Email Print Share

News Release 06-088

Researchers Release Draft Final Report on New Orleans Levees

700-page report suggests mechanisms for levee failures

Geotechnical engineers inspect a portion of the floodwall along the Industrial Canal.

Geotechnical engineers inspect a portion of the floodwall along the Industrial Canal.


May 22, 2006

This material is available primarily for archival purposes. Telephone numbers or other contact information may be out of date; please see current contact information at media contacts.

Following an eight-month study of the New Orleans levee system and its performance during Hurricane Katrina, a 30-person team of researchers led by Raymond Seed and Robert Bea of the University of California, Berkeley, released a near-complete draft of their findings today in a "town hall" meeting in that Gulf Coast city.

Seed received two National Science Foundation grants to collect perishable data and to conduct an independent field investigation of the performance of the New Orleans levee systems with the intent the findings would prove vital for gauging the performance of levee systems distributed across the United States.

The levee study is one of more than 100 NSF supported in response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. For decades, the agency has supported field investigations following all manner of disasters, allowing researchers to travel the world to collect perishable data as soon as possible after an event.

The results of these studies have provided emergency planners, responders and others with key findings ranging from how disasters inflict physical damage to the impact of social factors on evacuation and long-term emotional effects.

The Berkeley-led team's report is available at: http://www.ce.berkeley.edu/~new_orleans

This project was supported, in part, by the National Science Foundation under Grants No. CMS-0413327 and CMS-0611632. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this report are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Foundation.

Information about the report release is available from Robert Sanders, Manager of Science Communications at Berkeley: rsanders@berkeley.edu; (510) 643-6998

The NSF award abstracts for the Berkeley-led levee research efforts are below:

http://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward.do?AwardNumber=0553197

http://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward.do?AwardNumber=0611632

A listing of the NSF award abstracts related to the Katrina disaster are available on the NSF-supported Katrina Environmental Research and Restoration Network Website at: http://kerrn.org/projects.html

-NSF-

Media Contacts
Joshua A. Chamot, NSF, (703) 292-7730, email: jchamot@nsf.gov
Robert L. Sanders, University of California, Berkeley, (510) 643-6998, email: rsanders@berkeley.edu

Program Contacts
Adnan Akay, NSF, (703) 292-4613, email: aakay@nsf.gov
Richard J. Fragaszy, NSF, (703) 292-8360, email: rfragasz@nsf.gov

Principal Investigators
Raymond B. Seed, University of California, Berkeley, (510) 643-8438, email: seed@ce.berkeley.edu

The U.S. National Science Foundation propels the nation forward by advancing fundamental research in all fields of science and engineering. NSF supports research and people by providing facilities, instruments and funding to support their ingenuity and sustain the U.S. as a global leader in research and innovation. With a fiscal year 2020 budget of $8.3 billion, NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 40,000 competitive proposals and makes about 11,000 new awards. Those awards include support for cooperative research with industry, Arctic and Antarctic research and operations, and U.S. participation in international scientific efforts.

mail icon Get News Updates by Email 

Connect with us online
NSF website: nsf.gov
NSF News: nsf.gov/news
For News Media: nsf.gov/news/newsroom
Statistics: nsf.gov/statistics/
Awards database: nsf.gov/awardsearch/

Follow us on social
Twitter: twitter.com/NSF and twitter.com/NSFspox
Facebook: facebook.com/US.NSF
Instagram: instagram.com/nsfgov