Civil engineering doctoral student Alam earns ACRP Graduate Research Award

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Arafat Alam, doctoral student in civil engineering.
Arafat Alam, doctoral student in civil engineering.

Arafat Alam, a doctoral student majoring in civil engineering, has been chosen as one of eight recipients of the Transportation Research Board’s 2022-23 Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) Graduate Research Awards.

The ACRP Graduate Research Awards focus on applied research on airport and related aviation system issues to help the public sector continue to improve the quality, reliability, safety, and security of the U.S. civil aviation system. 

Recipients receive a $12,000 stipend and the opportunity to have their final research paper published in TRB’s peer-reviewed journal, Transportation Research Record, and to present their work at TRB’s annual meeting in Washington, D.C., in January 2024.

Alam said the award will help to support his research on Engineered Material Arresting System (EMAS), a crushable material placed at the end of a runway to mitigate damage and injuries resulting from an aircraft overrun at an airport. The tires of the aircraft sink into the lightweight, crushable material, and the aircraft is decelerated as it rolls through the material. 

“(This) e prestigious scholarship will help us to conduct practical research on this newer EMAS with multi-layer-cellular concrete system that will enhance safety and save lives during aircraft overrun,” said Alam, whose faculty advisor is Jiong Hu.

ACRP Graduate Research Awards aim to stimulate thought, discussion, and research by those who will become part of the future airport industry workforce. Now in its 16th year, the program is sponsored by the Federal Aviation Administration and administered by the TRB, part of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The annual award competition is managed by the Virginia Space Grant Consortium based in Hampton, Virginia. 

This year’s eight graduate student awardees represent seven universities from across the U.S. Their research focuses on a wide variety of topics including pavements, foreign object debris detection, and parking revenues.

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