DFI Announces Winner of 2015 Young Professor Paper Competition 

November 30, 2015, Hawthorne NJ: Aaron S. Bradshaw, Ph.D., P.E., from University of Rhode Island, is the winner of this year's DFI Educational Trust Young Professor Paper Competition for his paper, "Pile Load Transfer from Static Loading Test Inversions." Bradshaw's paper presents an inversion approach to estimate the distribution of load at depth in a deep foundation from the load-movement curve measured at the head. The method may be useful in situations where static loading tests have been performed on test piles that are not instrumented with strain gages or telltales, or the instrumentation data are unreliable. An inversion approach is described in detail that includes a simple elastic-perfectly plastic 't-z' pile model and a genetic algorithm. The inversion approach is validated using high quality pile loading test data from the literature.

Bradshaw earned his B.S. in civil engineering in 1996 from Tufts University, his M.S. in ocean engineering in 1999 from the University of Rhode Island and his Ph.D. in civil engineering in 2006 from the University of Rhode Island. He worked as a geotechnical engineering consultant at Hart Crowser in Seattle, Wash., from 2000 to 2003. Bradshaw has been a faculty member in the civil and environmental engineering department at the University of Rhode Island since 2011 and is currently an assistant professor. His research interests include the performance of deep foundations and marine anchoring systems and the dynamic behavior of soils.

The first runner-up for the Young Professor Paper Competition is C. Guney Olgun, Ph.D, Virginia Tech. His paper is titled "Experimental Investigation of Thermal Pile Response under Heating and Cooling Loads."

The awards were presented at the DFI 40th Annual Conference on Deep Foundations in October 2015 in Oakland, Calif. Bradshaw presented his paper to conference attendees. The competition papers will be published in a future issue of the DFI Journal.

About the DFI Educational Trust: The Deep Foundations Institute Educational Trust ( is an independent, 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization established in 2006 by the Deep Foundations Institute (DFI) as its charitable arm. The mission of the Trust is to support and encourage individuals in the fields of study related to the deep foundation industry by providing scholarships and opportunities to meet and work with deep foundation industry leaders.

About the Deep Foundations Institute (DFI)
DFI ( is an international association of contractors, engineers, suppliers, academics and owners in the deep foundations industry. Our multi-disciplinary membership creates a consensus voice and a common vision for continual improvement in the planning, design and construction of deep foundations and excavations. We bring together members for networking, education, communication and collaboration. With our members, we promote the advancement of the deep foundations industry through technical committees, educational programs and conferences, publications, research, government relations and outreach. DFI has more than 3,300 members worldwide.

Aaron S. Bradshaw, Ph.D., P.E., receiving award from David Coleman, past chair of the DFI Educational Trust