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NEES Community Update - May 2015
Research News
In The Network
Outreach News

Upcoming Events & Deadlines

May 17 - 20
12th North American Masonry Conference, Denver

See Event Details


Director's Letter


First, our heartfelt sympathy goes to the people of Nepal in the face of the events of April and May of this year. Since April 25 and as of May 16, more than fifteen significant earthquakes of magnitude greater than 3.4 have been registered at the USGS site (, with seven ranging in magnitude from 5.7 to the 7.8 of April 25 with a very recent one of magnitude 7.1. Regretfully, loss of life has been reported approaching 9,000 deaths and rescuers are still trying to reach the more remote areas. This is the immediate concern. The damage to the infrastructure in particular housing is enormous and will continue to be a major challenge as the monsoon season approaches with the threat of landslides and flood.

Julio Ramirez
NEES Chief Officer and NEEScomm Center Director

Recognition for NEESR researcher Miranda

Eduardo Miranda

Stanford University professor and NEESR researcher Eduardo Miranda was selected as one of 2014’s Top 25 Newsmakers by the editors of the Engineering News-Record.

For his work in developing an economical earthquake-resistant house, ENR named Miranda as one of the top industry professionals who have made a difference for their industry and the public during the preceding year.

The NEESR project is called Seismically Isolated Unibody Residential Buildings for Enhanced Life-Cycle Performance.

The ENR announcement is available online.

Be sure to watch the excellent video footage testing a residential dwelling on base isolators. The tests took place at UC San Diego’s outdoor shake table.

NEESComm News

Members of the NEEScomm Headquarters team attended the NSF Large Facilities Workshop, held May 12 through May 14 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Representing NEES network operations will be Deputy Director Barb Fossum, IT Director Brian Rohler and Financial Officer Becky White.

The annual event, hosted by NSF’s Large Facilities Office, is a collaborative forum for discussing current challenges and relevant topics related to large scientific research facilities such as those in the NEES network, as well as for sharing best practices and lessons learned from operational and administrative experiences. Among the attendees will be facilities management staff, principle investigators, facilities users, as well as NSF staff and representatives from other federal agencies.

The Large Facilities Office produces a publically available report outlining the results and findings from the discussions as well as the information presented by experts and guest speakers.

The selection of Puerto Rico enables participants to visit the NSF-funded Arecibo Observatory and continues the historical practice of allowing participants to visit and learn from other facilities operators. NEEScomm staff were specifically invited to share their insights and best practices related to cyberinfrastructure, Uniform Guidance implementation and managing project close-out.

Data Curation

As the community awaits news on the NHERI competition, NEEScomm continues to support data upload and data curation. Since the last newsletter, NEEScomm has completed data curation on 7 projects and 153 experiments. NEES researchers have added over 24,000 files and 584GB of curated data.

Data DOIs

Between June 2012 and March 2015, the NEES award minted more than 791 digital object identifiers (DOIs) for data. With the results of NEESR simulations and experiments firmly established as citable sources, NEEScomm and NEES researchers have their work positioned at the forefront of the academic movement ensuring that experimental data is readily available for re-use. Data, including NEESR earthquake engineering data, is a bona fide contribution to the research community.

IT Activities

NEEScomm seeks to continue to support data upload and data curation until the NHERI awardee has been announced and the transition period has begun. As always, NEEScomm is available to answer any questions through submitted tickets on the NEEShub for any NEES issues, such as access to high performance computing or questions about data curation.

More NEES REU Success

Laura Pavone

2014 NEES at Buffalo REU student Laura Pavone recently won the EERI outstanding undergraduate paper award. At the Buffalo facility she worked with Professor Andreas Stavridis.

Laura is a senior at SUNY Buffalo. She plans to continue her education at the master’s level in structural and earthquake engineering.

Her project is titled Effect of Window Openings on Reinforced Concrete Frames with Masonry Infill. It is available on the NEEShub.

Ryan McNerney

In addition, 2014 REU student Ryan McNerny attended the 2015 EERI annual meeting this spring as his award for the NEES REU 2014 Young Researchers Symposium "Best Overall" Winner. Ryan presented a poster about his work with Gregory Deierlein, Benjamin Fell, and Eduardo Miranda at UC San Diego on the Unibody Residential Buildings project. The title of Ryan's project was Nonlinear Simulations of Seismically Enhanced Light-Frame Systems. It is available on the NEEShub.


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The George E. Brown, Jr. Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation (NEES), a National Science Foundation (NSF) funded organization of which the goals are part of the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program's (NEHRP) coordinated effort to address earthquake risk in the United States. The NEES mission to accelerate improvements in seismic design and performance by serving as an indispensable collaboratory for discovery and innovation. Cooperative Agreement CMMI-0927178

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