Resilience: Infrastructure & Disaster Response

Understanding and Improving Critical Infrastructure Resilience to Natural Hazards

The population increase and urbanization of the past century ushered in an era of global development and infrastructure construction on a massive scale. As we near the end of the first century of development of the built environment, the societal stresses and costs associated with inefficient and aging infrastructure have come into focus. Historically, infrastructure development has tended to be dominated by brick-and-mortar, labor-intensive approaches with relatively modest adoption and leverage of advanced technologies compared to some other fields. However, given the scope of the national infrastructure challenge, and the high consequence of infrastructure failure, there is a strong motivation for embracing advanced technologies that can lead to substantial cost and performance improvements in the coming years. 

EESA envisions that the major advancements being made in high-performance computing (HPC) and sensors and data analytics–powered by unprecedented rapid data acquisition through high-bandwidth, low-latency communications–will provide a foundation for innovation across the spectrum of infrastructure design, maintenance, operations, and emergency response for a new era of resilient infrastructure. EESA scientists have developed multiple projects assessing the short and long term vulnerability and response of key infrastructure systems to a series of different potential natural hazards.

Learn more about our Resilient Energy, Water and Infrastructure program here.

Recent science & program advances

  • Developing an exascale computing simulation framework for unprecedented, multi-scale resolution of fault-to-structure earthquake simulations
  • Established a unique large-scale experimental facility to study soil-structure interactions and validate models of the surface-subsurface interface
  • Deploying newly developed in situ optical sensors to measure building deformation for rapid structural integrity analysis 
  • Provided near-real time coupled well-reservoir simulation results to advise the emergency response to the the Aliso Canyon natural gas storage well blowout
  • Developed an approach  to take advantage of the predictive capability of the analytical models, with support from data acquired from advanced monitoring technology for evaluations and analysis of various scenarios or potential threats for natural gas infrastructure.
  • Developed approaches to evaluate and mitigate vulnerability of natural gas infrastructure to ground subsidence, seismic events, and operation
  • Developed data Integration Approach for Mapping Air Dose Rates around the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Accident

Relevant Projects


EESA benefits from rich partnerships with our collaborators and sponsors. See project & program links above for more information.

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