEM to 2018.
  • Assoc. Prof. Hans Beushausen received a new, and higher, NRF rating (C2)

2014

  • Prof. Mark Alexander is President of RILEM (International Union of Laboratories and Experts in Construction Materials, Systems and Structures, France) for 2012–2015
  • MGA: Elected Director and Board member of Concrete Society of Southern Africa, March 2014
  • Dr Chris Oosthuizen (Panel Member) is currently Chairman of the ICOLD Technical Committee on Dam Surveillance. He received the SANCOLD 2013 Award for an outstanding contribution to Dam Engineering in South Africa
  • Dr Sifiso Nhleko was awarded the C V Raman International Fellowship for African Researchers, by the Indian Ministry of Science and Technology
  • Assoc. Prof. Hans Beushausen: Appointment as the African Management Committee Observer for European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST) Action TU1406 (Quality specifications for roadway bridges, standardization at a European level)
  • Mr Mike Otieno and Mr Philemon Arito: Carnegie Scholars in the Department of Civil Engineering
  • Dr Mike Otieno, PhD graduate and Carnegie research scholar, was appointed to a lectureship at the University of the Witwatersrand from March 2014
  • Dr Rachel Muigai, PhD graduate, was appointed to a lectureship at the University of Johannesburg from April 2015

2013

  • Prof. Alexander is President of RILEM (International Union of Laboratories and Experts in Construction Materials, Systems and Structures, France) for 2012–2015
  • Mr Mike Otieno, PhD student and Carnegie research scholar, was appointed to a lectureship at the University of the Witwatersrand from March 2014
  • Dr Chris Oosthuizen (Panel Member) is currently Chairman of the ICOLD Technical Committee on Dam Surveillance. He received the SANCOLD 2013 Award for an outstanding contribution to Dam Engineering in South Africa
  • Dr Sifiso Nhleko was awarded the C V Raman International Fellowship for African Researchers, by the Indian Ministry of Science and Technology
  • Mr Mfundo Vezi, a Masters student in CoMSIRU, attended the South African National Committee on Large Dams (SANCOLD) conference in November, 2013. He was the recipient of the SANCOLD award for the best paper prepared and presented by a young engineer

2012

  • Prof. Alexander was elected President of RILEM (International Union of Laboratories and Experts in Construction Materials, Systems and Structures, France) in September 2012
  • Prof. Alexander, Assoc. Prof. Beushausen and Mr Mike Otieno were awarded the American Concrete Institute (ACI) Wason Medal for Materials Research for the best paper in the ACI Materials journal
  • Ms Gladwell Nganga and Lombe Mutale received the Department of Science and Technology SA Women in Science Awards
  • Ms Rachel Muigai received the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), Germany Green Talents Award
  • Assoc. Prof. Beushausen received the UCT College of Fellow’s Award for Young Researchers
  • Dr Beushausen was promoted to Associate Professor
  • Assoc. Prof. Moyo was promoted to full Professor