Earthquake Early Warning
Earthquakes are perilous and inevitable natural events, which can cause severe damage and loss of life.
There is no proven method to forecast the precise occurrence time of an earthquake, nor its location or size.
Yet, utilising state of the art scientific methodologies as done in GeoSIG Earthquake Early Warning (EEW) solution, it is now possible to quite accurately assess the location and size as soon as an earthquake emerges using its non- destructive primary waves.
Thus, warnings about a potential strong shaking can be generated almost instantaneously , until destructive secondary seismic waves arrive.
Based on fast and reliable communication channels, this provides the crucial seconds to take measures which may help reduce catastrophic impacts of seismic events.
After an earthquake, GeoSIG Rapid Response (RR) solution provides analytic and thematic information on the aftermath of the earthquake in terms of shake maps consisting of observed ground motion parameters as well as estimated damage distribution.
Short time lapse video demonstrates the concept and operation of earthquake early warning systems available through GeoSIG.
Short time lapse video demonstrates the concept and operation of earthquake rapid response systems available through GeoSIG.
Case Study:EEW - Honam High-Speed Railway, South Korea
Honam High-Speed Railway, South Korea
BackgroundThe Honam high-speed railway project was a large, national project budgeted at US $7 billion to build a new Korea Train Express KTX) to connect Osong station and Songjeong station in Gwangju, South Korea. The railway, which is 185 kilometers, began operation in April 2015. Thanks to this new high-speed train, travel time between Yongsan Station (Seoul) to Songjeong Station (Gwangju) was originally 2hr 39min, and is now reduced to 1hr 33min. The train’s maximum speed is 300km/h.
ChallengeThis is a high-speed rail service that traverses roadbed, bridges and tunnels, and stops at five stations. The train is equipped with 410 seats -- a significant number of passengers. In recent years, experts have warned that the Korean Peninsula is no longer safe from strong shock waves and called for disaster preventive measures. It was essential to have proper seismic and structural monitoring. Project leaders wanted to monitor the health and response of the infrastructure under operational- and earthquake-imposed loads as well as to improve safe operation of the trains. They wanted to have a system in place that would provide data they could use to establish a database at a national level for response to earthquake at facilities, and use this as reference/supporting data for the legislation or revision of earthquake- resistant design. They also wanted to support earthquake disaster reduction activity for prompt damage evaluation and response after an earthquake, and to help generate a seismic intensity distribution chart by measuring seismic acceleration.
SolutionSuch an important project required a top-level engineering service with more than 20 years’ experience in seismic monitoring. Our partner, EJtech, was contracted to create the Honam high-speed railway Earthquake Monitoring System, which establishes a system to efficiently and safely control the high-speed train upon earthquake.
The CTC real-time high-speed railway seismic monitoring system encompasses 18 sites -- 13 bridges and five stations are monitored. For each bridge, four GeoSIG AC-71 sensors and three AC-73 sensors were installed, as well as a GMSplus recorder and two GMSplus6 recorders. The installations were located in the girder center, the pier top, the pier bottom and a free field location. For each station, three AC-71 sensors and two AC-73 sensors were installed, as well as a GMSplus and a GMSplus6. The installations were located in the top floor, the lowest floor and a free field location.
The system performs real-time earthquake and structural monitoring, issues warnings in case of exceedance of predefined thresholds, offers interactive surveillance, provides data for structural integrity evaluation and notifications for safe train operations. It also provides a connection between MPSS and other related organizations.
Another Solution using GeoSIG instruments and a capable Partner effectively showing that quality and reliability can also be cost-effective.
Case Study:EEW - Kenitra-Tangier High-Speed Rail, Morocco
Kenitra-Tangier High-Speed Rail Line, Morocco
Morocco—located in NW Africa—is characterized by a rugged mountainous interior, large tracts of desert and a long coastline along the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea. It has a population of over 33.8 million and an area of 446,550 km2. When Morocco wanted to modernise its transportation network by installing a high-speed rail line between Tangier and Casablanca, they decided to do so in stages over three decades. The first step was the Kenitra-Tangier High-Speed Rail Line. Morocco’s rail company ONCF awarded to the consortium consisting of Ansaldo-STS France and Cofely Ineo, the design and supply of the railway signalling, telecommunications and control traffic centre for the Kenitra-Tangier high-speed rail. Ansaldo-STS France has developed the signalling and train control systems that contribute to the constant improvement in railway safety and capacity on main lines and mass transit railway systems all over the world. For this project, Ansaldo-STS put together a complete system that allows safe and reliable commercial operations on the new line, up to 320 km/h.
Unlike some of the more highly seismic countries in the Mediterranean, Morocco is affected by a moderate seismic activity largely related to the convergence between Africa and Eurasia. Still, every year there are earthquakes felt by the population and in some cases they cause extensive local damage. Historical documents show that much larger earthquakes have occurred in the past in Morocco, particularly along the Atlantic coast between Tangier and Agadir. In addition, the 14 Euroduplex double-deck trains purchased for the high-speed rail line are each capable of carrying 533 passengers. The potential for injury is elevated should anything deform the tracks or if any ground motion should generate forces to affect the safe travel of the train at high speeds. Passenger safety is of utmost importance.
Our Partner in Morocco, SYGEO, is experienced in the supply, installation and maintenance of monitoring equipment for the inspection of civil engineering, dams, hydrology, oceanography, laboratories and meteorology. SYGEO provided instruments from GeoSIG for a high-speed train seismic monitoring system, which can be used to take emergency actions for critical infrastructure in case of detection of a damaging seismic event.
There were 18 seismic stations inside stainless steel field housings consisting of a three channel GMSplus recorder with an internal triaxial AC-73 sensor and with all necessary accessories as an integrated single unit, deployed at 10 km intervals along the tracks, either near or inside signalling stations. These were linked to the SMS-AEP computer at the data centre over LAN/FO. The seismic station continuously monitors and records the ground motion and periodically sends state-of-health and other files to the data centre. In case of a threshold exceedance, a digital alarm signal is immediately sent to the data centre and made available to the train control system utilising GeoSIG’s proprietary GeoDAS software, which assists the system operator to decide whether to take actions to slow down or stop trains. GeoDAS uses special optional software modules which provide an advanced configuration interface for voting logic, an intuitive alarm / status display as well as an industry standard ModBUS communication to the train control system.
Another solution using GeoSIG instruments, effectively showing that quality and reliability can also be cost-effective.
Case Study:EEW - Sakhalin Oil and Gas, Russia
Sakhalin Oil and Gas, Russia
Sakhalin is a large elongated island stretching more than 900 km from north to south, located at the far east of Russia in the North Pacific. It is known that the seismic hazards on the island have a high probability of occurrence with a high degree of uncertainty. Sakhalin Energy Investment Company Ltd (SEIC) is the operator of the Sakhalin II project under a Production Sharing Agreement with the Russian Federation. Sakhalin II is one of the world’s biggest integrated oil and gas project consisting of 3 offshore oil production platforms, 300 km offshore and more than 800 km onshore oil and gas pipelines, onshore processing facility, an oil export terminal and the construction of Russia’s first liquefied natural gas plant.
Aiming to be the new energy source for the entire Asia-Pacific area, SEIC had to implement a successful investment protection strategy in a region that is affected by seismic activity, therefore sought for comprehensive solutions in relation to the routing of pipelines to safely deliver the energy source to the identified customer base. These solutions were not limited to safety measures against direct effects of the seismic hazards but also indirect ones, such as landslides, avalanche, mudflow, subsidence, etc.
The onshore pipeline solution along the Sakhalin Island was impossible to achieve without passing through identified fault locations where extra protection was needed in the form of thicker walled pipe, special trench profiles which allowed for pipe movement plus block valves either side of most fault crossings as an extra safety measure in the event of a destructive earthquake. The offshore pipelines do not cross any active geological faults. In addition to these constructional safety measures, SEIC implemented a comprehensive monitoring and management infrastructure, Pipeline Operating Management System (POMS), featuring several state-of-the-art monitoring, remote-operated block valve, data collection and interpretation components to achieve rapid response to any potential damage.
Our Partner, SPC Vulcan of the Russian Federation, performs a wide range of geophysical and seismological services. They were able to provide a GeoSIG Seismic Monitoring and Rapid Response System that, in case of an earthquake, measures the local accelerations, generates a detailed shakemap, compares the accelerations with the design limits of the facilities and generates alarms accordingly.
The supplied instrumentation consists of field stations with borehole accelerometers and intelligent seismic recorders with associated peripheral equipment designed to work under the harsh environmental conditions. In addition a system central cabinet was supplied featuring hardware and specialised software to facilitate full configuration, operation and interfacing within the SEIC’s local and remote systems.
GeoSIG’s shakemap software application was extensively customised to meet the specific requirements of SEIC including the addition of an online interactive web-based interface. The shakemap application is available to all SEIC employees via SEIC intranet. Pipeline support staff and geomatic engineers can all analyse the earthquake information and advise how to respond. All SEIC employees can also see the three signals from each field station on a map of the island in a graphical format using OSIsoft-PI Processbook. SEIC geomatics engineers download the calibrated shakemap of measured and estimated ground motion from the shakemap application and superimpose this over the map of the island with all geohazards (landslides, fault crossings, etc). They can produce a survey plan to determine if geohazards have changed their state, which helps SEIC greatly in estimating where to focus inspection efforts and possible emergency response.
Another solution using GeoSIG instruments and a capable partner showing that quality and reliability can also be cost effective.
Case Study:EEW - TGV High-Speed Railway, France
TGV High-Speed Railway, France
When the LGV Méditerranée high-speed rail service was launched in France, it was a massive undertaking. Five hundred bridges and 20 viaducts were built between Valence and Marseille (approximately 250 km), during 100 million worker hours. One million trees were planted to meet environmental regulations. The CEA’s Environmental Assessment and Monitoring Department (DASE), in partnership with the French rail company SNCF, wanted to mitigate potential disaster with the TGV south-east high-speed train traveling between Valence and Marseille in the case of earthquake.
Because the train travels at speeds up to nearly 300 km/h, the potential for injury is elevated should anything deform the tracks. Each train can carry between 500 and 700 passengers, making it a significant risk.
The aim of the system is to automatically slow down or if necessary stop the train a few seconds after detection of an earth tremor liable to deform the tracks, to avoid it reaching the damaged areas at full speed.
Configuration of the system designed by the CEA and DASE consists of 24 measurement stations, set 10 km apart, which are installed along the tracks in the seismic area between Valence, Marseille and Nîmes. In the event of ground motion above certain thresholds, a central sign posting unit in Marseille -- collecting and processing all station data -- sends an order to slow down or stop trains to the SNCF system, which centralizes all safety alarms for the line.
At the same time, a separate automatic decision support system, located in Bruyères-le-Châtel, integrates data from 14 stations of the CEA’s national seismic monitoring network, to confirm (or not) the presence of an earthquake within a 10 minute interval. This allows the SNCF to take an informed decision (resume normal operation of the line or inspect the tracks).
The devices are connected via the SNCF’s fiber optic networks and dedicated lines.
For reliability and security reasons, the emergency stop system’s main features are redunded. This system is a world first. Only Japan has set up a system of this kind, but based on a different principle and not suited to the seismic conditions found in south-east France.
System performs seismic processing, data centralizing and real-time decision support based on data from the 24 stations and alarm transmission. Automatic alarm confirmation system is utilised, integrating data from CEA network seismometers. These data provide additional information due to the sensors’ superior resolution and more extensive geographical distribution, and are therefore valuable for locating earthquakes and determining their magnitude.
Case Study:EEW - Istanbul Metropolitan Area, Turkey
Istanbul Metropolitan Area, Turkey
GeoSIG has maintained a strong presence in countries where experts have reasons to suspect the likelihood of severe earthquakes that have the highest risk of requiring interventions in the form of earthquake monitoring solutions. GeoSIG has formed relationships with partners to ensure that earthquake monitoring systems provide the customer with solutions meeting output reporting requirements. Istanbul — the demographic and economic heart of Turkey — has a 70% probability for an earthquake with a magnitude above 7.2 in the next 25 years. The infamous mega-city thus requires a system for Early Warning (EWS) for a safe shutdown of many important facilities and Rapid Response (RRS) for disaster management.
The scope of the system includes not only a turnkey, state-of-the-art metropolitan alarm basis but also the structural monitoring of historical and vital buildings towards a better understanding of seismic hazards in a populated and valuable geographical area by contributing to seismic data management systems.
GeoSIG entered a joint venture with Electrowatt W.L.L., a leading electromechanical company under Al-Bandary Group. Electrowatt is an established, well-known name in their field, who specialises in HVAC, electrical-mechanical, plumbing, extra low voltage systems and fire alarms and firefighting. GeoSIG provided a custom Earthquake Early Warning System to meet the project’s needs. The EWS was comprised of 152 CMG-5T triaxial accelerometers; 152 GSR-18 and GSR-24-based multichannel recorders (online, dial-up and offline); enhanced communications with TEL-WLAN, TEL-SSR and GXR-GSM; GeoDAS software for two system operation centres; and RRMap software for four emergency response centres.
The outputs of the EWS comprise real time data streams from remote stations, processing of these streams and generating an earthquake alert of a destructive seismic earthquake that is distributable to several institutions, enabling vital information to be supplied to relevant officials and agencies.
The outputs of the RRS consists of processing of onsite seismic data continuously, seismic event triggered SMS messages from remote stations summarizing seismic event parameters, evaluation of incoming event parameters and processing these data to obtain damage estimation and event severity distribution across the metropolitan area, with distribution of these results via real-time communication to relevant officials and agencies.
Overall outputs also include the monitoring and testing of the full system in use at periodical intervals.
Another solution using GeoSIG products and a capable partner providing quality and reliability can also be cost effective.
Case Study:EEW - Ignalina NPP, Lithuania
Ignalina NPP, Lithuania
The Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant is a closed two-unit RBMK-1500 nuclear power station in Visaginas municipality, Lithuania. Reviews of several Soviet-built nuclear power plants had shown that most of them have an unknown earthquake safety or are under-designed seismically. Before the Ignalina NPP closed in 2004, an earthquake early warning solution was sought to extend the use of the facilities while improving safety measures.
The Baltic region is usually regarded as a region of relatively low seismicity. In comparison to Latvia, Estonia and Belarus, Lithuania has the lowest seismic activity. However, the available data indicates that there is a possibility of strong earthquakes at a distance of some 50 km from INPP. The maximum possible earthquake in the surroundings of INPP is estimated to have a magnitude of 4.5 and a focal depth of 5 to 8 km. For Soviet-designed nuclear power plants two levels of earthquakes were taken into account, i.e. the design earthquake and the maximum possible earthquake. The first is the maximum earthquake which may happen during the service life of a plant. The second is the maximum possible earthquake in the area. For the different structures and components of INPP, the design and maximum possible earthquakes have peak ground accelerations, respectively, of 0.012 to 0.05g and 0.025 to 0.1g. At the time of the design, this was considered adequate for a site with relatively low seismicity. A review of the structural integrity of the plant was carried out in 1995. Measures aimed at strengthening the building structures and equipment were considered and judged to be uneconomical. Consequently, it was decided to install an earthquake early warning system as a first step to increase the plant safety in the event of a strong earthquake.
GeoSIG entered a joint venture with Electrowatt W.L.L., a leading electromechanical company under Al-Bandary Group. Electrowatt is an established, well-known name in their field, who specialises in HVAC, electrical-mechanical, plumbing, extra low voltage systems and fire alarms and firefighting. GeoSIG provided a custom Earthquake Early Warning System to meet the project’s needs.
The EWS consisted of six seismic stations encircling INPP at a radial distance of approximately 30 km and a seventh station at INPP. Each station included three seismic substations, each 500 m apart. The ground motion at each station was measured continuously by three accelerometers and a seismometer. The data was transmitted via telemetry to the control centre at INPP. Early warning alarms were generated if an acceleration threshold was exceeded. The alarm was used to stop the nuclear reaction by insertion of the control rods. In the RBMK reactors at Ignalina, only 2.5 seconds were required for the insertion of the control rods. The pre-warning time provided by the seismic alarm system for earthquakes occurring at distances greater than 30 km from the site was approximately 4 seconds. Therefore, the nuclear reaction could be stopped before the earthquake arrived.
Another solultion with GeoSIG instruments and a capable partner showing that quality and reliability can also be cost effective.