Bob is nationally recognized for his expertise in geotechnical site characterization, in situ and laboratory testing, settlement and slope stability analysis, and performance monitoring of geotechnical and earthen structure systems. He has worked extensively on the design and rehabilitation of earth dams, levee structures, and earth retaining systems, with extensive experience on soil and rock strength characterization and slope stability assessment. Bob applied his expertise to not only resolve construction difficulties related to a 250-ft high gold mine tailings dam, but also design issues associated with permanent access roads on levees and dredged material containment dikes. He is a leading authority in the characterization, assessment, and construction of engineered structures in areas underlain by karst geologic features.
While a professor on the geotechnical engineering faculty at Georgia Institute of Technology, Bob focused his research on the beneficial re-use of coal combustion by-product materials and engineering applications for geosynthetic materials. He continues to work in these areas, and recently served as the lead author of a design guidance document related to drainage geocomposites used in civil engineering applications. He served as co-chair of the ASCE G.E.O-Institute's GeoCongress 2006, a national conference emphasizing "geotechnical engineering in the information age." His applied research in geotechnical engineering and solid waste management has yielded significant advancements in performance monitoring instrumentation used for assessing settlement beneath embankments and other earthen structures. In addition to his ongoing research, Bob has authored or co-authored more than 100 technical publications. These include several technical design guidance documents on behalf of the Federal Highway Administration regarding geotechnical engineering design.