Faculty Directory
Zdeněk P. Bažant

McCormick Institute Professor, Walter P. Murphy Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Material Science and Engineering


2145 Sheridan Road
Tech A135
Evanston, IL 60208-3109

847-491-4025Email Zdeněk Bažant


Personal Profile


Civil and Environmental Engineering

Materials Science and Engineering


Theoretical and Applied Mechanics Graduate Program


C.E. ("Civil Engineer"), 1960, Civil Engineering Czech Technical University in Prague, Prague, Czech Republic

Ph.D., 1963, Engineering Mechanics Czechoslovak Academy of Science, Prague, Czech Republic

Postgraduate Diploma, 1966, Theoretical Physics, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic

Docent (habilitatis), 1967, Concrete Structures, Czech Technical University in Prague, Prague, Czech Republic

Registration: Illinois Registered Structural Engineer (S.E.), since 1971

Research Interests

My interests lie in new interdisciplinary problems of the mechanics of solids and structures, with applications in structural, mechanical and aeronautical engineering, materials science and geophysics. My research group has worked on nonlinear fracture mechanics, size effects and scaling of failure, stability of structures, micromechanics of damage in materials, inelastic constitutive laws, creep and hygrothermal effects in nanoporous materials, chemo-mechanics, failure of fiber composites, hydraulic fracture, impact problems, probabilistic mechanics of quasibrittle structures, plasticity and finite strain, with related numerical methods. Our research, which emphasizes mathematical modeling based on experiments, has been focused on concrete, rock, sea ice, braided and woven composites for automobile crashworthiness, hybrid joints for ships, rigid foams, shape memory alloys, dry snow slabs, fracking of gas shale, probabilistic analysis of quasibrittle failure, especially the tail distribution strength, predictions of creep and shrinkage effects in concrete structures, and applications to gas shale, fiber-polymer composites for aircraft and ships, metallic thin films, reinforced concrete structures and granular materials.

Significant Recognition

  • Member NAS, NAE, AAAS , Royal Society of London; National Academies of Austria, Czech Republic, Italy (dei Lincei), Spain and Lombardy; Academia Europaea, and Eur. Academy of Science and Art
  • 7 honorary doctorates (TU Prague, TU Karlsruhe, UC Boulder, Milan Poly, INSA, TU Vienna, Ohio State)
  • Austrian Cross of Honor for Science and Art, 1st Class” (from President of Austria)
  • ASME Timoshenko, Nadai & Warner Medals
  • ASCE von Karman, Newmark, Biot, Mindlin and Croes Medals and TY Lin, Huber Prize and Lifetime Achievement Awards
  • SES Prager Medal
  • Honorary Member of ASCE, ASME, ACI and RILEM
  • W.Exner Medal, Austria Gov.-Industry Assoc.; RILEM L’Hermite Medal; Am. Ceramic Soc. Roy Award; Torroja Medal (Spain); Solın, Bazant Sr. & Stodola Medals (Czech Rep., Slovakia); IACMAG Outstanding Contrib. Award; ICOSSAR Award; SEAOI Meritorious Paper Award; Best Engrg. Book of the Year (SAP); Medal of Czech Soc. for Mech.; One of the original Top 100 ISI Highly Cited Scientists in Engrg.; Winner of Mathematical Olympics of Czechoslovakia 1955
  • ASCE Created ZP Bazant Medal for Failure and Damage Prevention
  • CSM, Prague, Created ZP Bazant Prize for Engineering Mechanics

Significant Professional Service

  • Past President of Society of Engineering Sciences, Founding President of IA-FraMCoS and of IA-ConCreep
  • Past Editor-in-Chief of ASCE J. of Engineering Mechanics
  • Officer of National Academy of Sciences (NAS), and Chair of several society committees

Selected Publications

    Selected papers in refereed journals (among 500+) and books

    1. Bažant, Z.P., and Cedolin, L. (1991). Stability of Structures: Elastic, Inelastic, Fracture and Damage Theories, Oxford University Press, New York (3rd ed., 2010, 1011 pp.).
    2. Bažant, Z.P., and Planas, J. (1998). Fracture and Size Effect in Concrete and Other Quasibrittle Materials. CRC Press, BocRaton and London (616 pp.).
    3. Jirásek, M., and Bažant, Z.P. (2002). Inelastic Analysis of Structures. J. Wiley & Sons, London and New York (735 pp.).
    4. Bažant, Z.P. (2005). Scaling of Structural Strength. 2nd ed., Elsevier, London.
    5. Bažant, Z.P., and Kaplan, M.F. (1996). Concrete at High Temperatures: Material Properties and Mathematical Models, Longman (Addison-Wesley), London.Bažant, Z.P., and Jirásek, M. (2002). “Nonlocal integral formulations of plasticity and damage: Survey of progress”. ASCE J. of Engrg. Mechanics 128 (11), 1119-1149 (invited ASCE 150th anniversary article).
    6. Bazant, Z.P, and Chau, V.T. (2016). ``Recent advances in global fracture mechanics of growth of large hydraulic crack systems in gas or oil shale: A review". Chapter 13 in  New Frontiers in Oil and Gas Exploration, C. Jin and G. Cusatis, Eds., Springer International, Switzerland.
    7. Chau, Viet T., Bazant. Z.P., and Su, Yewang (2016). ``Growth model for large branched 3D hydraulic crack system in gas or oil shale."  Philosophical Transactions of Royal Society A 374 (issue 2078, Oct.), pp.(doi: 10.1098/rsta.2015.0418).
    8. Bazant, Z.P., Luo, Wen, Chau, Viet T., and Bessa, M.A. (2016). ``Wave dispersion and basic concepts of peridynamics compared to classical nonlocal models."  J. of Applied Mechanics ASME 83 (Nov.) 111004-1---111004-16 (doi: 10.1115/1.4034319).
    9. Kirane, K., Su, Yewang, Bazant, Z.P. (2015). ``Strain-rate dependent microplane model for high-rate comminution of concrete under impact based on kinetic energy release theory."  Proc. Royal Soc. A 471 (Oct.), paper 20150535, pp. 1--8; DOI: 10.1098/rspa.2015.0535.
    10. Bazant, Z.P., and Hubler, M.H. (2014). ``Theory of cyclic creep of concrete based on Paris law for fatigue growth of subcritical microcracks."  J. of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids 63, 187--200.
    11. Hoover, C.G., and Bazant, Z.P. (2014).  ``Universal size-shape effect law based on comprehensive concrete fracture tests."  ASCE J. of Engrg. Mechanics 140 (3), 473--479.
    12. Bazant, Z.P., and Vorel, J. (2014). "Energy-conservation error due to use of Green-Naghdi objective stress rate in commercial finite-element codes and its compensation."  ASME J. of Applied Mechanics 81 (Feb.), pp. 021008-1 -- 121008-5.
    13. Caner, F.C., and Bazant, Z.P. (2013). ``Microplane model M7 for plain concrete: I. formulation."  ASCE J. of Engrg. Mechanics 139 (12), Dec., 1714--1723.
    14. Bazant, Z.P., and Bazant, M.Z. (2012). ``Theory of sorption hysteresis in nanoporous solids: Part I. Snap-through instabilities." J. of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids 60, 1644-1659.
    15. Bazant, Z.P., Yu, Qiang, and Li, Guang-Hua (2012). ``Excessive long-time deflections of prestressed box girders: I. Record-span bridge in Palau and other paradigms."  ASCE J. of Structural Engrg. 138 (6), 676--686.
    16. Bazant, Z.P., Hubler, M.H., and Yu, Qiang (2011). ``Pervasiveness of excessive segmental bridge deflections: A wake-up call for creep."  ACI Structural Journal 108 (6, Nov.-Dec.), 766-774.
    17. Le, Jia-Liang, Bazant, Z.P., and Bazant, M.Z. (2011). ``Unified nano-mechanics based probabilistic theory of quasibrittle and brittle structures: I. Strength, static crack growth, lifetime and scaling." J. of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids 59, 1291--1321.
    18. Bažant, Z.P., and Caner, F.C. (2013). “Comminution of solids caused by kinetic energy of high shear strain rate, with implications for impact, shock and shale fracturing.” Proc., National Academy of Sciences 110 (48), 19291–19294.
    19. Bažant, Z.P., and Caner, F.C. (2014). “Impact comminution of solids due to local kinetic energy of high shear strain rate: I. Continuum theory and turbulence analogy.” J. of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids 64, 223–235 (with Corrigendum, Vol. 67 (2014), p. 14).
    20. Bažant, Z.P., Salviato, M., Chau, Viet t., Viswanathan, H. and Zubelewicz, A. (2014). “Why fracking works.” ASME J. of Applied Mechanics 81 (Oct.), 101010-1—101010-10.
    21. Bažant, Z.P., and Cedolin, L. (1991). Stability of Structures: Elastic, Inelastic, Fracture and Damage Theories, Oxford University Press, New York (3rd ed., 2010, 1011 pp.).
    22. Bažant, Z.P. (2010). “Can multiscale-multiphysics methods predict softening damage and structural failure?” Int. J. for Multiscale Computational Engrg. 8 (1) 61-67.
    23. Bažant, Z.P. (1971). “correlation study of incremental deformations and stability of continuous bodies.” Journal of Applied Mechanics, Trans. ASME, 38, 919-928.
    24. Bažant, Z.P. (1972). “Thermodynamics of interacting continuwith surfaces and creep analysis of concrete structures.” Nuclear Engineering and Design, 20, 477-505.
    25. Bažant, Z.P., and Wu, S. T. (1974). “Thermoviscoelasticity of aging concrete.” J. Engrg. Mech. Div., Am. Soc. Civil Engrs., 100, EM3, 575-597.
    26. Bažant, Z.P. (1976), “Instability, ductility, and size effect in strain-softening concrete.” J. Engrg. Mech. Div., Am. Soc. Civil Engrs., 102, EM2, 331-344.
    27. Bažant, Z.P., and Oh, B.-H. (1983). “Crack band theory for fracture of concrete.” Materials and Structures (RILEM, Paris), 16, 155-177.
    28. Bažant, Z.P. (1984). “Size effect in blunt fracture: Concrete, rock, metal.” J. of Engrg. Mechanics, ASCE, 110 (4), 518-535.
    29. Bažant, Z.P., and Pijaudier-Cabot, G. (1988). “Nonlocal continuum damage, localization instability and convergence.” ASME J. of Applied Mechanics, 55, 287-293.
    30. Bažant, Z.P., and Kazemi, M.T. (1990). “Determination of fracture energy, process zone length and brittleness number from size effect, with application to rock and concrete.” Int. J. of Fracture, 44, 111-131.
    31. Bažant, Z.P., and Baweja, S. (1995), in collaboration with RILEM Committee TC 107-GCS, “Creep and shrinkage prediction model for analysis and design of concrete structures--model B3” (RILEM Recommendation 107-GSC). Materials and Structures (RILEM, Paris) 28, 357-365.
    32. Bažant, Z.P., and Li, Yuan-Neng (1995). “Stability of cohesive crack model: Part I--Energy principles.” Trans. ASME, J. of Applied Mechanics 62 (Dec.), 959-964.
    33. Bažant, Z.P., Daniel, I.M., and Li, Zhengzhi (1996). “Size effect and fracture characteristics of composite laminates.” J. of Engrg. Materials and Technology ASME 118 (3), 317-324.
    34. Bažant, Z.P., Hauggaard, A.B., Baweja, S., and Ulm, F.-J. (1997). “Microprestress-solidification theory for concrete creep. I. Aging and drying effects”, J. of Engrg. Mech. ASCE 123 (11), 1188-1194.
    35. Bažant, Z.P., and Li, Yuan-Neng (1997). “Cohesive crack with rate-dependent opening and viscoelasticity: I. mathematical model and scaling.” Int. J. of Fracture 86 (3), 247-265.
    36. Bažant, Z.P., Caner, F.C., Carol, I., Adley, M.D., and Akers, S.A. (2000). “Microplane model M4 for concrete: I. Formulation with work-conjugate deviatoric stress.” J. of Engrg. Mechanics ASCE 126 (9), 944-953.
    37. Bažant, Z.P. (2002). “Scaling of sea ice fracture--Part I: Vertical penetration.” J. of Applied Mechanics ASME 69 (Jan.), 11-18.
    38. Bažant, Z.P. (2004). “Scaling theory for quasibrittle structural failure.” Proc., National Academy of Sciences 101 (37), 13400-13407 (inaugural article).
    39. Bažant, Z.P., and Pang, S.-D. (2006). “Mechanics based statistics of failure risk of quasibrittle structures and size effect on safety factors.” Proc. of the National Academy of
    40. Sciences 103(25), 9434-9439.
    41. Bažant, Z.P., and Pang, S.-D. (2007). “Activation energy based extreme value statistics and size effect in brittle and quasibrittle fracture”. J. of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids 55, 91-134.
    42. Bažant, Z.P., Le, J.-L., Greening, F.R., and Benson, D.B. (2008). “What did and did not cause collapse of World Trade Center twin towers in New York?” J. of Engrg. Mechanics ASCE 134 (10) 892-906.
    43. Bažant, Z.P., Le, J.-L., and Bazant, M.Z. (2009), “Scaling of strength and lifetime probability distributions of quasibrittle structures based on atomistic fracture mechanics”, Proc. of the National Academy of Sciences 106 (28), 11484-11489.
    44. Le, Jia-Liang, Bažant, Z.P., and Bazant, M.L. (2009). “Subcritical crack growth law and its consequences for lifetime statistics and size effect of quasibrittle structures”, Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics 42, 214008 (8pp).
    45. Le, J.-L., and Bažant, Z.P. (2010). “Scaling of Strength of Metal-Composite Joints: II. Interface Fracture Analysis.” ASME J. of Applied Mechanics 77 (Jan.), pp. 011012-1-011012-7.
    46. Bažant, Z.P., Yu, Q., Li, G.-H., Klein, G.J., and Kristek, V. (2010), “Excessive deflections of record-span prestressed box girder: Lessons learned from the collapse of the Koror-Babeldaob Bridge in Palau.” ACI Concrete International 32 (6), June, 44-52.