Associate Professor, School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment
Claudia Zapata was appointed assistant professor in the School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment at Arizona State University in August 2006. She received her doctorate in geo-environmental engineering from ASU in 1999. Zapata's primary research interest is in the area of unsaturated soil behavior. She focused on fluid flow and volume change modeling for expansive soils, with applications related to the behavior of pavement subgrades and slabs-on-grade foundation design. At ASU, Zapata has been actively involved in the development of the new mechanistic-empirical guide for "Design of New and Rehabilitated Pavement Structures," in the assessment of pavement performance due to environmental factors and in the study of fluid flow and volume change properties of expansive soils under slabs on grade residential foundations.
Her main research interest is geared to the understanding of moisture flow, volume change, and strength of unsaturated soils and the impact of temperature gradients on their behavior. Practical applications include studies of foundation design on problematic soils, and environmental and dynamic loading effects on pavement design.