Julia Schonwalder_edited.jpg

Julia Schönwälder

Lecturer / Phd Candidate

Contact: j.schonwalder@tudelft.nl

Keywords: Structural design, Architectural cardboard, Lightweight structures, Construction materials, Sustainable design, Temporary structures, Demountable structures. 

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Julia has been supporting the Structural Design & Mechanics group as a lecturer since September 2021 . Her special interests are in membrane and shell structures as well as in (sustainable) cellulosic building materials such as cardboard, wood and bamboo. 


Julia studied civil engineering at the Technical University Munich. Within her study she spent two semesters at the École Nationale des Ponts en Chaussées (ENPC) in Paris and did her master’s thesis at the University of Toronto in Canada. After completing her studies in 2002, Julia came to the Netherlands to start her PhD research at the Technical University of Delft. She joint the Structural Mechanics group of  Prof. Jan Rots at the faculty of Architecture. There she investigated and modelled the mechanical properties of paper and cardboard to be applied as structural building material. 


In 2009 Julia started her practical experience as structural engineer at the Dutch company Witteveen&Bos. There she was working for about 3 years on various civil engineering structures such as dikes, locks, weirs and bridges. Since Julia was always interested in more architectural structures she decided to make a switch and started to work at Tentech, an engineering firm that is specialized in lightweight and membrane structures. At Tentech Julia had the opportunity to work on structures for the event and architectural sector in a very international field. The projects were predominantly membrane and demountable lightweight structures, but also buildings made of special materials such as cardboard, timber (CLT), bamboo, mycelium and 3D printed composites.

Selected Publications

  • A computational model for cardboard creep fracture, Schönwälder, J., van Zijl GPAG. & Rots, JG., 2006, Fracture of Nano and Engineering Materials and Structures (EFC16). Gdoutos, E.E. (ed.). Dordrecht: Springer, p. 475-478 4 p.

  • Determination and modelling of  the mechanical behaviour of cardboard as a building material, Schönwälder, J., Rots JG. & Veer, FA., 2004, 5th International PhD symposium in civil engineering volume I. Walraven, J., Blaauwendraad, J., Scarpas, T. &Snijder, B. (eds.) Delft: CRC Press / Balkema - Taylor & Francis Group, p. 413-421 9 p.

  • Mechanical behaviour of cardboard in construction, Schönwälder, J. & Rots, JG., 2008, Cardboard in Architecture. Delft: Delft University of Technology, Department of Building Technology, p. 139-155 17 p.

  • Construction with cardboard: design and modelling of a cardboard beam, Schönwälder, J., Veer, FA. & Rots JG., 2006, Deformation and Fracture Processes in Paper and Wood Materials, s.n. (ed.). Sundsvall: Mid Sweden University, p 1-5 5 p. .

  • Cardboard: An innovative construction material, Schönwälder, J. & Rots, JG., 2007, Sustainable construction materials and technologies. Chun, Y., Claisse, P., Naik, T.R. & Ganjian, E. (eds.). Leiden: Taylor &Francis, p. 731-740 10 p.

  • Rapid determination of creep properties of paperboard using staircase loading tests, Schönwälder, J. & Veer, FA., 2004,  The 2004 progress in paper physics seminar. Gregersen, OW. (ed.) ,Trondheim: s.n., p. 96-99 4 p. 

  • Investigation on multilayer paper boards as a structural material, van Kranenburg, C., Schönwälder, J., Veer, FA. et al., 2007, Proceedings of the third international conference on structural engineering, mechanics and computation, Zingoni, A. (ed.), Rotterdam: Millpress Science Publishers, p.1572-1576 5 p. 

  • The creep fatigue interaction in solid paper, Veer, FA., Schönwälder, J., Heidweiler,  A., Kuipers NB., 2004, Proceedings of 15th European Conference of Fracture Advanced Fracture Mechanics for Life and Safety Assessments (ECF15), Stockholm, Sweden. Nilsson, F. (ed.), Stockholm, Sweden: ECF, p. 1-8 8 p.

TU Delft Research Profile