Creating and sharing knowledge for telecommunications

Project: Interoperability and implementation of autonomous marine platforms for seismic monitoring

Main Objective:
The study of seismic activity has played a key role in increasing the understanding of the dynamics of the Earth and its
internal structure. Variations in real time seismicity provides knowledge of the state of local and regional stresses in the
short and medium term, essential information to study the potential seismic risk that may affect infrastructures and
population located in the area . Seismic information is obtained indirectly from the knowledge of traveling time of seismic
waves and their trajectories. For this, it is important to record these waves with different azimuths using seismic sensors.
The resolution of these measurements depends on the coverage and number of sensors capable of recording these
waves and their arrival times. On land, the resolution, and coverage is adequate at the regional level, and is relatively
easy to be increased in specific cases using portable seismic stations (e.g. for microseismic studies). However, it is
important to note that the dynamics of the lithosphere associated with the interaction of tectonic plates happens mostly in
ocean basins and margins, yet the distribution of marine seismic stations is far from their equivalent in land, either
because of the technological complexity related with the environment, or the difficulties to access the recorded data.
Recent seismic activity, possible induced, in the Gulf of Valencia or the intense underwater seismic activity associated
with the eruption of El Hierro (2011-2012) shows the importance of controlling the seismicity located in the sea that is not
covered by the terrestrial monitoring networks.
To overcome this problem, the INTMARSIS project will integrate different measurement and data communication
technologies in a new design with a buoy on surface and a seafloor seismometer. The integration of real time data
generated by marine seismometers will be possible thanks to the development of wireless communication systems, the
increasing potential for miniaturization of sensors, storage devices and data processing, which have opened the door to
a new generation of distributed intelligent sensor networks that are connected by communication networks.
To enable the exchange of instruments between different systems and platforms is necessary the standardization of
these. Therefore, standardization should begin at the sensor level because this gives a good integration of the
information flow. In observing systems with a limited number of instruments, it is always possible to individually integrate
each instrument in the measurement system. However, in the future systems of heterogeneous observation and dynamic
variable, this concept will not be practical.
The joint efforts of the research team, and industrial EPOs with extensive experience in the various technological
challenges of the project, will permit the design, construction and assembly of a new generation of interoperable marine
seismometers that will delivered acquired information in real time. This will represent a significant advance over existing
devices, decreasing the technological dependence and promoting the development of own technologies.
Reference: CGL2013-42557-R
Funding: Ministério da Ciência e Inovação Espanhol
Start Date: 01-09-2014
End Date: 01-08-2017
Team: Helena Maria dos Santos Geirinhas Ramos
Groups: Instrumentation and Measurements – Lx
Local Coordinator: Helena Maria dos Santos Geirinhas Ramos

Associated Publications