Engineering Materials Research

Research on engineering materials is carried out in our construction materials laboratories (more information) and a structural laboratory (more information). Following is a brief description of some of the research projects utilizing these laboratories, along with the associated faculty and students.

Dr. Rishi Gupta, P.Eng.

Rishi Gupta

Current Research Projects

BCIT Green Street Project- Phase II

Over the summer of 2012, a 1000ft2 pilot placement of pervious concrete was completed in BCIT’s parking Lot F. This project involved replacing a section of the asphalt paved surface in Student Parking Lot F with pervious concrete. The intent of the pervious concrete is to reduce the strain on the storm water drainage system by allowing rain water to percolate into the ground. In addition, use of pervious concrete is also known to improve the quality of the water feeding into the ground water table by filtering pollutants and thus resulting in a more environment friendly and sustainable system. The placement proposed in the proposal stage was doubled in size to allow studying the performance of this innovative material under moving traffic. The placement width was three stall wide and 40’ long in the other direction. A network of embedded perforated pipes will assist in future monitoring of the percolation capacity of the pavement and its effect on improving quality of permeated runoff. Compression testing of cylinders cast during construction will be used to measure the compressive strength ad percolation capacity of concrete.

As the testing of the pilot slab is at a young stage, further research and results are required before the determination of the feasibility of using pervious concrete at a larger scale. The current issues of pervious concrete are being investigated, including clogging, abrasion resistance or ravelling, and free-thaw durability.

This project was primarily funded by the Green Value Strategies Fund (GVSF) administered by the School of Construction and the Environment at BCIT. The principal investigator for this project is Dr. Rishi Gupta from the Department of Civil Engineering of the School of Construction and the Environment who has received an award through the GVSF. The research component of the pilot slab will be performed by Dr. Gupta and his research assistant, Amos Kim. This pilot slab of pervious concrete will be monitored over the course of the 2012-2013 academic year.

Comparison of Shrinkage Cracking in Concrete with Waterproofing Admixtures—Kryton International

Research is on-going to study the restrained plastic shrinkage characteristics of concrete according to ASTM 1579-06: Standard Test Method for Evaluating Plastic Shrinkage Cracking of Restrained Fiber Reinforced Concrete. In this research project the effects of waterproofing admixtures on resistance to cracking are being studied. The testing is being done according to ASTM standard and further testing is being conducted using modified conditions to simulate extreme weather conditions. This research project also includes studying the free shrinkage properties and drying shrinkage cracking in concrete modified with commercially available water proofing admixtures.

Previous Research Projects (Summary)

CIVL 4090 Student Industry Projects
Investigating the Effects of High Slag Contents and KIM on Ordinary Portland Cement Concrete (Josh Jordan, 2012)
Investigating the effects of temperature, moisture, and aging on movement in masonry veneer (Amrit Basra, 2012)
Use of recycled plastic and fibers in asphalt (Ashkan Zanganeh, 2011)
Research the Bond Strength of Mortar Containing Fly Ash (Dion Hopkins, 2010)
Testing the Effect of the Polypropylene Fibers on the Bond Strength and Flowability of Masonry Mortar (Stephen Vallee, 2010)
Developing and monitoring sustainable cement-based materials (Shaminder Aulakh, 2009)
Evaluation of the Compressive Strength Behaviour of the Octaform Concrete Forming Systems (Martin James, 2009)
Studying the Effect of Fiber on Masonry Mortar (Amin Hassanshahi, 2008)
Studying the Effect of Fly-Ash on Masonry Mortar (Foaad Solemany, 2008)
Crystalline Waterproofing Technology in Concrete and its Effect on Rebar Corrosion Reduction (Florian Kund, 2008)
Alternative Materials used to Achieve LEED Credits (Jessica Holman, 2008)
NSERC USRA Student Reports
Development of Sustainable Light Weight Cellular Concrete for Steel Gauge Wall System (Navid Rafati, 2011)
Effect of Class C fly-ash on Early-Age Properties, Free and Restrained Shrinkage of Concrete. (Andrew Pham, 2010)
NSERC Engage
Development of Sustainable Lightweight Cellular Concrete for Steel Gauge Wall Construction (Matt Furumori, 2011)
Industry Sponsored Research Projects (Industry Services Contracts)
Comparison of Shrinkage Cracking in Concrete with Waterproofing Admixtures (Amrit Basra, 2012)
Development of An Innovative Cracking Technique and Self-Sealing Analysis of Cracked and Hydrated Concrete (Stevan Gavrilovic, 2011)
Testing the Permeability of Concrete Under Constant Water Head and Determining the "Self-Sealing" Properties of Krystol Internal Membrane (KIM) in Cracked Concrete (Marie Qian, 2010)

Past Research Projects—Industry Services Contracts

Industry Service Contracts: During 2008-09, Rishi acquired total cash funding of $17,000 through three industry service contracts. A brief description of the projects is provided below:

Octaform Systems Inc: The OctaformTM system consists of interconnected PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) elements (panels, connectors and braces) manufactured by an extrusion process. This system is used as a stay-in-place concrete forming system. Octaform can supply standard forms for walls 4" to 12" wide, in two-inch increments. All the walls can be connected in a modular fashion, allowing the construction of agriculture, industrial and residential structures of virtually any shape, size or design. The compressive strength behavior of concrete members encased with the OctaformTM system is not fully understood. In this research project, full-scale columns (8' high) made using different Octaform configurations were tested.

Cement Association of Canada: Use of rammed earth for construction of insulated walls for residential construction is becoming common in Canada and the US. For producing rammed earth, locally available soil (earth) is combined with cement with very low water-cement (w/c) ratios and compacted using pneumatic rammers. However, the behaviour of such material when used in combination with rebar for structural applications is not fully understood. Hence, in this project tests were conducted to study the compressive strength, rebar pull-out strengths, flexural performance, and out-of-plane behaviour of full-scale columns.

Cement Association of Canada: Another industry service contract is being processed to conduct some addition pull-out and compression tests related to the Rammed earth project mentioned above.

CTS Alliance Group: Research was recently concluded on studying the effect of rapid hardening cement on free and restrained shrinkage of cement mortars. The project was sponsored by CTS alliance group.
Project Funded by BCIT's Green Value Strategies Fund
BCIT Green Street Project- Phase I (Amos Kim, 2012)


Download a PDF listing Rishi's Publications >>