NOAA 2007-R208
Contact: Greg Romano
NOAA News Releases 2007
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Using technology developed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Australian Bureau of Meteorology will deploy its first Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunami buoy station, further increasing its tsunami detection capability.

The deployment voyage departed Hobart, Tasmania, today with an anticipated deployment date of April 17. The DART station will be launched in the southeast Tasman Sea (48 deg. 3 min. S; 161 deg. 13 min. E), some 1,200 kilometers (745 miles) from Tasmania, capturing critical tsunami data from the Puysegur fault line near New Zealand.

“The deployment of the DART buoy is a significant milestone in building a robust tsunami warning system for Australia,” said Geoff Love, Ph.D., director of Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology. “We are planning further DART buoy deployments to complement our tsunami detection and verification network – one to the northeast of Australia and two to Australia’s northwest.”

The introduction of DART technology in Australia is a direct result of the recently signed tsunami science implementing agreement between NOAA and the Australian Bureau of Meteorology.

“This launch demonstrates Australia’s extraordinary commitment to build a tsunami warning system,” said Brig. Gen. John “Jack” Kelly, USAF (ret.), NOAA deputy under secretary for oceans and atmosphere. “We will continue to lend our support to building this key system of the Global Earth Observing System of Systems. The Australia tsunami warning system will move us closer to realizing our goal of improving warning systems globally.”

“The DART network is just one component in a comprehensive system to detect tsunami,” said Love. “We are making significant advances by enhancing our communication networks, upgrading our sea level monitoring stations, producing potential tsunami scenarios for at-risk areas, and transferring research technology into operations.

“Our goal is to develop a self-sustaining warning system for Australia,” Love added. “The station’s data will also be available to all nations through the World Meteorological Organization Global Telecommunications System and be part of the Global Earth Observation System of Systems. The acquisition of data this is critical to real time forecasts and allows us to issue warnings with enough time to potentially reduce the loss of life and property in coastal communities.”

DART stations located near potential source zones provide real-time data that helps scientists at the Bureau of Meteorology determine whether a potentially destructive tsunami has been formed by an earthquake or an undersea event. This deployment likewise serves as a contribution to the network of instruments which will enhance the tsunami warning capabilities for the Pacific basin, an effort facilitated by the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO and the World Meteorological Organization.

Developed by NOAA’s Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory and produced by NOAA’s National Data Buoy Center, the DART system provides real-time tsunami detection as waves travel across open waters. The stations consist of a bottom pressure sensor that is anchored to the seafloor and a companion moored surface buoy. An acoustic link transmits data from the bottom pressure sensor to the surface buoy, and then satellite links relay the data to warning centers, including NOAA’s Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Ewa Beach, Hawaii, and West Coast/Alaska Tsunami Warning Center in Palmer, Alaska.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, an agency of the U.S. Commerce Department, is celebrating 200 years of science and service to the nation. From the establishment of the Survey of the Coast in 1807 by Thomas Jefferson to the formation of the Weather Bureau and the Commission of Fish and Fisheries in the 1870s, much of America's scientific heritage is rooted in NOAA.

NOAA is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and information service delivery for transportation, and by providing environmental stewardship of our nation's coastal and marine resources. Through the emerging Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS), NOAA is working with its federal partners, more than 60 countries and the European Commission to develop a global monitoring network that is as integrated as the planet it observes, predicts and protects.

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