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Prof. Zhang Chao Wins ASCE Norman Medal

Zhang Chao, professor and doctoral supervisor of the HNU College of Civil Engineering, earnedthe Norman Medal, thehighest honor granted by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), for his contributions to engineering science based on his research paperUnified Effective Stress Equation for Soil.The research was accomplished by HNU as thefirst author affiliation, and Colorado School of Mines. HNU is the first Chinese university that wins such honor since the medal was set up 150 years ago.

Zhang put forward a unified effective stress equation for soil under fully saturated and unsaturated conditions, based on the cutting-edge theories of “soil sorptive potential” and “pore water pressure”. This equation is of longstanding significance to the research on porous medium mechanical behaviors in the fields of civil engineering, engineering geology, soil science, geomorphology, and materials science.

The Norman Medal, instituted in 1872, isthe most time-honored award of ASCE. Itrecognizes papers that make contributions to either practical or research aspects of engineering disciplines.


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