Dr Ross Stirling
Research Associate (Geotechnical Engineering)
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5268
- Address: School of Engineering
Drummond Building (Room 2.08a)
Newcastle upon Tyne
Latest paper in Applied Clay Sciences: Modelling the deterioration of the near surface caused by drying induced cracking
Background & Research Interests
Since completing my PhD in numerical modelling of desiccation cracking in unsaturated, compacted clay fill in the field of infrastructure slope stability, I worked simultaneously on two EPSRC funded projects – iSMART and Assessing The Underworld.
My role was primarily as an experimentalist (laboratory and full-scale). I manage and maintain the BIONICS research facility - a trial infrastructure embankment which hosts a number of innovative techniques to monitor the slope asset condition (e.g. ALERT-ME and SlopeALARMS) as well as a comprehensive suite of buried and meteorological sensors and associated extensive dataset. My laboratory interests revolve around the cyclic wetting-drying behaviour of clays - specifically geotechnical properties (e.g. Soil water retention curves (SWRC), tensile and shear strength testing and small-large strain stiffness testing), geophysical techniques (i.e. resistivity) and imaging (Digital Image Correlation, Environmental-SEM and XRCT).
During my Post-Doc work, I have gained an understanding and appreciation of geotechnical deterioration mechanisms across the scales of infrastructure performance, from the soil element itself up to the network, strategic level. Through my involvement with iSMART and ATU, I have helped to develop ideas of progressive asset deterioration in the infrastructure slope and buried utility contexts, assets upon which the future resilience of our cities relies.
I am currently guiding the design and future research potential of the UKCRIC Green Infrastructure and Urban Water Laboratory at the Urban Sciences Building on Science Central, Newcastle City Centre. This is a world-class facility in which to conduct collaborative, multi-disciplinary research into sustainable drainage systems and Green Infrastructure performance.
I am actively engaged in geotechnical design consultancy and have recently been working with Electrokinetic Ltd on several slope stabilisation sites for Highways England in Cambridgeshire. Electrokinetic Ltd provides solutions for remediating unstable slopes and dewatering slurries and sludges based on patented electrokinetic geosynthetic technology. They are recipients of numerous ICE awards owing to the outstanding sustainability credentials that electro-osmotic remediation brings.
Together with the Environment Agency, I am supervising bank stability monitoring and analysis project on the River Tyne. The purpose of this work is to identify sustainable remediation methods that exploit coupled hydro-mechanical mechanisms to provide green, aesthetic solutions.
- BSc (Hons) - Geology - Durham University 2008
- MSc - Geotechnical Engineering - Newcastle University 2009
- PhD - Multiphase modelling of desiccation cracking in compacted soils - Newcastle University 2014 (pdf)
- Development of a pseudo-discrete continuum finite difference model (FLAC) capable of capturing two-phase flow within a porous media subject to mechanical and hydrological boundary conditions and a tension failure criterion. Additionally, this work saw the design and development of an apparatus to establish the variable (un)saturated soil tensile strength.
- Fellow of the Geological Society
- Member of the British Geotechnical Association
- TUD COST Action TU1202 member (Website)
Grants & Awards
- UKCRIC - UK Collaboratorium for Research in Infrastructure & Cities: Newcastle Laboratories (EP/R010102/1) Researcher Co-Investigator, April 2016 - March 2021 (£9,671,332)
- Organiser of the International Training School ‘The Vadose Zone Workshop’. An event for European Early Stage Researchers convened between Newcastle University and Durham University, July 2015 (15,000EUR)
- ‘Short Term Scientific Mission’ travel grant to École des Ponts ParisTech, February 2015 - COST Action TU1202 (Report) (2,500EUR)
- CEGS Newcastle internal conference - Oral Presentation Prize 2011
- CEGS Newcastle internal conference - Poster Prize 2010
- Canadian Geotechnical Journal
- Journal of Geotechnical and Geological Engineering
- International Journal of Rock Mechanics and Mining Sciences
- Engineering Geology
- Geotechnique Letters
Researcher Profile: ResearchGate
Research Project Supervision:
- Oboho Eminue (PGR) - Crack development mechanisms in clay embankments
- MSc Geotechnical Engineering/Engineering Geology (PGT) (annually)
- MEng Civil Engineering (UG) (annually)
I am also a holder of 'Introduction to Teaching and Learning in Higher Education - Part A' and have experience as a Postgraduate Demonstrator on the following courses:
- Stage 1-2 Geotechnical Properties of Soils and Rocks (Classroom, Laboratory and Fieldtrip)
- Stage 3 Computational Engineering Analysis (Computer Lab)
- MSc Geotechnical Engineering/Engineering Geology (Laboratory and Classroom)
- MSc Pipeline Engineering (Laboratory)
- Stirling RA, Davie CT, Glendinning S. Numerical modelling of desiccation crack induced permeability. In: 18th International Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering. 2013, Paris, France.
- Stirling RA, Simpson DJ, Davie CT. The application of digital image correlation to Brazilian testing of sandstone. International Journal of Rock Mechanics and Mining Sciences 2013, 60, 1-11.
- Stirling RA, Hughes PN, Davie CT, Glendinning S. Cyclic relationship between saturation and tensile strength in the near-surface zone of infrastructure embankments. In: Khalili K, Russell A, Koshghalb A, ed. Unsaturated Soils: Research and Applications. London: CRC Press, 2014, pp.1501-1505.
- Stirling RA, Hughes P, Davie CT, Glendinning S. Tensile behaviour of unsaturated compacted clay soils — A direct assessment method. Applied Clay Science 2015, 112-113, 123-133.
- Stirling RA, Glendinning S, Hughes PN, Hen-Jones R, Asquith JD, Helm P. Deterioration of geotechnical infrastructure: the influence of asset aging through environmental cycling. In: 19th International Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering. 2017. In Press.
- Du H, Dimitrova V, Magee D, Cohn A, Stirling R, Curioni G, Clarke B, Reeves H. An Ontology of Soil Properties and Processes. In: 15th International Semantic Web Conference. 2016, Kobe, Japan.
- Stirling RA, Glendinning S, Davie CT. Modelling the deterioration of the near surface caused by drying induced cracking. Applied Clay Sciences 2017, 146, 176-185.
- Hen-Jones RM, Hughes PN, Stirling RA, Glendinning S, Chambers JE, Gunn DA, Cui Y-J. Seasonal effects on geophysical-geotechnical relationships and their implications for electrical resistivity tomography monitoring of slopes. Acta Geotechnica 2017, Epub ahead of print.
- Helm P, Stirling RA, Glendinning S. The Implications of Using Estimated Solar Radiation on the Derivation of Potential Evapotranspiration and Soil Moisture Deficit within an Embankment. In: 3rd International Conference on Transportation Geotechnics. 2016, Guimaraes, Portugal: Elsevier.
- Hen-Jones R, Chambers J, Gunn D, Hughes PN, Glendinning S, Stirling RA. Development of a landslide monitoring system using electrical resistivity tomography. In: American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting. 2015, San Francisco, USA.
- Uhlemann S, Chambers J, Wilkinson P, Gunn D, Stirling R, Hen-Jones R. Geoelectrical Imaging of Moisture Dynamics in Engineered Slopes. In: 3rd International Workshop on Geoelectrical Monitoring (GELMON,2015). 2015, Vienna, Austria: Geologische Bundesanstalt.
- Stirling RA, Davie CT, Glendinning S. Multiphase modelling of desiccation cracking in the near-surface of compacted soils. In: XVI European Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering. 2015, Edinburgh, UK: ICE Publishing.
- Glendinning S, Helm PR, Rouainia M, Stirling RA, Asquith JD, Hughes PN, Toll DG, Clarke D, Powrie W, Smethurst J, Hughes D, Harley R, Karim R, Dixon N, Crosby C, Chambers J, Dijkstra T, Gunn D, Briggs K, Muddle D. Research-informed design, management and maintenance of infrastructure slopes: development of a multi-scalar approach. In: International Symposium on Geohazards and Geomechanics. 2015, Warwick, UK: IOP Publishing.
- Toll DG, Asquith JD, Fraser A, Hassan AA, Liu G, Lourenço SDN, Mendes J, Noguchi T, Osinski P, Stirling RA. Tensiometer techniques for determining soil water retention curves. In: 6th Asia Pacific Conference on Unsaturated Soils. 2015, Guilin, China: CRC Press.
- Hughes PN, Hen-Jones R, Stirling RA, Glendinnning S, Gunn DA, Chambers JE, Dijkstra TA, Smethurst J, Flesjo K. Challenges in monitoring and managing engineered slopes in a changing climate. In: 3rd European Conference on Unsaturated Soils E-UNSAT 2016. 2016, Paris, France: EDP Sciences.
- Elia G, Cotecchia F, Pedone P, Vaunat J, Vardon PJ, Pereira C, Springman SM, Rouainia M, Esch JV, Koda E, Josifovski J, Nocilla A, Askarinejad A, Stirling R, Helm P, Lollino P, Osinski P. Numerical modelling of slope-vegetation-atmosphere interaction: an overview. Quarterly Journal of Engineering Geology and Hydrogeology 2017, Epub ahead of print.
- Stirling RA, Davie CT, Glendinning S. Multiphase modelling of desiccation cracking in the near-surface of compacted soils. In: XVI European Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering for Infrastructure and Development. 2015, Edinburgh, UK: ICE Publishing.