NORHED II Project – Capacity Building in Higher Education within Rock and Tunnel Engineering in Nepal

Brief Introduction

NORHED II Project 70141 6; Capacity Building in Higher Education within Rock and Tunnel Engineering in Nepal is a collaboration project between Paschimanchal Campus, Institute of Engineering (IoE-WRC), Tribhuvan University (TU) of Nepal and Department of Geoscience and Petroleum (IGP), Faculty of Engineering (IV) of NTNU. The project is funded by the Norwegian Government through NORAD. The total budget of the project is slightly over 17 MNOK and IGP is the partner in the North and is responsible in the total management of this project. On the other hand, IoE-WRC is the south partner and is responsible in implementing activities assigned in Nepal. The project activities are managed by the project management team and approved by the steering committee meetings held annually.  

The project has 6 years period from January 2021 to December 2026. This collaboration project focuses on the implementation of MSc and PhD programs at the Institute of Engineering (IoE) of the Tribhuvan University (TU) in Nepal and at IGP-NTNU through production of MSc fellows and capacity enhancement of faculties within “Rock and tunnel engineering” at Paschimanchal Campus of IoE (IoE-WRC) located in the city of Pokhara.

Objectives of the Project

Following are the main aims and objectives of the project.

  1. Establish / strengthen MSc and PhD program within Rock and Tunnel Engineering
  2. Capacity buildup of IoE-WRC faculties/staff through PhD research and training
  3. Establish rock engineering laboratory for the enhancement of education and research
  4. Provide teaching help from IGP in order to implement the MSc program
  5. Establish solid base for future sustainability of the MSc program
  6. Establish solid base for student exchange and future research collaboration


Steering committee meeting of 2022

The first kick-off meeting of the project was held on 5th October 2021 which constituted a steering committee for the project. The first steering committee meeting was held on 15th June 2022 where review and approval of the meeting minutes of the kick-off meeting, achieved progress during the year 2021 and projected plan of activities for the year 2022 were made. On the same day a meeting was held between the Dean of Engineering Faculty (IV) of NTNU and Dean of Institute of Engineering (IoE).

In addition, on 21st June a meeting was held between Dean of IoE, NORHED II Project team and the officials at the International office of NTNU.

From left: IoE Dean Prof. Shashidhar Ram Joshi, IV Dean Prof. Olav Bolland, IGP Head Dr. Ute Mann, Senior advisor at International Office Ms. Ingvild Heggstad, Prof. Bjørn Frengstad and Prof. Krishna Panthi

Student mobility of 2022

This project aims to invite second year students of MSc program in Rock and Tunnel Engineering that started in 2020 at IoE-WRC with the help of IGP-NTNU. The first batch of 20 MSc students visited Norway with IoE Dean. The aim of the visit by the students is to observe and learn on how Norway builds tunnels and underground caverns, rock cut slopes and mining projects on a very cost effective and sustainable way. Such learning provides students an opportunity to learn about the capacity a rock mass can have, visualize on the rock support that is needed to strengthen the self-supporting capacity of the rock mass at each rock engineering project, tunnels, underground caverns and cut slopes.

In the following selected photos of the visit by MSc second year students are given.

Visiting students with IoE dean at the IGP laboratory

Visiting students with IoE dean, officials from the International Office of NTNU in front main building

Visit to Strindheim road tunnel in Trondheim. Engineering Geologist Helen Feragen from Norwegian Road Authority and Prof. Krishna Panthi explained about the Norwegian way of road tunnel design and construction. The photo was taken at the pumping cavern.

Students during the lecture by Engineering Geologist Helen Feragen from Norwegian Road Authority

Visit to Leirfossen Hydropower Project

Visit to the Powerhouse Cavern of Leirfossen Hydropower Project

Walking along the cable tunnel of Leirfossen Hydropower Project

Visit to Bratsett Hydropower Project at Berkåk.

Visit to Tunnel Museum at Hunderfossen. Thanks to Jan Rohde from NFF and Morten Reiten from Norwegian Road Museum for the wonderful receival and explanation about the tunneling history of Norway.

Visit to Gjøvik Icehockey Underground Hall, the world largest public underground arena.

Visit to the 24.5 KM long Lærdal Road Tunnel, the world longest road tunnel

Visit to Visness Kalk, a open pit marble mine located at Eide

Students listening Engineering Geologist Lars Emil Eide who is also among the owners of Visness Kalk Mine. Lars completed his study from IGB in 2015.

Visit to observe vertical rock cut at the Atlantic Highway. Students also learn about Atlantic Sub-sea tunnel located.

Students observing a road cut slope and strengthining work made along E39 at Vinjefjorden. Hlynur Gudmundson from the Norwegian Road Authority explained about the project.

Observation of the unlined Road Tunnel at Vinjefjorden. Students amazed with the unlined solution.