Engineering Innovation Podcast and Radio Series

Lessons from the Tsunami

PostedJanuary 7, 2005

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Experts say a catastrophic tsunami in the Atlantic is unlikely, but possible.  A tsunami warning system would first monitor for earthquake activity.  Any disturbance above a certain threshold then triggers sensors that look for small changes in sea level.  The Indian Ocean disaster provides a rare look at tsunami landfall physics.  Fred Raichlen, a Caltech engineer, says that will help engineers better understand how to make buildings resist the massive forces of a tsunami... or at least help urban planners establish escape plans and put schools and hospitals out of harms way.  With the National Academy of Engineering, Randy Atkins, WTOP Radio.