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Christopher J Earls

  • Christopher J Earls
  • Dept: Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Title: Professor
  • Address: Room 365 Hollister Hall
  • Phone: 607 255-1652
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Earls' research involves the development and application of new computational techniques for the study of important problems involving solids and structures. Coupling the principled treatment of uncertainty with these computational approaches facilitates the solution of complex inverse problems. Such inverse problems arise naturally as part of Earls' research: through the development of novel model-based structural health monitoring strategies.

Earls is a member of the United States Association for Computational Mechanics (USACM), the International Association on Computational Mechanics (IACM), and the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM).

Research Interests

Earls' Group is concerned with developing novel algorithmic and computational approaches that enable new understanding concerning the actual condition, and future performance of complex structural systems. Practical challenges concerning the principled treatment of uncertainty, sparse sensing, and the complex multi-physics response modalities of the real-world are motivational in our work. The intellectual themes that underpin our research are: computational mechanics, high performance computing, and applied mathematics. Problems of interest to us occur in the domains of engineering and applied science.

Teaching Interests

Earls' teaching focus is on undergraduate design of metal structures and structural mechanics, as well as computational mechanics at the graduate level.

Service Interests

Earls is a member of the United States Association for Computational Mechanics, the International Association on Computational Mechanics, and the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics.

Selected Publications

  • Earls, Christopher J. 2013. "Condition assessment and performance prognosis in complex structural systems." Paper presented at 4th New York Conference on Applied Mathematics, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York
  • Earls, Christopher J., H. M. Reed. 2013. "Stochastic identification of the damage condition of a ship bow section under model uncertainty." Ocean Engineering.
  • Reed, H. M., Christopher J Earls. 2013. "Stochastic identification of imperfections in a submerged shell structure." Computer Methods in Applied Mechanics and Engineering.
  • Earls, Christopher J. 2013. "Bayesian inference of hidden corrosion in steel bridge connections: non-contact and sparse contact approaches." Mechanical Systems and Signal Processing 44 (1-2): 420-432.
  • Earls, Christopher J., R. Sternfels. 2013. "Reduced order model tracking and interpolation to solve PDE-based inverse problems." Inverse Problems 29: 075014.

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Selected Awards and Honors

  • James and Mary Tien Excellence in Teaching Award (Cornell University College of Engineering) 2011
  • Selected Visiting Post Graduate Program Lecturer (South African Institute of Steel Construction) 2005
  • Outstanding Young Alumni Award (The Charles E. Via Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Virginia Tech) 2004
  • Outstanding Professor of the Year Award (American Society of Civil Engineers, Pittsburgh Section) 2001
  • William Kepler Whiteford Faculty Fellow (University of Pittsburgh) 2000


  • BS (Civil Engineering), Virginia Tech, 1990
  • MS (Civil Engineering), Virginia Tech, 1992
  • Ph D (Civil Engineering), University of Minnesota, 1995