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Last Updated: Monday, 15 October 2007, 17:42 GMT 18:42 UK
India launches new tsunami centre
People on the shore at Madras survey the debris in the aftermath of the 2004 tsunami
The 2004 tsunami forced investment in new warning systems
A tsunami early warning system described as the most modern in the world has been unveiled in India.

The system will be able to issue a tsunami alert within 13 minutes of detecting an earthquake.

The Indian government promised to build the system in the wake of the 2004 tsunami, which killed 10,700 people in India and over 203,000 worldwide.

Data from the new system will be shared with India's neighbours, the government has pledged.

Nearly 400 million people living in India's coastal regions stand to benefit from the new system, to be housed at the Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS).

The centre will receive seismic information from six buoys and pressure sensors located on the seabed of the Indian Ocean and Arabian Sea.

TSUNAMI ALERT SYSTEM
Sends an alert within 13 mins of receiving data
Gets data from six buoys and sensors on the ocean floor
Built over three years at a cost of 15.6m

Analysis of the data will take seven minutes and another six minutes will be required to run simulation models before an alert is generated.

Scientists hope to halve the time taken to generate the alerts over the coming years.

The centre was built over three years at a cost of 1.25bn rupees (15.6m) and is located on the outskirts of Hyderabad.

"The Indian system... is the most modern system as INCOIS has adopted a multi-hazard approach in developing it," said Peter Koltermann, head of the Tsunami Co-ordination Unit at Unesco.

The system was tested successfully during the powerful earthquake that hit Indonesia on 12 September, according to India's Science Minister Kapil Sibal.

SEE ALSO
Powerful quake shakes Indonesia
12 Sep 07 |  Asia-Pacific
Country profile: India
26 Jul 07 |  Country profiles

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