On July 6th, the International Joint Research Laboratory of Earthquake Engineering (ILEE) was inaugurated in Tongji University. ILEE was co-established by Tongji University, the University of California, Berkeley, Tokyo Institute of Technology and European Centre for Training and Research in Earthquake Engineering (Italy). ILEE aims to study on the major earthquake-resistant scientific research, to cultivate innovative scientists and high-level excellent engineers with international horizon, and to develop an internationalized running system and management mechanism. Prof. Pei Gang, President of Tongji Univerisy, Prof. Chen Yiyi and Prof. Jiang Bo, Vice Presidents of TJU attended the inauguration ceremony.
In the opening speech of the inauguration ceremony, President Pei Gang said it is of great significance for Tongji to partner with other foreign earthquake engineering research centers to set up ILEE. He expressed his confidence in ILEE for achieving a batch of significant and original earthquake scientific research results and cultivating internationalized talents in the near future.
Prof. Lu Xilin, expert on earthquake engineering of TJU and director of scientific committee of ILEE, made an address in the ceremony. He said that recent earthquakes worldwide have caused significant economic and society losses. Earthquake disaster mitigation is becoming a key national strategy for many countries. Compared with the developed countries, China had fallen behind in the aspects of fundamental theories, original achievements, experimental technique level and technology application. It was essential to cooperate with leading institutions in the world to cope with the earthquake disasters.
After more than 50 years of development, China has made great progress in the field of earthquake engineering. As center of earthquake engineering research in China, Tongji University has set up world-class multi-functional shaking table testing facility, which is currently the 16th node of the U.S. George E. Brown, Jr. Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation (NEES). In addition, Tongji has cooperated with international institutions for over 20 years, which laid a good foundation for the establishment of ILEE.
Prof. Gu Xianglin, Dean of College of Civil Engineering of TJU will be the Chinese director and Prof. Stephen A. Mahin from University of California, Berkeley takes the post of foreign director. ILEE will foster five joint research centers in the fields of Building Engineering, Bridge Engineering, Lifeline Engineering, Geotechnical Engineering and Major Energy Facilities.