General session & mini symposia

General Session


  • Massimo Midiri, University of Palermo
  • Antonina Pirrotta, University of Palermo

General session dedicated to works not strictly related to a mini symposium.

MS01 - 20(20)23 Stochastic Mechanics & Meccanica Stocastica 20(20)23 International Conference (23SM&MS23) in honor of Emeritus Professor Mario Di Paola


The conference is organized in cooperation with AIMETA (Italian Association of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics),

  • Vittorio Gusella, University of Perugia
  • Giuseppe Marano, University of Turin
  • Giuseppe Muscolino, University of Messina
  • Antonina Pirrotta, University of Palermo

The conference postponed because of pandemic problems is developed as 20(20)23 Stochastic Mechanics & Meccanica Stocastica 20(20)23 MS and aims to bring together our friends in research to share their recent developments on theoretical and numerical problems involved in modelling the static and dynamic response of structures in which uncertainties are present in structural materials or in the loads.

MS02 - Linear and Nonlinear Vibrations of Systems in honor of Emeritus Professor Fabrizio Vestroni



The leadership of Professor Fabrizio Vestroni in the academic institutions and in the field of structural dynamics and nonlinear vibrations is well known in the broad community of mechanics and certified by the title of Emeritus Professor of Sapienza University of Rome. Moreover, his contributions have been recognized by the von Kármán medal, which is considered the highest award of the ASCE/EMI. This seminar is organized to celebrate Professor Fabrizio Vestroni, his achievements and legacy. 

Topics for potential contributions include but are not limited to: 

  • Vibrations of spatially continuous systems
  • Nonlinear vibrations of systems and structures
  • Cables and cable-supported structures
  • Complex nonlinear dynamics
  • Vibrations of discrete systems
  • Chaos
  • Bifurcation of dynamical systems
  • Active and passive vibration control
  • Damping
  • Hysteretic systems
  • Vibrations of submerged structures
  • Vibration absorbers and isolation systems
  • Fluid-structure interaction, wind and flow induced vibrations
  • Dynamics MEMS and NEMS
  • Dynamics of soft structures and metamaterials
  • Energy harvesting
  • Rotating and travelling systems and structures

MS03 - Damaged elements and structures: models, resolution techniques, detection devices, experimental approaches

  • Uğurcan Eroğlu, Istanbul Technical University, Turkey
  • Giuseppe Ruta, University “La Sapienza”, Roma, Italy

Structural health monitoring is becoming an urging subject of investigation in the research community, especially with regard to the assessment of reliability of existing constructions, to the protection of strategic plants, and to the continuous control of machinery and transportation. We wish to bring researchers and experimenters together to exchange their last results and disseminate the outputs of their work.

We think that the mini-symposium can be devoted to:

  • Models of damage: lumped, diffused, crack-like, …
  • Models of damaged structural elements: beams, arches, plates, shells, …
  • Models of damaged structures: shear-type frames, trusses, …
  • Resolution techniques for direct problems in static and dynamics
  • Inverse problems and challenges for damage detection by static and/or dynamic measurements
  • Experimental setups for damage detection: contact and non-contact measures, static vs. dynamic apparatuses, laboratory vs. in-situ measurements
  • Sensors or sensor networks for damage detection, signal transmission.

MS04 - First new science, on the resistance of solid bodies to be broken. A mini-symposium in honor of Roberto Ballarini on the occasion of his 65th birthday

  • Jia-Liang Le, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, USA. email:
  • Gianni Royer-Carfagni, University of Parma, Parma, Italy. email:

The Discourses and Mathematical Demonstrations Relating to Two New Sciences by Galileo Galilei (Discorsi e Dimostrazioni Matematiche intorno à due nuove Scienze, appresso gli Elsevirii, Leida, 1638) is structured as a dialogue in four days among eminent personalities. The title of this mini-symposium is that of the first day, in which Galileo argues on fundamental topics that were treated in Aristotle's Physics. Galileo is the founder of the “Galilean method” and this opera represents perhaps the oldest treatise on the first of the two new sciences, which we now call “mechanics of solids”.

In the spirit of Galileo, this mini-symposium invites contributions in the vast field of the mechanics of solids, descending from the world of mathematical manipulation of quantities to that of physical perception. Experimental works, especially those obtained from the design of innovative experimental instruments, are welcome. Multiscale and multiphysics analysis of the responses of solids to general loading (static, dynamic, thermal, chemical, etc.) is of interest. Probabilistic mechanics and stochastic analysis of engineering structures are encouraged. Applications for innovative materials or metamaterials fall within the specific scope. Engineering interventions on modern and historical structures, possibly making use of innovative methods of analysis, are also welcome.

We would like to honor, with this mini-symposium, the scientific personality of our dear friend and colleague Roberto Ballarini, Professor and Chair of the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering at the University of Houston. Roberto has developed fundamental works in the mechanics of ancient and modern structures, history of mechanics, fracture mechanics, multi-scale and multi-physics theories, bio-mechanics, atomistic modelling, and probabilistic mechanics. Roberto is also a licensed professional engineer who has contributed to some challenging issues in structural designs, knowing how to combine a solid theoretical background with the taste and practical sensitivity of the structural engineer.

MS05 - Computational modelling of Complex Flows with evolving interfaces


Complex flows with evolving interfaces occur in several natural processes and engineering applications, such as combustion, microfluidic coating, food processing and many others.
Such flows expose a plethora of strikingly complex and still unexplored behaviours occurring across many spatial and temporal scales.
A full understanding of the unique fluid dynamics features involved in such phenomena becomes pivotal to optimize industrial processes and to understand natural and environmentally-relevant phenomena based on the physics of fluids interfaces.
Computational methods represent a viable and efficient way to tackle the above challenges by allowing to investigate the physics of complex fluid interfaces across spatial and temporal scales. 
Indeed, owing to the development of novel and efficient numerical algorithms and to recent advancements in the field of HPC, state-of-the-art numerical models are increasingly playing a pivotal role for the investigation of fluid phenomena across scales of motions.
The minisymposium is aimed at stimulating the discussion on the state of the art of computational methods for complex flows with evolving interfaces and at providing an insight into their ability in reproducing the physical complexity of such flows. 

Keywords: emulsions, bubbly flow, fluid interfaces, multiphase flows, multicomponent flows, bubbly flows, computational methods, near-interaction forces

MS06 - Industrial Hydraulics

  • V. Armenio (University of Trieste, Italy)
  • B. Brunone (University of Perugia, Italy)
  • A. Carravetta (University of Naples, Italy)
  • M. De Marchis (University of Enna Kore, Italy)
  • O. Giustolisi (Politecnico di Bari, Italy)
  • S. Malavasi (Politecnico di Milano, Italy)

In the last decade many problems in hydraulic engineering have been approached using comprehensive methodologies including theoretical formulations and experimental sets derived from different branches of the physical science. The Industrial Hydraulics is the name given to complex processes occurring in machineries and devices where Fluid Mechanics plays a central role and interactions are present, among the others with thermodynamic processes, solid mechanics, acoustics, material properties. Specific problems are, as an example, the noise generation and propagation in Newtonian media due to valves, propellers, pumps and turbines, the generation and development of cavitation, the propagation of pressure waves in pipelines, the movement of non-Newtonian fluids in porous media. The relative field of application can be found in civil, maritime, naval, energy, petroleum, oil and gas sectors. In this mini-symposium the specific contributions in Industrial Hydraulics including multi-physic complex processes are welcome. Theoretical, numerical and experimental approaches will be considered. The contributions to the session are expected to supply, on the basis of a robust scientific ground novel methodologies and paradigms aimed at solving complex multi-disciplinary problems of interest for industrial applications characterized by a sound presence of fluid-mechanics. 

Keywords: industrial devices, multi-physic fluid-dynamic processes, computational methods, experiments

MS07 - Recent Advances in Performance-Based Engineering for Single and Multiple Hazards under Current and Changing Climate Conditions

  • Michele Barbato, Ph.D., P.E., F.ASCE, F.EMI, F.SEI
    Professor of Structural Engineering and Structural Mechanics
    Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
    Co-Director, Climate Adaptation Research Center
    Director, CITRIS Climate Initiative, CITRIS and the Banatao Institute
    Tel.: +1 (530) 754-6427


Performance-Based Engineering (PBE) is an established philosophy for design, construction, and maintenance of engineered systems, which is finding recognition in the development of modern design codes. PBE moves from the prescriptive perspective that is common to current design codes and focuses on the engineering system performance from the viewpoints of different stakeholders. In structural engineering, this modern concept and the design methodologies derived from it allow for cost-effective design, construction, and maintenance of facilities under current and changing climate conditions. PBE approaches require to estimate accurately the mechanical response of structures subject to dynamic loadings, and to account rigorously for the uncertainties in material properties, geometry, construction methodologies, modeling assumptions, and loading environment, including effects of climate change. Thus, PBE needs advanced analysis methods that can balance accuracy and cost efficiency requirements. This minisymposium provides an opportunity to present current research findings in dynamic response analysis methods and techniques to assess and promote the performance of real-world structural systems subject to single or multiple natural and man-made hazards. Contributions regarding different sub-fields of structural engineering (such as earthquake, wind, hurricane, blast, and fire engineering) involving both deterministic and probabilistic approaches are welcome. Studies addressing the issues associated with climate change effects and nonstationarity for hazards, vulnerability, structural capacity, and structural performance are particularly welcome. The main objective of this minisymposium is to bring together researchers and engineers active in these topical areas to share their experiences and latest results. Papers that address conceptual, theoretical, computational, and/or methodological developments in both dynamic response analysis and performance assessment/prediction, as well as novel and/or large-scale applications, are appropriate for this minisymposium.

Sponsoring committee

Dynamics Committee
Probabilistic Methods Committee

MS08 - Stochastic models for deteriorating infrastructure and calibration based on field data



Deterioration can cause severe reductions in the performance of complex infrastructure systems. The decrease in performance can affect both regular service and the ability to respond to disastrous events. When modeling a deteriorating infrastructure, several sources of uncertainty might cause hard-to-predict behaviors. Stochastic models are required to obtain the evolution of the system with the associated uncertainties, and the recent literature has seen a rise in stochastic process theory applied to the field of deteriorating infrastructure. The most recent advancements range from physics-based models that use Stochastic Differential Equations for the evolution of the state variables of the system, to empirical methods that leverage the potential of artificial intelligence and machine learning. In both cases, the stochastic methods come with unknown model forms and parameters that must be calibrated based on field data from Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) or Structural Health Monitoring (SHM). The field data must be integrated within the assumed mathematical models to achieve a realistic representation of the system response. In the context of infrastructure analysis, a better understanding of the conditions of critical components (and of the deterioration processes that alter those conditions over time) can help to devise optimal maintenance strategies and to accurately assess and reduce the disruptions that natural and man-made hazards might cause. 

This mini-symposium aims to bring together expert researchers and academics concerned with the various aspects of infrastructure subject to deterioration. In particular, the session welcomes studies that focus (i) on novel stochastic models for deterioration analysis and quantification of the associated uncertainties, (ii) on the collection of relevant data via NDT/SHM, and (iii) on the calibration of deterioration models to predict the future performance of the system based on the data. The contributions could range from applications of Machine-Learning and Artificial Intelligence for the calibration of stochastic models, to theoretical contributions in the fields of stochastic processes for deterioration modeling.

Keywords: Deterioration, Reliability Analysis, Infrastructure Analysis, Non Destructive Testing, Structural Health Monitoring, System Identification 

MS09 - Uncertainty Quantification, reliability and sensitivity analysis under limited data


Non-deterministic analysis is attracting increasing research interest in several engineering fields as a consequence of the growing diffusion of new materials, advanced technologies, and complex systems which require more careful decision-making. In this context, a key issue is the selection of the most suitable mathematical representation of uncertainties. In many cases, limited data can be acquired from direct measurements to capture the inherent variability of the input parameters. Several approaches are currently emerging to perform uncertainty treatment under limited data, ranging from purely interval and fuzzy approaches to polymorphic concepts. This mini-symposium aims to collect the most recent theoretical and computational developments in the application of these approaches to engineering problems. Researchers focusing on efficient Uncertainty Quantification, ranging from uncertainty propagation methodologies, inverse identification and quantification techniques to optimization, as well as advanced procedures for reliability and sensitivity analysis in the presence of limited data are invited to submit an abstract to this mini-symposium. Recent implementations and developments of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning for dealing with uncertainty are also welcome.

Sponsoring committee

Committee on Probability and Statistics in the Physical Sciences of the Bernoulli Society (

MS10 - Modeling and performance assessment of bridges


The transportation infrastructure is an essential lifeline system. Decreased performance of the transportation infrastructure may have relevant economic and social cascading effects such as hindering the efficiency of supply chains and impairing the response to hazard events. Bridges are usually the most vulnerable elements within the transportation infrastructure and their performance is affected by both deterioration and occasional shock occurrences. Modeling the structural response and functionality of bridges incorporating different causes of deterioration and the interaction with vehicles is of critical importance to properly assess the reliability and functionality of the transportation infrastructure and consequently provide the information needed to optimize maintenance decisions and support effective infrastructure management. Hence, the scope of the mini-symposium encompasses all the aspects related to the modeling and performance assessment and includes, but is not limited to, the following topics:
  1. modeling of vehicle-bridge interactions;
  2. modeling deterioration of bridges due to extreme loading and environmental conditions, aging, and regular operation;
  3. performance assessment and reliability analyses of bridges with respect to serviceability and ultimate limit states based on physics-based models.

MS11 - Modeling and performance assessment of rocking elements


Several structural and non-structural elements exhibit rocking dynamics. Usually rocking structural elements, such as rocking walls and piers, are used as protective elements aimed at dissipating energy, isolating the structure from the ground, and, ultimately, withstanding strong seismic forces. Such elements can be either included within the structure to be protected or externally coupled with it. Conversely, rocking non-structural elements are usually elements that need to be protected against possible damage due to seismic events, such as statues, pieces of equipment, containers, and most of the freestanding slender contents in buildings. Such nonstructural elements can be protected with different types of restraints or devices that modify the rocking dynamics reducing the oscillations of the elements and preventing their overturning. The variety of applications and the economic and societal importance of structural and non-structural rocking elements justifies the large interest in the modeling and performance assessment of such elements with a particular emphasis on the ability to predict uplift and overturning. Hence, the scope of the mini-symposium encompasses all the aspects related to the behavior of rocking including analytical, numerical, and experimental contributions.

MS12 - Mechanical modeling and experimentation of inorganic matrix fiber and textile reinforced composite systems



Inorganic matrix fiber and textile reinforced composite materials display important advantages for structural rehabilitation and retrofitting under conventional and dynamic loading scenarios, in light of their excellent weight to performance ratio and damage tolerance combined with interesting capabilities in the realm of durability, compatibility and reversibility. Unfortunately, these advantages come at the cost of increased performance inconsistency, owing to the diverse and complex ways in which failure may take place. This symposium discusses recent trends in addressing such issues, with special emphasis on new technologies, to secure consistent and effective exploitation of the reinforcing material, on the grounds of a deeper understanding of the mechanical principles underlying the failure pathways.

MS13 - Reliability of Structures, Systems and Components

  • Michael Beer a, b, c
  • Enrico Zio d, e 
  • Edoardo Patelli f 
  • Yan Shi a, g, h
a - Institute for Risk and Reliability, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Hannover 30167, Germany
b - Institute for Risk and Reliability, University of Liverpool, Liverpool L69 7ZF, United Kingdom
c - International Joint Research Center for Resilient Infrastructure & International Joint Research Center for Engineering Reliability and Stochastic Mechanics, Tongji University, Shanghai 200092, China
d - MINES Paris-PSL Research University, CRC, Sophia Antipolis 06560, France
e - Energy Department, Politecnico di Milano, Milano 20156, Italy
f - Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow G1 1XJ, United Kingdom
g - School of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering, University Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu 611731, China
h - Center for System Reliability and Safety, University Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu 611731, China


Engineering structures, systems and components (SSCs) always exist multiple uncertainties such as vibration and deformation uncertainties, which may affect the function of SSCs or lead to the failure of SSCs. Reliability analysis aims to assess the probability that SSCs complete their specific tasks under specific conditions of operation and for a specified time. However, reliability analysis of complex engineering SSCs is still challenging for high-dimensional problems and small failure probability estimation of highly reliable SSCs. This mini-symposium invites contributions dealing with the reliability analysis of SSCs in complex situations. A non-exhaustive list of topics involves reliability models and methods for high-dimensional SSCs, small failure probability estimation, multiple uncertainties, progress in reliability related to engineering mechanics, surrogate models and machine learning approaches, reliability assessment based on data, reliability-assisted optimization, advanced numerical simulation techniques, and novel reliability analysis tools. Contributions dealing with challenging applications and innovation of theories in energy, oil, gas, aerospace, construction, machinery, automobile, shipbuilding and many other engineering mechanics-related fields are quite welcome.

Email (Michael Beer); (Enrico Zio) (Edoardo Patelli) (Yan Shi)

MS14 - Multi Risk by natural actions: mitigation strategies for structures and infrastructures



Extreme (but not only) natural events have the potential to disrupt key structures and infrastructures with subsequent effects difficult to predict. Identifying the most likely events, modelling and  analyzing structures and providing mitigation actions to reduce service interruptions and impacts on citizens and economic activities and to increase resilience is of primary interest and worthy of high scientific systematic solutions and methodologies.

MS15 - Recent advances in input motion modelling for the design of earthquake-resistant systems


The knowledge of ground motion attributable to earthquakes is essential for the design of earthquake-resistant structures, and for the evaluation of the seismic vulnerability of existing ones. Among all possible sources of uncertainty stemming from the structural and soil material properties, the selection of earthquake-induced ground motions has the highest effect on the variability observed in the response history analysis of earthquake-resistant systems.
This Minisymposium aims at discussing new developments and open research issues addressing:
  • Seismic hazard analysis;
  • Ground motion simulation and scaling techniques;
  • Artificial intelligence and machine learning models to solve earthquake engineering problems.

MS16 - Multiscale Mechanics and Nanostructures


"This work was supported in part by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation", grant number US23GR15.


  • Ada Amendola, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Salerno, Via Giovanni Paolo II, 132 - 84084 Fisciano (SA), Italy.
  • Raffaele Barretta, Department of Structures for Engineering and Architecture, University of Naples Federico II, via Claudio 21, 80125 Naples, Italy.
  • Fernando Fraternali, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Salerno, Via Giovanni Paolo II, 132 - 84084 Fisciano (SA), Italy.
  • Antonina Pirrotta, Department of Engineering, University of Palermo, viale delle Scienze, 90128 Palermo, Italy.

Ultrasmall structures and multiscale materials are gaining lot of attention in the scientific community with the challenging purpose to design, model and characterize innovative systems and nano-devices.
Non-conventional materials and small-scale structures are forefront topics in the field of Engineering and Material Science in which understanding of Solid and Structural Mechanics at different levels play a fundamental role to overcome the multiscale challenge and to explore potentialities of miniaturized and innovative systems. The Mini-symposium aims at providing new insights in modeling, analysis and design of small-scale systems, new-generation nanocomposites, multiscale materials and structures. Discovery and promotion of new knowledge about mechanical behaviours involving size effects as well as multiple characteristic scale lengths are highly encouraged. Recent achievements regarding unconventional responses of multiscale systems and nanostructures will be deeply investigated from theoretical, computational and experimental points of view.
The debate will focus on modeling and assessment of scale effects in nanostructures which is a ground breaking topic in Nanoscience and Nanoengineering with a wide range of applications concerning development of miniaturized electro-mechanical devices such as nano-sensors, nanoresonators, nano-actuators, nano-probes. Enriched and refined theories able to reproduce complex scale phenomena are required to capture size-dependent behaviours of such new generation systems.
Time-dependent structural responses will be investigated by means of nonlocal theories of viscoelasticy involving fractional operators. Effects of random excitations on small-scale structures will be analysed thought stochastic approaches. Special attention will be devoted to the design and characterization of nanomaterials and to the assessment of effective constitutive properties of advanced composites. Modeling and design of unconventional materials and structures will be provided through the deepening of multiscale mechanics. Innovative systems ranging from multifunctional lattices to nanocomposites and their applications will be discussed.
Contributions related (but not limited) to the following topics are encouraged:
  • nonlocal continua
  • size- and time-dependent structural behaviours
  • fractional calculus in nonlocal mechanics
  • multiscale physic phenomena
  • advanced nanocomposites
  • micro- and nano-mechanics
  • multiscale composites and metamaterials

MS17 - Recent Advances and Challenges in Modelling Masonry Structures


Masonry constructions form a large part of the historic and architectural heritage in many countries and represent a significant issue for both structural and infrastructural engineering.
The assessment of their response and safety conditions is a challenging task due to the masonry complex mechanical response, usually exhibiting nonlinear constitutive behavior characterized by the presence of degrading and plastic effects.
The increasingly availability of computational resources have prompted the formulation of efficient numerical procedures to accurately evaluate the masonry structural response. A number of approaches can be quoted and classified according to the scale at which masonry is analyzed, such as micromechanical approaches, macromechanical models, and the most recent multi-scale techniques.
Concerning the solution procedures, finite element techniques have been usually adopted, although other methods, such as discrete element, virtual element and isogeometric analysis have been proposed. Moreover, numerical issues concerning spatial discretization and solution algorithms have received great attention.
This mini-symposium focuses on the in-depth understanding of modelling masonry structures, with specific attention to:
  • Advances in computational methods: finite element method, distinct element method, applied element method, limit analysis, and so on;
  • Spatial discretization of masonry: continuum elements, discrete elements, mixed approaches;
  • Temporal analysis discretization: time-dependent vs. time-independent analyses, implicit vs explicit schemes, incremental vs sequential solution srocedures;
  • Application to seismic and settlement-related problems, particularly for tunnelling-, mining- and climate-induced settlements.
Contributions outside these specific focal areas, but related to the topic of the mini-symposium, are also very welcome.
Aim of the proposed mini-symposium is to collect the most recent research contributions on these topics and to discuss on the current and future developments.

MS18 - Recent Advances in Health Monitoring and Retrofitting Techniques of Existing Structures: Design, Optimization and Case Studies


  • Dario De Domenico, Assistant Professor, Department of Engineering, University of Messina, 98166 Messina, Italy.
  • Antonino Recupero, Full Professor, Department of Engineering, University of Messina, 98166 Messina, Italy.
  • Giuseppe Quaranta, Department of Structural and Geotechnical Engineering, Sapienza University of Rome, 00184 Rome, Italy.


Many existing structures, including buildings and bridges, are approaching their natural service life and are affected by ageing and material deterioration phenomena ascribed to their inherent environmental exposure and the lack of periodical maintenance plans. For these reasons, it is of key importance to assess the safety conditions of existing structures through health monitoring techniques based on either free-vibration or ambient-vibration tests: a critical comparison between estimated modal features from in-situ tests and numerical values allows assessing the health conditions of existing structures and identifying possible defects in a rapid and effective manner. Moreover, most existing structures were realized according to past design regulations, present poor construction details that do not reflect current code principles and are vulnerable especially to seismic loading. Once structural vulnerability conditions of a given existing structure are identified, it is important to make informed decisions on the most suitable structural retrofitting intervention to implement, which can be either localized to specific, weaker zones, such as composite systems for strengthening purposes, or conceived to modify the structural behavior as a whole via the introduction of special devices that reduce the seismic input or provide supplemental energy dissipation capability (isolators and dampers, respectively). This mini symposium aims to collect contributions in the following areas: development of novel identification methods and smart techniques for health monitoring purposes, elaboration of design procedures and optimization strategies for structural retrofitting of existing structures, and implementation of such strategies in representative case studies aimed to reduce the vulnerability with respect to static or dynamic (seismic and wind) loading.

MS19 - Experimental Characterization, Identification, Analysis, and Design of Mechanical Systems with Hysteretic Behavior


The development of nonlinear procedures and simulation strategies for the study of structural systems characterized by hysteresis phenomena is becoming increasingly sensible in many fields of mechanics and engineering. In particular, within structural dynamics and earthquake engineering, a significant number of structures, systems, materials, and devices are ruled by complex hysteretic behavior.
For this reason, current research is focused on many aspects of hysteretic materials and systems, and particularly the:
  • development of reliable and efficient phenomenological models;
  • development of robust and reliable numerical methods and analysis algorithms;
  • experimental characterization of hysteretic materials and systems;
  • deterministic and probabilistic identification of hysteretic constitutive parameters;
  • use of hysteretic models in sensitivity analysis and reliability analysis procedures;
  • design strategies for structures and equipment with hysteretic behavior, including optimization design methods.
The mini-symposium welcomes contributions sharing the most innovative advances related, but not limited, to such topics.

MS20 - Mechanical systems operating in marine environments


  • Prof. Felice Arena, Mediterranea University of Reggio Calabria
  • Dr. Giovanni Malara, Mediterranea University of Reggio Calabria 


The marine environment is expected to gain a central role in the future supply of food, energy and land space through, for instance, the development of new floating platform concepts and energy converters. For addressing these purposes, probabilistic models are widely used for describing the behavior of the sea waves and for modelling the response of the mechanical systems operating at sea.

This symposium provides a forum for discussions concerning emerging technologies enabling the sustainable exploitation of the marine system both in nearshore and offshore areas, as well as recent methodologies to be utilized for modeling random sea waves and predicting the mechanical response of marine systems. Papers present new theoretical developments concerning fluid mechanics related problems (including probabilistic wave mechanics, signal processing tools, probabilistic response analysis tools) and recent experimental results on marine systems tested either at a laboratory scale or at sea.

MS21 - Green materials based on natural clays

  • Giuseppe Cavallaro
    Università degli Studi di Palermo - Dipartimento di Fisica e Chimica “E. Segrè”
    Viale delle Scienze – Pad. 17 - 90128 Palermo – Italy
    Tel: +3909123897916
  • Giuseppe Lazzara
    Università degli Studi di Palermo - Dipartimento di Fisica e Chimica “E. Segrè”
    Viale delle Scienze – Pad. 17 - 90128 Palermo - Italy
    Tel: +39 09123897962


The topic of the proposed symposium will cover the fundamental and applied advances of clay-based materials, such as geopolymers and nanocomposites. The basic knowledge on the structure and properties of these materials is crucial to target their specific applications, which include sustainable building engineering, cultural heritage and packaging.

MS22 - Multi-scale and multi-field interface mechanics: modeling, computation and experimental aspects

  • M. Serpilli, Department of Civil and Building Engineering, and Architecture, Università Politecnica delle Marche, 60131 Ancona, Italy,
  • R. Rizzoni, Department of Engineering, University of Ferrara, 44121 Ferrara, Italy,
  • M.L. Raffa, Laboratoire QUARTZ, ISAE-SUPMECA, 93400 Saint-Ouen, France,
  • F. Lebon, Laboratoire de Mécanique et d'Acoustique, Aix-Marseille University, CNRS, Centrale Marseille, 13453 Marseille Cedex 13, France,
  • R. Rodríguez-Ramos, Departamento de Matemática, Facultad de Matemática y Computación, Universidad de La Habana, San Lazaro y L, La Habana, 10400, Cuba,

Interfaces/interphases/surfaces play an essential role in determining the mechanical behavior, structural integrity, and the lifespan of a wide variety of materials and structures.
Problems concerning interface and surface engineering (design, modeling, characterization, manufacturing, etc.) are often multi-scale and multi-physics (e.g., coupling of mechanical and environmental conditions). The fields concerned are countless, ranging from the transport industry to the structure and infrastructure industries and the biomedical industry.
Although a lot of progress has been achieved, the research field is still growing and diversifies in many directions. Contributions concerning theoretical, numerical, and experimental aspects are welcome from scientists working in different fields of material science and mechanics of materials and structures.

This session is devoted to recent developments on the various aspects of interface mechanics.
Topics to be covered include but are not limited to the following:
  • Multi-scale (nano-micro-macro models) and multi-physics (thermo, piezo, magneto, etc.) modeling of interphases, thin films, and surfaces;
  • Contact mechanics: unilateral contact, sliding, friction, adhesion, viscosity, fretting, wear, peeling, debonding, rolling contact, biomechanics;
  • Deformation, damage, fracture, and other dissipative processes at interfaces;
  • Homogenization procedures and non-linear heterogeneous structures;
  • Computational methods: isogeometric analysis, contact discretization, advanced finite element methods for interfaces and surfaces modeling;
  • Recent developments for interface and surface design;
  • Recent developments of adhesively bonding technology and materials;
  • Mathematical advances;
  • Industrial applications involving interface and contact conditions.

MS23 - Structural health monitoring for urban and extra-urban enviroments


Nowadays Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) plays a paramount role for the preservation of existing civil structures and infrastructures (buildings, bridges, towers, etc.) composing urban environments. Indeed, the use of advanced techniques and innovative instrumentations, many of them carried out and widely assessed for other fields of engineering, allow for identifying important parameters characterizing the dynamic response of these structures toward service and exceptional loads, throughout noninvasive and expeditive procedures. Moreover, the correct identification of these parameters, together with the use of specific algorithms and techniques, allow to derive additional important information about the presence, location and extent of possible damages.

The ever-more frequent extreme weather, mainly depending on climate changes, have particularly emphasized the fragility of urban and extra-urban environments where, together with man-made structures, nature-made structures certainly play a crucial role. Regarding the latter, the frequent events of falling of trees point out the attention toward the study of the vulnerability of trees, particularly in urban areas, with the twofold aim of ensuring safety and quality of life of inhabitants.

SHM then represents a common tool able to support an integrated process for assessing and measuring the safety of urban environments and then, for carrying out efficacy strategies of intervention.

Aim of the present symposium is to share recent advances in the general context of SHM and, moreover, to show its potentiality in terms of application to different types of man-made and nature-made structures.

The main topics included in this symposium are:

  • Structural Health Monitoring techniques;
  • Damage identification techniques;
  • Monitoring and assessment of man-made and nature-made structures;
  • Statistical analysis of monitoring data for novelty detection;
  • Effects of environmental and operational variability on health sensitive features;
  • Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning techniques;
  • Innovative sensing techniques;
  • Case studies.

MS24 - Recent advances, applications and challenges of coupled free flow and porous media flow systems

  • Martin Schneider (University of Stuttgart, Germany)
  • Holger Class (University of Stuttgart, Germany)
  • Rainer Helmig (University of Stuttgart, Germany)
  • Costanza Aricò (University of Palermo, Italy)
  • Donatella Termini (University of Palermo, Italy)

Transport phenomena of coupled free flow and porous-medium flow occur in several environmental, industrial and biological applications. These include surface and groundwater flow, contaminant transport from lakes by groundwater, soil evaporation, fuel cells, oil filters, passive flow control devices, food drying, blood flow in vessels and tissue, or transport of therapeutic agents.

When modelling such applications, physical processes occur over several spatial and temporal scales. Typically, averaged continuum models, based on the representative elementary volume (REV) approach, are used for meso- and macro-scale simulations to overcome the high computational effort required by direct numerical simulations (DNS)  when modelling these types of systems on the pore-scale. However, this leads to a loss of detailed pore-scale processes which might strongly affect the global system behavior. Pore network models represent an attractive tool for understanding and predicting meso-scale phenomena by abstracting pore geometries into pore bodies and pore throats, allowing to efficiently perform pore-scale simulations

This mini-symposium is mainly devoted to provide an insight into the physical, mathematical and numerical modelling of coupled free flow and porous-medium flow systems related to recent theoretical, numerical and experimental findings and challenges.   Furthermore, recent numerical and mathematical developments related to the REV-scale description of averaged or upscaled pore-scale phenomena using effective REV models shall be addressed and discussed within this mini-symposium.

Keywords: free fluid and porous medium flow, pore scale, pore network model, REV, continuum model, DNS, transport process, single phase, multiphase  


MS25 - Mechanics and Physics of Granular Materials and Systems


Nearly every product or commodity in use is constituted and/or derived from granular materials through mining, agriculture, and/or chemical processing. These materials are also central to geomechanics and structural mechanics as constituents of earthworks, road pavements reinforced concrete structures and so on. As ubiquitous constituents of industrial processes and geophysical phenomena granular materials exhibit behaviors ranging from rapid, collision-dominated flows to quasi-static deformations of grains in persistent contacts or joined by cementation. Granular systems also share common properties over a wide range of particle sizes, from rockfills to fine powders, and for colloidal multi-phase materials. This symposium encourages fundamental and applied contributions on particle-based systems across spatial and temporal scales, including (i) complex behavior at extended scales of density, grain size, and deformation rate; (ii) the transition from a solid to fluid-like state, and fundamental mechanical particle interactions that controls such transitions; (iii) dynamical systems and multi-scale modeling of flow; (iv) the interface between granular materials and colloidal systems, and (v) simulated /machine learning approaches.
Computational, experimental and theoretical studies commensurate with the symposium theme are welcome.

MS26 - Innovations in Biomechanics and Bio-Inspired Engineering


Biomechanics takes advantage of the methodologies developed in several different fields as: Mechanics of fluids and deformable bodies, Material Mechanics, Applied Physics, Biochemistry, Organic Chemistry, Medicine, Biology and Surgery. On one hand, biomechanics is used to predict the evolution of physiological phenomena by means of virtual and/or laboratory experiments. On the other hand, observation of biological phenomena led engineers to developed bio-inspired engineering which aims to replicate the main features of biologic process to fields of civil and industrial engineering.
The objective of this mini-symposium is to gather scientists active in the field of biomechanics and bio-inspired engineering to discuss the innovative features of theoretical and experimental models popping up in the last years.
Topics included in the mini-symposium but they are not limited to:
  • Cardiovascular biomechanics
  • Biomechanics of bones
  • Biomechanics of articular joints
  • Mechanics of soft biological tissues
  • Mechanobiology of receptor-mediated endocytosis
  • Mechanobiology of cell membranes
  • Mechanical characterization of bio-inspired materials
  • Multiscale models of bio-inspired structures
  • Innovative mathematical tools for multiscale problems
  • Homogenization methods of bio-inspired materials
  • Computational Biomechanics
  • Multifield mechanics of bio-inspired engineering problems.

MS27 - Rocking mechanics in civil engineering



Since the first seminal paper by Housner in the second half of the last century, the role of rocking mechanics in civil engineering structural analysis has been central. The dynamic response and rocking stability of civil constructions have also gradually pushed the development of rocking isolation, an attractive, practical alternative for the seismic protection of tall, slender structures. However, the latter is only one of the possible applications of rocking mechanics. Indeed, rocking dynamics applies to a wide range of civil construction typologies, such as ancient temples with emblematic peristyles and sets of slender, free-standing columns with an entablature, museum and laboratory objects, and deck-abutment pounding in reinforced concrete structures. In recent years, several numerical and analytical formulations have been proposed to model flexible structures with a particular focus on the impact, the interaction of rocking with flexural modes, and the influence of deformability.

This Minisymposium aims to bring together researchers working on different fields of rocking mechanics and its fundamental theoretical and applied advances, including the interaction with the classical elastic approach to the analysis of civil structures. Techniques and experiments developed by researchers, manufacturers and practitioners and focusing on all the possible applications of rocking mechanics to civil engineering are foreseen, with a particular interest in, but not limited to:

  • Bridge piles and decks;
  • Archaeological remains;
  • Obelisks;
  • Masonry arches, triumphal arches and arch bridges;
  • Standing out elements (pinnacles, parapets, battlement of fortresses);
  • Out-of-plane behaviour of masonry elements, such as masonry walls poorly connected to the rest of the building, soaring portion of church façades;
  • Museum objects;
  • Laboratory equipment.

MS28 - Vibration-based Monitoring of Dynamic Systems


The mini-symposium deals with structural identification, structural health monitoring, vibration monitoring, and observability algorithms and tools for inferring the properties of dynamic systems using data obtained from dynamic sensors. It covers theoretical and computational issues, with applications in structural, mechanical, aerospace and biological dynamic systems as well as other related engineering disciplines. Topics relevant to the session include vibration monitoring, theoretical and experimental modal identification, linear and nonlinear system identification, model updating/validation and correlation, uncertainty quantification, model class selection, fault detection techniques, early alert systems, optimal strategies for experimental design, theoretical/structural and practical observability and identifiability algorithms, optimal sensor and actuator placement strategies, structural prognosis techniques and updating the lifespan of the system. Papers dealing with experimental investigation and verification of theories are especially welcomed.

Topics of Interest Include:

  • Structural health monitoring
  • System identification
  • Vibration monitoring
  • Damage detection
  • Observability

Sponsoring committee

EMI Dynamics Committee, EMI Structural Health Monitoring Committee

MS29 - Bio-fluid mechanics

  • Valerio Caleffi (Dipartimento di Ingegneria, Università di Ferrara)
  • Giorgio Querzoli (Dipartimento di Ingegneria Civile, Ambientale e Architettura Università di Cagliari)
  • Jan O. Pralits (Dipartimento di Ingegneria Civile, Chimica e Ambientale, Università di Genova)
  • Rodolfo Repetto (Dipartimento di Ingegneria Civile, Chimica e Ambientale, Università di Genova)
  • Annunziato Siviglia (Dipartimento di Ingegneria Civile Ambientale e Meccanica, Università di Trento)
  • Francesca Maria Susin (Dipartimento di Ingegneria Civile, Edile e Ambientale, Università di Padova)

Physiological fluids and their motion play a key role in the functioning of various systems in the human body, such as the cardiovascular, respiratory, cerebrospinal, urinary and lymphatic. Various pathological conditions are also closely associated with the motion of bodily fluids (e.g. in the eye). In recent years bio-fluid mechanics has played an important role in the understanding of physiological processes as well as in the development and optimization of therapeutic and prosthetic devices, currently in use in clinical and surgical practice. This line of research, which is rapidly expanding worldwide, is based on the application of knowledge and techniques typical of hydraulics and fluid mechanics, that are integral part of the background of civil engineers. For the above reasons, the proposers think that a mini-symposium on this topic will be timely and of broad interest. 

Keywords: biofluid mechanics, physiological flows

MS30 - Structural Monitoring and Identification of Complex Dynamical Systems

  • Alberto Di Matteo, Assistant Professor, University of Palermo, Italy
  • Kalil Erazo, Assistant Teaching Professor, Rice University, USA

This mini-symposium covers recent developments in structural monitoring and identification methods with application to complex dynamical systems, including structural health monitoring procedures for damage detection and reliability analysis. The scope includes theoretical, computational and experimental analyses with applications in structural, mechanical and aerospace engineering, as well as other related engineering disciplines in which the analysis of complex dynamical systems is involved.
Topics relevant to the session include:
  • analysis and identification of systems comprising fractional and nonlinear operators;
  • theoretical and experimental modal identification (such as operational modal analysis);
  • linear and nonlinear system identification including probabilistic and statistical methods (such as maximum-likelihood and Bayesian inference);
  • state, parameter and input estimation;
  • model updating/validation and correlation;
  • uncertainty quantification and propagation in model selection and parameter estimation;
  • stochastic simulation techniques for state estimation and model class selection;
  • optimal strategies for experimental design;
  • structural health monitoring techniques;
  • vehicle-bridge interaction based monitoring techniques.
Papers dealing with experimental investigation and verification of theoretical approaches are especially welcomed.

MS31 - Multiscale and Multiphysics Modelling for 'Complex Materials' (MMCM18)



In the last decades, the development of multiscale methods in a stochastic setting for uncertainty quantification and reliability analysis of composite materials and structures, as well as the integration of stochastic methods into a multiscale framework are becoming an emerging research frontier.
This Mini-Symposium aims at presenting recent advances in the field of multiscale analysis and enhanced methods to study complex heterogeneous media and metamaterials.
In this respect, topics of interest include but are not limited to:

  • Random field modeling of heterogeneous media
  • Efficient simulation of random microstructure/morphology
  • Design / Optimization of composite structures considering uncertainty
  • Scale-dependent homogenization of random composites
  • Homogenization of materials with random microstructure as generalized continua
  • Finite element solution of multiscale stochastic partial differential equations
  • Stochastic finite element (SFE) analysis of composite materials and structures
  • Efficient algorithms to accelerate the SFE solution of multiscale problems
  • Advanced Method for modeling composite materials (Virtual Elements Method, Isogemetric analysis, Mixed Finite Elements)
  • Methods for improving the efficiency of Monte Carlo simulation
  • Large-scale applications
  • Peridynamic theory and multiscale methods for complex material behavior.
  • Molecular dynamic method.
  • Mechanical modeling of linear and non-linear metamaterials for structural and acoustic applications

MS32 - Sustainable mobility

  • Rosario Miceli
In recent years the transportation sector is facing a significant transformation due to the rapid development of technology and the need to achieve new energy and environmental goals for climate-neutral transport. Therefore, sustainable transportation is becoming a very widespread research topic with the aim of providing innovative solutions for a greener, safer and efficient mobility system. New hybrid propulsion systems, H2 fuels, digital products and processes to foster smart management and intelligent transport systems for connected and cooperated vehicles are some of the main challenges to be faced in the next future for achieving the EU targets of reducing 60% of emissions by 2050 in the transport sector.
In this scenario, this symposium in Sustainable Mobility provides a discussion forum for the exchange of new and innovative ideas on sustainable transportation research in the context of environmental, economic, social and engineering aspects. The goal is to promote and accelerate the exchange of knowledge regarding these crucial topics on both local and international levels.
The possible topics are given here below:
  • Air Mobility
  • Sustainable Road Vehicle
  • Waterways
  • Rail Transportation
  • Light Vehicle and Active Mobility
  • Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CAVs)
  • CCAM, Connected Networks and Smart Infrastructure
  • MaaS & Innovative services
  • Urban Mobility
  • Freight and Logistic
  • Innovative Materials and Lightweighting
  • Innovative Propulsion
  • Electric Traction and Batteries
  • Hydrogen & New Fuels

MS33 - A careful approach to the study and preservation of cultural heritage


Cultural heritage includes a set of structures and artifacts composed of many different materials: from stone elements, natural or artificial, to organic ones.
The study of cultural heritage and the development of strategies for its conservation and fruition pose specific issues that require attentive approaches in both analysis and conservation strategies.
The mini symposium will host oral presentations focusing on:
  • diagnostic methodologies to study artifacts and historical buildings
  • analytical approaches for monitoring and conservation status evaluation
  • effective solutions for ensuring the state of conservation
  • innovative and smart devices for the fruition of cultural heritage assets.

MS34 - Bioinspired self-healing structural materials

  • Nima Rahbar, WPI, CEE 

Self-healing of materials and structures is the process of restoration of mechanical functionality by means of a variety of mechanisms that range from active mineralization and polymerization to ordered or disordered self-assembly. It is now emerging as a highly topical issue in engineering mechanics of soft and hard matter, because of its potential impact on safe and sustainable engineering design. While a variety of disciplines and communities have addressed this challenging topic, the future of this emerging field will strongly depend on translational moves between disciplines, incl. chemistry, physics, materials sciences, engineering mechanics, structural engineering, geotechnics, and biomechanics. This is the focus of this symposium dedicated to the Mechanics of Self-Healing Materials and Structures, which seeks contributions, both theoretical and experimental in nature, that explicitly address the coupling between self-healing and mechanics of materials. Topics of particular interest include the modeling of open self-healing thermodynamic systems, surface vs. volume growth, innovative experimental methods to assess the mechanics of self-healing, and upscaling of atomic and/or microscopic phenomena to the structural engineering scale. 

Examples include:

  • Mechanical healing in biological materials and living systems
  • Thermodynamics of open systems subject to healing
  • Crystal growth leading to macroscopic mechanical healing
  • Methods for understanding and predicting mechanical healing -- theoretical, numerical, experimental and practical approaches
  • New developments related to optimized self-healing capabilities, repair techniques, and treatments to enhance the degradation resistance
  • Applications to the design of structures that contain engineered and natural materials

MS35 - Challenges and emerging trends in vibration mitigation

  • Giuseppe Failla, University of Reggio Calabria, Italy
  • Roberta Santoro, University of Messina, Italy


Vibration mitigation is a key issue in civil, mechanical and aerospace engineering. A significant research effort is now focusing on developing new principles, materials and devices to overcome current limitations. Scope of the Mini-Symposium is to gather contributions on innovative concepts as: 

  • Locally resonant acoustic metamaterials
  • New damping materials (carbon nanotube composites, shape memory alloys, metal particles, photorheological fluids)
  • Surface damping treatments for structural components
  • Tuned resonant masses, inerter-based absorbers, tuned liquid column dampers
  • Viscoelastic damping devices with fractional law 

Contributions may include (but are not restricted to) applications in the following fields: 

  • Vibration mitigation of structural, mechanical and aerospace components
  • Seismic isolation
  • Vibration/oscillation mitigation in offshore wind turbines

MS36 - Anti-Collapse Performance Evaluation and Reliability Improvement of Engineering Structures



In the last decades, structural collapse accidents caused by earthquakes, gas explosions, fires, collisions, man-made construction and use errors, terrorist attacks, etc. have occurred and caused severe consequences. The collapse of engineering structures under extreme disaster loads is an extreme mechanical behavior of structural systems and members, involving many complex issues such as uncertainty of disaster loads, strong non-linearity of materials, oversized deformation of members, discontinuous displacement fields, impact-contact, internal force redistribution of structural systems, etc. In addition, the coupling of high-dimensional uncertainty parameters and strong non-linear mechanical behavior makes it difficult for us to accurately assess structural collapse reliability. These key issues need to be solved urgently with exploration of structural collapse mechanism, efficient reliability method, novel techniques against progressive collapse, etc. The objective of this mini-symposium is to bring together active scientists, engineers in the field of structural anti-collapse and structural reliability to discuss the innovative advances made in recent years. 

Topics of Interest Include:
  • Collapse mechanism analysis
  • Uncertainty quantification
  • Structural reliability methods
  • Reliability-based design methods
  • Anti-Collapse design and evaluation
  • Novel techniques against progressive collapse
  • Case studies

MS37 - Disastrous Load Modelling and Dynamic Reliability Analysis


  • Xu Hong, Assistant Professor, Department of Structural Engineering, College of Civil Engineering, Hefei University of Technology, Hefei, China,
  • Jun Xu, Professor, College of Civil Engineering, Hunan University,
  • Fan Kong, Professor, Department of Structural Engineering, College of Civil Engineering, Hefei University of Technology, Hefei, China,
  • Yongbo Peng, Professor, Shanghai Institute Disaster Prevention and Relief, Tongji University, Shanghai, China,
  • Jingfeng Wang, Professor, Department of Structural Engineering, College of Civil Engineering, Hefei University of Technology, Hefei, China,


Engineering structures are commonly vulnerable to catastrophic natural disasters, e.g., seismic ground motions and strong winds. Structural failure due to catastrophic disasters may cause numerous economic losses and casualties. The disastrous load modelling and dynamic reliability analysis are therefore of essential importance for the purpose of hazard mitigation. Nevertheless, high-fidelity and efficient techniques regarding this topic are still challenging. On the one hand, randomness inevitably involves both disastrous loads and structures. On the other hand, the nonlinear behavior of engineering structures (especially under the disastrous dynamic load) makes the problem even more difficult. To this regard, this MS is devoted to reporting the recent advances and emerging approaches related to stochastic dynamics and reliability evaluations of complex engineering structures under disastrous loadings.

Topics for potential contributions include but are not limited to:

  • Modelling of disastrous excitations, e.g., the modelling of seismic ground motions and strong winds;
  • Pragmatic techniques for stochastic dynamics of complex nonlinear structures;
  • Distinct failure mechanisms of complex engineering structures under disastrous loadings;
  • Dynamic reliability analysis of complex engineering structures;
  • Dynamic reliability analysis involving multiple kinds of failure mechanisms.

MS38 - Advances in experimental characterization and numerical modelling of masonry structures retrofitted with traditional and innovative techniques



The numerical simulation of masonry structures is still a very complex task due to the different constructive features, the properties and the heterogeneity of the materials and the particular structural behaviour. When it comes to retrofitting techniques, and in particular the use of fibre-reinforced materials, modelling the structural capacity becomes more tough, due to the inner complexity in considering the interaction between the strengthening application and the structural member. A crucial aspect is related to the correct simulation of the complex stress transfer mechanisms that develop at the reinforcement-to-substrate interface, and the relative failure mode observed. In this framework, during the last decades a huge amount of research work was developed, and several numerical and analytical approaches were proposed for retrofitted masonry structures.

This mini symposium aims to collect contributions in the field of the mechanical behaviour of strengthened masonry structures, numerical and experimental analysis of masonry members, such as, but not limited to,

  • micro or macro modelling of retrofitted masonry members and buildings, including the exploitation of advanced modelling approach such as finite element methods or discrete element methods 
  • applications of different kind of analysis, such as dynamic or static analysis
  • use of limit analysis methods
  • experimental validations and/or characterization of strengthened masonry models
  • experimental investigations on the effectiveness of retrofitting methods for masonry structures
  • experimental characterization of materials and strengthening systems

MS39 - Computational intelligence in structural engineering & structural optimization



The mini-symposium encourages the submission of research contributions related to the latest computational intelligence-based approaches for structural engineering and recent findings in the field of structural optimization. Computational intelligence techniques, which are a subset of artificial intelligence applications, are being increasingly used to solve large or complex structural engineering problems. Notably, Genetic Algorithms, Particle Swarm Optimization, and Differential Evolution have proven effective in improving the optimal design of new structures and retrofitting interventions in existing buildings. In addition, Machine Learning techniques, particularly Genetic Programming and Neural Networks, are used to predict outcomes based on data-driven analysis. Contributions focused on topology and sizing structural optimization using traditional approaches are also welcomed.

Topics of interest for this Special Session include, but are not limited to: 

  • The application of Computational Intelligence algorithms to optimize the design of new structures and retrofitting interventions in existing buildings
  • The use of Machine Learning techniques in structural engineering
  • Topology and sizing structural optimization
  • Generative design and form finding

MS40 - Innovations in Structural Dynamics Models and Experiments

a - Department BiT – Structural and Geotechnical Dynamics Laboratory StreGa, University of Molise, 86100 – Campobasso, Italy.
b - Institute for Construction Technologies, National Research Council of Italy, Secondary branch of L’Aquila 67100 L’Aquila, Italy
c - Faculty of Engineering and Architecture, Kore University of Enna, 94100 - Enna, Italy
d - Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, 06125 Perugia - Italy


Structural dynamics plays a key role in the field of design, assessment and maintenance of any engineering structure. It is a fully interdisciplinary field, since dynamic loading and the associated response of structures and components are relevant in many and different fields, where aerospace, automotive and industry are the traditional areas of development and growth of knowledge. Nowadays, following the increased demand of safety and reliability of civil engineering structures under generalized actions, a continuous and detailed exchange of experience, theoretical and numerical methods have been proposed in the literature by the experts operating in the above mentioned engineering fields. This is the background and the motivations behind the recent launch of the Association IDEA (Innovative Dynamics Experiments Association) that aims at promoting the knowledge transfer between research and production, maximizing the impact of an interdisciplinary approach to the Structural Dynamics. This mini-symposium invites contributions from the wide range of scholars involved in the development of novel and innovative studies on the dynamics of structures, dynamic identification, experimental dynamics, modeling of structures and infrastructures in the dynamic domain. Numerical studies aimed at describing the actual structural response or laboratory tests are welcome, especially those carried out in a High Performance Computing environment.

MS41 - Emerging Mathematical Tools in Advanced Modelling: The Fractional-Order Calculus, in honor of Emeritus Professor Teodor Atanackovic


Mechanical description of real-world phenomena is strictly based on the well-established classification of physical actions as inertial, dissipative and elastic forces. Starting from these definition Newtonian and/or Analitical mechanics yields the governing equations of the phenomena as simple balance among these actions. The dynamic equilibrium equations or the Euler-Lagrange equations are represented by ordinary (or partial if deformed event space is involved) systems of differential equations. In recent years, however, precise observations of unconventional phenomena in different fields of mechanics, thermodynamics, electromagnetism, micro and nanoelectronics have shown that the strict classifications of forces of well-established physics is no longer efficient. Possible generalization of the physical actions still retaining the powerful tool of the balance laws is represented by fractional-order generalization introducing the emerging tool of fractional calculus. The objective of this mini-symposium is to gather scientists active in the field of fractional-order calculus to discuss the innovative features of theoretical and experimental models popping up in the last years.
Topics included in the mini-symposium but they are not limited to:
  • Automatic Control
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Electronics
  • Electromagnetism
  • Fractional-Order Calculus and Artificial Intelligence
  • Fractional-Order Dynamics and Control
  • Fractional-Order Modeling and Control in Biomedical Engineering
  • Fractional-Order Variational Principles
  • Fractional-Order Transforms and Their Applications
  • Fractional-Order Wavelet Applications to the Composite Drug Signals
  • Fractional-Order Image Processing
  • Mathematical methods
  • Mechanics
  • Physics
  • Robotics
  • Special Functions Related to Fractional Calculus
  • Thermal Engineering
  • Viscoelasticity

Junior MS01 - Innovative applications and modeling of additive manufacturing in biomechanics and biomedical engineering


Additive Manufacturing (AM) represents, nowadays one of the most challenging approach used to innovate the world of industrial manufacturing by means of a technology that is not borrowed from the pre-historical stone manufacturing, and then applied to all the materials used in the modern world as woods, composites and/or metals or metal alloys.
In this context a very interesting approach is the use of additive manufacturing in biomechanics and biomedical engineering where the potentiality of additive manufacturing may be even more enhanced allowing for patient-specific devices required by the paradigm of precision medicine. The proposal of the present mini-simposium is to gather young researchers operating in the field of additive manufacturing to present the latest innovation for applications in biomechanics and biomedical engineering.

The topics are, but not limited to:
  • Additive manufacturing for innovative biomedical devices.
  • 3D printed scaffolds for tissue regeneration
  • Mathematical models of additive manufacturing processes
  • Topology optimization in additive manufacturing
  • Stochastic models in additive manufacturing
  • Multimaterial-based scaffolds with additive manufacturing

Junior MS02 - Mathematical models and methods for Structural Systems

  • Andrea Burlon, Post-doc student at Mediterranean University of Reggio Calabria (email:
  • Rossella Laudani, Post-doc student at University of Messina (email:

Real-world problems require an increasing accurate modeling of phenomena jointly with the need to efficiently solve the associated governing differential equations. The main aim of this mini-symposium is to bring together Ph.D. students, eventually supported by senior researchers, to discuss the novel and latest mathematical models and analytical/numerical methods for the analysis of structural systems.
Specifically, contributions on the following topics are of significant interest:
  • Mechanics of solids and structural systems
  • Mechanics of materials
  • Structural vibration analysis
  • Models and devices to mitigate seismic actions
  • Dynamic identification
  • Wave propagation in mechanical metamaterials
  • Multiscale analyses

Junior MS03 - Probabilistic methods for uncertainty quantification and Bayesian solutions to structural identification problems

  • Chiara Pepi, PhD, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Perugia, Perugia, Italy,
  • Silvia Monchetti, PhD, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Florence, Florence, Italy,
  • Viscardi Cecilia, PhD, Department of Statistics, Computer Science, Applications, University of Florence, Florence, Italy,

Every numerical and computational prediction is characterized by several sources of uncertainty arising from model assumptions and simplifications of the reality, and from the uncertainty about input parameters (i.e. physical and mechanical properties, geometries, boundary conditions). Each model can be described by a forward problem, which predicts some quantities of interest of the system given a set of unknown/uncertain parameters, and by the corresponding inverse problem, which consists in estimating the set of these parameters from a set of measured/observed data. In realistic applications, the data are often noisy and/or incomplete and this introduces a further level of uncertainty. Bayesian inference represents an actual effective tool to quantify the uncertainty around models’ input parameters, but novel mathematical formulations and sampling techniques need to be developed. The objective of this mini-symposium is to highlight the new research trends in the field of uncertainty quantification methods in structural engineering applications with a special focus on surrogate models, reduced order models and Monte Carlo methods. Moreover, contributions presenting novel applications of Bayesian inference and/or methods for the inverse problem solutions (i.e. structural identification, surrogate model based sampling techniques, structural health monitoring applications) are welcome.

Junior MS04 - Toward novel theoretical methods and experimental techniques for structural health monitoring of civil structures

  • Ph.D. Domenico Camassa, Research-Assistant Professor, Department of Civil Engineering Sciences and Architecture (DICAR), Polytechnic University of Bari (Italy),, +39 3278857565

One of the major current needs in structural engineering concerns the assessment of the structural integrity and safety of both contemporary and historical civil constructions over time. The scientific community has been working for several decades to develop methodologies for Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) of civil constructions. Nowadays, recent and continuing advancements in sensing technology offer new opportunities to this field and pose challenges whose solution will bring significant innovation to SHM.

The application of recent sensing technologies (MEMS, radar, satellites, smartphones, drones, GNSS, etc.) to SHM is very promising but still presents several issues. One of the major problems is that the modeling techniques, data analysis methods, and experimental approaches that have been developed for data acquired from traditional sensors generally turn out to be inadequate for recent technologies. There is a need to develop ad hoc theoretical methods and experimental techniques for acquiring, processing, and interpreting data. In addition, the integration of different types of sensors should be addressed by developing suitable data fusion techniques.

This mini-symposium aims to present research and stimulate discussion on this topic. The main focus concerns the development of novel ad hoc modeling techniques, data analysis methods, and experimental approaches. This topic requires a multidisciplinary approach involving both traditional and more recent knowledge from science and engineering. The topics here addressed include structural health monitoring, structural dynamic identification, damage identification, uncertainty quantification, model updating, and data sciences techniques (artificial intelligence, machine learning, neural networks, etc.).

Junior MS05 - Sustainable Urban Mobility for Liveable Neighbourhood


  • Gabriele D’Orso, Department of Engineering, University of Palermo,, +393393289950, Viale delle Scienze, Building 8, 90128 Palermo, Italy 


Cities are engines of economic and social development if they are well planned and managed. However, most cities are faced with traffic congestion, air pollution, noise pollution, land consumption, and an increase in accidents. This is due to a car-oriented urban development that encourages citizens to use their private cars during their commuting and non-commuting trips. Cities must change the paradigm: policymakers need to make urban mobility sustainable and neighbourhoods liveable, promoting walking, cycling, public transport and shared mobility as valid alternatives to private cars. Research can support them by providing methodologies for designing and planning sustainable mobility solutions.

This Mini-Symposium aims to present methodologies, practices, and policies for modelling and planning sustainable mobility in cities, achieving a behavioural change towards active transport, public transport, and shared mobility. This Mini-symposium provides an opportunity to discuss on recent advances on the use of methodologies involving big data, machine learning, and GIS-based analyses.

This session encourages the submission of articles related to:

  • Sustainable mobility planning and policies.
  • Methodologies, practices, and policies for achieving behavioral change towards sustainable modes of transport.
  • Big data and machine learning in transport modelling and planning.
  • Policies for promoting cycling and walking in cities.
  • Methodologies for assessing walkability and bikeability.
  • Shared Mobility.
  • Microtransit
  • Transit-oriented development.
  • Maas—Mobility as a service.

Junior MS06 - Modeling and analysis of advanced materials and structures

  • Gioacchino Alotta, Department of Civil, Energy, Environment, Materials Engineering (DICEAM), via Graziella, Località Feo di Vito, 89124 Reggio Calabria, Italy,
  • Francesco Paolo Pinnola, Department of Structures for Engineering and Architecture, University of Naples Federico II, via Claudio 21, Ed. 6, 80125 Naples, Italy,


Due to the growing number of innovative materials and their more and more sophisticated applications, advanced mechanical modeling is of great interest in solid mechanics. Bioinspired and biocompatible materials and their applications to made cutting-edge prosthetics or biomedical devices, small-scale composites, micro-structured materials and the design of engineered continua are only some examples that require advanced theoretical and computational methodologies. In this context, the Mini-Symposium aims at expanding and sharing knowledge about modeling, analysis and developing of new physical models for innovative materials and complex structures. Specifically, new insights, scientific debates and depth discussions about enhanced formulations and methodologies concerning new constitutive relations, linear and nonlinear viscoelasticity, nonlocal continuum mechanics, plasticity, damage with applications in static and dynamic regime will be welcome.

Contributions in matter physics, materials science, solids mechanics, biomechanics, dynamics of structures are particularly encouraged. Authors may discuss theoretical aspects, computational methods, modelling techniques, interpretation of experimental data and simulation issues.

Suggested focus topics (not limited to):

  • mechanics of biological tissues
  • linear and nonlinear viscoelasticity
  • non-local mechanics
  • mechanics of biomedical materials and devices
  • multiscale mechanics
  • size dependent materials
  • metamaterials
  • finite element formulations of complex materials
  • fractional calculus and its applications

Junior MS07 - New trends in structural health monitoring and retrofitting for sustainable maintenance of structures and infrastructures

  • Marianna Crognale, Department of Structural and Geotechnical Engineering, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy,
  • Melissa De Iuliis, Department of Structural and Geotechnical Engineering, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy,
  • Cecilia Rinaldi, Department of Structural and Geotechnical Engineering, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy,

In the last years, advancements toward structural monitoring and retrofit strategies have increased to offset the impacts of climate change, global economic development, population growth and mitigation, socio-ecological changes, and rapid urbanization and to improve urban resilience. “Green” and sustainable technologies not only offer an important element in developing urban resilience across different scales (e.g., building, infrastructure, community), but also in helping foster adaptive capacity to cope with environmental disturbances.
The mini symposium is dedicated to all the contributions that aim to transform the future of built environment through the development of real-time efficient structural monitoring systems and innovative retrofitting approaches which make civil structures smart, sustainable, durable, multi-hazard resistant and resilient. In this context, also digital representations of built environment interacting through the Internet of Things plays an important role as they allow the optimization of the use of experimental data and modeling to manage resources and to preserve building safe conditions by means of a set of strategies relying on the integration of physics-based and data-driven methods, environmental sustainability, and low-carbon-emission operations.

Junior MS08 - Recent advances in Structural Health Monitoring and Structural vibration control


  • Chiara Masnata, Research Fellow, Department of Engineering, University of Palermo, viale delle Scienze, 90128, Palermo, Italy.
  • Salvatore Russotto, Ph.D., Department of Engineering, University of Palermo, viale delle Scienze, 90128, Palermo, Italy.


Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) and structural control are nowadays of crucial importance to preserve several types of structures like buildings, bridges, railway tracks, offshore platforms and wind turbines from failure and significant damage due to dynamic loads. This mini-symposium will offer an opportunity for young Ph.D. students to discuss challenges and advances in SHM and innovative strategies for vibrations control in order to ensure safety and preservation of existing and new structures. The mini-symposium will be focused on the most recent developments in theoretical, experimental and practical cases concerning the following topics:

  • Structural vibration-based identification;
  • Strategies for continuous SHM;
  • Innovative methods to detect and/or localize structural damage;
  • Automated or semi-automated algorithms for structural identification and SHM;
  • Analysis and development of innovative control devices;
  • Optimal design of devices to reduce structural vibrations.

Junior MS09 - Generative Design strategies and applications in the Architecture, Engineering, and Construction Industry


  • Laura Sardone, Department of Civil Engineering and Architecture (DICAr), Politecnico di Bari, Via Edoardo Orabona, 4, 70125 Bari BA, Italy;
  • Beibei Xiong, Department of Structural, Geotechnical and Building Engineering (DISEG), Politecnico di Torino, Corso Duca degli Abruzzi, 24, 10129 Torino TO, Italy.


The demand for well-designed, functional living and working spaces is increasing dramatically, which is set to continue well into the future. By 2050, over 13,000 urban buildings will need to be constructed globally daily, according to recent projections [1]. The Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry increasingly employs Generative design technologies and strategies to tackle the demands. Adopting new-generation design tools improves shape exploration and structural optimization while facilitating decision-making processes in complex design problems. Moreover, due to the environmental emergency strictly related to material production, Generative Design Strategies helps the designer to deal efficiently with predicting structures employing the least material. Generative algorithms are evolving, becoming more powerful, widely applicable, and easier to use. The technology requires investment in tools, education and cultural exchange for those willing to commit to improving design techniques. In this context, the Mini-Symposium aims to expand the knowledge of the scientific community and the AEC operators, referring to the synergies exploitation between the designer and the algorithms, focusing on Generative Design techniques and the development of innovative workflows concerning digital simulation, analysis and optimization.

Contributions focusing on (i) improving engineering productivity and time-to-market with AI-driven Generative Design, (ii) frameworks of generative design, (iii) problem definition and solution-finding through Algorithm Aided Design showing the capacity of the generative approach are particularly encouraged.

Authors may discuss theoretical aspects, computational methods, modelling techniques, process application to case studies for efficient solutions, and experimental interpretation data and simulations.

[1] Bertollini, V.; Here’s what building the future looks like for A 10-Billion-Person Planet. In Redshift by Autodesk. Infographics - August 24,  2018.

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