U.S. expands tsunami warning system

August 22, 2006

The U.S. National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration says it has expanded its network of deep-ocean buoys to guard against tsunamis.

The month-long project ended Monday with the installation of four new deep-ocean assessment and reporting of tsunami, or DART, buoy stations in Alaskan waters, as well as the servicing and upgrading to DART II of two existing stations.

The DART system provides real-time tsunami detection as waves travel across open waters. The deployment brings the total U.S. network to 19 DART stations.

"With a history of tsunami generation in ... the Alaskan region, DART stations are a high priority within our overall effort to expand the U.S. tsunami warning system," said John McNulty, director of operational systems for the U.S. National Weather Service. "The DART II is a more robust system designed by NOAA Research to withstand the harsh Alaskan ocean environment."

NOAA is also working with more than 60 nations and the European Commission to develop a global tsunami monitoring network.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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