Robert A. Dalrymple, a Johns Hopkins University coastal engineer and internationally recognized expert on water waves and coastal engineering, is available for interviews in connection with the tsunamis that have devastated Southeast Asia.
Dalrymple, who is president of the Association of Coastal Engineers and chair of the American Society of Civil Engineers' Coastal Engineering Research Council, has written numerous scholarly articles and textbook chapters on water wave mechanics and how powerful waves can damage harbor structures and buildings constructed near the shore.
In recent years, he has been assembling a computer model to study the effect of tsunamis on coastal structures. Its intent is to mathematically describe a wave as it hits a shoreline — the run-up, the wave attack on structures and, potentially, the waterborne debris and its impact. Although this model will not predict when and where tsunamis will strike, it may eventually help engineers build structures that are better able to withstand the impact of powerful waves. It may also lead to better techniques to reduce coastal erosion associated with waves.
Dalrymple is the Willard and Lillian Hackerman Professor of Civil Engineering at Johns Hopkins. During daytime hours, he can be reached in his Baltimore campus office at (410) 516-7923. His home phone number is (410) 583-7066.
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