School of Engineering

Staff Profile

Dr Helen Mitrani

Lecturer in Civil Engineering


Dr Mitrani works part-time, Monday to Wednesday.


Dr Helen Mitrani joined the School of Engineering in 2012, as part of the Geotechnical and Structural Engineering (GEST) Group. Prior to this, Dr Mitrani spent 5.5 years working as a structural engineer in the London and Newcastle offices of Arup, a global firm of consulting engineers. During this time, she gained chartered civil engineer status and was involved in the design and construction of diverse and challenging structures, including a new facility for testing 100m long wind turbine blades. Dr Mitrani’s research background is in seismic geotechnics – specifically the centrifuge testing of liquefaction remediation methods. This and her structural design experience inform her current research interests.


MEng Civil and Structural Engineering (University of Sheffield)

PhD Seismic Geotechnics (University of Cambridge)


EPSRC Early Career Forum in Manufacturing Research (

CEng MICE Chartered Member of the Institution of Civil Engineers

Associate Fellow of The Higher Education Academy

Google scholar: Click here.


Research Interests

  • Responsive materials
  • Novel ground improvement techniques
  • Dynamic soil-structure interaction
  • Effects of long-term cyclic loading on soils and structures
  • Liquefaction and liquefaction remediation

Funded Projects

Hub for Biotechnology in the Built Environment

Current Projects

Thinking Soils. Co-I for EPSRC funded project (EP/R003629/1). This project builds on the work in Computational Colloids to develop a living material which can respond to physical forces in its environment through the synthesis of strengthening materials. This concept is partly biomimetic inspired by, for example, the way in which our bones strengthen, becoming more dense under repeated load. However, we are also proposing to build this system using living bacteria cells which have no such functional requirement in nature.

Soil-structure interaction under long term cyclic loading. Funded by the SAgE Faculty of Newcastle University, under the EPSRC Doctoral Training Award scheme. This project investigates how long-term cyclic loading effects the behaviour of shallow onshore wind turbine foundations.

Previous Projects

Computational Colloids. Co-I for EPSRC funded project (EP/N005791/1). This project investigates how Civil Engineering may be integrated with the emerging field of Synthetic Biology. Combining these fields has potentially transformative implications for both and may generate a new field of Engineering Design.

PhD Supervision

Current Projects

Rose Hawkswood Soil-structure interaction under long-term cyclic loading

Thora Arnardottir Thinking Soils

Completed Projects

Javier Rodriguez Corral (Feb 2020) Micro and Macro-Scale Characterisation of and Agarose-Based Physical and Computational Model for the Testing and Development of Engineered Responsive Living Systems

Esteem Indicators

Reviewer for 'Géotechnique', Soil Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering', 'Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering', 'Bulletin of Earthquake Engineering' and 'International Journal of Physical Modelling in Geotechnics'.

Scientific Committee member for the International Conference on Geotechnical Research and Engineering, 2020 and 2021.

Authored an Arup internal guidance note on Fatigue design of Concrete to EC2’.

Member of the EPSRC Peer Review Associate College.


Google Scholar profile

ResearchGate profile


Undergraduate Teaching

Module Leader for:

  • CEG3301 Design of Building Systems

 Contribution to: 

  • CEG3099 Individual Project - project supervision
  • CEG8099 Investigative Research Project - project supervision

Postgraduate Teaching 

Degree Programme Director for MSc Structural Engineering

Module Leader for:

  • CEG8310 Structural Engineering Field Course

Contribution to:  

  • CEG8396 MSc Project and Dissertation in Structural Engineering - project supervision 
  • CEG8296 MSc Project and Dissertation in Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology - project supervision