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What are the different branches of Civil engineering and what do they do?

I've always wanted to be a Civil Engineer, but I know that there are so many different branches of it that I'm not sure which one I want to follow in. #civil-engineering

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David’s Answer

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I'll add one more. Construction Engineering Management. - It is the management of the construction Engineering Portion. It deals more with the financial end of the construction engineering process. How to deploy resources (equipment, materials, and labor) in the most efficent way. It has to do with a lot of scheduling and cost analysis. You also need to know about construction engineering because you also need to understand how things are actually done in the field. I concentrated on Construction Engineering Management in for my Masters.

I am actually in Telecommunications now, but I did originally start in Construction. One thing that I have noticed in those two fields is that very often Engineers controll the budgets. Or at least they are given a budget, and it is up to them to meet it with their design. It is great to be an engineer and design the best "whatever" but when you present it, the question is going to be "how much does it cost" and then the next sentence is going to be "That's great, but you need to go back and redesign it so it is 20% cheaper."


Looking through this list again, there are also specializations in cold weather/artic engineering, pipeline engineering, and oil field engineering.

Some of these fields are only offered at certain schools. In HS I was intered in pipline / artic engineering. I came very close to doing my undergraduate work at the University of Alaska - Fairbanks, but decided not to.

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Dhanesh’s Answer

12 Types of Civil Engineering Branches To Choose Your Career


Civil engineering is the design, implementation and maintenance of public works. This involves facilities and structures such as arenas, large scale monuments, government buildings, transportation routes as well as other structures. Engineers will either work for the city or for a private firm that has been hired by the city. Some civil engineers work in the private sector on projects for independent companies.


Types of Civil Engineering Branches

There are several types of civil engineering. A civil engineer can specialize in a number of different civil engineering branches. Those branches are described briefly below. You may also like to know about what civil engineers do.

#1 Construction Engineering

This civil engineering branch deals with the planning, construction and maintenance of structures. Construction engineering is the planning and execution of designs from site development, environmental, structural, transportation and structural engineers. They must ensure that the plans that have been designed by other engineers are implemented to their exact specifications. Construction engineers will supervise field work during the entire project. They are in a sense a cross between an engineer and manager as they will oversee the project from start to finish and handle any problems that come up throughout the duration of the project.


#2 Structural Engineering

This branch of civil engineering encompasses the structural analysis and design of structures. It is the responsibility of the structural engineer to analyze and design a structure that will safely bear or resist the stresses, forces and loads. The design must satisfy the project specifications while meeting all safety regulations. The structure must endure massive loads as well as natural disasters and climate changes.

#3 Geotechnical Engineering

In geotechnical engineering the engineer studies soil, foundations and bearing capacities. The engineer will study the behavior of the earth materials and how they will affect a structure that is to be constructed. They will also evaluate pre-existing structures that are showing signs of problems with the earth materials under or near the structure.

#4 Transportation Engineering

Civil engineers that specialize in transportation engineering will work with the planning, construction and management of transportation facilities. They will design and implement the infrastructures that deal with transportation in order to provide a safe, comfortable, convenient, economical and environmentally compatible mode of transport. There are six divisions related to transportation engineering: highway, air transportation, waterway, aerospace, coastal & ocean and urban transportation.

#5 Surveying

This type of civil engineering branch handles the surveying and leveling of land by using different instruments to map and contour the terrain. This is done to locate and measure property lines, lay out buildings, bridges, channels, highways, and pipelines for constructions. Surveyors are generally classified into two categories: plane surveying and geodetic surveying.



#6 Water Resource Engineering

These engineers deal with the design and construction of hydraulic structures. These structures include dams, canals and water distribution system. The engineer is responsible for the design of the structure as well as the implementation and safety precautions that must be closely adhered to when dealing with hydraulic structures.

#7 Environmental Engineering

This civil engineering type is the study of environment friendly designs, pollution and their resolutions and sewage management. Many engineers focus solely upon the crisis of pollution and coming up with solutions as well as determining new and inventive ways for sewage management and other environmental entities.

#8 Municipal Engineering

These engineers will work with urban or city governments on the planning and management of the township. Most of these engineers work directly with government officials to ensure that the structures within the municipality are properly designed and implemented.

#9 Coastal Engineering

This branch of civil engineering deals with coastal and marine structures. These structures include groynes and embankments. These engineers not only ensure that the structures being erected correctly but they are also concerned with not disturbing the coastal regions.

10 Tunnel Engineering

Civil engineers who specialize in tunnel engineering are responsible for the planning, designing, construction, safety and maintenance of tunnels. There are specifications that must be adhered to when working with tunnels for roadways, waterways or trains.

11 Earthquake Engineering

Earthquake engineers study the seismic forces and earthquake resistant structures. In regions that are known for seismic activities, engineers must design and construct structures based on how well they will react within an earthquake situation.

12 Material Engineering

This branch of civil engineering deals with the study of material strength, properties of materials used in construction and ceramics. These engineers will determine the best possible materials to be used for a project based on that project’s specifications.


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John ’s Answer

Construction Engineering
Deals with planning, construction and maintenance of structures.


Structural Engineering
Deals with Structural Analysis and Design of structures.


Geotechnical Engineering
Study of soil, foundations, bearing capacity, etc.


Transportation Engineering
Deals with planning, construction and management of transportation facilities.


Surveying
Deals with surveying and levelling of lands using various instruments, mapping & contouring of terrains, etc.


Water Resource Engineering
Deals with design and construction of hydraulic structures like dams, canals, water distribution system, etc.


Environmental Engineering
Study of environment friendly desings, sewage management, pollution and their treatment.


Tunnel Engineering
Deals with planning, design, construction, safety and maintenance of tunnels.


Earthquake Engineering
Study of seismic forces, earth-quake resistant structures etc.


Material Engineering
Study of Material Strength, properties of materials used in construction, ceramics, etc.

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syed’s Answer

Surveying
Deals with surveying and levelling of lands using various instruments, mapping & contouring of terrains, etc.


Water Resource Engineering
Deals with design and construction of hydraulic structures like dams, canals, water distribution system, etc.


Environmental Engineering
Study of environment friendly desings, sewage management, pollution and their treatment.


Tunnel Engineering
Deals with planning, design, construction, safety and maintenance of tunnels.


Earthquake Engineering
Study of seismic forces, earth-quake resistant structures etc.

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Nayeem’s Answer

Civil Engineering possess hugCivil engineering branches are:
•Environmental Engineering – it treats chemical, biological and thermal waste; it concentrates on e.g. water purification, waste water and solid waste treatment, air pollution, hazardous waste management and it is also in charge of giving information on possible environmental consequences
•Geotechnical Engineering – this branch is based on the knowledge from geology, material science, mechanics and hydraulics; it focuses on economical foundations, retaining walls as well as similar structure designs
•Structural Engineering – it provides structural design and structural analysis of buildings ( bridges, towers, tunnels); next, it identifies the kind of loads acting on structures and it takes into account strength, stiffness and stability of the structures
•Transportation Engineering – the main emphasis is placed on moving people and goods efficiently; also it pays attention to designing, constructing and maintaining of transportation infrastructure (streets, highways, rail systems, airports, ports and mass transit)
•Municipal Engineering – this branch of civil engineering deals with municipal infrastructure; it designs, constructs and maintains pavements, water supply networks, sewers, street lighting, municipal solid waste management, public parks, bicycle paths
•Water Resource Engineering - it concerns collection and management of water; the branch is connected with hydrology, environmental science, meteorology, geology, resource management; it is closely related to the design of pipelines, water supply network, drainage facilities and canals
•Material Engineering - this branch deals with various kinds of materials, such as concrete, mix asphalt concrete, metals; its attention is drawn to increasing strength of aluminium, steel, polymers and carbon fibres
•Coastal Engineering - the main task of this branch is to manage the coastal areas; it also tackles with the flooding defence and erosion
•Construction Engineering - it provides planning and execution of the designs from transportation, site development, hydraulic, environmental, structural and geotechnical engineers; it plays a role in business in drafting and reviewing contracts, evaluating logistical operations and prices monitoring.

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