Professor Kyle Rollins was selected to give the 2014 Osterberg Memorial Lecture by the Deep Foundation Institute. Named in honor of Jorj Osterberg, one of the true pioneers of geotechnical engineering, the lecture is intended to recognize innovations in deep foundations construction related to engineering design, testing and education - all aspects of Jorj Osterberg's lifelong contributions. Osterberg has long been recognized for his innovations in soil sampling and testing (including his inventions: the Osterberg Sampler and the Osterberg Cell). Dr. Osterberg enjoyed a long and distinguished career as a teacher and consultant; he was Professor Emeritus of Civil Engineering, Northwestern University. Past award recipients include: Jean-Louis Briaud, Dan Brown, John Schmertmann, Bengt Fellenius and Clyde Baker.
Dr. Rollins was honored for his pioneering work related to the behavior of deep foundations in liquefiable sands. Rather than waiting for an earthquake, Rollins has employed small explosive charges to liquefy sand and then loaded full-scale foundations both laterally and axially within this liquefied volume. Load has been applied by high-speed hydraulic rams and by the Statnamic rocket sled device which can simulate the loading rate observed in earthquakes. Tests using blast liquefaction have been performed in San Francisco, Charleston, South Carolina, Vancouver, Canada, and most recently in Christchurch, New Zealand. Dr. Rollins gave his lecture entitled “Deep Foundation Behavior in Liquefied Sand Based on Blast Liquefaction Testing” on April 30, 2014 in Greensboro, North Carolina.