National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration
United States Department of Commerce


FY 2009

Tsunameter network design for the U.S. DART® arrays in the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans

Spillane, M.C., E. Gica, V.V. Titov, and H.O. Mofjeld

NOAA Tech. Memo. OAR PMEL-143, 165 pp (2008)

In March 2008 a significant milestone in the quest to provide adequate warning of propagating tsunami waves in the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans was accomplished with the completion of the U.S. array of 39 tsunameters ( In conjunction with five additional instruments, deployed in cooperation with other nations (including two sites in the Indian Ocean), this network is monitored continuously by the U.S. Tsunami Warning Centers in Hawaii and Alaska and the data stream provided freely in real-time to the international community. While the occurrence of a significant submarine earthquake can be detected rapidly to provide a basis for an early warning, not all such events generate significant waves. Unambiguous quantitative observation of the passage of tsunami waves in the deep ocean can permit either early warning cancelation or, in conjunction with numerical models, forecasts of the hours-long trains of potentially damaging waves at threatened sites. This report documents the considerations and methodology used in site selection.

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