Sam’s research centres on blast and impact engineering, with a focus on protecting people, buildings and vehicles from explosions. This branch of structural engineering explores what happens to materials when they are subjected to extreme loading from explosions.
Sam’s work on the quantification of blast loading in extreme environments, such as buried explosives, or explosives located very close to a target structure, enables a better understanding of near-field explosions and their effects.
This research can help to save lives by improving the design of protection systems, ranging from applications in war zones to anti-terrorism legislation.
Sam has strong links with numerical modelling experts and industry practitioners in the UK and abroad, and is particularly focused on developing approximate engineering tools for rapid quantification of blast effects.
In January 2017, Dr Rigby spent a 3 ½ month sabbatical at the University of Cape Town, South Africa, working with the world-renowned Blast Impact and Survivability Research Unit.