From an open ocean detector to a coastal site: directly, immediately, accurately...

Click here for larger figure
03/11/2011 Tohoku tsunami measurements at Aleutian DART station 46408 are converted into the wave time history at Alaskan DART 46410, NEPTUNE sensor CORK (offshore Vancouver Island, Canada), and West Coast DARTs 46404, 46407, and 46411, 3-4.6 hr before the tsunami arrival at these stations.

BLACK - measurements, de-tided;
RED - prediction deduced from 46408 record.

Implication: tsunamis originating in north-west Pacific (Japan, Kuril) can be predicted on the U. S. West Coast directly by their record at DART 46408 mid-way through their path, 5 hr ahead of the wave arrival at coastal sites, without knowing the tsunami source function   -   subject to further research. Funding is sought to carry out this study.
Next, the same responses are applied in the same manner to "forecast" a hypothetical tsunami originated anywhere on a 2000-km long segment of Kamchatka-Kuril-Japan Subduction Zone. Hypothetical EQ source is one of 100x50 km PMEL's unit sources (boxes in the map on the top) with 10 m slip (Mw 8.2 EQ). Model - Cliffs.     Click the source name (b11-b29) for forecast vs. synthetic record
b11 b13 b15 b17 b19 b21 b23 b25 b27 b29


  • Create your own numerical tsunami offshore Kuril or Japan, and propagate it to California
  • Save time-histories at DARTs 46408 and 46411
  • Get Response (shifted in time by -2.5 min for use with synthetic data) of station 46411 to 46408, and forecast scripts (Matlab/Octave) here
  • Predict 46411 with the computed time-history at 46408, and the provided scripts and Response
  • Compare the predictions with the direct computations (expect better results for a tsunami originating closer to the Tohoku EQ; expect better results for a tsunami originating to the north of the Tohoku EQ than to the south)
  • DARTs' locations (lon,lat) as on 2011/03/11 are
    46408: 190.147 E, 49.624 N
    46411: 232.987 E, 39.328 N


    Dmitry Nicolsky, Elena Tolkova, Elena Suleimani. No-source tsunami forecasting for Alaska communities,
    Abstract NH13A-3722,  AGU Fall Meeting, 2014      View Poster

    W. Power and E. Tolkova. Forecasting tsunamis in Poverty Bay, New Zealand, with deep-ocean gauges.
    doi: 10.1007/s10236-013-0665-6

    BPR data sources:

    DART   National Data Buoy Center, NOAA/NWS, United States.
    CORK   Ocean Networks Canada Data Archive, Oceans Networks Canada, University of Victoria, Canada.

    More demos:

    Tohoku to West Coast Reading California in Aleutians Reading North America off Peru