Tsunami warning systems improved using signals from Earth’s ionosphere.
The researchers analysed the tsunami caused by the Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai volcanic eruption in the South Pacific earlier this year – the largest recorded by modern equipment.
The resulting tsunami caused a range of unexpected distant effects and was first predicted as only a regional hazard.
However, the wave killed at least three people on the island of Tonga, travelling as far as Peru, where a further three people drowned, highlighting how accurate tsunami warning systems are essential.
The study, ‘ Spectral Characteristics of Ionospheric Disturbances Over the Southwestern Pacific From the 15 January 2022 Tonga Eruption and Tsunami,’ explores how evidence from the ionosphere explains why the tsunami grew larger and travelled faster than tsunami forecasts predicted.
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Jessica Ghent, the lead author and a University of Washington doctoral student in Earth and space sciences, explained: “This was the most powerful volcanic eruption since the 1883 eruption of Krakatau, and a lot of aspects of it were unexpected.
Foreign [Music] Warning Systems improved using signals From Earth’s ionosphere the researchers Analyzed that tsunami caused by the Hungatanga hunger hapai volcanic Eruption in the South Pacific earlier This year the largest recorded by modern Equipment the resulting tsunami caused a Range of unexpected distant effects and Was first predicted as only a regional Hazard however the wave killed at least Three people on the island of Tonga Traveling as far as Peru where a further Three people drowned highlighting how Accurate tsunami warning systems are Essential the study spectral Characteristics of ionospheric Disturbances over the southwestern Pacific from the 15 January 2022 tongo Eruption and tsunami explores how Evidence from the ionosphere explains Why that tsunami grew larger and Traveled faster than tsunami forecasts Predicted to stay up to date with latest Top stories make sure to subscribe to This YouTube channel by clicking the Button above this video Jessica Gantt The let author and the University of Washington doctoral student in Earth and Space Sciences explained this was the Most powerful volcanic eruption since The 1883 eruption of crocodile and a lot Of aspects of it were unexpected we used
A new monitoring technique to understand What happened here and learn how we Could monitor future natural hazards Current tsunami warning systems are Inadequate due to tsunamis being an Extremely rare natural disaster current Tsunami warning systems are far from Optimized and rely on a limited number Of Tide gauges and ocean sensors in Order to advance forecasting the study Focused on using GPS signals traveling Through the upper atmosphere to track Events on the ground for example a large Earthquake or volcanic eruption Generates pressure waves in the Atmosphere as they pass through the Zone Known as the ionosphere around 50 to 400 Miles altitude and where electrons and Ions float freely particles are Disturbed GPS satellites sending Coordinates down to earth transmit a Slightly modified radio signal that Monitors the disturbance Brendan Crowell Co-author and the University of Washington research scientist Earth and Space Sciences said other groups have Been looking at the ionosphere to Monitor tsunamis we are interested in Applying it for volcanology this tongue Of eruption kicked our Research into Overdrive there was a big volcanic Eruption and a tsunami normally you’d Study one or the other mapping tsunamis With the ionosphere for the
Investigation the team utilized 818 Ground stations in the global navigation Satellite system around the South Pacific to analyze the atmospheric Disturbance and the hours after the Eruption results showed that the sonic Boom from the volcanic explosion made The tsunami larger and faster as the Ocean wave was enhanced by the Atmospheric pressure wave created by the Eruption the initial tsunami forecasts Did not account for this boost Explaining why it was underestimated Ghent said tsunamis typically can travel In the open ocean at 220 meters per Second or 500 miles per hour based on Our data this tsunami wave was moving at 310 meters per second or 700 miles per Hour the researchers subsequently Separated the different aspects of the Eruption such as the acoustic sound wave The ocean wave and other types of Pressure waves to check their accuracy Against ground-based observations gent Explained the separation of these Signals from the acoustic sound wave to The tsunami was what we had set out to Find from a hazards monitoring Perspective it validates Our Hope for What we can use the ionosphere for this Unusual event gives us confidence that We might someday use the ionosphere to Monitor hazards in real time the Potential new system for improving
Volcano and tsunami warning systems has A range of advantages due to Ground-based monitoring being difficult In the Pacific Northwest and other areas This is because sensors must be Maintained and repaired snow and ice can Inhibit signals accessing the monitoring Stations can be difficult and animals Can eat through the cables of ground Instruments Foreign [Music]