Research Mission

Major Goals

  • Improve efficiency in earthworks construction through effective site reconnaissance, automated design and construction, autonomy, and real-time monitoring
  • Ensure long-term serviceability of civil infrastructure through performance assessment and simulation/modeling
  • Translate emerging technologies into standards and specifications through multi-state and federal agency collaboration
  • Optimize the selection and use of earth materials through life-cycle cost modeling

Core Competencies

  • In situ testing and characterization
  • Compaction monitoring technologies
  • Automated earthwork construction systems
  • Geo-spatial and statistical analysis
  • Pavement foundation layer characterization/design/modeling
  • Soil stabilization (chemical, mechanical, and biological)
  • Ground improvement and geo-construction systems
  • Development of standards, specifications, and training programs


  • Participated in international research and technology deployment
  • Integrating state-of-the-art technologies into specifications
  • Collaborated with over 40 researchers at ISU, other universities, and consulting services, 20 industry partners, and 25 state highway agencies.
  • Prepared over 40 research-experienced graduates for industry
  • Published more than 100 research articles (peer-reviewed journal/conference articles, and research reports), and delivered more than 50 professional presentations on critical geo-construction topics
  • Developed a national road map for developing and implementing specifications for intelligent compaction technologies in partnership with industry and state agencies
  • Leveraged every $1 of industry funds with $5 of government agency funds
  • Secured investments of $1 million in state-of-the-art test equipment