RUB Bauwesen CompEng

Award Winning CompEng Alumnus M.Sc. Sahir N. Butt

Alumnus SahirNButt Klein


Former CompEng student M.Sc. Sahir N. Butt. is an outstanding alumnus for several reasons:

After graduating in Automotive and Marine Engineering at the NED University of Engineering & Technology, Pakistan, he started the RUB Master’s program Computational Engineering in October 2014.
During his studies, Mr. Butt received a special scholarship for outstanding CompEng-students in order to finish his Master’s and start his PhD degree at the same time, working as a research assistant. The Fast Track scholarship program was introduced as a cooperation between the Computational Engineering Master’s course and the Collaborative Research Center 837 „Interaction Modeling in Mechanized Tunneling “(SFB 837). Mr. Butt was the first scholarship holder of this scholarship program.

With a final grade of 0.9, Mr. Butt was among the top 3 graduates of the 2014 Computational Engineering batch - while already working on his PhD!

Within the last couple of months, Mr. Butt visited several conferences around the world. He came back with not only new ideas and new knowledge but three awards:

During the conferences, he presented his recent work, involving the application of peridynamics, a state-of-the-art continuum theory, to investigate the dynamic fracture process in brittle materials. The method was applied to model crack propagation in glass plates as well as to model rock excavation process in mechanized tunneling.  Three dimensional elastodynanmic simulations were performed on glass plates to model various characteristics of mode-I dynamic fracture, such as microbranching instability and crack branching. Rock excavation using TBM cutting discs was modeled to predict the cutting forces as well as the abrasive wear on the disc moving in heterogeneous ground.

The 4th International Conference on Tunnel Boring Machines in Difficult Grounds 2019 in Colorado, USA awarded Mr. Butt with “Best Paper”. The ETS Conference and Exhibition 2019 in Luxor, Egypt awarded him with “Best Student Paper” and the USACM Thematic Conference on Experimental and Computational Fracture mechanics 2020 in Louisiana, USA awarded Mr. Butt with “Best Poster”.
Additionally, Dr. Stewart Silling, who formulated the peridynamics theory in 1999, mentioned Mr. Butt’s Master’s thesis work during his plenary lecture at the USACM Thematic Conference. In his Master’s thesis work, Mr. Butt provided a physical interpretation of a parameter (known as the peridynamic horizon) involved in peridynamic theory.

We say congratulations and thank you for being a part of the CompEng family. We are very proud of these success stories, every CompEng student has the chance to write.

All the best for your future, Mr. Sahir N. Butt!



Christina Rauch, Assistant Coordinator