Forensic engineering is in depth study of an engineering process or machine, structure or item to determine how that structure or item failed to perform adequately.
The engineering structure might be a bridge, building, aircraft or factory, or a single small component. In a construction engineering dispute a forensic engineer might need to study the particular construction or manufacturing process to analyse the engineering factors that contributed to failure or motivated a particular party’s actions.
In layman’s terms a forensic engineer is to a complex industrial failure or engineering dispute what a project manager is to the construction of a large power station or a dairy factory. A complex industrial failure involving several engineering disciplines might require a forensic engineer to evidence from other experts such as metallurgists, specialist engineers and technicians in order to perform a comprehensive causal analysis.
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