Organization profile

Introduction / mission

The Aluminium research area focuses on the general aspects of aluminium design as well as its integration with related building aspects.

Highlighted phrase

Contributing to structural use of aluminium in building and civil engineering 

Organisational profile

Research at the chair of Aluminium Structures considers the structural properties of aluminium alloys as well as how it is integrated into a wide range of structures. The research contributes to better understanding of structural performance, for example when subjected to fatigue loading or when exposed to fire. The research carried out in this area contributes to an adequate structural application of aluminium in buildings and other structures. This research is intended to make a significant contribution to the structural use of aluminium in building and civil engineering applications.

By analyzing the structural performance of aluminium structures with regard to areas such as fatigue, fracturing, joining and structural fire resistance the research area is contributing to better understanding its properties and improving the position of this material in building, civil engineering and other applications.


Our research themes

1. Make structures safe
- ductile response
- response to repetitive load
- response to fire and blast

Structures should be safe in use. It implies that the probability of failure is sufficiently low and that the structure ideally has the possibility to redistribute forces in case of a local failure or overload.

  • Structures need to have sufficient ductility. This implies requirements to the materials used but also the structural detailing, especially the joints. We build numerical models to determine the structural ductility.
  • The fatigue resistance is an important area of research. Our research focusses on experimental and numerical prediction models and on reliability levels.
  • Extreme load events, such as a fire, may damage a structure. We study the structural performance in case of fire exposure. Aim is to provide a safe escape possibility in case of a severe fire.

2. Enable / improve production
- bend / roll extruded sections
- (re)shape at various temperatures
- new applications
We model various production processes, such as cold bending of extruded sections. Our models provide predictions of the performance of the aluminium components during and after production. This enables or improves the production.

3. Reduce resources
- enhance existing structures
- re-use components
- optimize designs
Aluminium and its alloys are well known for their recycling possibilities. Aluminium can be melted and re-used, but it is also possible to demount old structures and reuse the components. Another possible application is the refurbishment and upgrading of existing structures, such as in case of bridge decks (see photos).

Our research relates to:

  • Joining of different materials, in the construction phase but also during its use.
  • The requirements and the determination of the performance of already used components, e.g. the acceptability of flaws in static or fatigue loaded structures.

In many cases, the research concerns the development of optimised models to predict the structural response of real structures. Numerical simulation models are developed that are dedicated to a certain type of structural shape and loading condition. Small or full-scale tests in our laboratory are used for calibration and/or validation of these simulation models. The knowledge gained is transferred to design models that practitioners can apply in developing a structural design. See the chain of figures for an example. The research enhances the application of aluminium structures.

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    Photo of Seyed Hashemi

    Seyed Hashemi, MSc

    Person: Prom. : doctoral candidate (PhD)

    Photo of B.W.E.M. (Dianne) Hove van

    B.W.E.M. (Dianne) van Hove

    Person: OWP : University Teacher / Researcher


    Research Output

    Open Access
  • 8 Downloads (Pure)

    Revision of EN 1993-1-11 – fatigue design rules for tension components

    Annan, R., Bechtold, M., Friedrich, H., Maljaars, J., Misiek, T. & Paschen, M., 1 Feb 2020, In : Steel Construction : Design and Research. 13, 1, p. 61-75 15 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    Open Access
  • Rivet clamping force of as-built hot-riveted connections in steel bridges

    Leonetti, D., Maljaars, J., Pasquarelli, G. & Brando, G., Apr 2020, In : Journal of Constructional Steel Research. 167, 13 p., 105955.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    Open Access
  • 13 Downloads (Pure)

    Student theses

    Analysis of plastic failure in case of a (fatigue) crack

    Author: Hermus, J., 27 Mar 2018

    Supervisor: Maljaars, J. (Supervisor 1), Leonetti, D. (Supervisor 2) & Snijder, H. (Supervisor 2)

    Student thesis: Master


    Automated two-way coupled CFD fire and thermomechanical FE analyses of a self-supporting sandwich panel façade system

    Author: de Boer, J., 26 Jun 2018

    Supervisor: Hofmeyer, H. (Supervisor 1), Maljaars, J. (Supervisor 2) & van Herpen, R. (Supervisor 2)

    Student thesis: Master


    Influence of thermal expansion on slender aluminium and steel cross-sections under fire conditions

    Author: Van den Hove, F., 26 Sep 2017

    Supervisor: Maljaars, J. (Supervisor 1), Hofmeyer, H. (Supervisor 2) & Feijtel, J. (External person) (External coach)

    Student thesis: Master