CLOUGH, RAY W. / Technology / Researchers

International Center for Scientific Research


Technology / CLOUGH, RAY W.


Professor Emeritus, Department of Civil Engineering

Earthquake Engineering Research Center
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, California, U.S.A.

Research interests

Ray Clough, renowned for pioneering the field of earthquake engineering, is credited with the development and application of a mathematical procedure—finite element analysis—used to analyze the stresses on buildings and other structures, such as dams. In finite element analysis, a physical structure is broken down into substructures called "finite elements." These elements and their interrelationships are converted to equations and solved mathematically. Once earthquake stresses on a structure's design have been identified using Clough's analysis, architects and engineers can modify the design to withstand earthquakes. This technique became a key analytical tool in the young field of earthquake engineering.

Prizes and awards

Clough served on the National Academy of Sciences Committee on Earthquake Engineering and is the recipient of many honors including the George W. Housner Medal from the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute and the Prince Philip Medal from the Royal Academy of Engineering in London. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Chinese Academy of Engineering. In 1994, President Clinton presented Clough with a National Medal of Science.

2006 Benjamin Franklin Medal in Civil Engineering for revolutionizing engineering and scientific computation and engineering design methods through his formulation and development of the finite element method, and for his innovative leadership in applying the method to the field of earthquake engineering with special emphasis on the seismic performance of dams.


M. J. Turner, Ray W. Clough, H. C. Martin, und L. J. Topp: Stiffness and deflection analysis of complex structures. Journal of the Aeronautical Sciences, Vol. 23, No. 9, p. 805-823, 1956

Clough, Ray W.: The finite element method in plane stress analysis. Proceedings, 2nd Conference on Electronic Computation, A.S.C.E. Structural Division, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Sept. 1960

Ray W. Clough, Joseph Penzien, Dynamics of Structures, McGraw-Hill, 1975 und 1993, ISBN 0071132414

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