sacramento state - leadership begins here
 sac state home  admissions  about sac state  giving a gift  site index  contact us

Benjamin Fell

Associate Professor, Department of Civil Engineering

picture Professor Fell joined Sacramento State in Fall 2008 after completing his PhD at the University of California, Davis. Prior to that he received his MS from Stanford University and BS from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Dr. Fell's research concentration is on the behavior of structures under seismic effects. His course offerings include structural analysis, structural dynamics and the design of steel structures. He was recently honored with the 2013 President’'s Award for Research and Creative Activity, as well as the 2012 Outstanding Scholarly & Creativity Award and the 2011 Outstanding Teaching Award for the College of Engineering and Computer Science. Dr. Fell is a registered Professional Engineer in California, an advisor to several student engineering chapters, member of the Faculty Senate Executive Committee, and Chair of the College Academic Council.

Office: Riverside Hall 4044
Hours: Tuesday and Thursday, 10:00-12:00
Phone: (916) 278-8139
Fax: (916) 278-7957
Mail: Department of Civil Engineering
6000 J Street
Sacramento, CA 95819-6029

Link to NEESR Project: Seismically Resilient Houses

Ph.D. Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of California, Davis, 2008
M.S. Civil and Environmental Engineering, Stanford University, 2004
B.S. Civil Engineering (summa cum laude), Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 2003

Professional Registration and Memberships
Registered Professional Engineer, California
American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE)
American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)
American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC)
Consortium of Universities for Research in Earthquake Engineering (CUREE)
George E. Brown, Jr. Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation (NEES)

Service Activities
SEAOC Seismology Steel Subcommittee
California State Mitigation Assessment Review Team
Faculty Senate, civil engineering department representative
Faculty Senate Executive Committee member
Faculty Senate Curriculum Policy Committee Chairperson
College of ECS Academic Council Chairperson
ASCE student chapter advisor
SEAOCC student chapter advisor
Tau Beta Pi engineering honor society advisor

Technical Interests
Design of steel structures, large-scale experimental techniques, fracture and fatigue of structures, earthquake engineering, nonlinear finite element modeling, materials processing

Courses Offered

CE 161 Theory of Structures I (offered Fall and Spring)
Description: Analysis of statically determinate and indeterminate beams, frames, trusses and grids. Includes energy principles, flexibility analysis, slope deflection method, moment distribution procedure, and stiffness analysis. Computers are used to aid in the solution of complex structural problems.
CE 163 Design in Steel I (offered Fall only)
Description: Theory and practice in design of structural steel members and connections using current design specifications. Design of tension and compression members, laterally supported and unsupported beams, beam-columns, and bolted and welded connections.
CE 166 Seismic Behavior of Structures (offered Spring only)
Description: Analysis of simple structures' response to dynamic loads with an emphasis on structural response to earthquake ground motion. Introduction to multi-story buildings dynamics. Modal and approximate analyses of earthquake response. Dynamic analysis and building code procedures.
CE 232 Nonlinear Structural Analysis (offered every other Spring)
Description: Theory and applications of nonlinear structural analysis including geometric and material nonlinear effects. Stability issues and second-order analysis methods are discussed in the context of moment amplification effects, member buckling, and the behavior of structural elements and frames undergoing large deformations. Inelastic material behavior and stress resultant plasticity concepts within a line-type element framework. Computer implementation of geometric nonlinear behavior.
CE 234 Dynamics and Earthquake Response of Structures (offered every other Fall)
Description: Response of structures modeled as single-degree systems to harmonic, periodic, and arbitrary excitation and earthquake ground motion; effects of damping and material nonlinearity; numerical methods using spreadsheets; response spectra. Response of structures modeled as multi-degree systems: modeling of structure mass, damping and elastic stiffness; solution by modal superposition; time-history and response spectrum analysis; implications for codes for earthquake-resistant design. Microcomputer software is extensively used.
CE 296c Advanced Steel Design (offered every other Spring-alternating with CE232)
Description: Advanced design methodology of steel structures using Load and Resistance Factor Design (LRFD). System level behavior, especially from a seismic loading perspective, is integrated into the design of steel components and connections. Other topics include plate girder design, plastic design of indeterminate systems, design of moment frame systems, and design of braced-frame systems.


Journal and Magazine Publications

Fell, B.V. and O'Rourke, M. J. (2014). "Loss of Pressure Boundary through Buckling-Induced Fracture in the Ciudad Nezahualcóyotl Pipeline." Journal of Pipeline Systems Engineering and Practice, ASCE.

Fell, B.V. and Salveson, M.W. (accepted). "“Parametric simulation of nonlinear shear key behavior on the response of bridge abutments."” Journal of Bridge Engineering, ASCE.

Shaw, S.M., Kanvinde, A.M. and Fell, B.V. (2010). "Earthquake-induced net section fracture in brace connections - experiments and simulations." Journal of Constructional Steel Research, Elsevier, 66(12), 1492-1501.

Fell, B.V. and Kanvinde, A.M. (2010). "Tensile forces for seismic design of braced frame connections - experimental results." Journal of Constructional Steel Research, Elsevier, 66(4), 496-503.

Fell, B.V. and Kanvinde, A.M. (2009). "Steel braced frames: Enhancing seismic response." The Structural Engineer, Institution of Structural Engineers, 87(21), 22-26.

Myers, A.T., Kanvinde, A.M., Deierlein, G.G. and Fell, B.V. (2009). "Effect of weld details on the ductility of steel column baseplate connections." Journal of Constructional Steel Research, Elsevier, 65(6), 1366-1373.

Fell, B.V. and Kanvinde, A.M. (2009). "Recent fracture and fatigue research in steel structures." Structure Magazine, February 2009, 14-17.

Kanvinde, A.M., Gomez, I.R., Roberts, M., Fell, B.V. and Grondin, G.Y. (2009). "Strength and ductility of fillet welds with transverse root notch." Journal of Constructional Steel Research, Elsevier, 65(4), 948-958.

Fell, B.V., Kanvinde, A.M., Deierlein, G.G. and Myers, A.T. (2009). "Experimental investigation of inelastic cyclic buckling and fracture of steel braces." Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, 135(1), 19-32.

Kanvinde, A.M., Fell, B.V., Gomez, I.R. and Roberts, M. (2008). "Predicting fracture in structural fillet welds using traditional and micromechanics-based models." Engineering Structures, Elsevier, 30(11), 3325-3335.

Conference Publications

Swensen, S.D., Acevedo, C., Jampole, E.A., Hopkins, A., Fell, B.V., Miranda, E.M., Deierlein, G.G. (2014). "Toward Damage Free Residential Houses Through UniBody Light-Frame Construction with Seismic Isolation," SEAOC Convention 2014, Indian Wells, CA, September 2014.

Swensen, S.D., Deierlein, G.G., Miranda, E.M., Fell, B.V., Acevedo, C., Jampole, E.A. (2014). "Finite element analysis of light-frame unibody residential structures," Proceedings of the 10th National Conference in Earthquake Engineering, Earthquake Engineering Research Institute, Anchorage, AK, 2014.

Jampole, E.A., Swensen, S.D., Fell, B.V., Miranda, E.M., Deierlein, G.G. (2014). "Dynamic testing of a low-cost sliding isolation system for light-frame residential structures," Proceedings of the 10th National Conference in Earthquake Engineering, Earthquake Engineering Research Institute, Anchorage, AK, 2014.

Deierlein G.G., Kanvinde, A.M., Myers, A.T., and Fell, B.V. (2011). "Local cyclic void growth criteria for ductile fracture initiation in steel structures with significant yielding," Proceedings, Eurosteel 2011, Budapest, Hungary, August-September 2011.

Fell, B.V. (2011). "Exchange - Multi-day earthquake engineering workshop for middle school students," 2011 Annual Conference and Exposition, ASEE, Vancouver, BC, Canada, June 2011.

Salveson, M.W. and Fell, B.V. (2011). "Effect of abutment shear keys on the seismic response of bridges," 2011 ASCE Structures Congress, Las Vegas, NV, April 2011.

Fell, B.V., Kanvinde, A.M., and Deierlein, G.G. (2009). "Micromechanics-based parametric simulation of earthquake-induced fracture of steel pipe bracing components," NSF-CMMI Grantees Meeting 2009 (NEES 7th Annual Meeting), Honolulu, HI, June 2009.

Kanvinde, A.M., Fell, B.V., and Deierlein, G.G. (2008). "An examination of the fracture susceptibility of square HSS braces under seismic actions - experiments, simulations and data synthesis," SEAOC Convention 2008, Big Island, HI, September 2008.

Fell, B.V., Kanvinde, A.M., and Deierlein, G.G. (2008). "Parametric simulation of the fracture performance of inelastic buckling steel braces using micromechanics- based models," NEES 6th Annual Meeting, Portland, OR, June 2008.

Myers, A.T., Kanvinde, A.M., Deierlein, G.G., Fell, B.V., and Fu., X (2007). "Large scale tests and micromechanics-based models to characterize ultra low cycle fatigue in welded structural details," ASCE Structures Congress 2007, Long Beach, CA, May 2007.

Fu., X., Fell, B.V., Kanvinde, A.M., Myers, A.T., (2007). "Experimental and analytical investigations of net-section fracture in brace-gusset plate connections," ASCE Structures Congress 2007, Long Beach, CA, May 2007.

Fell B.V., Myers A.T., Deierlein, G.G., and Kanvinde A.M. (2006). "Testing and simulation of ultra low cycle fracture and fatigue in steel braces," 8th National Conference on Earthquake Engineering, San Francisco, April 2006.

Technical Reports

Hopkins, A., Fell, B. V., Deierlein, G.G. and Miranda, E.M. (2014). "Large-scale tests of seismically enhanced planar walls for residential construction." Blume Earthquake Engineering Center Technical Report #186, Stanford University, Stanford, CA.

Fell, B. V., Kanvinde, A.M. and Deierlein, G.G. (2010). "Large-scale testing and simulation of earthquake induced ultra low cycle fatigue in bracing members subjected to cyclic inelastic buckling." Blume Earthquake Engineering Center Technical Report #172, Stanford University, Stanford, CA.

Fell, B.V., Kanvinde, A.M., Deierlein, G.G., Myers, A.T. and Fu, X. (2006). "Buckling and fracture of concentric braces under inelastic cyclic loading." SteelTIPS, Technical Information and Product Service, Structural Steel Educational Council.