Research, Education, and More

Richard Endres

Supervising Engineer, MDOT Geotechnical Services Section

Mr. Endres is a recognized statewide expert in geotechnical engineering with over 29 years of experience in involving over 1000 transportation projects. He has authored hundreds of reports summarizing geotechnical investigations and providing foundation recommendations for design of bridges and related transportation infrastructure and authored several Special Provisions for construction of bridge foundations. He also has extensive experience in environmental compliance issues, such as hydro-geologic site investigations and soil erosion and sedimentation control. Mr. Endres has been working as a supervisor for 21+ years with required EEO Manager/Supervisor training. He provided quality assurance review for several hundred consultant bridge projects and authored guidance and Scope of Work documents for many consultant projects. In addition, Mr. Endres provided necessary oversight to secure and maintain AASHTO accreditation of Soils Laboratory and participated in FHWA, NCHRP, and TRB committees and research panels. He has also been very active in hosting and representing MDOT at FHWA sponsored geotechnical conferences.

Ralph Hodeck

Associate Professor, Michigan Technological University

Dr. Hodek's research interests include soil mechanics and foundational engineering with an emphasis on deep foundations. In addition to teaching and research, Dr Hodek has been actively involved in professional organizations. He is a past chairmen of the Michigan Board of Professional Engineers, and has chaired the executive committee of the ASCE Technical Council on Cold Weather Engineering. Additionally, Dr. Hodek is a Fellow of ASCE and is a program visitor for the Educational Activities Commission of ABET. Dr. Hodek is not working as the director of Michigan Tech Transportation Institute

Willam Likos

Professor, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Dr. Likos is a co-author of Unsaturated Soil Mechanics, one of only a handful of textbooks on the subject. He and Ning Lu, a professor of engineering at the Colorado School of Mines, authored the book, which provides a comprehensive introduction to the fundamental principles of unsaturated soil mechanics.

His research toolbox includes experience as an experimentalist, as well as a background in instrumentation and modeling. At UW-Madison, where his affiliations now include geological engineering and civil and environmental engineering, Likos saw the opportunity to contribute both complementary and unique expertise.

Stanley Vitton

Associate Professor, Michigan Technological University

Dr. Vitton is an Associate Professor at Michigan Technological University. He has eight years of industrial experience with the Shell Oil Company. While at Shell, Dr. Vitton was the Engineering Manager of their subsidiary the R&F Coal Company located in Cadiz, OH and a senior mining engineer on mining projects across the United States. He has expertise in the development and operations of coal mines in both the eastern and western United States coal regions. In the western United States he supervised the first coal mine environmental permit issued under the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act (SMCRA) and was instrumental in adapting the SMCRA regulations in an economically and efficient manner. His research is in the area of applied geomechanics specializing in blast vibrations for both civil and mining engineering projects, high strain rate dynamics of civil engineering materials, slope stability, and the analysis of the stability of abandoned surface and underground mines. Dr. Vitton is actively involved in a number of national and international research and educational activities related to civil engineering.

Xiong (Bill) Yu

Associate Professor, Case Western Reserve University

Dr. Bill Yu is an associate professor of Civil Engineering. He also holds a courtesy appointment in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. He is an active member of ASCE, ASTM, IEEE, SPIE and a registered Professional Engineer in the State of Ohio. Dr. Yu’s research interests embrace the broad aspects of materials and sensors innovations for sustainability of infrastructure systems. The recent innovations of the PI include tools for infrastructure materials such as measuring the soil modulus reductions (Yu et al. (2005); Yu and Yu (2006)), monitoring of moisture distribution (Yu and Yu (2006)), determining the curing status of concrete and stabilized soils (Yu et al. (2004a, 2004b); Yu and Drnevich (2005)), and for monitoring of bridge scour (Yu and Zabilansky (2005), Yu and Yu (2006)). These innovations have produced two U.S. patents, one pending patent application and one additional provisional patent. The discoveries from his research have also been successfully transferred by a technology transferring agreement to a company in practice.

Guoping (Gregg) Zhang

Associate Professor, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

Dr. Zhang joined the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering at the University of Massachusetts Amherst as an Associate Professor in September 1, 2013. He was an Associate professor in the Dept. of Civil and Environmental Eng., Louisiana State University. Dr. Zhang received his PhD in Geotechnical & Geoenvironmental Engineering from MIT. He received his MS from the Tsinghua University. Dr. Zhang’s research interests include nano/micro mechanics of low-dimensional geomaterials (clays/shales, clay-exopolymer micro flocs, “marine snow”) for energy and marine ecosystem sustainability; bioinspired/bioengineered soil stabilization for coastal/wetland sustainability; novel geopolymers for infrastructure, environment, and energy sustainability; and behavior of soft marine/wetland clays and residual soils