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CEE 269C EnvEng Seminar: Frank Lombardo "The Role of Thunderstorms and Tornadoes in Wind Engineering"

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Abstract: Windstorms cause the most damage annually of any natural hazard in the United States. In most years, an overwhelming percentage of this damage is caused by severe convective storms (i.e., thunderstorms and tornadoes). Despite these losses, very little is known about the characteristics of these events, their relation to wind loading, and how they differ from current prescriptions available in wind load codes and standards. This talk will focus on the integrated work that is occurring at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) in an attempt to increase understanding of these phenomena and their impacts. Specifically, discussion will include: 1) characterization of tornado, tornado-like and thunderstorm winds and wind loading relevant to engineering through field experiments and post-damage assessment; 2) utilization and assimilation of field data into experimental and computational projects to broaden the knowledge and application of these types of windstorms and 3) incorporation of thunderstorms and tornadoes into building codes and standards.

Bio: Dr. Frank Lombardo is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, where he also serves as Co-Director of the Extreme Wind Resilience Center. Dr. Lombardo currently specializes in wind engineering, where he focuses on characterization of extreme winds such as tornadoes and thunderstorms and the associated loading and damage they cause to the built and natural environment. He also serves on professional committees related to windstorms including the ASCE Wind Load Subcommittee (WLSC). He serves as vice-chair of the tornado task committee of the WLSC, which has developed tornado loading provisions for inclusion in ASCE 7-22. Dr. Lombardo also took part in research aimed at the characterization of multiple, natural hazards and how possible modifications in these hazards due to climate change could affect the vulnerability of the built environment.