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College of Engineering and Computing

Faculty and Staff

Paul Ziehl

Title: Associate Dean for Research
Department: Civil and Environmental Engineering
College of Engineering and Computing
Phone: 803-467-4030
Fax: 803-777-0670
Paul Ziehl

Research Interests

Dr. Ziehl oversees a research program in the areas of structural prognostics, remote online monitoring and assessment, nondestructive evaluation, in-situ load testing, repair and strengthening, composite materials, and prestressed/reinforced concrete structures. His team works in modeling and assessment of structural degradation mechanisms such as corrosion, alkali-silica reaction, and fatigue with projects related to diverse systems including nuclear structures, buildings, bridges, and aircraft. Research sponsors include the U.S. Department of Energy, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, the National Science Foundation, the South Carolina Department of Transportation, and industry.


  • Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX (2000)

  • M.S.E., University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX (1997)

  • B.S., California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, CA (1991)


  • Assistant Dean for Research, College of Engineering and Computing, U. South Carolina, Columbia (2016 – present)
  • Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering, U. South Carolina, Columbia, SC (2013 – present)
  • Associate Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering, U. South Carolina, Columbia, SC (2008 – 2012)
  • Assistant Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering, U. South Carolina, Columbia, SC (2004 – 2008)
  • Assistant Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Tulane University, New Orleans, LA (2001 – 2004)
  • Bridge Engineer Assistant, Texas Department of Transportation, Austin, TX (2001)
  • Graduate Research/Teaching Assistant, Phil M. Ferguson Structural Engineering 
  • Laboratory, University of Texas at Austin (1994 – 2000)
  • Engineering Assistant, Armentrout, Roebuck and Company, Athens, Georgia (1989 – 1994)

Current Projects (selected, as PI or co-PI)

  • “Assessment of Structural Degradation for Bridges and Culverts”, PI, SCDOT.“Improved Resiliency of Transportation Networks through Connected Mobility”, USDOT Center for Connected Multimodal Mobility (funded through C2M2). 
  • “Online Monitoring System for Concrete Structures affected by Alkali-Silica Reaction”, DOE NEUP.“Stress Wave Propagation Simulation for Stress Corrosion Cracking Applied to Austenitic Stainless Steel Dry Cask Storage Systems”, EPRI. 
  • “Progressive Damage Analysis, TC1 2C18, Advanced Composites Consortium”, NASA.
  • “Distributed Condition Prognostics System for Navy Shipboard Machinery”, Navy Surface Warfare Center/DOD. 
  • “Radionuclide Waste Disposal: Development of Multi-Scale Experimental and Modeling Capabilities,” DOE/EPSCoR.

Professional Service

  • Chair, ACI Committee 437 (Strength Evaluation of Existing Concrete Structures)
  • Member, ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code: Section X (Design of Fiber Reinforced Pressure Vessels).
  • Professional Engineer: South Carolina

Awards and Honors

  • Research Progress Award – University of South Carolina, College of Engineering and Computing (2011)
  • Southeastern Section New Faculty Research Award, First Place – American Society of Engineering Education (2007)
  • Certificate of Appreciation - ASTM Committee E-07 on Nondestructive Testing (2007)
  • ASCE Teacher of the Year Award - Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Tulane University (2004)
  • Award of Excellence - Prestressed Concrete Institute (Big Beam – 2002, 2004)
  • Harold Dalrymple Endowed Presidential Scholarship - Department of Civil Engineering, University of Texas at Austin (1999)
  • John Focht Endowed Presidential Scholarship – Department of Civil Engineering, University of Texas at Austin (1998)

Recent Publications

  • Assi, L. Carter, K., Deaver, E.., Anay, R., and Ziehl, P., (2018), “Sustainable Concrete: Building a Greener Future”, Journal of Cleaner Production (DOI: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2018.07.123).
  • Assi, L., Deaver, E., and Ziehl, P.,.(2018), Effect of Source and Particle Size Distribution on the Mechanical and Microstructural Properties of Fly Ash-Based Geopolymer Concrete" Construction and Building Materials, 167, pp. 372-380. (DOI: 10.1016/j.conbuildmat.2018.01.193).
  • Assi, L.., Soltangharaei, V., Anay, R., Ziehl, P., and Matta, F., (2018) “Investigation of Portland Cement Paste Hydration using Acoustic Emission”, Journal of Cement and Concrete Research, Vol. 103, pp.216-225. (DOI: 10.1016/j.cemconres.2017.10.019).
  • Anay, R., Soltangharaei, V., Assi, L., DeVol, T., Ziehl, P., (2018), “Identification of Damage Mechanisms in Cement Paste Based on Acoustic Emission”, Construction and Building Materials, Volume 164, pp. 286-296. (DOI: 10.1016/ j.conbuildmat.2017.12.207).
  • Abdelrahman, M., ElBatanouny, M., Rose, J., and Ziehl, P., (2018), “Signal Processing Techniques for Filtering Acoustic Emission Data in Prestressed Concrete”, Journal of Research in Nondestructive Evaluation, (DOI: 10.1080/09349847.2018.1426800).

Recent Presentations (selected)

  • Soltangharaei, V., Anay, R., Begrajka, D., Van Tooren, M., and Ziehl, P., (2018), “Acoustic Emission Working Group (AEWG), “Zonal Source Location of AE Events on an Airplane Elevator using Neural Network Supervised Method”, 60th Meeting of the Acoustic Emission Working Group, June 19 and 20, Charleston, SC.
  • Barrios, F. and Ziehl, P., (2017), “Considerations for Numerical Simulation in the Assessment of Concrete Materials and Systems”, Special Symposium on Computation Mechanics and the Finite Element Method: Impact of Accuracy and Uncertainty on Engineering Safety and Advanced Manufacturing, 2017 International Conference on Computational and Experimental Engineering and Sciences (ICCES 2017), Madeira, Portugal, June 27.
  • Soltangharaei, V., Anay, R., Assi, L., and Ziehl, P., (2017) “Unsupervised Pattern Recognition for Clustering Acoustic Emission Data during Early Hydration and Uniaxial Compression of Cement paste”, 44th Annual Review of Progress in Nondestructive Evaluation (QNDE 2017), Provo, Utah, September 2017.
  • Assi, L., Anay, R., Leaphart, D., Soltangharaei, V., and Ziehl, P., (2016), “Investigation of Early Geopolymerization of Fly Ash-Based Geopolymer Paste Using Acoustic Emission”, 4th International Conference in Sustainable Construction Materials and Technologies (SCMT4), Las Vegas, USA.



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