Podcast 3 – Rebuilding after the earthquake, homeowners are not the engineers

The rebuilding process after a devastating earthquake is a tricky business. People are scared and impatient, many engineers are clueless. There are also some people who want to benefit from the situation. I am dealing only with the engineering aspect of the rebuilding process. This podcast is prepared after reading an article by a professor in a popular online media, setopati.com.

Prof. Padma Khadka has written an article titled ‘Don’t worry if you have cracks on beams and columns’. I believe, people should worry and hence this podcast.
padma khadka article

Prof. Khadka is a geotechnical engineer. But, his suggestions are nowhere near geotechnical in nature. Please listen to the podcast and comment.  Continue reading

Podcast 2, Can earthquake microzonation be done for my land?

In the second podcast of NepaliEngineer we discuss the possibility of seismic microzonation. The question was to prepare a map so that a person can know the seismicity of the place while purchasing or building a structure. We discuss the possibility of having such a map by the government. In the course of the preparation for the podcast, I had collected various hazard maps and concluded:

  • although the hazard maps are good for research purpose, they don’t serve as a guideline when making land purchases for residential purpose.
  • there is no consistency between different hazard maps prepared by different authorities (see the papers below).
  • these maps can not be reliable during earthquake.

In the podcast, I discuss about the difficulty in producing a reliable earthquake hazard map useful for land use management.

Some other documentations I found in a quick search include:

  • Preliminary Study For Evaluation Of Earthquake Risk To The Historical Structures In Kathmandu Valley (Nepal); by Sudhir R. Shrestha, Madan B. Karkee, Carlos H. Cuadra, Juan C. Tokeshi, and S. N. Miller; at World Conference on Earthquake Engineering, Vancouver, B.C., Canada, August 1-6, 2004 (download link, pdf)

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Podcast 1 – Code of Conduct of Nepal Engineering Council

In association with kguff.com, we are starting a new podcast of NepaliEngineer.com. The technical aspects of the podcast is being managed by kguff and the technical aspects of the content by NepaliEngineer.com

The first podcast is about the Code of Conduct of Nepal Engineering Council (NEC). All the related documents of NEC can be downloaded here.
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Approved Foreign Universities – Nepal Engineering Council’s Gaijatra

It is Gaijatra time in Nepal and at the time of the festival of satires and jokes, Nepal Engineering Council (NEC) has published a list of universities approved to work in Nepal. The list contain 41 universities from USA and 80 universities from Russia and 29 more universities in Russian Federation.

The number of universities approved are 510 universities from 38 countries. India has the most number of approved universities (137 universities) followed by Russia with 80 universities.

If you are a graduate from the world’s top institute according to Time’s University ranking, California Institute of Technology, you can’t work in Nepal unless NEC updates the list to include the institution in the list. In the top 100 universities list, US universities are more than half, way more than 41 approved universities. That means, the list gives a wrong impression that Nepal prefers Russian graduated rather than the graduates from the world’s top universities.

The full list of universities are as follows:

Nepal Approved universities  (1)

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Traffic lights don’t work in Kathmandu

Most of the traffic lights installed about 10 years ago in 10 different locations in Kathmandu don’t work these days. The problem has caused major headache in traffic management and it has also increased the possibility of accidents in the busy intersections.

Roles and responsibilities of government bodies:

  • Traffic management – Traffic Police
  • Vehicle registration – Department of Transport Management
  • Road construction / Traffic sign, light installation  – Department of Roads

Nepal_traffic_vehicle_roads_roles_responsibilities

The traffic lights that were installed in 2058 and don’t work properly these days include the ones at the intersection of

  • Naya Baneshowr
  • Maiti Ghar
  • Thapathali
  • Kalimati
  • Singha Durbar
  • Padmodaya Mod
  • Putali Sadak
  • Narayanhiti West Gate
  • Kesharmahal
  • Gaushala

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PCI Bridge design manual (free)

book_review_pci_bridge_design_manualThe Bridge Design Manual features background, strategies for economy, fabrication techniques, evaluation of loads, load tables, design theory and numerous complete design examples.

The Bridge Design Manual covers both preliminary and final design information for standard girders and most precast and precast, prestressed concrete products and systems used in bridge structures.

The book is designed to explain and amplify the application of both the AASHTO Standard and LRFD Bridge Design Specifications.
The chapters and the contents in each chapter can be downloaded by visiting PCI website.

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Air pollution in Nepal

In a 2010 report, Nepal ranked third from the bottom after India and Bangladesh in air quality. The data is a bit dated (from 2009 study and published in 2010), everybody has felt that the pollution level has not improved. With the rapid increase in vehicles in the road and haphazard construction (and destruction) around the city, the pollution level might have even increased in this particular year.

air_pollution_in_kathmandu_mask_wearing_pillion

Suspended particulates contribute to acute lower respiratory infections and other diseases such as cancer. Finer particulates (such as PM2.5) lodge deeper in lung tissue, causing greater damage than coarser particulates. Annual average concentrations of greater than 10 micro-­‐grams per cubic meter are known to be injurious to human health.

Problem roots:

  • Air pollution in Nepal’s neighbor, India and China can have pronounced effect on the air pollution in Nepal.
  • In Kathmandu valley – the bowl-shaped valley causes thermal inversion. Thermal inversion forms a layer in the atmosphere, especially in winter season, that traps pollutants by blocking  their natural dispersion.
  • Maintenance and monitoring of vehicles and industries to control pollution. Huge amount of pollution is caused by outdated vehicles and industrial machines.
  • Huge number of vehicles ply in Kathmandu because of the lack of mass transport system like metro railways and regular and reliable bus transits.

Engineering Colleges in Nepal

At the time when there used to be only one university in Nepal, only one institute,Institute of Engineering (IOE), offered bachelor course in engineering. After other universities were allowed to operate, a number of other private institutes started producing engineers. Now, IOE offers affiliation to a number of other institutes to offer engineering courses under it’s curriculum of Tribhuvan University. Similarly there are a number of other institutes affiliated to other universities as well.

TUEngineering colleges/institutes affiliated to:

Institute of Engineering (IOE), Tribuvan University

      1. Pulchowk Campus, Institute of Engineering (IOE)
      2. Kantipur Engineering College (KEC)
      3. Kathmandu Engineering college
      4. Advance College of Engineering and Management
      5. National College of Engineering
      6. Kathford International College of Engineering and Management
      7. Janakpur Engineering College
      8. Khwopa Engineering College
      9. Lalitpur Engineering College
      10. Sagarmatha Engineering College

More details on the institutes affiliated to IOE can be obtained from IOE website.

pokhara_universityPokhara University

      1. Nepal Engineering College (NEC), Bhaktapur
      2. Cosmos College of Management and Technology, Lalitpur
      3. National Academy of Science & Technology, Kailali
      4. Pokhara Engineering College(PEC), Pokhara
      5. Everest Engineering and Management College, Kathmandu
      6. Gandaki College of Engineering and Science, Pokhara
      7. Oxford College of Engineering and Management, Nawalparasi
      8. Lumbini Engineering, Management and Science College
      9. Nepal College of Information Technology, Lalitpur
      10. United Technical College, Chitwan
      11. Apex College, Baneshwor, Kathmandu

More details on the institutes affiliated to Pokhara University can be obtained from the the university website.

purbanchal_universityPurbanchal University

      1. Kantipur City College
      2. College of Information Technology & Engineering
      3. Khwopa Engineering College
      4. Acme Engineering College
      5. White House Institute of Science and Technology
      6. The Aryan School

The details on the institutes affiliated to Purbanchal University is not available in the university website. So, the list above is unofficial and might not be complete.

kathmandu_universityKathmandu University

      1. KU School of Engineering

Other Engineering Institutes

ctevt

Apart from the universities mentioned above, Council for Technical Education and Vocational Training (CTEVT) offers 36 months diploma courses in various engineering fields. The students seeking entry to these diploma courses only need to pass the 10th standard in school.

A CTEVT diploma holder is usually eligible to pursue a bachelor degree in the related field in the institutes affiliated to universities mentioned above.