Rafi Muhanna, Ph.D.

Title: 
Associate Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering & Director, Center for Reliable Engineering Computing
Phone: 
(912) 966-7931
Fax: 
(912) 966-7928
Building-Room: 
PARB 221
Web Sites:
Education: 
  • Ph.D., Higher Institute for Structure and Architecture, Sofia, Bulgaria, 1979
  • M.Sc., Higher Institute for Structure and Architecture, Sofia, Bulgaria, 1976
  • B.Sc., University of Damascus, Damascus, Syria, 1972
Research Interests: 
  • Computational solid and structural mechanics
  • Uncertainty modeling
  • Reliable engineering computing
  • Structural reliability
  • Finite elements
Biography: 

Dr. Muhanna’s research activity is in the general area of computational solid and structural mechanics that includes uncertainty modeling, structural reliability, computational reliability, shell theory, and optimization of masonry building materials in structural systems. This research activity has culminated in the development of new methods for reliable engineering computing, establishment of the Center for Reliable Engineering Computing (REC) at GT-Savannah, and organizing and hosting international NSF-sponsored workshops on reliable engineering computing during September 2004, February 2006, and February 2008. Dr. Muhanna has won a number of international prizes, among them: the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, the largest architecture prize in the world (1992); the Golden Prize of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), for the best exposed patent at the International Fair of Damascus (1988); and the Special Prize of the United Nations HABITAT (1989).

Honors:

  • Award from the Government of Syria, 1993. For the structural analysis and design of the Unknown Soldier Memorial, Damascus.
  • The Aga Khan Award for Architecture, 1992. In recognition of the new cylindrical shell structural system without steel reinforcement, flexibility in construction, and economy.One of the most prestigious international architectural awards in the world, for recognition of architectural excellence. Awarded triennially. The award is announced in more than 150 specialized journals and approximately 400 newspapers throughout the world.
  • The Silver Medal of the Fifth Biennale of Architecture Interarch '89, 1989, Sofia.
  • The Special Prize of the United Nations Center for Human Settlements (HABITAT), 1989.
  • The Gold Prize of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), 1988, United Nations Organization, Geneva.

Articles:

  • Zalewski, B.F., Mullen, R. L. and Muhanna, R. L., "Interval Boundary Element Method in the Presence of Uncertain Boundary Conditions, Integration, and Truncation Errors," Journal of Engineering Analysis with Boundary Elements. 2009 (In press- Available online 27 September 2008)
  • Zhang, Hao., Muhanna, Rafi. L., "Interval Approach for Nondeterministic Linear Static Finite Element Method in Continuum Mechanics Problems, "International Journal of Reliability and Safety. 2009 (In press)
  • Muhanna, R., Mullen, R., and Zhang, H., "Interval Finite Element as a Basis for Generalized Models of Uncertainty in Engineering Mechanics," Reliable Computing Journal, Springer Netherlands, Vol. 13, No. 2, pp. 173-194, 2007.
  • Muhanna, R. L., Mullen, R. L., and Zhang, H.," Combined Axial and Bending Stiffness in Interval Finite Element Methods, "Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, Vol. 133, No. 12, pp. 1700-1709, 2007.
  • Muhanna, R., Mullen, R., and Zhang, H., "Interval Finite Element as a Basis for Generalized Models of Uncertainty in Engineering Mechanics, Reliable Computing Journal, Springer Netherlands, 2005 (accepted)
  • Muhanna, R. L., Mullen, R. L., and Zhang, H. "Penalty-Based Solution for the Interval Finite Element Methods," Journal of Engineering Mechanics, ASCE, Vol. 131, No. 10, pp. 1102-1111 2005.
  • Modares-Zadeh, M., Mullen, R., L. and Muhanna, R. L. "Uncertainty Analysis of the Dynamics of Structures Using the Interval Finite Element Method, "Journal of Engineering Mechanics, ASCE, 2005 (accepted)
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L., "Fundamental Concepts for Interval-based Finite Element Formulations," Journal of Reliable Computing, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2005 (tentatively accepted)
  • Muhanna, R. L., Mullen, R. L., and Zhang, H.," Combined Axial and Bending Stiffness in Interval Finite Element Methods," Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, 2005 (accepted)
  • Pereira, S., Mello, U., Nelson, M.,and Muhanna R., L. "Uncertainty in Thermal Basin Modeling: An Interval Finite Element Approach, " Journal of Reliable Computing, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2005 (accepted)
  • Zhang, H. and Muhanna, R. Finite Element Analysis for Structures with Interval Parameters, proceedings of the 9th ASCE joint Specialty Conference on Probabilistic Mechanics and Structural Reliability, New Mexico, July 26-28, 2004
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L., " Fundamental Concepts for Interval-based Finite Element Formulations, "Journal of Reliable Computing, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2003, (tentatively accepted)
  • Muhanna, R. L., Mullen, R. L., and Zhang, H., " Penalty-Based Solution for the Interval Finite Element Methods, " Journal of Engineering Mechanics, ASCE, 2003 (in review)
  • Muhanna, R. L., Mullen, R. L., and Zhang, H.," Combined Axial and Bending Stiffness in Interval Finite Element Methods, " Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, 2003 (in review)
  • Modares-Zadeh, M., Mullen, R., L. and Muhanna, R. L. "Uncertainty Analysis of the Dynamics of Structures Using the Interval Finite Element Method, "Journal of Engineering Mechanics, ASCE, 2003 (in review)
  • Pereira, S., Mello, U., Nelson, M.,and Muhanna R., L. "Uncertainty in Thermal Basin Modeling: An Interval Finite Element Approach, " Journal of Mathematical Geology, 2003 (in review)
  • Mullen, R. L. and Muhanna, R. L. "Efficient Interval Methods for Finite Element Solution, " High Performance Computing Systems and Applications, IEEE, editors: Almhana J. N. and Bhavsar V. C., 2002.
  • Mhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L., " Critical Issues in the Application of Interval Methods to Finite Element Analysis, " proceedings of SCAN2002, 10th GAMM - IMACS International Symposium on Scientific Computing, Computer Arithmetic, and Validated Numerics, Paris, France, September, 24-27, 2002.
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L., " Treatment Of Geometric Tolerances In Finite Element Analysis," International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Systems, Vol. 4, No. 1, pp 143-162, 2001.(Invited contribution)
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L., " Uncertainty in Mechanics Problems - Interval-Based Approach, "Journal of Engineering Mechanics, ASCE, Vol. 127, No. 6, pp 557-566, 2001.
  • Mullen, R. L. and Muhanna, R., L., "Sharp Interval Estimates for Finite Element Solutions with Fuzzy Material Properties, " proceedings of the 14th ASCE Engineering Mechanics Conference, The University of Texas at Austin, May 21-24, 2000.
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L., "Sharp Enclosure for Material Uncertainty in Solid and Structural Mechanics-Interval Based Approach, Part II, " proceedings of the Eighth ASCE Joint Specialty Conference on Probabilistic Mechanics and Structural Reliability University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, Indiana July 24-26, 2000.
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L., "Sharp Enclosure for Material Uncertainty in Solid and Structural Mechanics-Interval Based Approach, Part I, " proceedings of the Eighth ASCE Joint Specialty Conference on Probabilistic Mechanics and Structural Reliability University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, Indiana July 24-26, 2000.
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L., "Sharp Rigorous Bounds On Interval Estimates For Finite Solutions With Uncertain Material Properties, " proceedings of the 2000 NSF Design & Manufacturing Research Conference, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, January 3-6, 2000.
  • Mullen, R. L. and Muhanna, R. L. "Bounds of Structural Response for All Possible Loadings, " Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE, Vol. 125, No. 1, pp 98-106, 1999.
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L., "Formulation of Fuzzy Finite Element Methods for Mechanics Problems, " Computer-Aided Civil and Infrastructure Engineering (previously Microcomputers in Civil Engineering), Vol.14, pp 107-117,1999.(Invited contribution)
  • Mullen, R. L. and Muhanna, R. L., "Interval Based Finite Element Methods, " Recent Advances in Numerical Methods and Applications, editors: Iliev O. P., Kaschiev M. S., Margenov S. D., Sendov Bl. H., Vassilevski P. S., World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., 1999.
  • Mullen, R. L. and Muhanna, R., L., "Interval-Based Geometric and Material Uncertainty for Mechanics Problems," proceedings of the 13th ASCE Engineering Mechanics Division Conference, The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, June 13-16, 1999.
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L., "Interval based Methods for Load and Stiffness Uncertainty in Computer-Aided Analysis, " proceedings of the 1999 NSF Design & Manufacturing Grantees Conference, Queen Mary, Long Beach, CA, January 5-8, 1999. http://www.usc.edu/dept/ise/NSF/proceedings/.
  • Muhanna, R., Ballarini, R. and R. Mullen, "Calculation of Stress Intensity Factors with Fuzzy Loading, " proceedings of the 4-th International Conference on Stochastic Structural Dynamics, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN, USA, Aug. 6-8, 1998.http://www.nd.edu/~ssd98/.
  • Yang Y, Mulholland JA (1997). "Distribution of Oxygenated and Unoxygenated Aromatics from Phenol Pyrolysis at Low Temperatures," Organohalogen Compounds, 31, 465-468.
  • Muhanna, Rafi L., Ayyub, Bilal M. "Uncertainty Analysis of Structural Strength of Stiffened Panels," Naval Engineers Journal, Vol. 108, No. 3, pp 399-418, 1996.
  • Mullen, R. L. and Muhanna, R. L. "Structural Analysis with Fuzzy-Based Load Uncertainty, " proceedings of the 7th ASCE EMD/STD Joint Specialty Conference on Probabilistic Mechanics and Structural Reliability, WP I, MA, pp 310-313, August 7-9, 1996.
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Ayyub, B. M. "Modeling Geometric Uncertainties of Continuum Structures for Reliability Assessment Purposes, " proceedings of ISUMA-NAFIPS'95, pp 705-710, September 17-20, 1995.
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L. "Development of Interval Based Methods for Fuzziness in Continuum Mechanics, " proceedings of ISUMA-NAFIPS'95, pp 145-150, September 17-20, 1995.
  • Muhanna, R. L., "A New Assumed Natural Strain Formulation of the Shallow Shell Element," Communications in Numerical Methods in Engineering, Vol. 9, pp 989-1004, 1993.
  • Muhanna, R. L., "Local Building Materials and a New System for Houses and Buildings, " The First Symposium on Quality Control of Structures And Building Materials, Sana'a, Yemen, January 1990.
  • Muhanna, R. L., "The Policies of Planning and Design of Earthquake Resistant Constructions," Symposium on December '82 Earthquake Relief And Reconstruction Program, Sana'a, Yemen, April 1989.(Invited)
  • Muhanna, Raif L., Muhanna, Rafi L., and Muhanna, Z. L., "Construction System with Natural Stone in Syria, " Journal Architektur (Germany), Vol. 7, 1988.
  • Muhanna, R. L., AL-Hasan, A., and AL-Jabri, L., "New Aspects of a Traditional Material, "Symposium of Low Cost Rural Housing, Dara'a, Syria, September 1982.
  • Muhanna, R. L. "The Analysis of Shallow Shells by Finite Element Method, J. Construction (Bulgaria), Vol. 7, 1978.

Books:

  • Guest Editor, Special issue of the International Journal of Reliability and Safety on Reliable Engineering Computing: Imprecise Probability in Engineering Analysis and Design, in press (part I), 2009.
  • Guest Editor, Special issue of the International Journal of Reliability and Safety on Reliable Engineering Computing: Imprecise Probability in Engineering Analysis and Design, in press (part II), 2009.
  • Editor, Proceedings of the NSF International workshop on Reliable Engineering Computing "Imprecise Probability in Engineering Analysis and Design," Georgia Tech, February 2008, 479 pp
  • Guest Editor, Special issue of International Journal of Reliability and Safety on Reliable Engineering Computing (to appear 2008).
  • Guest Editor, Special issue of Reliable Computing Journal on Reliable Engineering Computing, Vol. 13, No. 1, (part II), 2007.
  • Guest Editor, Special issue of Reliable Computing Journal on Reliable Engineering Computing, Vol. 13, No. 2, (part III), 2007.
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L., Interval Methods for Reliable Computing, Chapter in Reliability Design Handbook, CRC Press LLC, ISBN 0-8493-1180-2, edited by Efsratios Nikolaidis and Dan Ghiocel, to be published February 2004
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L., Interval Methods for Reliable Computing, Chapter in Reliability Design Handbook, CRC Press LLC, ISBN 0-8493-1180-2, edited by Efsratios Nikolaidis and Dan Ghiocel, 2005

Proceedings:

  • B.F. Zalewski, R.L. Mullen, R.L. Muhanna, "Boundary Element Analysis of Systems UsingInterval Methods", Proceedings of the NSF Workshop on Reliable Engineering Computing, 2006.
  • Mullen, R. L. and Muhanna, R. L. "Efficient Interval Methods for Finite Element Solution," Proceedings of the High Performance Computing Systems and Applications, IEEE, editors: Almhana J. N. and Bhavsar V. C., 2002.
  • Modares, M., Mullen, R., Muhanna, R., and Zhang, H., "Buckling Analysis of Structures with Uncertain Properties and Loads Using an Interval Finite Element Method," Proceeding of NSF Workshop on Reliable Engineering, Georgia Tech, Savannah, GA, 2004.
  • Muhanna, R., Mullen, R. and Zhang, H., Interval Finite Element as a Basis for Generalized Models of Uncertainty in Engineering Mechanics, Proceeding of NSF Workshop on Reliable Engineering, Georgia Tech, Savannah, GA, 2004.
  • Modares, M., Mullen, R., Bellini, P., and Muhanna, R., Buckling Analysis of Structures with Interval Parameters, Proceeding of the 2005 SAE World Congress, Reliability and Robust Design in Automotive Engineering, Detroit, Michigan, April 11-14, 2005.
  • Zhang, H., Muhanna, R. Mullen, R., "Finite Element Analysis for Uncertain Structures: An Interval Approach," Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Structural Safety and Reliability (ICOSSAR 2005), Rome, Italy, June 19-23, 2005 (accepted).

Patents:

  • Development of Java based interval calculatorThis Interval Calculator is a JAVA-SWING and C++ based application, it can be run locally or as a Web computing tool. Developed by Center of Reliable Engineering Computing (REC), Georgia Tech Savannah. Unlike conventional calculators, this interval calculator is a generalized scientific calculator that works beyond the dimensions of conventional arithmetic and intended for reliable computations. It is capable of displaying computer representations of numbers. Developed to serve as a student learning tool as well as a scientific calculator for engineering community to explore the new dimensions of interval arithmetic in validating computing. It operates under three modes, single/double precision, and their combinations. (2003)
  • Established the Center for Reliable Computing (REC), GTSAV The centers objectives are the development of methods and tools for reliable engineering computing, the promotion of reliable computing in the different fields of engineering and fostering interdisciplinary collaborations between engineering disciplines, computer science and mathematics on one hand, and with industry on the other hand. In addition, the center will focus on promoting the international effort in this endeavor and will seek to host activities in this aspect. The focus of REC is based on, but not limited to, interval analysis.http://www.gtrep.gatech.edu/rec/ (2002)
  • 2001Established the Computational Mechanics Laboratory at GTREP, including:A35-WRF2-Sun Fire 280R Server (dual 750 Ultra SPARC-III processors, 8MB E-cache, 4GB memory, two 36GB hard disks).Two Sun Blade-100 (500Mhz/UltraSPARC-Ie, 256 KB L2 Cache, Expert3D-Graphics, 256 Mbyte SDRAM/15-Gbyte Internal).Software (Finite Element software, Sun Forte developer including Fortran, C, C++ compilers, and Interval Math Library).
  • Patent, 60/026085, September 13, 1996 Device and Method for Evaluation of Mechanical Behavior for All Possible Loading Combinations, U. S., provisional
  • Patent No. 4219, May 30, 1988 for A New System for the Construction of Houses and Buildings using Natural Stone Shells, Syria.

Presentations:

  • Zhang, Hao and Muhanna, Rafi L. "Interval Estimates of Structural Reliability, "Proceedings of the 10th International Conference on Structural Safety and Reliability (ICOSSAR 2009), Osaka, Japan, September 13-17, 2009.
  • Invited scholar by the Collaborative Research Center 528, German National Science Foundation (DFG), TU Dresden, Germany, June 19, 2007.
  • Sun HPC Consortium, Phoenix, Arizona, November 15-16, 2003. Title: Towards Reliable Engineering Computing-Interval Finite Element Methods
  • Muhanna, R. L., "Modeling of Engineering Systems Under Uncertainty-Interval-Based Approach, " JANNAF Workshop on Simulation-Based Design in the Face of Uncertainty, July 20, 2003, Huntsville, Alabama.
  • Muhanna, R. L., Mullen, R. L., and Zhang, H., "Penalty-Based Solution for the Interval Finite Element Methods, " First Scandinavian Workshop on Interval Methods And Their Applications, August 14-16, 2003,Technical University of Denmark, Copenhagen, Denmark.
  • Invited lecture at Georgia Institute of Technology, Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, Structural graduate seminar, November 25, 2003."Reliable Engineering Computing. "
  • Mullen, R. L. and Muhanna, R., L., " Information Content, Finite Element Analysis, and Interval Methods, " Validated Computing 2002, A SIAM Workshop, Toronto, Canada, May 23-25, 2002.
  • Muhanna, R. L. and Mullen, R. L., "Critical Issues in the Application of Interval Methods to Finite Element Analysis, " SCAN2002, 10th GAMM - IMACS International Symposium on Scientific Computing, Computer Arithmetic, and Validated Numerics, Paris, France, September 24-27, 2002.
  • Invited lecture at Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, November, 11,2002.
  • Invited lecture at Petrobras Research Center, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, November, 12,2002.
  • Invited lecture at Northwestern University, NSF Center for Science and Technology of Advanced Cement-Based Materials, Evanston IL, March 15, 1992.
  • Invited lecture at Cleveland State University, Cleveland, Ohio, April 22, 1992.
  • Invited lecture at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio, June 5, 1992.
  • "Building Materials and Development of Ductile Brick."
  • "Conventional Masonry Building Materials in Contemporary Structural Systems."
  • "Finite Element in Shells, A New Assumed Natural Strain Formulation of the Shallow Shell Element."
  • "Fundamental Concepts for Interval-based Finite Element Formulations." (Invited)
  • "Modeling of Engineering Systems Under Uncertainty."
  • Zhang, H. and Muhanna, R. Finite Element Analysis for Structures with Interval Parameters, ASCE joint Specialty Conference on Probabilistic Mechanics and Structural Reliability, New Mexico, July 26-28, 2004.
  • Modares, M., Mullen, R., Muhanna, R., and Zhang, H., "Buckling Analysis of Structures with Uncertain Properties and Loads Using an Interval Finite Element Method," NSF Workshop on Reliable Engineering, Georgia Tech, Savannah, GA, 2004.
  • Muhanna, R., Mullen, R. and Zhang, H., Interval Finite Element as a Basis for Generalized Models of Uncertainty in Engineering Mechanics, NSF Workshop on Reliable Engineering, Georgia Tech, Savannah, GA, 2004.
  • Modares, M., Mullen, R., Bellini, P., and Muhanna, R., Buckling Analysis of Structures with Interval Parameters, the 2005 SAE World Congress, Reliability and Robust Design in Automotive Engineering, Detroit, Michigan, April 11-14, 2005.
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