Published Date: 2022-05-18, Wednesday
The First International Conference on Space Utilization and Research in Underground Structures (SURung-I) was hosted by Kathmandu University on the 5th and 6th of May 2022. The conference brought together academicians, researchers, engineers, and industry experts involved in disciplines of underground structure. As a part of the conference, Prof Dr. Bhola Thapa, vice-chancellor of Kathmandu University, and Mr. Kulman Ghising, managing director of Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) inaugurated the conference. The two-day conference was participated by around 100 participants through physical and virtual presence from national and international institutes/organizations.
The conference was jointly organized by Kathmandu University, Seoul National University, Norwegian University of Science and Technology and Hydro Tunnelling and Research Pvt. Ltd. in association with Nepal Tunnelling Association and Nepal Society for Rock Mechanics. The two-day conference was supported by Energize Nepal and Purwanchal Campus (IoE) (NORHED-II project), and was sponsored and co-sponsored by Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA), Nepal Construction and Engineering Corporation Pvt. Ltd (NCEC), Hydro Tunneling and Research Pvt. Ltd. (HTR) and Energize Nepal.
The entire conference was chaired by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Shyam Sundar Khadka, head of the department at the Department of Civil Engineering, Kathmandu University. Prof. Seokwon Jeon from Seoul National University (SNU), Prof. Krishna Kanta Panthi from Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Dr. Sandip Shah, Immediate Past President of Nepal Tunneling Association (NTA), and Dr. Pawan Kumar Shrestha, President of Nepal Society of Rock Mechanics (NSRM) delivered keynote lectures on various topics in the field of tunneling and underground structure. This was followed by a technical presentation in four different sessions. A total of 20 presentations were done followed by a panel discussion. National and international participants presented their findings in various topics of underground engineering through physical and virtual presence. Dr. Pawan Kumar Shrestha moderated the discussion with Prof. Krishna Kanta Panthi, Prof. Ramesh Kumar Maskey and Prof. Tara Nidhi Bhattarai as panelists on the issue of underground space utilization of Nepal Himalayas for sustainable development.
The conference provided a leading-edge, scholarly forum for researchers, engineers and students alike to share their state-of-the-art research and developmental work, new ideas and breakthroughs in areas of Space Utilization and Underground Structures and was officially closed with closing remarks from Prof. Dr. Subodh Sharma, registrar of Kathmandu University and Dr. Rita Kumar, senior advisor at the office of International Relations, NTNU. Finally, Dr. Khadka delivered vote of thanks to all the organizers, partners, sponsors, volunteers and participants.