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Adopted projects related to the April 2015 Nepal earthquake in the J-RAPID Program

Title of the Project Japan based Principal
Nepal based Principal
1 Investigation of Ground-motion to Damage Relationship in the Kathmandu Valley from Aftershock and Microtremor Observations Kazuki Koketsu Professor,
Earthquake Research Institute,
The University of Tokyo
In this study, we carry out aftershock and microtremor surveys in the Kathmandu Valley together with building damage surveys for elucidating the relationship between ground motion and damage and the mechanism of ground motion damage. To put it concretely, we perform 1) the construction of the velocity structure in the Kathmandu Valley, 2) the recovery of mainshock ground motions there, 3) the establishment of ground motion to damage relationship, and 4) the examination of mechanism of ground motion damage. The outcomes of this study are expected to enhance the accuracy of seismic risk assessment in the Kathmandu Valley.
Soma Nath Sapkota Deputy Director General,
Department of Mines and Geology,
Ministry of Industry
2 Damage Mapping of April 2015 Nepal Earthquake using Small UAV Hiroshi Inoue Principal Senior Researcher,
National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention
We map the damage of buildings caused by the Nepal earthquake in Kathmandu Valley and surrounding mountain areas using a small fixed-wing UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle), in systematic, extensive, and precise manner for the purposes of 1) damage assessment, and risk assessment for urban planning by the national and local governments towards recovery, 2) detailed study of the distribution of building damages, and 3) improvement of the methods of rapid damage mapping using satellite and UAV imageries. We carry out the survey as projects of national and local governments with UAV flight permission. The Japanese team provides UAV operation and mapping technology to the Nepali side. We provide data to the government and share the data for research. The project aims at 1) damage assessment by the governments and risk assessment for urban planning for recovery, 2) studying relationship between damage distribution and the terrain, soil and other conditions, 3) verification and improvement of rapid damage assessment by satellite imagery data, 4) improvement and transfer of UAV operation technology in built-up urban center and mountain areas, and 5) improvement of timeliness of damage assessment by introducing the UAV and 3D mapping technology.
Ramesh Guragain Deputy Executive Director,
National Society for Earthquake Technology-Nepal
3 Inventory Mapping of Landslides induced by the Nepal Earthquake and Hazard Mapping of Future Landslides for Making the Plan of Better Reconstruction Masahiro Chigira Professor,
Disaster Prevention Research Institute,
Kyoto University
The purpose of this study is 1) to make an inventory mapping on landslides, cracks, and landslide dams induced by the Nepal earthquake and to investigate their formative mechanisms, and 2) to detect the areas and displacements of slope surfaces, of which susceptibility to landslides would be evaluated on the basis of geology, geomorphology, and groundwater conditions. The joint research has the following schemes. 1) Inventory mapping of landslides and related phenomena like cracks and landslide dams. 2) Identification and mapping of displaced slopes using the results of SAR image analyses and field survey. 3) Rainfall mapping before the earthquake using the rainfall database APHRODITE. 4) Analysis on major landslides, unstable slopes, and landslide dams from the viewpoints of geology, geomorphology, and antecedent rainfalls. 5) Semi quantitative slope stability analysis with geological and geomorphological features and quantitative seismic response analysis with FEM(Finite Element Method). This study will clarify the characteristics and the distribution of slope movements induced by the Nepal earthquake and enable to locate future potential landslide sites, which results will be used to establish the methodology of predicting earthquake-induced landslides. We wish we can help the governmental organizations of Nepal to make decisions on where or how to relocate villages and how to maintain roads against natural disaster.
Vishnu Dangol Professor,
Department of Geology,
Tribhuvan University
4 Investigation of Cryo-geohazards in Langtang Valley, Nepal Koji Fujita Associate Professor,
Graduate School of Environmental Studies,
Nagoya University
On 25 April 2015, Langtang village, which is located at north of Kathmandu, was severely damaged by the Gorkha Earthquake triggering avalanches. To investigate the tragic destruction, we estimate debris quantity covering the village and its distribution, which may consist of ice and rock mixture, by comparing three sets of digital elevation models (DEMs) and 3D images for the pre-earthquake, post-earthquake and post-monsoon, which will be created by satellite imagery, footages and UAV photographs with a couple of advanced technologies such as Leica Photogrammetry Suite (LPS) and Structure from Motion (SfM). Based on this information, we will validate and improve our avalanche model by taking into account different materials and entrainment process, and then create an avalanche hazard map using the newly developed method of polynominal chaos quadrature (PCQ), which allows us to describe avalanche flow as a probability distribution. We then plan to provide this hazard map to villagers rebuilding their lives in Langtang Valley. Through the observations and analyses in this proposal, our knowledge, technology and skill will be transferred and shared with Nepali researchers for their own research capability in the future.
Rijan Bhakta Kayastha Associate Professor,
School of Science,
Kathmandu University
5 Field Survey and Development of GIS Database on Rural Areas Affected by the Nepal Earthquake Machito Mihara Professor,
Faculty of Regional Environment Science,
Tokyo University of Agriculture
This research deals with the analysis of the facts and features of devastation and the evaluation of land use in rural areas suffered from the Nepal Earthquake in April and May 2015 for building up the new GIS database. The purposes of the research are as follows.
  1. 1. Understand and analyze the damage of residential and other buildings as well as agricultural land and facilities
  2. 2. Classify suitable land use type taking into account of consideration of disaster risks
  3. 3. Suggest the Nepalese Government suitable resettlement areas with the high resilience to natural disasters
  4. 4. Recommend the government a sustainable land use plan in the rural areas
To accomplish the purposes, the research team collects existing GIS data, conducts field survey and develops new GIS data as well as a digital elevation model (DEM) through remote sensing. All of those data are reflected the teamís developing GIS database for land use evaluation. This land use evaluation aims to classify the types of suitable land use for resettlement, forestry, conservation area, wetland, and so on, as well as to identify the disaster-prone areas from landslides, flooding and so on. With the research outcomes, it is expected that the Nepalese Government could identify what aid and reconstruction plan as proper and needed in the project areas to make the rural societies more resilient to natural disasters and sustainable.
Bim Prasad Shrestha Professor,
School of Engineering,
Kathmandu University

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