Department of

Civil and Environmental Engineering



Kavanagh Lecture - Abstract

March 30, 2006

Engineering for Security


Jeremy Isenberg
Recently Retired President and CEO
Weidlinger Associates, Inc.


This paper considers the technology available for protecting facilities such as buildings, bridges, tunnels and transportation terminals against terrorist attack. It describes briefly the development and status of testing and computer simulation of blast effects starting with nuclear weapons testing and simulation during the Cold War and proceeding to the threat of chemical explosive attacks on civilian targets. Rational methods for prioritizing facilities and hardening projects within complex facilities are discussed and the role of insurance, whose future is uncertain at the time of writing, is noted. Finally, future directions of the technology and of the terrorist hazard to be addressed are speculated upon.