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Research group

Infrastructure Group

Coastal windturbines at sunset

The Infrastructure Research Group has expertise across structural and geotechnical engineering. We address research challenges found onshore and offshore, supporting sustainability and resilience.

Part of Engineering


The Infrastructure Research Group focuses on the sustainability and resilience of civil engineering infrastructure, to address societal needs in energy, mobility and the built environment. 

We have expertise across structural and geotechnical engineering, and we work on projects and technologies on land and in the ocean. We are a group of around 15 academics, working with a team of Research Fellows and PhD students and a network of collaborators across industry, government and other stakeholders. 

We are based at Boldrewood Innovation Campus in the National Infrastructure Laboratory (NIL), which is equipped with modern facilities for data-rich structural testing at large and small scale, as well as accelerated small scale geotechnical testing using a centrifuge. 

Most of our activities fit 3 main themes: 

  • Offshore renewable energy: Our work supports the growth of offshore wind, wave and tidal energy as well as the emergence of the green hydrogen economy. We have a particular strength in offshore geotechnics and host the Intelligent & Resilient Ocean Engineering (IROE) RAEng Chair in Emerging Technology.
  • Low carbon transport: We have world-leading expertise in the geomechanics of linear infrastructure, built on long-standing collaborations with the railway industry, including the UK’s Network Rail and through the UK Rail Research and Innovation Network (UKRRIN).
  • Resilient buildings and infrastructure: We have wide-ranging expertise in structural materials and system performance, spanning concrete, steel and timber, and targeting higher performance for lower carbon. We also specialise in resilience against natural and man-made hazards, including earthquakes, tsunamis and blast.

We engage strongly with transdisciplinary initiatives, to broaden the reach of our activity. Examples include the Southampton Marine & Maritime Institute and the International Blast Injury Research Network

We provide specialist training courses on specific topics to industry. We also engage with industry on a consultancy basis and to aid knowledge transfer from research to practice.

People, projects, publications and PhDs


Dr Tristan Rees-White

Senior Research Fellow

Professor William Powrie

Professor of Geotechnical Engineering

Research interests

  • Railway track and trackbed behaviour and performance.
  • Geotechnical transportation infrastructure (earthworks, retaining walls, tunnels).
  • Groundwater and groundwater control.

Accepting applications from PhD students


Address: Boldrewood Campus, Burgess Road, SO16 7QF (View in Google Maps)

Dr Ziliang Zhang

Research Fellow in Bridge Engineering

Related research institutes, centres and groups

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Get in touch

Please contact our administrative officers, Azra Jaffry or Melanie Hallford, with your enquiry.

Civil, Maritime and Environmental Engineering 
Engineering and Physical Sciences 
University of Southampton 
Boldrewood Campus 
Southampton SO16 7QF

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