September 8, 1999 Hazard Series Presentation
Are Chemical Plants at Risk from Hurricane Winds?
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Slides: 1, 2, 3
About Marc Levitan
LSU Hurricane Center
Hurricanes and Chemical Hazards Internet Conference
EIIP Classroom Online Presentation
Are Chemical Plants at Risk For Hurricane Winds?
Dr. Marc Levitan
The speaker for the Virtual Classroom was Dr. Marc Levitan, Acting Director of the Hurricane Center at Louisiana State University (LSU) and Associate Professor of Civil Engineering. Dr. Levitan has been actively engaged in wind engineering research, practice, and teaching for the past 15 years. His paper, "Are Chemical Plants at Risk from Hurricane Winds?" is available from the Hurricane and Hazards Internet Conference at http://hurricane.lsu.edu/internetconf.htm .
Dr. Levitan discussed the fact that many places on the US coastline are home to large concentrations of chemical/petrochemical/agrichemical plants. These plants are filled with complex structures for which there are no wind loading standards available. As explained, the two biggest potential impacts from hurricane wind damage are the release of hazardous materials into the environment and the economic impact of repairing damaged structures, including loss of production while the repairs are underway. Dr. Levitan used several slides to illustrate the types of structures discussed in his paper and why we should be concerned about wind damage to these facilities.
Associate Professor of Civil Engineering
Dr. Marc Levitan has been actively engaged in wind engineering research, practice, and teaching for the past 15 years. His primary research focus is in the fields of wind loading on structures, wind damage assessment, wind damage mitigation, and hurricane sheltering and evacuation issues. Past research projects have dealt with wind loading on low-rise buildings, electrical power transmission towers, and many other types of structures. He is currently involved with research in areas relating to wind loading on industrial and petrochemical structures, and assessment/retrofit/design of hurricane evacuation shelters. Dr. Levitan has over 20 publications in these areas and has made a similar number of presentations at conferences, seminars, and short courses. He was the driving force be-hind the creation of the new LSU Hurricane Center, and was recently named Acting Director. The Center is a campus-wide, multi-disciplinary initiative. It's mission is to address hurricanes and other weather-related hazards and their impacts on the natural, built, and human environments.
Prior to joining LSU, Dr. Levitan spent five years as the Managing Director of the Wind Engineering Research Field Laboratory at Texas Tech University. This laboratory is a state-of-the-art facility for measuring wind loads on low-rise buildings and structures. During his tenure as Managing Director, the project grew from an idea on the drawing board into an internationally respected laboratory, employing over 20 graduate and undergraduate students and hosting numerous visiting researchers from around the world. He was responsible for the design and construction of the laboratory and its test facilities; development of the computerized data acquisition and data analysis systems; designing and managing many of the experiments performed at the lab; and personnel management.
Dr. Levitan has done consulting work in the fields of wind damage investigation, site-specific prediction of extreme wind speeds, wind load analysis on a variety of buildings and structures, and design of instrumentation and data acquisition systems for dynamic loads on structures.
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