The NORHED II project aims to build capacity in higher education within Rock and Tunnel Engineering in Nepal, and is a collaboration project between Department of Geoscience, NTNU and Paschimanchal Campus of Institute of Engineering (IoE-WRC), Tribhuvan University in Nepal. The project is funded by Norad – Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation which aims to enhance internal capacity of Institute of Engineering (IoE) within Rock and Tunnel Engineering through the production of 4 #PhD graduates of IoE faculties at NTNU, establishment of state-of-art rock and tunnel engineering laboratory at IoE-WRC, teaching support to MSc in Rock and Tunnel Engineering at IoE-WRC which was started in late 2020 with direct contribution by NTNU. This 6 years long collaboration project gives maximum focus on UN sustainable goals and has started in January 2021 and will end by the end of 2026.
Tek Bahadur Katuwal is 33 years old, from Nepal. He has just joined the Department of Geoscience and Petroleum, NTNU to undertake a 4 – year PhD in the field of Rock and Tunnel Engineering. His main Supervisor is Krishna Kanta Panthi (Professor IGP, NTNU) and the co–supervisor is Dr. Chhatra Bahadur Basnet (Visiting Associate Professor, Pashchimanchal Campus (WRC), Institute of Engineering (IoE)). Tek will focus, through research, on “Selection of Tunnel Construction Methods in Himalayan Rock Mass Conditions”. After the selection of relevant cases, he will be actively involved in a field visit to carry out engineering geological mapping, collect required data and representative rock samples from the Himalayan region for the laboratory investigation at IGP. The research work will mainly be carried out at IGP with frequent field visits to the Himalayan region. This research will recommend, geologically, optimum and economically viable tunnel construction methods for the Himalayan region.
This PhD research is part of “NORHED II PROJECT 70141 6: Capacity Enhancement in Rock and Tunnel Engineering at Pashchimanchal Campus (WRC), Institute of Engineering (IoE), Tribhuvan University (TU), Nepal” funded by NORAD and managed by IGP-NTNU. The main objective of this NORHED II project is, the establishment of an MSc Program in «Rock and Tunnel Engineering» at the Institute of Engineering (IOE) of Tribhuvan University, produce about 90 MSc graduates in Nepal and capacity enhance of the faculties through the production of 4 PhD graduates at NTNU within 2026.
Tek has graduated from the Department of Civil Engineering in Pashchimanchal Campus (WRC), Institute of Engineering (IOE) of TU and has Master’s degree in Infrastructure Engineering and Management. Prior to joining NTNU, he was an assistant professor at Pashchimanchal Campus (WRC), Institute of Engineering (IoE), Tribhuvan University (TU) in Nepal. After completion of his PhD research work, he will return to his home country and contribute to research and academic activities at Pashchimanchal Campus (WRC) of the Institute of Engineering (IoE). He will be active in collaborative research initiatives between IoE, NTNU, tunnelling industry and other international academic institutions.
Sailesh Adhikari has joined The Department of Geoscience and Petroleum, Faculty of Engineering to start his PhD on “Stability assessment and rock support optimization of underground excavations in Himalayan rock mass”. The PhD is a part of “NORHED II PROJECT 70141 6: Capacity Enhancement in Rock and Tunnel Engineering at Pashchimanchal Campus (WRC), Institute of Engineering (IoE), Tribhuvan University (TU), Nepal” funded by NORAD and managed by IGP-NTNU. In the research Sailesh will develop stability assessment methods suitable for the Himalayan rock mass. His research outcome will deliver appropriate approach of rock support design relevant for Himalayan rock mass. The research focus will on the utilization of flexible, sustainable, cost effective and environmentally friendly support design. He will carry out extensive field mapping, instrumentation, collection of relevant data and laboratory testing of the rock samples brought from different tunnel project cases from Himalayan region. The mapped, collected and tested data will be used as basis to carry out comprehensive stability assessment and optimization of rock support for underground caverns and tunnels passing through Himalayan rock mass.
Sailesh has completed M.Tech. in Structural Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology Delhi (IIT Delhi), India. Prior joining to NTNU, he was assistant professor at Pashchimanchal Campus (WRC), Institute of Engineering (IoE), Tribhuvan University (TU), Nepal.
Nepal is a country that has great potential for Hydropower, but only 5% of the potential is utilized. The mountain country is also struggling with poor infrastructure. NTNU has for many decades worked closely with universities in Nepal. NTNU professor Krishna Kanta Panthi is in the process of starting a master’s program in rock and tunnel engineering. The government of Nepal has shown great interest in this
NTNU has collaborated with Tribhuvan University in Nepal for decades. The collaboration began with hydropower, but has now also developed into other areas. The Department of Geoscience and Petroleum has now started a direct collaboration, and now Professor Krishna Kanthi Panthi is going to Nepal to help build a master’s program in rock and tunneling engineering