A course on Forensic Engineering

On September 6th 2019, Sébastien Travadel and Enrico Zio of the CRC presented a new course to the students of the first year of the “civil engineer” cycle at MINES ParisTech. Forensic Engineering studies the dysfunctions of industrial systems, from simple breakdown to disaster, in order to better control their performance. The material aspects, but also the human, the organization and the social expectations are fully integrated into the reflection. The analysis can be conducted “before” (accident survey), “after” (reliability study) or even predictive (approach increasingly developed in “condition monitoring”).

The 3-week “Forensic Engineering” courseaims to educate future engineers on all aspects of this essential component of engineering: origins and current developments (through the generalization of experience); future challenges (with special attention to predictive maintenance and “digital twins”); post-accident investigation techniques; methods of demonstrating reliability in design; epistemological frameworks and logical foundations.

A fire burns at a fertilizer plant in West, Texas after an explosion Wednesday April 17, 2013