• Why Buildings Fall — Over Time

    The recent collapse of the condo building in Florida served as a dire warning for the nation’s aging infrastructure problem and the deadly consequences that can result. Researchers explore how time can factor in a building collapse.

  • New Orleans Residents Have Decisions to Make as Long Recovery from Hurricane Ida Begins

    New Orleans and utility officials spent Monday assessing the severity of the damage, but private energy provider Entergy Corporation confirmed that 216 substations and 2,000 miles of transmission lines — including a tower that collapsed along the Mississippi River — are down in Louisiana, leaving more than 1 million residents without electricity. Entergy promises a team of 20,000 to repair the damage, but it’s unclear how long that will take.

  • Flood control: Seeking Community-Driven Answers to Living with Flooding

    Researchers have used a localized flooding event to envision how human beings can live with the threat of water invading their living and working spaces.

  • Extreme Sea Levels to Become Much More Common Worldwide

    Extreme sea-level events are the result of a combination of tide, waves, and storm surge. Because of rising temperatures, an extreme sea level event that would have been expected to occur once every 100 years, currently is expected to occur, on average, every year.

  • Improving Flood Projections

    Climate change will lead to more and stronger floods, mainly due to the increase of more intense heavy rainfall. In order to assess how exactly flood risks and the severity of floods will change over time, it is particularly helpful to consider two different types of such extreme precipitation events.

  • Protecting Earth from Space Weather Events

    There are only two natural disasters that could impact the entire U.S.,” according to an expert. “One is a pandemic, and the other is an extreme space weather event.” Space weather eventsfry electronics and power grids, disrupt global positioning systems, cause shifts in the range of the aurora borealis, and raise the risk of radiation to astronauts or passengers on planes crossing over the poles.

  • NIST’s Expert Team to Investigate the Champlain Towers South Collapse

    NIST announced Wednesday the expert team members who will conduct a technical investigation into the 24 June 2021, partial collapse of the Champlain Towers South condominium in Surfside, Florida. The Champlain Towers South investigation will be the fifth investigation NIST has conducted using authorities granted by the 2002 National Construction Safety Team (NCST) Act.

  • What Caused Heavy Rainfall Which Led to Western Europe’s Severe Flooding

    Mid-July flooding resulted in at least 184 fatalities in Germany and 38 in Belgium and considerable damage to infrastructure, including houses, motorways and railway lines and bridges and key income sources. Road closures left some places inaccessible for days, cutting off some villages from evacuation routes and emergency response. What was the cause of these devastating floods?

  • The Impact of Extreme Waves on Offshore Structures

    Strong storms can trigger steep, breaking waves that slam into platforms and wind turbines with tremendous force. Scientists are studying the behavior of offshore structures subjected to these kinds of waves. Their goal is to increase safety at sea.

  • Optical Fibers Detect Earthquakes

    Optical fibers, the underground optical cables that transmit a lot of information at a time, are familiar to us. But few would associate optical fibers with earthquake detection.

  • U.S. Most Widely Felt Earthquake: 10 Years On

    Ten years ago, millions of people throughout the eastern U.S. felt shaking from a magnitude 5.8 earthquake near Mineral, Virginia. No lives were lost, and it was not the strongest earthquake to have occurred in the eastern U.S., let alone the western U.S., but the Virginia earthquake was likely felt by more people than any earthquake in North America’s history.

  • Taliban to Gain Control over $1 trillion Mineral Wealth

    To date, the Taliban have profited from the opium and heroin trade. Now the Islamist group effectively rules a country with valuable resources that China needs to grow its economy. Afghanistan’s mineral riches will also bolster China’s dominance in rare Earth elements.

  • Urban Development and Greenhouses Gasses Will Fuel Urban Floods

    When rain began falling in northern Georgia on September 15, 2009, little did Atlantans know that they would witness epic flooding throughout the city. Researchers are asking whether a combination of urban development and climate change fueled by greenhouse gasses could bring about comparable scenarios in other U.S. cities. Based on a new study, the answer is yes.

  • How Do Floods Become a Disaster?

    Since the 1990s, the number of fatalities from river floods has declined worldwide, but the amount of damage has risen sharply. Researchers attribute the decline in casualties to improved flood warning, technical protection measures and heightened hazard awareness.

  • Small Towns Should Focus on Resilience

    With heatwaves, bushfires, and floods, small towns and their surrounding communities have confronted a combination of successive disasters fueled by climate change. And it’s predicted to only get worse. “So, the challenge for all of us, but particularly areas at increasing risk of climate-fueled disasters, is to get ahead of what’s coming,” says one expert. “We need to ask: what we can do to reduce or even prevent some of these disasters from happening?”