Exaugural Lecture: Prof. Michael Pender

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Lecture room 401.439 & Neon Foyer

Faculty of Engineering

20 Symonds Street

Auckland, Auckland 1010

New Zealand

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Join us for Professor Michael Pender's Exaugural Lecture on Wednesday 5 May.

About this event

On his exaugural lecture, Professor Mick Pender wishes to present his thoughts on five items: research, teaching, professional work, the University, and his thanks. With over 40 years as a member of our academic staff, we’re sure he will have some great stories to tell. Join us to celebrate his journey so far, thank him for his service, and to find out what’s next on his list of things to accomplish.

On research, he will outline his career highlights:

  • properties of soils derived from in situ weathering of Wellington greywacke
  • developing an add-on to the Cambridge critical state soil mechanics stress-strain models to embrace overconsolidated clay
  • measurement of in situ stresses in rock at the site of the Rangipo underground power house and also in coal at the Huntly West mine
  • disappointment that Auckland Residual clay would not fit into the Cambridge Critical State framework and showing why this is likely to be the case by laboratory testing
  • field testing of the lateral capacity of short timber poles at a site in Albany
  • investigation of the snap-back response of steel piles at sites in Albany and Silverdale
  • the behaviour of rocking shallow foundations in Albany and Silverdale
  • computational response of shallow foundations to earthquake excitation
  • supervising a PhD student using OpenSees to model the behaviour of shallow foundations and retaining structures on dense dilatant cohesionless soils

On teaching, he will describe his enjoyment and the freedom our environment provides for course development and new directions, as well as his experience with supervising 35 masters research and A-graded final year projects, and 23 PhD students.

On professional work, he will reflect on his engagements with:

  • supervision of laboratory testing for Contact Energy related to the extraction of geothermal energy at Wairakei and Tauhara as well as interpretation of the data and assisting in the preparation of evidence for a planning hearing
  • the Australian Mineral Industry Research Association on the risk of liquefaction of iron ore in ship holds
  • investigation of foundation failure of the collapse of a former hotel in Auckland

About Professor Michael J Pender

After completing his PhD at the University of Canterbury, Mick Pender spent 18 months in the early 1970s as a Post-Doctoral Fellow at Cambridge University in England. He worked at the Ministry of Works and Development’s Central Laboratories in Lower Hutt, where he was in charge of the Geotechnical laboratory, providing testing services for designers of the Wellington Urban Motorway, Terrace Tunnel, and the Pukaki High Dam, and interpreting the data so obtained.

Mick joined the University of Auckland in July 1977, and was named Professor of Geotechnical Engineering in 1985. He has served as Head of Department, and been on the University Research Committee, Scholarships Committee, Discipline Committee, Honours Committee, Chaired the review of the Geology Department, and various appointment committees. During his time here, he also consulted as a professional engineer on various activities through UniServices.

He is particularly proud of his contribution to the development of a final year elective course on Foundation Engineering. In 1997, he was Acting Dean, a task shared between the five heads of the Engineering HoDs.

He was the Australasian Vice President of the International Society for Rock Mechanics in the mid-90s, and has been a Visiting Professor to the European School for Advanced Studies in the Reduction of Seismic Risk (ROSE School), University of Pavia since 2003.

He became the President of the New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering in 2006 and 2007, and was appointed a Life Member in 2012. In the following year, he was appointed an International Honorary Member of the Japanese Geotechnical Society.

He received a Sustained Excellence in Teaching Award from the University in 2005, and after receiving 7 IPENZ awards over the years, Mick was appointed as a Distinguished Fellow of Engineering New Zealand in 2017.

NOTE: If you cannot attend and wish to have access to the recorded video, please register to receive the post-event comms.

Date and time

Location

Lecture room 401.439 & Neon Foyer

Faculty of Engineering

20 Symonds Street

Auckland, Auckland 1010

New Zealand

View Map

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