Agreement Links UK with Chinese Experts

Contact: Ralph Derickson or Michael Lynch

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Under the agreement, three Chinese experts in seismology, geology and geophysics will visit the University of Kentucky next April to share their knowledge and experience, and to learn about seismic research in Kentucky, including the state’s network of seismic instruments monitoring earthquake activity in the region.

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (Dec. 16, 2004) -- Earthquake experts from the University of Kentucky and the People’s Republic of China will benefit from each other’s research as a result of a recently approved agreement involving the Kentucky Geological Survey (KGS), UK’s Department of Geological Sciences. and the Lanzhou Institute of Seismology in China’s Earthquake Administration.

The agreement notes that earthquakes threaten both the United States and China and that the two countries have “strong mutual interests” in earthquake study. The central United States, including Kentucky, is threatened by earthquakes in the New Madrid and Wabash Valley Seismic Zones, and China has been rocked by a number of strong earthquakes in the past three decades.

"UK has several areas of exceptional expertise, and this is certainly one of those areas," said Wendy Baldwin, the university’s Executive Vice President for Research. "We are thrilled to share our quality research internationally as we continue to work on projects with a global impact."

Under the agreement, three Chinese experts in seismology, geology and geophysics will visit the University of Kentucky next April to share their knowledge and experience, and to learn about seismic research in Kentucky, including the state’s network of seismic instruments monitoring earthquake activity in the region.

The KGS, which is a research institute at UK, and the Department of Geological Sciences will send three seismic experts to China next summer to share their expertise and learn first-hand about Chinese seismic research.

“This agreement offers a unique opportunity for us to share our research and knowledge with our Chinese colleagues, and to learn valuable lessons from their recent experiences with major quakes,” said James C. Cobb, State Geologist and KGS director.

The American and Chinese partners have also agreed to support a visiting scholar from each other’s country to conduct seismic research on ground motions and detecting geologic faults in urban environments.

“This partnership with China’s Lanzhou Institute of Seismology builds on an already strong working relationship between the Department of Geological Sciences and the Kentucky Geological Survey,” said Steven L. Hoch, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.  “Our faculty will gain the rare opportunity to study some of the world’s most active and interesting earthquake-related events. At the same time, we hope to share our own expertise in seismic research and monitoring systems with Chinese researchers.”

Eventually, the American and Chinese seismologists hope to undertake research that incorporates the scientific methods of both countries.


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