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Thomas Schumacher
Thomas Schumacher

Associate Professor


Dr. Schumacher is currently an Associate Professor in the field of Structural Engineering. After earning his undergraduate degree at the Bern University of Applied Sciences, Switzerland in 2000, he worked as a structural and project engineer for a consulting firm for five years. He left design practice in 2004 to expand his education abroad and earned M.S. and PhD Degrees from Oregon State University in 2006 and 2010, respectively. Before joining PSU in 2015, he was a faculty member at the University of Delaware for five years. Dr. Schumacher is a licensed professional engineer (PE) in the State of Delaware and an active member of the American Concrete Institute (ACI); as of spring 2018, he is the Chair of ACI Committee 444 – Structural Health Monitoring and Instrumentation.

Dr. Schumacher’s primary research interests are in the area of non-destructive evaluation (NDE) of civil infrastructure with a focus on concrete structures. In particular, he is interested in stress wave and vibration-based methods such as acoustic emission and ultrasonic monitoring and impulse response testing, respectively. Additionally, he has been collaborating with faculty at the University of Delaware to develop a novel distributed carbon nanotube (CNT)-based sensor that can be integrated with structural composites to form a self-sensing reinforcement to repair and rehabilitate concrete and steel structures. Finally, he is interested in video-based sensing techniques to monitor structural motion. His additional research interests include the behavior and durability of concrete structures, structures subject to extreme events, bridge engineering, data analysis and signal processing, and asset management. His Google Scholar profile has a complete list of his published reports and articles to date. The Schumacher research group’s NDE Laboratory is located within the iSTAR Laboratory at PSU.

Dr. Schumacher currently offers courses on structural analysis, structural dynamics, and non-destructive evaluation of structures. His teaching philosophy is rooted in ASCE’s ExCEEd instructional model. The core elements of this model consist of the effective use of teaching aids, respect for the different learning styles, maintaining good rapport with every student, use of classroom demonstrations, and providing frequent performance feedback.

In his free time, he enjoys exploring the outdoors, running, playing guitar, and spending time with his wife family and friends.