Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Tsunami observed by radar, may lead to better early warning systems

Date:
August 16, 2011
Source:
University of California - Davis
Summary:
The tsunami that devastated Japan on March 11 was picked up by high-frequency radar in California and Japan as it swept toward their coasts, according to US and Japanese scientists. This is the first time that a tsunami has been observed by radar, raising the possibility of new early warning systems.

The tsunami that devastated Japan on March 11 was picked up by high-frequency radar in California and Japan as it swept toward their coasts, according to U.S. and Japanese scientists. This is the first time that a tsunami has been observed by radar, raising the possibility of new early warning systems.

Related Articles


"It could be really useful in areas such as south-east Asia where there are huge areas of shallow continental shelf," said Professor John Largier, an oceanographer at the University of California, Davis, Bodega Marine Laboratory, and an author of a new paper describing the work.

The paper appears this month in the journal Remote Sensing.

Largier and his colleagues have been using a high-frequency radar array at the Bodega Marine Lab to study ocean currents for the last 10 years. The Bodega lab is part of a network of coastal radar sites funded by the State of California for oceanographic research.

Largier, together with collaborators from Hokkaido and Kyoto universities in Japan and San Francisco State University, used data from radar sites at Bodega Bay, Trinidad, Calif., and two sites in Hokkaido, Japan, to look for the tsunami offshore.

The scientists found that the radar picks up not the actual tsunami wave -- which is small in height while out at sea -- but changes in currents as the wave passes.

The researchers found they could see the tsunami once it entered shallower coastal waters over the continental shelf. As the waves enter shallower water, they slow down, increase in height and decrease in wavelength until finally hitting the coast.

The continental shelf off the California coast is quite narrow, and approaches to the coast are already well-monitored by pressure gauges, Largier noted. But he said radar detection could be useful, for example, on the East Coast or in Southeast Asia, where there are wide expanses of shallow seas.

Co-authors of the paper with Largier were: Belinda Lipa and Donald Barrick, Codar Marine Sensors, Mountain View, Calif.; Sei-Ichi Saitoh, Hokkaido University; Yoichi Ishikawa and Toshiyuki Awaji, Kyoto University; and Newell Garfield, San Francisco State.

The work was supported by the National Science Foundation, the California Coastal Conservancy, the Sonoma County Water Agency and the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of California - Davis. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Belinda Lipa, Donald Barrick, Sei-Ichi Saitoh, Yoichi Ishikawa, Toshiyuki Awaji, John Largier, Newell Garfield. Japan Tsunami Current Flows Observed by HF Radars on TwoContinents. Remote Sensing, 2011; 3 (8): 1663 DOI: 10.3390/rs3081663

Cite This Page:

University of California - Davis. "Tsunami observed by radar, may lead to better early warning systems." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 August 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110816144038.htm>.
University of California - Davis. (2011, August 16). Tsunami observed by radar, may lead to better early warning systems. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 25, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110816144038.htm
University of California - Davis. "Tsunami observed by radar, may lead to better early warning systems." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110816144038.htm (accessed January 25, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Earth & Climate News

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Florida Might Legalize Black Bear Hunting

Florida Might Legalize Black Bear Hunting

Newsy (Jan. 24, 2015) A string of black bear attacks has Florida officials considering lifting the ban on hunting the animals to control their population. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dramatic Footage Shows Coast Guard Rescue Off Scottish Coast

Dramatic Footage Shows Coast Guard Rescue Off Scottish Coast

Reuters - News Video Online (Jan. 23, 2015) Footage just released by the UK Coast Guard shows a dramatic helicopter rescue off the Scottish coast, where five men were plucked to safety after their fishing boat sank on Saturday. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stunning Wingsuit Proximity Flying in Norway

Stunning Wingsuit Proximity Flying in Norway

Rumble (Jan. 23, 2015) A collection of amazing shots from flights made in the Aurland Valley in Norway. How incredible is that? Credit to &apos;BASEjumper&apos;. Video provided by Rumble
Powered by NewsLook.com
Senate Agrees Climate Change Is Happening, Just Not On Why

Senate Agrees Climate Change Is Happening, Just Not On Why

Newsy (Jan. 22, 2015) The Senate voted to confirm climate change is real, but some still weren&apos;t on board with the idea that humans are causing it. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins