Japan orders tsunami detection buoys

Aug. 29, 2012 at 1:34 PM
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MCLEAN, Va., Aug. 29 (UPI) -- Buoy systems to help provide data on tsunami activity are being supplied to the Japan Meteorological Agency by U.S. company SAIC.

The six systems ordered will be deployed in the northwest Pacific Ocean as part of a larger network of sensors to strengthen country's tsunami warning system.

"SAIC has successfully provided more than 20 tsunami assessment buoys to countries in the Western Pacific and Indian Ocean areas, forming the foundation of a global tsunami buoy network," said Thomas Watson, SAIC senior vice president and business unit general manager.

"We look forward to providing this proven technology to Japan to assist in strengthening their warning system after the terrible tragedy of 2011."

Science Applications International Corp. said its STB system is comprised of a surface communications buoy, a buoy mooring, and a bottom pressure recorder, which includes a sea floor pressure sensor for detecting earthquakes and sea level changes.

"Acoustic communications transmit the pressure data to the surface buoy, which then relays the data by satellite communications to forecast centers for analysis," it said.

"The deployment of these buoys will enable us to detect tsunamis generated around the Japan Trench axis off the Tohoku region about 10 minutes after an earthquake," the Japanese agency said. "JMA will assist tsunami evacuation activities by issuing information on the offshore tsunami observations."

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