Nottingham Transportation Engineering Centre (NTEC)

University of East London.  Dr Alex ApeagyeiAlex is a Senior Lecturer in Highway and Transportation Engineering at the University East London (UEL). Prior to joining UEL he served as Course Director for the BSc Civil Engineering programme at Kingston University. He has worked as a Research Fellow at the Nottingham Transportation Engineering Centre, University of Nottingham, as Research Scientist at the Virginia Transportation Research Council and as a Research Associate at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA.

His primary research interest is the application of experimental and computational techniques to better understand the influence that climatic factors, especially those related to moisture and temperature, have on the sustainability and durability of highway pavements.


In the past, his research had focused on advanced materials characterization of road construction materials (including soils, aggregates, and portland cement concrete), low temperature cracking of asphalt mixtures, rutting in asphalt mixtures, asphalt pavement recycling, pavement rehabilitation and non-destructive testing.  With excessive precipitation predicted to be one of the main impacts of climate change in UK, future research plans are aimed at forging interdisciplinary collaborations to solve one of the most intractable problems in highway engineering – moisture damage in asphalt.  His ultimate aim is to better understand the effects of environmental change on asphalt pavement sustainability and the development of adaptation systems to address the issue.  Alex is a Fellow of the Institute of Highway Engineers, a Chartered Engineer and a registered Professional Engineer in the USA.  He has been an active member various international scientific groups including Institute of Highway Engineers, RILEM, ASTM International, American Society of Civil Engineers, Association of Asphalt Paving Technologist, European Asphalt Technology Association and Transportation Research Board.  He currently serves on the Editorial Board of Transportation Research Record.  Alex has published some of his work in several peer-reviewed journals and presented others at prestigious national and international conferences and meetings in Europe and North America.  Alex has shared his work in over 70 peer-reviewed publications.

Resources UEL has a wide range of lab facilities like the recently upgraded hydraulic compression and testing facilities, digital robotic arm, 3D manufacturing suite, fluid dynamics channels, geological sciences lab, surveying workshop, scanning electron microscope, CNC, plasma and laser cutting machines, simulation and analysis high power computation facilities.

Detailed laboratory resources available in the School are listed below:

(i) Mechanical Labs This laboratory In addition to these it houses the following equipment for Mechanical Engineering: 

Gunt universal testing machine

  • TecQuipment Impact Tester 
  • TecQuipment SM1006 Creep Machine
  • TecQuipment SM1090 Rotating Fatigue Machine
  • TecQuipment SM1011 Thick Cylinder
  • TecQuipment SM1007 Thin Cylinder
  • TecQuipment MFP101 Centrifugal Pump Module

(ii) Hydraulics laboratory: this contains equipment for studying the flow of water in pipes and channels, scouring and sediment transport in channels.  The laboratory houses open channels, pumps and hydraulic work benches and flow measurement equipment. 

(iii) Engineering Science: The facilities in this laboratory are used to provide students with an introduction to structural mechanics and structural forms.  Students undertake experiments on a variety of measuring and recording devices which serve to illustrate the theory taught in formal lectures and tutorials.  This laboratory also houses the 'clean' soil mechanics testing apparatus and a shaker table for investigating structural dynamics. 

(iv) Construction Science: This houses equipment and apparatus to undertake thermal and acoustic investigations to the building fabric envelope. It includes a full-scale environmental chamber and measuring devices, building service equipment installations and monitoring devices. 

(v) Scanning Electron Microscope: A state of the art microscope is employed for advanced experimental research and consultancy work.

(vi) Open Plan Engineering laboratories that include:

  • Structures: Large Scale facilities are available in this area to study the behaviour of structures and the structural components of steel and reinforced concrete.  The reinforced concrete strong floor, together with the computer controlled hydraulic testing equipment, provides the means to test large scale structural elements under static and dynamic loading.  The laboratory is also equipped with a variety of strain measurement devices and data logging facilities.
  • Concrete and Materials: the equipment is utilised for the characterisation of concrete as influenced by proportioning, mixing and the curing processes. The properties of fresh and hardened concretes are determine using destructive and non-destructive testing methods and the area is also utilised for the manufacture of various elements. The laboratory also contains an environmental chamber and equipment for the testing of materials such as steel.
  • Soil Mechanics: This area is equipped to sample and prepare soils, in accordance with the latest codes and standards, to determine their engineering properties, to analyse the chemical properties of solid and pore fluids and to undertake model structure interaction.  The equipment includes sieves, Casagrande limit apparatus, standard cone apparatus, soil density measuring devices, compaction and shrinkage apparatus. The equipment used for determining the strength of soils include vane, shear box consolidation and swelling apparatus.  Tri-axial and unconfined compression tests are performed using 1 and 5 tonne compression machines and constant pressure systems.  In order to determine permeability, constant head and falling head devices are available. We have recently embarked on a programme of enabling the existing equipment in this laboratory with data logging facilities
  • Engineering Geology: This area is furnished with point load index apparatus and a 25 tonne compression testing machine for determining the strength of rock.  PUNDIT apparatus is used to determine density comparison and isotropic characteristics of rock and the influence of discontinuities on insitu P wave velocities.  Slake durability apparatus is available to be used to determine weathering index values. 

(vii) Workshop: This provides a central service for the design, manufacture, construction and fabrication of equipment for teaching research and project work.  A range of machine tools and materials are held.

(viii) Geotechnics Research Laboratory: This laboratory is equipped with a pneumatically controlled, large scale, cyclic loading triaxle rig that can be used for soil specimens up to 100mm in diameter.  Within this laboratory there are also 2 pneumatically controlled shear boxes that are capable of accepting samples up to 100mm by 100mm and two pneumatic oedometers.  All of the equipment in this laboratory is computer controlled with all readings being recorded by data logger software.  Low vacuum scanning electron microscope


Faculty of Engineering
The University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD