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Tsunami Research Facility

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Research Areas:
NSF Award:

Upgrading Oregon State's Multidirectional Wave Basin for Remote Tsunami Research  (Oregon State University)

Research Focus & Anticipated Benefits

The Tsunami Research Facility at Oregon State University offers researchers a unique facility for the study of earthquake generated tsunami waves and their impact on nearshore and coastal environments. Research at the facility includes the interaction of tsunamis and built structures, tsunami inundation and overland flow, tsunami debris flow and scour, landslide-generated tsunamis, and harbor resonance.

The Facility is the world’s largest for investigating the effects of waves. By studying the impact of tsunamis on model buildings and other structures, engineers and scientists can develop better designs and materials to mitigate damage to people and property. The Tsunami Wave Basin is part of the National Science Foundation’s George E. Brown, Jr. Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation (NEES).

Education & Outreach

The Tsunami Research Facility is committed to providing outstanding education to improve the sustainability of coastal areas. Public open houses are held each year and teachers are invited to schedule facility tours for their classes at or above the fifth-grade level. The Tsunami Structure Challenge invites engineering students from middle school through college to learn about tsunami research by constructing a tsunami resistant structure that is tested at the facility. The Ambassadors program gives undergraduate students the chance to be trained and serve as tour guides for open houses and K-12 activities. Participants learn about tsunami research and gain experience presenting and interacting with the public. The facility also hosts undergraduates for summer Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) programs in which they work directly with tsunami experts and conduct their own research.

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  • Photo of tsunami wave basin
The Tsunami Wave Basin at Oregon State University is the world's largest facility for investigating the effects of large waves. The facility is part of the Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation (NEES).
College of Engineering, Oregon State University
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