Sessions & Events


Known globally as the world’s gathering place for advancing concrete, the ACI Concrete Convention is dedicated to bringing together the international concrete community to improve the design, construction, maintenance, and repair of concrete projects. Attendees can experience dozens of technical and educational sessions that provide insight into the latest concrete innovations, research, and case studies.


Featured Sessions

Legal Issues in Concrete Construction—Lessons Learned

This session will bring together individuals with extensive experience in litigation related to concrete construction to share their experiences as lawyers, expert witnesses, and engineers through case studies and experience-based recommendations. Moderated by Jeff Coleman, with speakers Randy Poston, Bill Rushing, Matt D’Ambrosia, and Jeff Coleman. Monday, March 29, 2021 (11:00 AM - 1:30 PM).

The Concrete Industry in the Era of Artificial Intelligence

This session will provide insight on the merit of using artificial intelligence (AI) in the concrete industry with focus on how to better the performance of concrete materials at ambient and elevated temperatures and showcase the substantial potential of using AI to improve design of concrete structures under traditional and fire conditions. Moderated by M. Z. Naser, with speakers Henry Burton, Andrew Fahim, Pouria Ghods, Aali Alizadeh, Tahmid Medhi, Hayder Rasheed, Alaaeldin Abouelleil, Eric Fletcher, Emilio Taenqua, Liberato Ferrara, Ali Al-Obaidi, S. Gupta, and M. Z. Naser. Monday, March 29, 2021 (4:00 PM - 6:30 PM).

Adjusting Workability of Successful 3-D Concrete Printing

This two-part session will highlight the importance of controlling fresh-state properties for the successful execution of 3-D concrete printing. Moderated by Nicos Martys and Scott Jones, with speakers Mohamadreza Moini, Jan Olek, Pablo Zavattieri, Jeffrey Youngblood, Gaurav Sant, Jason Timmons, Iman Mehdipour, Shang Gao, Hakan Atahan, Narayanan Neithalath, Mathieu Bauchy, Edward Garboczi, Samanvaya Srivastava, Wilson Ricardo Leal da Silva, Thomas Andersen, Nicos Martys, Scott Jones, William George, Timothy Wangler, Robert Flatt, Peter Stynoski, Eric Kreiger, Megan Kreiger, Viktor Mechtcherine, Karthik Pattaje, Chuanyue Shen, David Lange, Lex Reiter, Sooraj Nair, Manu Santhanam, Gaurav Sant, Narayanan Neithalath, Mohammed Sonebi, M. Dedenis, Sofiane Amziane, Arnaud Perrot, Joseph Biernacki, Hajar Afarani, Edward Garboczi, Newell Moser, and Ebrahim Nasr-Esfahani. Part 1: Sunday, March 28, 2021 (10:00 AM - 12:30 PM). Part 2: Sunday, March 28, 2021 (1:00 PM - 3:30 PM).

Impact of Hot Weather Conditions on Concrete Repair

This two-part session will assist contractors, material suppliers, and specifiers with practical information that can be used for planning, constructing, and designing successful hot weather repair projects. Moderated by Mike Faubel and Tarek Khan. Part 1: Thursday, April 1, 2021 (10:00 AM - 12:30 PM). Part 2: Thursday, April 1, 2021 (1:00 PM - 3:30 PM)

Productivity in the Concrete Industry—Why Has it Stagnated and How Can ACI Help?

Productivity in the U.S. construction industry has been flat for 50 years, while productivity of U.S. industry in general has nearly doubled in that same time frame. Why? And what can ACI do about it? This session will explore answers to these and other questions and will include presentations from designers and contractors offering their perspectives on how ACI can help confront this very important industry issue. Moderated by Cary Kopczynski, with speakers Oscar Antommattei, Mike Schneider, Mario Garza, Mike Tholen, and Cary Kopczynski. Tuesday, March 30, 2021 (11:00 AM - 1:30 PM)


Session & Event times are listed in Eastern Daylight Time: EDT (UTC-4). All sessions & events are included in convention registration.

To access all committee meetings, sessions, and special events, please register for the convention. Once registered, you can access the web-based convention at http://crowd.cc/acis21 or by downloading the convention app on your mobile device.

Convention Highlights

March 29, 2021


10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

Moderator: Kimberly Waggle Kramer

The latest update to E702’s buried concrete basement wall design example will be used to demonstrate how concrete wall design is performed. To enhance the learning experience and promote thoughtful dialogue, discussion will involve what-if scenarios, additional detailing to be performed, and other design checks which could be needed. Several resources and tips based on practical real-world design will be shared as well. Not only is this valuable for practicing engineers and students alike, it can help knock the rust off every engineer’s fundamental understanding of flexure and shear design.
Learning Objectives:
(1) Identify the types of bottom and top of wall fixity that are commonly assumed;
(2) Review the loads that must be accounted for in a wall design and how they differ depending on seismic, soil types, and nearby objects such as roads;
(3) Discuss the fundamental ACI 318-19 Chapter 14 requirements for structural concrete wall design;
(4) Summarize typical wall thickness estimations and construction friendly reinforcement layout.
(5) Explore what to do if a design was in a high seismic region or insufficient soils data was available.

This session has been approved by AIA and ICC for 1 PDH (0.1 CEU). Please note: You must attend the live session for the entire duration to receive credit.


10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Moderators: Eric Jacques, Mi-Geum Chorzepa

The objectives of the session are to: (i) present state-of-the-art research on concrete subjected to high strain rate impacts, including ballistic, vehicle collision, falling loads and debris set in motion by explosions or tsunamis; (ii) highlight current and developing methodologies in impact-resistant concrete manufacturing, testing, and analysis; and, (iii) present knowledge to ACI audiences on the use of these emerging technologies to improve penetration and impact resistance of concrete structures. Contributions from academia, industry, and practitioners will be emphasized to inform on the application of concrete to debris and projectile impact protection through a mix of research- and practice-oriented papers.
Learning Objectives:
(1) Discuss state-of-the-art research on concrete subjected to high strain rate impacts caused by accidental or malicious impacts;
(2) Identify current methods and new developments in manufacturing, testing, and analysis for a broad range of traditional and novel cementitious materials;
(3) Consider the use of emerging material and computational technologies to improve penetration and impact resistance of concrete structures;
(4) Illustrate ongoing research and future research needs.

This session has been approved by AIA and ICC for 2 PDHs (0.2 CEUs). Please note: You must attend the live session for the entire duration to receive credit. On-demand sessions do not qualify for PDH/CEU credit.


10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Moderator: Ali Ghahremaninezhad

This session will feature presentations of original, unpublished results from ongoing research projects and leading-edge concrete technology and research throughout the world.
Learning Objectives:
(1) Recognize ongoing concrete research projects from a wide range of research topics;
(2) Discuss recent techniques, research methods, and procedures related to structural and material aspects of concrete research;
(3) Describe engaging ideas in concrete research;
(4) Summarize recent technical information related to concrete materials and structures research.

This session has been approved by AIA and ICC for 2 PDHs (0.2 CEUs). Please note: You must attend the live session for the entire duration to receive credit. On-demand sessions do not qualify for PDH/CEU credit.


10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Moderators: Joe Frederick DiBucci, Megan Sarah Voss

This session will give students a chance to present research that they have done as an undergraduate student at a national meeting.
Learning Objectives:
(1) Identify what is possible in terms of research and involvement in ACI at an early point in their careers;
(2) Discuss concrete research topics presented at their level of expertise;
(3) Question and discuss research in a less-intimidating setting;
(4) Summarize the types of undergraduate research projects that are possible.

This session has been approved by AIA and ICC for 2 PDHs (0.2 CEUs). Please note: You must attend the live session for the entire duration to receive credit. On-demand sessions do not qualify for PDH/CEU credit.


11:00 AM - 1:00 PM

$0.00

Moderator: Jeffrey W Coleman

This session will bring together four individuals with extensive experience in litigation related to concrete construction. The speakers will share their experiences as lawyers, expert witnesses, and engineers through case studies and will share their experience-based recommendations. Ample time will be allowed for audience questions.
Learning Objectives:
(1) Review best practices on dealing with project documentation;
(2) Describe the role technical experts played in the resolution of the litigation;
(3) Recognize pitfalls where concrete materials requirements and constructability issues can contribute significant risk to a project;
(4) Identify the three C’s (clear, concise, and coordinated) of specifications;
(5) Discuss how to manage project emails (what not to include).

1:00pm - 1:30pm - Please join us after the session for a 30-minute Question and Answer period. Attendees will have the opportunity to submit questions and speakers will answer the questions live.

This session has been approved by AIA and ICC for 2 PDHs (0.2 CEUs). Please note: You must attend the live session for the entire duration to receive credit. On-demand sessions do not qualify for PDH/CEU credit.


12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

Speaker: Henry Prenger
Presentation: Engineering Ethics

Henry Prenger Bio: Henry Prenger has a thirty plus year career in the concrete industry. He has worked as the Concrete Engineer for the State of Maryland, Manager of Technical Services for Blue Circle Cement, Director of Technical Services for Lafarge Cement, and is currently Technical Service Engineer for LafargeHolcim. He is an Honorary Member of ASTM, a Fellow of ACI, and is a registered Professional Engineer in the State of Maryland. He currently chairs ACI 233, is subcommitte chair on ACI 301, and is a committee member of ACI 207 and ACI 308.

Presentation Abstract: We work in a world of conflicting interests. For contractors, for ready mix concrete producers and precasters, and for material suppliers, there will often be a conflict between quality and profits. It is often the engineer's job to determine what changes to products and practices can be safely made to optimize profits. It is also an engineer's duty to hold the line on quality issues that could affect health and safety regardless of cost. The speaker will give real life examples of ethical issues that engineers face and will provide advice on how to address them.




1:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Moderators: Chris Carroll, Ben Dymond

This session features presentations associated with 11 collaborative papers written by groups of faculties who use some of the most innovative approaches to teach topics in concrete materials and reinforced concrete design at the undergraduate level. The session will include presentations related to general pedagogy, along with teaching hydration of cement, fresh and hardened properties of concrete, durability, additive manufacturing, nondestructive testing, detailing, the equivalent rectangular stress block, failure types of reinforced concrete beams, nonrectangular beams, and analysis and design for shear. The session will also include a presentation by the Walter P. Moore Award Winner.
Learning Objectives:
(1) Identify various forms of effective pedagogies used in engineering education and relate them to concrete materials;
(2) Describe innovative approaches used to teach concrete materials;
(3) Identify how teaching concrete materials relates to various student learning styles;
(4) Incorporate various pedagogical techniques into your concrete materials courses.

This session has been approved by AIA and ICC for 2 PDHs (0.2 CEUs). Please note: You must attend the live session for the entire duration to receive credit. On-demand sessions do not qualify for PDH/CEU credit.


1:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Moderators: Stavroula J Pantazopoulou, Kevin R Mackie

Soil structure interaction (SSI) effects are studied through instrumented bridges in the field and extensive dynamic analyses. Studies show that foundation compliance owing to SSI attenuates seismic demands in monolithic bridge piers but may accentuate seating demands for bearing supports in bridges that are not continuous with the piers. This session aims to assess the design implications of SSI in controlling the pier/bearing demands as a retrofit measure in existing bridges, as well as to establish a framework for its explicit consideration in new seismic design of bridges, particularly in seismic events of large intensity.
Learning Objectives:
(1) Establish criteria for foundation selection;
(2) Identify explicitly the role of SSI as a mitigating effect in the bridge system response;
(3) Link pier design strategies to criteria for controlled SSI contribution;
(4) Establish a design framework where SSI is actively used to retrofit existing bridges.

This session has been approved by AIA and ICC for 2 PDHs (0.2 CEUs). Please note: You must attend the live session for the entire duration to receive credit. On-demand sessions do not qualify for PDH/CEU credit.


1:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Moderators: Eric Jacques, Mi-Geum Chorzepa

The objectives of the session are to: (i) present state-of-the-art research on concrete subjected to high strain rate impacts, including ballistic, vehicle collision, falling loads and debris set in motion by explosions or tsunamis; (ii) highlight current and developing methodologies in impact-resistant concrete manufacturing, testing, and analysis; and, (iii) present knowledge to ACI audiences on the use of these emerging technologies to improve penetration and impact resistance of concrete structures. Contributions from academia, industry, and practitioners will be emphasized to inform on the application of concrete to debris and projectile impact protection through a mix of research- and practice-oriented papers.
Learning Objectives:
(1) Establish design criteria to mitigate local and global failure modes under impact loading;
(2) Describe innovative experimental procedures for measuring structural response under high strain rate impact loading;
(3) Describe macromechanical and high-fidelity simulation tools for robust design and analysis of impact-type problems;
(4) Summarize recent advances in the cementitious materials and technologies for impact resistant concrete infrastructure.

This session has been approved by AIA and ICC for 2 PDHs (0.2 CEUs). Please note: You must attend the live session for the entire duration to receive credit. On-demand sessions do not qualify for PDH/CEU credit.


4:00 PM - 6:00 PM

Moderators: Chris Carroll, Ben Dymond

This session features presentations associated with 11 collaborative papers written by groups of faculties who use some of the most innovative approaches to teach topics in concrete materials and reinforced concrete design at the undergraduate level. The session will include presentations related to general pedagogy, along with teaching hydration of cement, fresh and hardened properties of concrete, durability, additive manufacturing, nondestructive testing, detailing, the equivalent rectangular stress block, failure types of reinforced concrete beams, nonrectangular beams, and analysis and design for shear. The session will also include a presentation by the Walter P. Moore Award Winner.
Learning Objectives:
(1) Identify various forms of effective pedagogies used in engineering education and relate them to reinforced concrete design;
(2) Describe innovative approaches used to teach five topics related to reinforced concrete design;
(3) Identify how teaching reinforced concrete design relates to various student learning styles;
(4) Incorporate various pedagogical techniques into your reinforced concrete design courses.

This session has been approved by AIA and ICC for 2 PDHs (0.2 CEUs). Please note: You must attend the live session for the entire duration to receive credit. On-demand sessions do not qualify for PDH/CEU credit.


4:00 PM - 6:00 PM

Moderator: Dimitri Feys

High rise construction, specifically in Chicago, is continuing to push the limits of what is possible with concrete. Buildings are going up higher and developers are requesting more livable square footage, requiring concrete with very strict requirements and specifications. This results in a chain of preparation once a building is announced from the mix design development and raw material sourcing, to the testing of the mix design meeting specification, to the contractor who will do the placement and construction. Individuals in each stage of the process must work together to ensure a successful project. Collaboration and information exchange between designers, architects, contractors, producers, and testing labs needs to be streamlined and improved to ensure that the structural properties of the material can be matched with constructability. Testing labs should be more involved with the design and certification of mix designs to ensure that the specification is being adhered to, while contractors need to take the concrete and place it in the building. As such, it needs to be pumpable and workable once it comes out of the pump 60+ stories in the air, which adds an additional constraint placed upon all who are involved. Designers require more specific properties of materials, which results in substantial challenges in finding the appropriate materials and mix designs.
Learning Objectives:
(1) Summarize best practices for pumping contractors to deliver a successful project;
(2) Troubleshoot concrete that is being pumped;
(3) Identify the technology that can help producers and contractors;
(4) Review what research is being conducted in this arena.

This session has been approved by AIA and ICC for 2 PDHs (0.2 CEUs). Please note: You must attend the live session for the entire duration to receive credit. On-demand sessions do not qualify for PDH/CEU credit.


4:00 PM - 6:00 PM

$0.00

Moderator: M. Z. Naser

The synopsis of this session is to educate researchers, practitioners, students, and officials on the merit of using AI in the concrete industry. Special attention will be paid to better the performance of concrete materials at ambient and elevated temperatures and showcase the substantial potential of using AI to improve design of concrete structures under traditional and fire conditions. Introduce AI and automation to the concrete industry.
Learning Objectives:
(1) Discuss the proper methods of leveraging AI for various applications (i.e. durability, fire resistance, chemical exposure etc.);
(2) Highlight case studies on successful AI applications in the area of concrete material and structural design (i.e. optimizing concrete mixture (e.g. UHPC, FRC), developing post-fire assessment methods etc.);
(3) Organize research and development efforts to modernize the concrete industry;
(4) Use AI as a new mean of analysis/assessment, together with traditional methods (i.e. testing, simulations, analytical derivations).

6:00pm - 6:30pm - Please join us after the session for a 30-minute Question and Answer period. Attendees will have the opportunity to submit questions and speakers will answer the questions live.

This session has been approved by AIA and ICC for 2 PDHs (0.2 CEUs). Please note: You must attend the live session for the entire duration to receive credit. On-demand sessions do not qualify for PDH/CEU credit.



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