Faculty Profile

B F Spencer, Jr

Civil and Environmental Engineering
B F Spencer, Jr
B F Spencer, Jr
Professor
2213 Newmark Civil Engineering Bldg
205 N. Mathews
Urbana Illinois 61801
(217) 333-8630

Administrative Titles

  • Nathan M. & Anne M. Newmark Endowed Chair in Civil Engineering
  • Director, Newmark Structural Engineering Laboratory
  • Director, Multi-Axial Full-Scale Sub-Structured Testing & Simulation Facility
  • Director, Smart Structures Technology Laboratory

Primary Research Area

  • Structural Engineering

Education

  • Ph.D. Theoretical and Applied Mechanics University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign 1985
  • M.S. Theoretical and Applied Mechanics University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign 1983
  • B.S. Mechanical Engineering University of Missouri, Rolla 1981

Biography

Professor B.F. Spencer Jr. is the Nathan M. and Anne M. Newmark Endowed Chair in Civil Engineering at the University of Illinois.  He holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering (University of Missouri – Rolla 1981), and M.S. and Ph.D. in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 1983, 1985). He joined the faculty of the department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Illinois in 2002. Dr. Spencer served as a professor at the University of Notre Dame from 1985-2002, where he held the Leo E. and Patti Ruth Linbeck Professor of Engineering.

Dr. Spencer has taught graduate and undergraduate courses in structural mechanics, structural dynamics, and structural reliability. He is the author of two books. The first is a monograph entitled, On the Reliability of Nonlinear Hysteretic Structures Subjected to Broadband Random Excitation (Springer-Verlag 1986). The second book, coauthored with Prof. K. Sobczyk, is entitled, Random Fatigue: From Data to Theory (Academic Press 1992).

Dr. Spencer is a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), was the founding chair of the Committee on Structural Control and is the past chair of the Committee on Fatigue and Fracture Reliability, both in the ASCE Structures Division. He serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Structural Control and has served as associate editor for the ASCE Journal of Structural Engineering. He is also a Foreign Member of the Polish Academy of Sciences, the North American Editor in Chief of Smart Structures and Systems, and the president of the Asia-Pacific Network of Centers for Research in Smart Structures Technology.

Academic Positions

  • Director, NSF NEES MUST-SIM Facility, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign, 2010-2014
  • Director, Newmark Structural Engineering Laboratory, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign, 2007-present
  • Nathan M. and Anne M. Newmark Endowed Chair in Civil Engineering, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign, 2004-present
  • Senior Center Affiliate NCSA, University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign, 2003-present
  • Director, Smart Structures Technology Laboratory, University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign, 2002-present
  • Thrust Leader for Damage Synthesis, Mid-America Earthquake Center, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign, 2003-2005
  • Thrust Leader Information Tech. Mid-America Earthquake Center, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign, 2003-2010
  • PI and Project Director, NSF NEES System Integration Award, University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign, 2003-2005
  • Associate Director, NSF NEES MUST-SIM Facility, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign, 2002-2010
  • Anne M. and Nathan M. Newmark Distinguished Professor in Civil Engineering, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign, 2002-2004

For more information

Professional Registrations

  • Registered Professional Engineer, State of Indiana PE60910347, 1991-Present

Research Statement

Dr. Spencer has research interests primarily in the areas of smart wireless sensor technology, damage detection and health monitoring, structural control, stochastic fatigue, stochastic computational mechanics, earthquake engineering, and civil engineering applications of information technology.

Research Interests

  • structural health monitoring, structural control, cyberinfrastructure applications, stochastic fatigue, stochastic computational mechanics, and natural hazard mitigation

Research Areas

Invited Lectures

  • Keynote and Plenary Lectures
  • Keynote and Plenary Lectures
  • Keynote and Plenary Lectures
  • Keynote and Plenary Lectures
  • Keynote and Plenary Lectures
  • Keynote and Plenary Lectures
  • Keynote and Plenary Lectures
  • Keynote and Plenary Lectures
  • Keynote and Plenary Lectures
  • Keynote and Plenary Lectures

Journal Editorships

  • North/South American Editor-in-Chief, SMART STRUCTURES and SYSTEMS, An International Journal, 2004￿present.
  • Member of Editorial Board, Earthquake Engineering and Engineering Vibration, 2003-present.
  • Associate Editor, Shock and Vibration, 2000￿2006.
  • Associate Editor, Journal of Structural Engineering, American Society of Civil Engineers, 1998￿2002.
  • Member of the Editorial Board of Journal of Structural Control and Monitoring, 1998￿present.
  • Member, International Editorial Board of Advances in Structural Engineering ￿ An International Journal, 2002￿present.

Professional Societies

  • International Conference on Structural Safety and Reliability, Member, International Scientific Committee, 2009
  • 3rd China-Japan-US Symposium on Structural Health Monitoring and Control, Dalian, China, Member, Scientific Committee, 2004
  • US-European Workshop on Sensors and Smart Structures, Strausbourg, France, Member, Scientific Committee, 2003
  • China-US Workshop on Disasters, Beijing, Member, Scientific Committee, 2003
  • 7th National Conference on Earthquake Engineering, Boston, Member, Scientific Committee, 2002
  • Conference on Motion and Vibration Control, Member, International Scientific Board, 1996￿ present
  • International Conference on Advances in Building Technology, Hong Kong, China, Member, Scientific Committee, 2002
  • 5th International Conference on Vibration Engineering, Nanjing, China, Member, Scientific Committee, 2002
  • First International Symposium on Performance of Buildings with Control Devices, Tokyo, Japan, Member of the Program Committee, 2003
  • Applied Technology Council Seminar on Seismic Isolation, Passive Energy Dissipation and Active Control, Member of the Steering Committee, 2002

Service on Department Committees

  • Newmark Structural Engineering Laboratory, Director, 2007-present
  • Promotions and Tenure Committee, Chair, 2006-2009
  • Graduate Admissions Committee, Member, 2005-2008
  • Undergraduate Studies Committee, 2002-2007
  • Computing Committee, 1994-present, University of Notre Dame
  • Dondanville Award Committee, Chair, 1994-1999, University of Notre Dame
  • Graduate Curricula and Program Committee, 1994-1999, University of Notre Dame
  • Director of Graduate Studies, 1994-1999, University of Notre Dame
  • Committee on Appointments and Promotions, 1990-1994, University of Notre Dame
  • Coordinator of Computing, 1985-1992, University of Notre Dame

Service on College Committees

  • Engineering Graduate Studies Committee, 1994￿1999, University of Notre Dame
  • Engineering College Council, 1992￿1994, University of Notre Dame
  • Structures and Mechanics Advisory Committee, Chair, 1988￿2000, University of Notre Dame
  • Committee for Engineering Computing, member, 1985￿1994, Chair, 1989￿1990, 1992￿1994, University of Notre Dame

Service on Campus Committees

  • Consortial Relations Task Force, 1999, University of Notre Dame
  • Committee on Postdoctoral Appointments, 1999, University of Notre Dame
  • Committee on Research, Scholarship and Infrastructure, 1994, University of Notre Dame
  • Dean￿s Review Committee, 1993, University of Notre Dame
  • Committee for Technical Computing, Chair, 1992-1994, University of Notre Dame
  • The University Faculty Workstation Distribution Committee, 1989￿1990, 1992￿1994, University of Notre Dame

Service to Federal and State Government

  • Member, Advisory Millennium Dialog Committee on US-Japan Science and Technology (S&T) Relations, White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, 2000.
  • Member of the US Delegation to the 19th US-China Protocol Meeting between the US National Science Foundation and the Chinese Ministry of Construction, Notre Dame, Indiana, September, 1999.

Other Outside Service

  • Conducted Shakes and Quakes Program, Countryside School, Champaign, Illinois, 2016
  • Engineer-in-the-Classroom, Lincoln Trail Elementary School, Mahomet, Illinois, 2016, 2017
  • Conducted Shakes and Quakes Program, Lincoln Trail Elementary School, Mahomet, Illinois, 2016
  • Conducted Shakes and Quakes Program, Sangamon Elementary School, Mahomet, Illinois, 2016
  • Engineer-in-the-Classroom, Lincoln Trail Elementary School, Mahomet, Illinois, 2016

Teaching Honors

  • J.O. Smith Award, Outstanding Young Teacher in Engineering Mechanics (1985)

Research Honors

  • ASCE Housner Structural Control and Monitoring Medal (2015)
  • J.M. Ko Medal of Advances in Structural Engineering (2014)
  • Designated Foreign Expert￿ by China's State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs (2013)
  • Designated Foreign Expert￿ by China's State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs (2012)
  • Structural Health Monitoring Person of the Year Award (2011)
  • ANCRiSST Outstanding Senior Investigator Award (2007 )
  • Fellow, ASCE (2007 )
  • Vice-President, International Association for Structural Control and Monitoring (2007)
  • President, Asia-Pacific Network of Centers in Smart Structures Technology (2005-2011)
  • Elected a Foreign Member of the Polish Academy of Sciences (2005)
  • Zhu Kezhen International Lectureship Award, American Zhu Kezhen Educational Foundation (2004)
  • JSPS Short-Term Invitation Fellowship (2000)
  • JSPS Short-Term Invitation Fellowship (1999)
  • Selected by the Science Coalition as one of 8 research groups nationally to participate at the "Signature Event" held in Washington, D.C. (1999)