Associate Professor Charles Clifton

BE (Hons), University of Canterbury, Civil Engineering, 1978 ME, University of Canterbury, Civil Engineering, 1979 PhD, University of Auckland, Civil Engineering, 2005

Biography

  • Associate Professor of Civil Engineering

Charles Clifton graduated from the University of Canterbury with a Bachelor of Civil Engineering (Hons) in 1978 and a Master of Civil Engineering in 1979. From 1979 to 1981 he worked for a major New Zealand consulting engineering firm, (now) Beca Consultants, then from 1981 to 1983 for a joint UK/Saudi Arabian consulting engineering firm in London, RH Sanbar Consultants, Ltd.

In 1983, Charles started the Structural Division of the New Zealand Heavy Engineering Research Association (HERA). He has been an expert advisor to the National Association of Steel Framed Housing (NASH NZ) since its formation 1989, overseeing research into the light steel frame area. The outputs from all this research have been presented to the consulting engineering profession; first as design guides, starting in 1984 and then into new and revised Standards and codes of practice, from 1989.

In 2008, he joined the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, specialising in structural steel and composite engineering in both heavy and light gauge steel. Some of the research he has undertaken there includes ongoing development of robust solutions for heavy and light gauge steel framed buildings in severe fires, establishing good performance of brick veneer on light steel frame buildings, development of seismic resilient solutions for pallet racking systems and further development of design guidance for durability. He is also one of the key people responsible for development and implementation of advanced friction sliding systems for highly seismic resilient structural solutions, which is one of the most exciting new seismic resilient systems being developed worldwide.

He is also the sole Southern Hemisphere representative on the Expert Advisory Group to the National Fire Research Laboratory of NIST, USA, who run the largest and most sophisticated structural fire engineering laboratory in the world.

Charles' work has been recognised with the following recent significant distinctions:

2017  Vice Chancellor’s Commercialisation Medal for role in development of profession and industry.

2017  Velocity Award for the Friction Slipper baseplate for earthquake resistant steel frames.

2017 Life Membership of the Structural Engineering Society.

2021 Life Membership of the New Zealand Society of Earthquake Engineering.

 

Qualifications

Bachelor of Civil Engineering (Second Class Honours Division 1), University of Canterbury (1978)
Master of Civil Engineering, University of Canterbury (1979)
Doctor of Philosophy in Civil Engineering, The University of Auckland (2005)

Research | Current

 

  • Behaviour and design of steel seismic-resisting systems
  • Behaviour and design of steel buildings for fully developed fire conditions, especially in regard to composite floor systems
  • Corrosion rates for steel in above ground and below ground conditions
  • Behaviour and design of composite steel and concrete elements
  • Behaviour and design of light gauge steel, for strength and thermal performance
  • Acoustic performance of buildings and building elements

 

Research groups

  • Materials Accelerator
  • Steel Research Panel
  • Bridge Development Group

Teaching | Current

 

  • CIVIL 718 - Light Gauge Steel
  • CIVIL 713 - Structures and Design 4
  • CIVIL 714 - Multistorey Building Design

Postgraduate supervision

Currently supervising 1 ME Student, Main Supervisor for 7 PhD students and Co-supervisor for 7 PhD students

Distinctions/Honours

2021 Life Membership of the New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering (NZSEE)

2017  Vice Chancellor’s Commercialisation Medal for role in development of profession and industry.

2017  Velocity Award for the Friction Slipper baseplate for earthquake resistant steel frames.

2017  Life Membership of the Structural Engineering Society (SESOC).

2014  Faculty of Engineering Top Fifteen Teachers award.

2011  Special Award for Engineering Services following Christchurch Earthquakes. UoA Awards Recognition Dinner.

2009  Engineering New Zealand Freysinnet Award for Services to Building and Construction.

2009  Institution of Structural Engineers 2009 Global Structural Awards prize for engineering excellence in the healthcare and education sectors.

2008  Keith Smith Award for Distinguished Service to the Metals Industry. Highest award offered by the Metals Industry of New Zealand for outstanding dedication and success in building the technical foundation from which to grow the market share for structural steel.

2008  Standards New Zealand Meritorious Service Award.

2003  Fellow of the New Zealand Society of Earthquake Engineering (FNZSEE).

1998  Fellow of Engineering New Zealand (FEngNZ).

1997  EngNZ Structural Award.

Responsibilities

These are responsibilities that are still current.

2016 to current NZSEE Management Committee Member.

2015 to current: Member of the Expert Advisory Group to the NIST National Fire Research Laboratory, Washington, USA. Only member from the Southern Hemisphere.

2015 to current: Member of Standards Australia Standards New Zealand (SA/SNZ) Committee BD -032 Composite Construction responsible for the inaugural Composite Structures Standard AS/NZS 2327: 2017.

2014 to current: Member of the SA/SNZ BD – 06 Committee Joint Australia/New Zealand Loadings Standard Set.

2012 to current: Member of the European Convention for Constructional Steelwork (ECCS) Technical Committee TC3: Fire Engineering.

2011 to current: Member of the ECCS Technical Committee TC13: Seismic Design.

1992 to current:  Chairman of the Standards New Zealand (SNZ) Committee for the Steel Structures Standard NZS 3404 1989, 1992, 1997 editions and 2001, 2007 Amendments.

1987, 1995, 2010/2011 and 2016 Participant in NZSEE Earthquake Reconnaissance Team Scheme.

1986 to current: Member of the SNZ Loadings Standard Committee.

1985 to current; Technical advisor to the National Association of Steel Framed Housing (NASH).

1984 to current: Principal contributor to structural steel seismic design practice in New Zealand through directing the structural steel seismic research programme covering all major research providers since 1984 and the development of all design guides and technical support publications on this topic. Principal developer of current seismic design practices for steel and composite steel/ concrete buildings in New Zealand. Principal author and technical contributor to Section 12: Seismic Design of the Steel Structures Standard, NZS 3404. Co-author and principal technical contributor to the foundation publication for steel seismic design in New Zealand, HERA Report R4-76. This covers the behaviour of moment resisting and braced framed steel seismic-resisting systems, preliminary design, detailed final design and connection design. From 2008 Course Organiser and principal lecturer for CIVIL 714 teaching multi storey seismic and gravity system design to undergraduates.

 

Areas of expertise

Principal Areas of Technical Expertise:

  1. Behaviour and design of steel seismic-resisting systems
  2. Behaviour and design of steel buildings for fully developed fire conditions, especially in regard to composite floor systems
  3. Corrosion rates for steel in above ground and below ground conditions
  4. Behaviour and design of composite steel and concrete elements
  5. Construction of steel buildings
  6. Behaviour and design of light gauge steel

Secondary Areas of Technical Expertise:

  1. Acoustic performance of steel structures
  2. Performance of steel elements in fatigue
  3. Thermal performance of light steel elements of construction

Committees/Professional groups/Services

 

Professional affiliations

  • Fellow of the Institute of Professional Engineers New Zealand (IPENZ)
  • Fellow of the New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering (NZSEE)
  • Member of the Structural Engineering Society of New Zealand (SESOC)
  • Member of Standards New Zealand Committee on the Loadings Standard and Steel Structures Standard
  • Member of Department of Building and Housing Working Groups on aspects of fire safety design and acoustic performance.

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

As of 29 October 2020 there will be no automatic updating of 'selected publications and creative works' from Research Outputs. Please continue to keep your Research Outputs profile up to date.
  • Chanchi Golondrino, J. C., MacRae, G. A., Chase, J. G., Rodgers, G. W., & Clifton, G. C. (2020). Seismic behaviour of symmetric friction connections for steel buildings. Engineering Structures, 224.10.1016/j.engstruct.2020.111200
  • Jing, J., Clifton, G. C., Roy, K., & Lim, J. B. P. (2020). Three-storey modular steel building with a novel slider device: Shake table tests on a scaled down model and numerical investigation. Thin-Walled Structures, 15510.1016/j.tws.2020.106932
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Krishanu Roy, James Lim
  • Jing, J., Clifton, G. C., Roy, K., & Lim, J. B. P. (2020). Performance of a novel slider device in multi-storey cold-formed steel modular buildings under seismic loading. Structures, 27, 212-246. 10.1016/j.istruc.2020.05.051
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Krishanu Roy, James Lim
  • Jing, J., Clifton, G. C., Roy, K., & Lim, J. B. P. (2020). Seismic protection of modular buildings with bonded rubber unit sliders: Experimental study. Thin-Walled Structures, 15410.1016/j.tws.2020.106790
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Krishanu Roy, James Lim
  • Alizadeh, S., MacRae, G. A., Bull, D., & Clifton, G. C. (2020). Composite gravity beams subject to slab lateral movement. JOURNAL OF CONSTRUCTIONAL STEEL RESEARCH, 17110.1016/j.jcsr.2020.106162
  • Taheri, H., Clifton, G. C., Dong, P., Karpenko, M., Raftery, G. M., & Lim, J. B. P. (2020). The use of effective full penetration of T-butt welds in welded moment connections. WELDING IN THE WORLD, 64 (9), 1503-1519. 10.1007/s40194-020-00941-z
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: James Lim
  • Hashemi, A., Clifton, G. C., Bagheri, H., Zarnani, P., & Quenneville, P. (2020). Proposed design procedure for steel self-centring tension-only braces with resilient connections. STRUCTURES, 25, 147-156. 10.1016/j.istruc.2020.02.024
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Ashkan Hashemi, Pierre Quenneville
  • Maguire, J. R., Teh, L. H., Clifton, G. C., Tang, Z. H., & Lim, J. B. P. (2020). Cross-aisle seismic performance of selective storage racks. Journal of Constructional Steel Research, 168.10.1016/j.jcsr.2020.105999
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/50945
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: James Lim

Contact details

Primary office location

ENGINEERING BLOCK 1 - Bldg 401
Level 10, Room 1016
20 SYMONDS ST
AUCKLAND CENTRAL
AUCKLAND 1010
New Zealand

Secondary office location

B906 STRUCTURES HALL - Bldg 906
Level 2, Room 221
262 KHYBER PASS
NEWMARKET
AUCKLAND 1023
New Zealand