Zdeněk P. Bažant Selected to Austrian Cross

Professor Zdeněk P. Bažant Professor Zdeněk P. Bažant has been selected to receive the Austrian Cross of Honor for Science and Art of the 1st Class (Österreichisches Ehrenkreuz für Wissenschaft und Kunst, I. Klasse).  He will receive the award on May 11th from the President of Austria in Hofburg (the Imperial Palace). 

Professor Bažant is the 78th person to receive this honor since its inception in 1960.  Karl Schiske, a composer, was the first to receive the honor.  Professor Bažant is the first engineer to be recognized. 

Bažant is the McCormick Institute Professor and Walter P. Murphy Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and Materials Science and Engineering at Northwestern University’s McCormick School of Engineering.

One of just a few top-cited researchers in his field, Bažant is best known for his discovery of the scaling law for the energetic size effect in quasibrittle structural failure. His groundbreaking work has resulted in better understanding of scaling of structural strength, creep and hygrothermal effects, structural stability, finite strain, material damage models based on nano- and micro-mechanics, impact mechanics, fracture mechanics and probabilistic mechanics, with applications to bridges, nuclear containments and other concrete structures, fiber composites for ships and aircraft, and for car crashworthiness, rocks, gas shale, sea ice, thin films, and bone.

Throughout his career, Bažant has received numerous awards and honors, including election into the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Academia Europaea, the Austrian, Czech, Italian and Spanish national academies; seven honorary doctorates; the Timoshenko, Nadai, and Warner Medals of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), the von Karman, Newmark, Biot, Mindlin and Croes Medals of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), Prager Medal from the Society of Engineering Science, and many more. He is an honorary member of ASME, ASCE, American Concrete Institute, and RILEM. Last January, ASCE established a new medal named Zdeněk P. Bažant Medal for Failure and Damage Prevention.

The "Austrian Decoration for Science and Art" was established by the National Council for scientific or artistic achievements by Federal Law of May 1955.  At the same time, the Austrian National Council also established the "Austrian Cross of Honour for Science and Art", which is awarded as "Cross of Honour, First Class" (German: Ehrenkreuz 1. Klasse) and "Cross of Honour" (German: Ehrenkreuz).

McCormick News Article