Computing Facilities


The School of Engineering provides a consolidated group of high performance PC's for undergraduate use. The Computer Laboratories are split between two rooms, one each on the first and third floors of the Engineering Building. These laboratories contain over 60 Windows NT-based Dell computers linked to the School's computer network, providing access to email, the Internet, and many software packages including Microsoft Office 2000, MathCAD, SAP 2000, HEC-RAS, DETPOND, HydroCad, Imagineer, ALGOR, and others. The School also has a Unix laboratory with twenty UNIX workstations, and associated peripherals and servers, providing the backbone resources for computer modeling and advanced Unix programming. UAB engineering students involved in graduate research also have free access to the Alabama Supercomputer Network and the software resident on the Cray supercomputers.

Students have access to the computer laboratories except when BEC is closed and during system maintenance periods. Dial-up access is provided for students to access files and e-mail. The smaller computer laboratory may be scheduled for classes (such as ME 102 - Engineering Graphics). The access policies, student population, and size of the computer facilities have assured that few, if any, students must wait to use a computer.

The School of Engineering computer laboratories provide the bulk of the facilities required by the Civil Engineering students. However, in addition to the School level computing resources, the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering provides Windows and Unix based workstations for undergraduate use. The Department has been administering the NSF funded Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program for the past several years and plans to continue the program in the future. As part of this program, four high-end Windows based PC's are acquired each year through a lease program to ensure the most up-to-date machines are available. As the REU program is only active over ten weeks of the summer, these PC's are available to students throughout the rest of the year.

Three Unix workstations have recently been purchased by the Department to provide Finite Element modeling capabilities in addition to those mentioned above. The machines are used for research purposes and by students enrolled courses such as CE 461 "Finite Element Methods."