What technology would have stopped the tsunami?



Serious thread now (wow, that’s a first!)

As you all know the Tsunami killed more than 200,000 people in… sort-of-a single blow.

We dutchies have the “Delta Works” since the 1953 disaster here. Dunno if it actually really works, because to my knowledge such a storm has never passed the Netherlands since.

But what would be the best technology to stop such natural disasters to ever happen again? Ignore money and manpower, just think of the technology that should be implemented.

Hey, if it’s even a succesful technology, maybe you could be the new hero of Asia! Get your grey cells working! :slight_smile:


Nature always wins eventually… So I’ll pass on this one… :wink:



It’s not about nature, it’s about GOD’s will me believe.


First, scientists should look for a way to find out about regions that are likely to be hit by Tsunami’s (and possible other twirls of nature). If we know what the sensitive spots are, we can look into a solution. At least, that’s what I think…

We Dutchies have kilometers of dikes that are protecting us from the sea (at least, on some parts of the seashore). Would this be a solution? I doubt it…


2 days ago I read on a newspaper that 2 engeneers have coded a new app, based on geographic images of some US institutions, to calculate a tsunami.

TWO STUDENTS at the University of Technology in Sydney have come up with a cheap and cheerful tsunami warning program which runs on a desktop.

Apparently the pair, Marcus Schappi and Christian Kent were inspired to write the code after reading the pontifications of a tech columnist Robert Cringely.

Cringely reckoned that it should be fairly simple to come up with a tsunami warning system using data available on the internet.

Schappi, who is in the final year of an engineering degree, said he and Kent thought they would give it a go.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, they used the widget generator Konfabulator to generate the warning screen that sits on the desktop of a PC or Mac.

It gets its data from from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration tsunami warning bulletin.

The widget should be handy if you are wi-fing from a beach and want to know if a wave of mass destruction is coming your way. Mind you if you are on Bondi beach and you see all the owners of lap-tops suddenly legging it inland, you might want to consider that they might know something you don’t.

Link: here


I wonder if there had been some small quakes in the ocean before the big one that started the Tsunami…if so …can’t geologists…at least give some heads up …Hey theres some action out there…we need to keep a watch on it…


i think no one could stop the planet / nature from “working” - but it would be necessary to build a global network of sensors to be able to give a warning to people in the danger-zone early enough…


Nothing and nobody can stop nature.


Humanism overcoming nationalism.


superman. he would’ve spun the world backwards, then frozen the ocean with his freeze breath then saved everyone before it all melted.

well said kenshin.

unfortunately, i dont think natural terrestrial processes (known to us as catastrophic human tragedies or natural disasters) can be “stopped” (as asked in the title of the thread). i think they’re just one form of nature’s often “cruel and insensitive” methods of population control that can be detected early enough to minimize human loss, but not necessarily stopped.


Well nothing could have stopped it but, if they were prevalent in the area like they are in the pacific then there would of been warning buoys like they have in the pacific to detect high waves. Now this would have only saved lives in the areas that have communications (most of the remote areas would still of gotten casualties). I am sure that there will be buoys added because of this.

For those who like to read (and can :stuck_out_tongue: ), there is a great book called Karakatoa (volcano in Sumatra that erupted in the 1890s) that describes what was the worst natural modern catastrophe since this. Also, it explains the emergence of radical Islam.


This Krakatoa?


The problem is you cant stop a tsunami or any other disaster made by mother earth.
The only thing you can do is give out warnings and evacuate the area. Just think about a wave about 5 meters high coming at you with the speed of a jumbojet (over 300kmph) thats a hell of an amount of energy coming at you.
Here in Japan we get informations about the possibility of a Tsunami about 5-10 minutes after an earthquake. If there should be a possibility of Tsunamis the meteorological agency calculates estimated time of arrival and height of the tsunami for each area along the coast and all TV channels run these information by interupting the normal program until the danger is over. Other things you can do is build walls among the coast to hold of the wave but thats not the ultimate answer because you can not say how high and how fast the tsunami will be at anytime in future (you could build walls of 5 meters but if one comes with 15 meters you are out). Also over here each community has its own evacuation map in case a earthquake or Tsunami should hit.


would creating ripple areas on the bottom of the ocean some miles away from the shore help at all? if the tsunami’s grew taller because of the slowly rising seafloor as they approach coastlines, would increasing/decreasing the level over a certain range f* up the wave?

probably not. i dont think there is anything that technology could do to stop this from happening, with the size/power of the quake.

// i think ice-9 would have stopped it cold.


hehe, vonnegut rules!!

and you’re right about the depth of the seafloor, but it’s implausible to think man can make such a massive change to the ocean’s topography without disturbing the ecology:

[I]Diego Garcia was not affected by the Andaman Tsunami of 26 December 2004. It is located south of the tip of India, well with in range of what the tsunami, with a max elevation of 22 and an average elevation of only 4 feet. Civilians monitoring shortwave radio reported on rec.radio.shortwave that a female operator, in answer to a query from an aircraft after giving weather information, reported no ill effects from the earthquake.

Officials said the Diego Garcia Navy Support Facility, which houses about 1,700 military personnel and 1,500 civilian contractors, suffered no damage related to the earthquake and ensuing tsunamis. Personnel at the facility reported no unusual activity or problems over the weekend. Diego Garcia, the southernmost island in the Chagos Archipelago, sits about 1,000 miles south of India and roughly 2,000 miles from the earthquake’s epicenter. Even though an earthquake like Sunday’s will radiate destructive waves in all directions, the damage caused by the water differs greatly depending on the undersea topography.

Favorable ocean topography minimized the tsunami’s impact on the atoll. Diego Garcia is part of the Chagos Archipelago, situated on the southernmost part of the Chagos-Laccadive Ridge. To the east lies the Chagos Trench, a 400 mile long, underwater canyon that ranges in depth from less than 1,00 meters below the surface to depths that plunge to over 5,000 meters. It is one of the deepest regions of the Indian Ocean. Diego Garcia is located to the west of Chagos Trench, which runs north and south. The depth of the Chagos Trench and grade to the shores does not allow for tsunamis to build before passing the atoll. The result of the earthquake was seen as a tidal surge estimated at six feet.

Tsunami runup at the point of impact will depend on how the energy is focused, the travel path of the tsunami waves, the coastal configuration, and the offshore topography. Small islands with steep slopes usually experience little runup - wave heights there are only slightly greater than on the open ocean. This is the reason that islands with steep-sided fringing or barrier reefs are only at moderate risk from tsunamis. [/I]


I agree:iagree::iagree:


There was an earthquake south of tasmania about 2 days before the big one that caused the tsunami. It was directly responsible for causing it.

Geographers were on alert when they thought it might cause complications…like a bigger earthquake & tsunamis.
Warnings were sent out to the areas, but the affected areas don’t have much emergency services structure & the message simply didn’t get out. The residents were completely unaware. The bureacracy however, knew it was coming a few hours before it hit. They just couldn’t organise anything in time.


To solve problems like these … massive tidal generators … which will absorb much of the energy in the waves before it actually hits a shorleline.
If we have a system that can absorb the energy, it will reduce the magnitude of the resultant tsunami & we have the added benefit of a surge in energy supply :wink:

Then we have two warning systems :wink: The geographers & The power monitoring system.
The power monitoring system will go nuts when it has a huge surge in power from tsunami’s/etc :wink:

Oh, and of course, we could also paint all tsunami affected areas with WD40 :wink: which disperses water :wink:

How about all building on the coast are built like giant shark fins :wink: So when the water hits the building, the water easily parts and goes around the building, rather than smashes the front walls down :wink:

Maybe all buildings on the coasts should be two stories off the ground, with only temporary/tent shops/stalls at the bottom, which can be washed away, but leave the buidling standing :wink:


Yes, although the paperback was cheaper.


The technology already exists I believe, it just wasn’t implemented. Firstly had the authorities recieved warning of the tsunami they could have evacuated the area before hand, secondly you can impede a tsunami with concrete re-inforcements, although that may be unnecessary if you installed an early warning system and had procedures in place for an evacuation should a tsunami happen again.