Dr Shanshan Cheng

Dr Shanshan Cheng

Lecturer in Civil Engineering

School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics (Faculty of Science and Engineering)



I've been a lecturer in Civil Engineering at UoP since 2017. Prior to joining UoP as a lecturer, I worked at the University of Sheffield as a postdoc for the EPSRC project “The behaviour of built-up thin-walled steel structural elements (EP/M011976/1)” and “Sustainable fire-spalling-resistant concrete (EP/N019555/1)”. My current research mainly focuses on the low carbon construction materials, particularly the application to offshore floating platforms. I am currently the PI for a Royal Society funded project "Fatigue failure mechanics of carbon-fibre textile reinforced concrete in the marine environment", to test the flexural fatigue behaviour of CTRC beams under seawater, and the coordinator for an EU funded project “Tailor-made recycled aggregate concrete (H2020-MSCA-RISE-2017-777823-TRAC)” which aims to promote the use of recycled aggregates in civil infrastructure. I’m also a Co-I for EPSRC funded project “FlexWave – flexible responsive systems in wave energy (EP/V040367/1)”, where I’m responsible for finite element analysis of the flexible wave energy converters under wave loading. I was the PI for an EPSRC funded Supergen ORE ECR award “Offshore floating foundations using self-sensing carbon fibre textile reinforced concretes”, to test the dual-functional properties of using carbon-fibre textiles as both reinforcement and sensor in concrete structures, and PI for a Sustainable Earth Institute funded project “Use of tungsten tailing waste as replacement for cement” to investigate the feasibility of using tungsten tailings in making low carbon concrete materials.


 |  2017 - present  |  Plymouth University, UK  |  Lecturer
 |  2015 - 2016  |  The University of Sheffield, UK  |  Postdoc
 |  2011 - 2015  |  Plymouth University, UK  |  PhD
 |  2009 - 2011  |  Harbin Institute of Technology, China  |  MSc (research)
 |  2005 - 2009  |  Central South University, China  |  BEng 

Roles on external bodies

2023 – present, Technical Committee member of FIB (Task Group 1.2: Concrete structures in marine environments)
2022 – present, Technical Committee member of RILEM (292-MCC: Mechanical characterization and structural design of textile reinforced concrete; 294-MPA: Mechanical properties of alkali-activated concrete; 297-DOC: Degradation of organic coating materials and its relation to concrete durability) 
2020 – present, Committee member of IStructE Southwest regional group
2019 – present, IStructE student staff liaison officer 


Teaching interests

STAD200 - Structural Analysis and Design II
CIVL500 - Finite Element Modelling and Analysis


Research interests

  • Buckling of thin-walled structures
  • Fibre reinforced concretes
  • Recycled aggregate concretes
  • Composite material characterisations
  • Survivability of offshore floating structures
  • Structural fire safety
  • Steel-concrete composite structures

Other research

Ongoing PhD students: 
Mr Saheed Yusuf (Jan 2024 - ongoing): Coupled Fluid-Structure Interaction of Large Floating Concrete Modular Systems (Director of Studies / 1st Supervisor) 
Ms Zhenyi Yan (Oct 2023 - ongoing): Fatigue failure mechanics of low-carbon concrete in marine environment (Director of Studies / 1st Supervisor)
Ms Anna Holcombe (Oct 2021 - ongoing): Motions and loads of dynamic power cables for floating offshore renewable energy applications (2nd Supervisor)
Mr Feiyi Shi (Oct 2021 - ongoing): Mesoscale modelling for predicting effective properties of geopolymer concrete (2nd Supervisor)
Mr Bin Zhang (Oct 2021 - ongoing): Coupled thermo-structural analysis of steel reinforced geopolymer concrete structural members (2nd Supervisor)
Mr Ignacio Pregnan Johannesen (Oct 2020 - ongoing): Size efficient semisubmersible platforms for floating offshore wind turbine with passive motion reduction strategies (3rd Supervisor)

Research degrees awarded to supervised students

Dr Jie Ji (2023): Bond Behaviour between Carbon Fibre Strand and Mortar under Marine Environment (Director of Studies / 1st Supervisor)
Dr Qi Ye (2023): Structural analysis and design of semi-submersible platform for floating offshore wind turbines (Director of Studies / 1st Supervisor)

Grants & contracts

1. LITEFLOATCON - Light-weight High Performance Concrete for Modular Floating Structures, Horizon Europe MSCA Staff Exchange project, €611.8k, 2024-2027 (Co-I, WP5 lead)
2. Fatigue Failure Mechanics of Carbon-fibre Textile Reinforced Concrete in the Marine Environment, Royal Society, £60.5k, 2023-2024 (PI)
3. Use of Tungsten Tailing Waste as Replacement for Cement , Plymouth University Sustainable Earth Institute, £3k, 2022 (PI)
4. FlexWave - Flexible Responsive Systems in Wave Energy, EPSRC, £1m, 2021-2025 (Co-I)
5. Offshore Floating Foundations Using Self-sensing Carbon Fibre Textile-reinforced Concretes, EPSRC Supergen ORE ECR fund, £5k, 2020 (PI)
6. TRAC – Tailor-made Recycled Aggregate Concrete, European H2020-RISE project, €450k, 2018-2024 (PI)


Key publications

Key publications are highlighted

Li Z, Li L-Y & Cheng S (2024) 'Evaluation of modulus of elasticity of concrete containing both natural and recycled concrete aggregates' Journal of Cleaner Production Publisher Site , DOI Open access
Tong D, Yu M, Li S, Zeng Y, Cheng S & Chi Y (2023) 'Axial deformation of early-age concrete-filled steel tubular columns under multi-stage loading' Structures 57, 105197-105197 Publisher Site , DOI
Xue C, Yu M, Wu M & Cheng S (2023) 'Axial compressive behaviour of ultra-high performance concrete filled steel tube stub columns at elevated temperatures' Structures 57, 105333-105333 Publisher Site , DOI
Yu M, Liao W, Liu S, Wang T, Yu C & Cheng S (2023) 'Axial compressive performance of ultra-high performance concrete-filled steel tube stub columns at different concrete age' Structures 55, 664-676 Publisher Site , DOI
Guo Y, Cheng S, Wang Y, Lai X & Chen L (2023) 'Topology optimization for transient thermoelastic structures under time-dependent loads' Engineering with Computers Publisher Site , DOI
Wang T, Yu M, Shan W, Xu L, Cheng S & Li L-Y (2023) 'Post-fire compressive stress–strain behaviour of steel fibre reinforced recycled aggregate concrete' Composite Structures 309, , DOI Open access
Yu M, Hu X, Xu L & Cheng S (2022) 'A general unified method for calculating fire resistance of CFST columns considering various types of steel and concrete' Journal of Building Engineering 59, , DOI Open access
Le H-B, Bui Q-B, Nguyen D-M & Cheng S (2022) 'Assessing the mechanical properties of geopolymer recycled aggregate concrete: flexural strength, bond strength and thermo-mechanical behaviour' Journal of the Australian Ceramic Society 58, (5) 1649-1665 Publisher Site , DOI
Li Z, Ding F-X, Cheng S & Lyu F (2022) 'Mechanical behavior of steel-concrete interface and composite column for circular CFST in fire' Journal of Constructional Steel Research 196, 107424-107424 Publisher Site , DOI
Wang T, Yu M, Zhang X, Cheng S & Liu S (2022) 'Post-fire mechanical behaviour of ultra-high-performance concrete-filled steel tube (UHPCFST) stub columns under compression' Journal of Constructional Steel Research 196, , DOI Open access
Zheng S, Gao W, Liu Y & Cheng S (2021) 'Wave diffraction from a truncated cylinder with a moonpool of arbitrary cross-section: a semi-analytical study' Ocean Engineering 237, , DOI Open access
Li Z, Ding F-X & Cheng S (2021) 'Numerical investigation on moment redistribution of continuous reinforced concrete beams under local fire conditions' Advances in Structural Engineering 24, (15) 3375-3388 Publisher Site , DOI
Cheng S, Ji J & Meng M (2020) 'Interfacial response of fibre-to-matrix in textile reinforced concrete between two cracks: Analytical solution' Composite Structures 245, , DOI Open access
Yue M, Liu Q, Li C, Ding Q, Cheng S & Zhu H (2020) 'Effects of heave plate on dynamic response of floating wind turbine Spar platform under the coupling effect of wind and wave' Ocean Engineering 201, 107103-107103 Publisher Site , DOI
Yuan W-B, Ge P-J, Shen Y-T, Cheng S-S & Yu N-T (2020) 'Buckling Analysis of Steel H Column with Thermal Gradient Along the Flanges' International Journal of Steel Structures 20, (2) 677-691 Publisher Site , DOI
Sua-iam G, Makul N, Cheng S & Sokrai P (2019) 'Workability and compressive strength development of self-consolidating concrete incorporating rice husk ash and foundry sand waste – A preliminary experimental study' Construction and Building Materials 228, 116813-116813 , DOI Open access
Ding Q-W, Li C, Cheng S-S, Hao W-X, Huang Z-Q & Yu W (2019) 'Study on TMD Control on Stability Improvement of Barge-Supported Floating Offshore Wind Turbine Based on the Multi-Island Genetic Algorithm' China Ocean Engineering 33, (3) 309-321 Publisher Site , DOI
Hu X, Lu Q & Cheng S (2019) 'Uniaxial Damaged Plastic Constitutive Relation of Recycled Aggregate Concrete' Advances in Materials Science and Engineering 2019, 1-16 , DOI Open access
Hu X, Lu Q, Xu Z, Zhang W & Cheng S (2018) 'Compressive stress-strain relation of recycled aggregate concrete under cyclic loading' Construction and Building Materials , DOI Open access
Ding FX, Li Z, Cheng SS & Yu ZW (2018) 'Stress redistribution of simply supported reinforced concrete beams under fire conditions' Journal of Central South University 25, (9) 2093-2106 , DOI
Ding FX, Luo L, Wang L, Cheng S & Yu ZW (2018) 'Pseudo-static tests of terminal stirrup-confined concrete-filled rectangular steel tubular columns' Journal of Constructional Steel Research 144, 135-152 , DOI Open access
Ding FX, Zhu J, Cheng SS & Liu X (2017) 'Comparative study of stirrup-confined circular concrete-filled steel tubular stub columns under axial loading' Thin-Walled Structures 123, 294-304 , DOI Open access
Becque J & Cheng S (2016) 'Sidewall Buckling of Equal-Width RHS Truss X-Joints' Journal of Structural Engineering 143, (2) 04016179-04016179 , DOI Open access
Ding F-X, Li Z, Cheng S & Yu Z-W (2016) 'Composite action of hexagonal concrete-filled steel tubular stub columns under axial loading' Thin-Walled Structures 107, 502-513 , DOI
Ding F-X, Li Z, Cheng S & Yu Z-W (2016) 'Composite action of octagonal concrete-filled steel tubular stub columns under axial loading' Thin-Walled Structures 107, 453-461 , DOI
Cheng S & Becque J (2016) 'A design methodology for side wall failure of RHS truss X-joints accounting for compressive chord pre-load' Engineering Structures 126, 689-702 , DOI Open access
Gu J-Z & Cheng S (2016) 'Shear effect on buckling of cellular columns subjected to axially compressed load' Thin-Walled Structures 98, 416-420 Publisher Site , DOI
Cheng S, Yan Q-W, Li L-Y & Kim B (2015) 'Thermal Buckling Analysis of Axially Loaded Columns of Thin-Walled Open Section with Nonuniform Sectional Properties' International Journal of Structural Stability and Dynamics 15, (6) 0-0 , DOI Open access
Cheng S, Li L-Y & Kim B (2015) 'Buckling analysis of partially protected cold-formed steel channel-section columns at elevated temperatures' Fire Safety Journal 72, 7-15 Publisher Site , DOI Open access
Cheng S, Li L-Y & Kim B (2015) 'Buckling analysis of cold-formed steel channel-section beams at elevated temperatures' Journal of Constructional Steel Research 104, 74-80 Publisher Site , DOI Open access
Yuan W-B, Cheng S, Li L-Y & Kim B (2014) 'Web-flange distortional buckling of partially restrained cold-formed steel purlins under uplift loading' International Journal of Mechanical Sciences 89, 476-481 Publisher Site , DOI Open access
Zha XX, Wang HY & Cheng SS (2013) 'Finite Element Analysis of the Subsidence of Cap Rocks during Underground Coal Gasification Process' Advanced Materials Research 859, 91-94 Publisher Site , DOI
Cheng SS, Kim B & Li LY (2013) 'Lateral–torsional buckling of cold-formed channel sections subject to combined compression and bending' Journal of Constructional Steel Research 80, 174-180
Zha XX & Cheng SS (2011) 'Numerical Simulation of Natural and Super-Critical Carbonation on Concrete Porous Brick' Advanced Materials Research 343-344, 112-115 Publisher Site , DOI
Zha XX & Cheng SS (2011) 'Study of Transverse Section Temperature Distribution in Underground Coal Gasification' Applied Mechanics and Materials 71-78, 2513-2517 Publisher Site , DOI
Soares CG (2022) Trends in Renewable Energies Offshore. CRC Press Publisher Site , DOI
Conference Papers
Wang X, Meng M, Cox M, Puzhukkil K, Yang J, Borthwick A, Ransley E, Cheng S, Chaplin J & Hann M (2023) 'Graphene oxide reinforced room-temperature-vulcanising elastomers for flexible wave energy converters' European Wave and Tidal Energy Conference Publisher Site , DOI
Puzhukkil K, Wang X, Yang J, Borthwick A, Ransley E, Chaplin J, Cox M, Meng M, Hann M & Rawlinson-Smith R (2023) 'Hydro-elastic interaction of polymer materials with regular waves' European Wave and Tidal Energy Conference Publisher Site , DOI
Yang J, You Z, Cheng S, Wang X, Puzhukkil K, Cox M, Rainey R, Chaplin J & Greaves D (2023) 'Origami-adapted clam design for wave energy conversion' European Wave and Tidal Energy Conference Publisher Site , DOI
Pregnan Johannesen I, Ransley E, Hann M, Cheng S & Greaves D (2023) 'Passive Motion Reduction Angled Disks for Semi-Submersible Floating Offshore Wind Turbine Foundations' The 33rd International Ocean and Polar Engineering Conference, Ottawa, Canada, June 2023 Publisher Site
Johannesen I, Ransley E, Hann M, Cheng S & Greaves D (2022) 'Passive motion reduction of semisubmersible floating offshore wind turbine foundations' in Soares CG 5th International Conference on Renewable Energies Offshore (RENEW 2022), Lisbon, Portugal, 8–10 November 2022 1-/-1/20221-/-1/2022Taylor & Francis Group 501-508 , DOI Open access
Ye Q, Cheng S, Kim B, Collins KM & Iglesias G (2019) 'Structure Design and Assessment of a Floating Foundation for Offshore Wind Turbines' 2nd International Offshore Wind Technical Conference , DOI Open access
Cheng S & Becque J (2016) 'Design of equal-width RHS truss X-Joints for side wall buckling in the presence of chord pre-load' 927-934
Meza F, Cheng S, Becque J & Hajirasouliha I (2016) 'Experimental investigation of the cross-sectional stability of cold-formed steel built-up columns' 353-360


Other academic activities

External examiner of PhD viva (Nov 2023) - Sifan Mohamed Muhamad Ibrahim (Nothumbria University), Development and Structural Applications of High Strength Concrete: Ultra High Performance and Lightweight High Strength Concrete.
External examiner of EngD viva (Oct 2023) - Ali Marjan (Cranfield University), Structural fatigue assessment and optimisation of offshore wind turbine jacket foundations.