2017 Archie Seminars


2017 Archie Seminars: Scotland (21 August), Bristol (29 September), London... [read more]

New BoMs and a word of warning


Somewhat belated but the last two BoMs for 2014 are atNovember, WhangareiandDecember,... [read more]

August 2014


Bridge of the Month up to date again [read more]

New file


Seems that the demo uploaded was the wrong one. Sorry. now... [read more]

New Download + Bridge of the Month


DOWNLOAD Version standalone now available for... [read more]



OBVIS ltd provides support for program users. This can range from talking beginners through the way Archie-M works to advising on extracting and using Archie-M data to extend the value of the program. We also run a series of annual seminars for which we charge only the cost of providing the venue etc. Those who attend seem to come regularly and find the seminars both informative and educational.

Beyond this support, if you are dealing with issues beyond those for which Archie-M was designed, we will pass you on to Bill Harvey Associates Ltd. Since that means the same person in a different wrapper it is perhaps worth explaining. OBVIS Ltd is a joint enterprise between Bill and Zoltan Juhasz. Bill does the engineering, sales and support and Zoltan does the programming. We share the profits equally. When it comes to work that is solely Bill's, it is easier to separate it completely.

Bill Harvey Associates undertakes a wide range of work. Over recent years we have worked on Box Girder Bridges (in association with Jolyon Gill Consulting), on large historic buildings (eg for the Landmark Trust), on modern structures (1960s shops in Taunton, A house in Shaftsbury), but our main work remains with arching structures.

Bill often finds it worthwhile to build bespoke software in Microsft Excel. In this way he is able to offer solutions where others might resort to very complex analysis and yet produce results that are not useful. In this respect he has saved large sums of money (roughly 1000 times his fee) on the CTRL among other work.

Bill is always prepared to discuss any engineering problem and will seek to offer a solution directly or use his large range of contacts to pass the work on to someone better suited. Bill has a blog at http://billharvey.typepad.com in which there are several threads representing his interests. He is also, slowly, developing personal sites at





Bill Undertakes training in all aspects of arch bridge assessment and design. If you wish to discus an in house course please email him at bill@obvis.com or call +44 (0)7879 425884. If you are a lone user and need to attend a course please let bill know and he will try to arrange something.

One Day Course

A one day course will run from 9.30 to 16.00 with appropriate breaks for coffee, lunch and tea.The following programme has been presented a number of times, including to Network Rail engineers and to Parsons Brinkerhof.

  • Construction of arch bridges
  • Introduction to arch behaviour
  • Basic use of Archie-M
  • Some bells and whistles
  • Multi span bridges
  • Skew Bridges
  • Extending Archie-M
  • Future developments

With two days available, a more relaxed programme is possible as indicated in this programme presented to The Department of Regional Development, Northern Ireland.

Day 1, Thursday 1st Oct

  • 09.00 Site Visits
  • 11.00 Coffee and Introduction
  • 11.10 How arches were built
    • This is vital to understanding likely internals etc.
  • 11.50 How arch bridges work
    • A best assessment of current understanding.
  • 12.40 Lunch
  • 14.00 Inspection for assessment
    • Where to look, what to look for and what and how to record. Photography, dimensions, faults, causes and effects.
  • 15.00 Site visits

Day 2, Friday 2nd Oct

  • 09.00 MEXE Outcomes of a study for UIC
    • How MEXE was made. Alterations over the years. Obvious failings
  • 10.00 Other approaches
    • Thrust lines/zones, The oldest approach, powers and problems
  • 11.00 coffee followed by
    • Elastic analysis
    • Began with Castigliano and hand calc but now much simpler. CTAP
    • Small scale equilibrium (RING)
    • Now commercially available
    • Various levels of finite element analysis
    • Bar elements and BA16, Tapered elements, Choo et al, 2D elements, 3D elements
  • 11.40 Issues
    • Distribution models
    • No model is better than its input data
    • Railway loads and effects
    • Bridge failures test assessment methods
  • 12.00 Lunch
  • 13.00 Skew Bridges
  • 14.00 Archie-M
    • Basic modelling and analysis, Multi spans, Refinements, Extensions, Failings, Plans for the near future.
  • 15.00 Tea
  • 15.30 Practical sessions and/or discussion
    • Explore the implications of what we have seen.