NSF Offers Grants for Himalayan Earthquake Research

$760,000 awarded

Everest Base Camp after the avalanche. (AP)

The National Science Foundation (NSF) will fund research grants to better understand the causes of the earthquake that struck Nepal last April, according to a press release published on Monday. Grants from the Directorate for Geosciences and Directorate for Engineering total approximately $760,000 and are rapid-response awards, meant for research that must be conducted quickly.

The magnitude 7.8 earthquake that hit Nepal on April 25 killed more than 8,800 and injured almost 23,000 people. While the general causes are not mysterious—the region sits at the border of the Indian tectonic plate and the Asian plate—there is more to be learned about the immediate effects and aftershocks of the plates’ collision.

“Studying the damage to this structural system and the challenges to disaster management will help us better understand the vulnerabilities of similar systems, particularly those in California,” Pramod Khargonekar, assistant director for engineering at the NSF, said in the press release. “With more data to inform more resilient designs, engineering advances can enable infrastructure to better withstand future hazards and to bounce back faster with minimal loss.”

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