Dr Hwa Kian Chai

Senior Lecturer



+44(0)131 6507153


3.16 William Rankine Building

Engineering Discipline: 

  • Civil and Environmental Engineering

Research Institute: 

  • Infrastructure and Environment

Research Theme: 

  • Tomography
  • Institute for Infrastructure and Environment Themes
  • Infrastructure Sensing and Systems
  • Structural Engineering
  • Materials and Structures
Dr Hwa Kian Chai
Dr Hwa Kian Chai


I am a Senior Lecturer in Civil Engineering. I spent years working as researcher, engineer and university academic in Malaysia and Japan before joining Edinburgh. I have amassed good experience in research and application in the fields of structures and construction materials, with specific focuses in structural repair and retrofit, low carbon cementitious materials, condition monitoring and non-destructive evaluation of structures. 

Academic Qualifications: 

BEng(Hons) in Civil Engieering (Universiti Sains Malaysia)
MEngSc in Concrete Materials (Universiti Malaya)
PhD in Civil Engineering (Osaka University)

Professional Qualifications and Memberships: 

  • Chartered Member of Institution of Structural Engineers
  • Fellow of Higher Education Academy
  • Senior Member of International Union of Laboratories and Experts in Construction Materials, Systems and Structures (RILEM) 
  • Member of British Institute of Non-destructive Testing "Civil Engineering Group"
  • Graduate Member of Board of Engineers Malaysia


  • Detailed Design of Structures 3 CIVE09029 - Lecturer
  • Structural Design Philosophy 3 CIVE09033 - Course Organiser and Lecturer
  • Plastic Analysis of Frames and Slabs CIVE10003 - Course Organiser and Lecturer
  • Concrete Structures 4 CIVE10029 - Course Organiser and Lecturer
  • Interdisciplinary Group Design Project (Engineering) SCEE11010 - Lecturer
  • Interdisciplinary Group Design Project 4 SCEE11014 - Course organiser and Lecturer

Research Interests: 

  • Acoustic emission based structural health monitoring
  • Elastic wave motion modelling and tomographic reconstruction
  • Concrete material decarbonisation
  • Data-driven and machine learning approaches for infrastructure sensing
  • Structural damage assessment and failure risk analysis


  • Reinforced concrete structures modelling, analysis and design
  • Acoustic emission monitoring and data analysis
  • Low carbon cementitious composite materials development
  • Elastic wave tomography development and implementation
  • Structural appraisal, strengthening and retrofit

Further Information: 

Accepting PhD projects.