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Dr. Brendan O'Kelly

Associate Professor (Civil Struct & Env. Eng.)

Dr. Brendan O'Kelly is an Associate Professor in the Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering at Trinity College Dublin. Brendan, a Chartered Engineer and Chartered Environmentalist, is the principal investigator of the Geotechnical Research Group, including the research areas of environmental geotechnics and geoenvironmental engineering. He was made a Fellow of Trinity College Dublin in 2010. Prior to his current appointment, Brendan was a design engineer with Scott Wilson Consulting Engineers, UK, and for successive two-year periods as the Pierce-Newman Fellow in Civil Engineering, Research Fellow in Soil Mechanics and Assistant Lecturer in Civil Engineering at University College Dublin, Ireland.
  Dams and Earth Structures   Environmental engineering   Geotechnical Engineering   Geotechnics   Landslides   Materials Testing   Soil Mechanics & Foundations   Solid Waste Disposal

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Details Date
National Management Committee Member for COST Action TU1202: Impact of climate change on engineered slopes for infrastructure ( 2012-2016
Member Scientific Committee for Civil Engineering Research in Ireland Conference (Bridges, Concrete, Geotechnics, Materials, and Structures), 28th-29th August 2014, Belfast 2014
Member Scientific Committee for Joint Symposium on Bridge and Infrastructure Research in Ireland and Concrete Research in Ireland (2nd-3rd September 2010), Cork 2010
Member Scientific Committee for Joint Symposium on Bridge and Infrastructure Research in Ireland and Concrete Research in Ireland (4th-5th December 2008), Galway 2008
Co-chair (B.C. O'Kelly and A. Kahru) for Environmental Restoration (session II) at the First International Conference on Environmental Management, Engineering, Planning and Economics (CEMEPE), Skiathos, Greece, 28th June, 2007 2007
Irish representative, EUCEET III, EU Academic Network Project on European Civil Engineering Education and Training ( 2006-2010
PR Officer, Geotechnical Society, Sector of Engineers Ireland 2004-2006
Irish representative, EUCEET II, EU Academic Network Project on European Civil Engineering Education and Training ( 2004 -2005
Irish representative, European Geotechnical Network for Research and Development (GeoTechNet) 2003-2005
Member of Conference Organizing Committee for the Fourth Decennial Symposium on Concrete Practice in Ireland held at University College Dublin (10th-11th May 1995) 1995
Language Skill Reading Skill Writing Skill Speaking
English Fluent Fluent Fluent
French Medium Basic Basic
Irish Medium Medium Medium
Details Date From Date To
Chartered Engineer (CEng MICE), Institution of Civil Engineers, London 2003 -
Chartered Environmentalist (CEnv), Society for the Environment, UK 2005 -
Chartered Engineer, Engineering Council UK 2003 -
Chartered Engineer and Fellow (CEng FIEI) of The Institution of Engineers of Ireland 2001 2012
European Engineer (EurIng), European Federation of National Engineering Associations 2002 2012
International Register of Professional Engineers (IntPE) 2004 2012
Professional Geologist (PGeo), Institute of Geologists of Ireland 2005 2010
Member, Geotechnical Society of Ireland (MGSI), Engineers Ireland, including committee member 2004-2006 1992 2012
Fellow Geological Society of London (FGS) 2004 2009
Member, International Society of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (and non-voting member on Council in 2005) 2005 2006
O'Kelly BC, Johnston PM, and Xiao LW, Editorial: Geotechnical aspects of peatland restoration and management, Environmental Geotechnics, 5, 2018, Notes: [Guest Editors for Themed Issue on Geotechnical Aspects of Peatland Restoration and Management], Journal Article, APPROVED
Zhang, L., O'Kelly, B.C. and Nagel, T., Tensile and compressive contributions of fibres in peat, Proceedings of the 6th Biot Conference on Poromechanics, Champs-sur-Marne, Paris, France, 9-13th July 2017, 2017, pp8 , Conference Paper, ACCEPTED
Arshad, M. and O'Kelly, B.C., Model studies on monopile behavior under long-term repeated lateral loading, International Journal of Geomechanics, ASCE, 17, (1), 2017, p12 , Journal Article, PUBLISHED  URL  URL
O'Kelly B.C., Biodegradation of biosolids and specific gravity determination, Environmental Geotechnics, 4, 2017, p15 , Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
Zomorodian S.M.A., Shabnam M., Armina S. and O'Kelly B.C., Strength enhancement of clean and kerosene-contaminated sandy lean clay using nanoclay and nanosilica as additives, Applied Clay Science, 140, (May 2017), 2017, p140 - 147, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  URL  URL
Amin M., Zomorodian S.M.A. and O'Kelly B.C., Erodibility reduction for sand using MICP technique, Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers - Ground Improvement, 170, 2017, Journal Article, APPROVED  DOI
Arshad, M. and O'Kelly, B.C., Reducing monopile rotation under lateral loading in sandy soils, Geomechanics and Geoengineering, 12, (1), 2017, p14 - 27, Notes: [Free access to the published article at this eprint link ], Journal Article, PUBLISHED  URL
O'Kelly, B.C., Fall-cone strength testing of municipal sludges and residues, Environmental Geotechnics, 4, 2017, p13 , Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
Chapter 20: Offshore wind turbine foundations - analysis and design in, editor(s)Ng, C. and Ran, L. , Offshore Wind Farms: Technologies, Design and Operation, Cambridge, UK, Woodhead Publishing (Elsevier), 2016, pp589 - 610, [O'Kelly, B.C. and Arshad, M.], Notes: [Woodhead Publishing Series in Energy: number 92], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED  DOI  URL
O'Kelly, B.C., Assessing the shear strength of municipal sludges and residues for landfill disposal, Proceedings of the Third Symposium on Urban Mining and Circular Economy (SUM2016), Bergamo, Italy, 23-25th May 2016, edited by Cossu R and Lavagnolo MC , CISA Publisher: Italy, 2016, pp11 , Conference Paper, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  URL

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Osorio-Salas, J.P., Summary of PhD thesis entitled "Vacuum Consolidation Field Test on a Pseudo-Fibrous Peat", Trinity College Dublin, Ireland (Principal supervisor: B.C. O'Kelly), In PhD Theses: 2013. Géotechnique, 65, (8), 2015, ppw8-, Published Abstract, PUBLISHED
O'Kelly B.C., Some current geotechnical research at Trinity College Dublin, with a focus on instrumentation and monitoring, COST Action TU1202 - Working Group 2 workshop: slopes monitoring data knowledge exchange, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Imperial College, London, 13th May 2014, 2014, 6pp, Notes: [European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST) Action TU1202 - Addressing the impacts of climate change on engineered slopes for infrastructure], Invited Talk, PUBLISHED
O'Kelly B.C., Some current geotechnical research at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland India Concrete Research Initiative (IICRI) Group Workshop on Research Collaborations with Structural Engineering Staff at Trinity College Dublin, Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland, 15th August 2014, 2014, Ireland India Concrete Research Initiative Group, 12pp, Invited Talk, PUBLISHED
News Feature. In: Construction and Property News Magazine, "Vacuum consolidation improves peat ground conditions", Construction and Property News, 36, (7 (June)), 2010, p25 - 25, Notes: [One page News Feature on the TCD/NRA Vacuum Consolidation Field Trail at Ballydermot Bog reported in Construction & Property News Magazine], Journal Article, PUBLISHED
Osorio J.P., Farrell E.R., O'Kelly B.C. and McElvaney J., Design approach for improving rampart roads, Young European Arena of Research website, Extended abstract, 2008, Conference Paper, PUBLISHED
O'Kelly B.C., Development and uses of the UCD hollow cylinder apparatus, Invited academic presentation, Urban Institute Ireland, University College Dublin, Ireland, 27th July, 2007, Invited Talk, PRESENTED
Geotechnical research Trinity College Dublin, The Irish Scientist Year Book 2005, 13, 2005, pp90 - [Farrell E.R, Orr T.L.L and O'Kelly B.C], Item in dictionary or encyclopaedia, etc, PUBLISHED
O'Kelly B.C. and Naughton P.J., Irish researchers develop automated anisotropic test kit, Ground Engineering, 36, (4), 2003, p7 (News feature) , Journal Article, PUBLISHED
O'Kelly, B.C., The Influence of Particle Shape Distribution on Magnesium Sulphate Soundness Values, Department of Civil Engineering, University College Dublin, Internal report, 1992, Notes: [Mentor: Dr Mark Richardson (UCD)], Report, PUBLISHED
O'Kelly B.C., The Magnesium Sulphate Soundness Values of Selected Irish Aggregates, Report commissioned by F.Z. Norman, Cement Roadstone Holdings plc., Department of Civil Engineering, University College Dublin, September, 1991, Notes: [Mentor: Dr Mark Richardson (UCD)], Report, PUBLISHED


Award Date
Fellow of Trinity College Dublin, FTCD (awarded on the grounds of distincition in research and scholarship) 2010
Fellow of The Institution of Engineers of Ireland, FIEI 2008
Fellow Geological Society, London, FGS 2004
Pierse-Newman Fellowship in Civil Engineering, University College Dublin (first recipient) 1998-2000
Award recipient for best paper in geotechnical engineering at 2010 Conference on Bridge and Concrete Research in Ireland (BCRI) [Osorio J.P., Farrell E.R. and O'Kelly B.C., Peat improvement under vacuum preloading: A novel approach for bog roads in Ireland. Vol. 1, pp. 255 - 262] 2010
Research Fellowship in Soil Mechanics, University College Dublin 1996-98
Cement Roadstone Holdings Research Scholarship, Cement Roadstone Holdings plc. 1991
Geotechnical Research Award, Institution of Engineers of Ireland 1992/93 and 1993/94
Clara-Abbott Scholarship Award, Clara-Abbott Foundation, Illinois 1988/89, 1989/90, 1990/91 and 1991/92
Environmental Research Award, Lord Edward Fitzgerald Memorial Fund, University College Dublin 1992/93
Research Demonstratorship in Civil Engineering, University College Dublin 1992/93 and 1993/94
Scholar at University College Dublin (awarded on basis of fourth-year Annual Examinations in Civil Engineering) 1991/92
Scholar at University College Dublin (awarded on basis of third-year Annual Examinations in Civil Engineering) 1990/91
Soil Mechanics; Geotechnical Engineering; Geoenvironmental Engineering; Environmental Geotechnics. My research expertise encompasses the following areas: 1. Bespoke ground improvement technologies, which can be categorized into three main themes, as follows: (a) Nanoparticles, bioploymers, MICP, polyelectrolytes, cement and lime; (b) Granular columns and anchors, geosynthetics and embedded pile walls; (c) Ground improvement for peat deposits. 2. Geotechnics of biosolids, sewage sludge and water-treatment residue materials. 3. Monopile foundations for offshore wind turbines. 4. Axial monotonic and cyclic loading of open and closed-ended piles and footings. 5. Geomechanical behaviour/properties of peat, including effective-stress strength properties and constitutive modelling. 6. Atterberg limits determination. 7. Generalised stress path testing of sand using a hollow cylinder apparatus. 8. Water content determinations for peat and other highly organic soils using the oven drying method. More detailed descriptions of these research are included in the Projects Section below.