The Department of Earthquake Engineering is the only one of its kind in India and amongst a few in the world. Established in 1960 as School of Research and Training in Earthquake Engineering, the department has been actively engaged in teaching, basic and applied research, and providing consultancy services in the seismic design of almost all major engineering projects in the country, with an aim of mitigating disasters caused by earthquakes. These include nuclear power plants, major dams, bridges, petrochemical and other industrial complexes and multistoried buildings. The contributions have been widely acclaimed and have eliminated the need for foreign consultancy in this field. A computer controlled shake table facility has been set up for testing the behavior of equipment and models of power plant structures, bridges, buildings and many other special structures etc to simulate earthquake shaking. The department has been consulted by a large number of governmental and nongovernmental organizations with regard to earthquake resistant design of such structures. This has also helped the industry in obtaining certification of the seismic withstand capability of equipment and other systems to be installed in seismic areas. A large portion of the software used for analysis and design has been developed in-house.
In addition, the department has also undertaken programmes of seismic instrumentation in the country with a view to have better understanding of the ground motion characteristics and seismicity of various regions. For this purpose networks of strong motion instruments have been set up, maintained and operated by the department. The department has made significant contribution and has been actively involved in the formulation of various codes of practice for earthquake resistant design and construction, which have been brought out by the Bureau of Indian Standards. The department has rendered technical services to UNESCO on Influence of Natural Disasters on Educational Facilities for the West and South East Asian countries and has prepared a manual on protective measures needed to save educational facilities from the disastrous effects of earthquakes.