Tsunami

How Amateur Video is Helping Us Understand Deadly Tsunamis

Hermann Fritz heard the news on the radio. It was the day after Christmas in 2004, and Fritz, a civil engineer who lived in Georgia, was visiting his parents' home in Zurich, Switzerland, for the holidays. The reporter's voice crackled through the speaker: There had been an earthquake in the Indian Ocean. A tsunami had followed. Thousands of people were presumed dead. Fritz, then 32, was shocked by the human toll. But he also listened with professional interest. He'd recently been hired as a professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Savannah, where he studied tsunamis. How Amateur Video Is Helping Us Understand Deadly Tsunamis​

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

NSF natural hazards group highlights Fritz’s unique volcanic landslide generator

The volcanic tsunami generator simulates a volcanic eruption by “punching” through the water’s surface. Professor Hermann Fritz built this one-of-a-kind setup and conducted a series of experiments to better understand tsunamis created by eruptions of underwater volcanoes. (Photo: Yibin Liu)

Last summer, Hermann Fritz was watching a miniature volcano erupt over and over again. The idea was to generate tsunamis from the eruption or a resulting landslide to see how these rare events differ from their more common earthquake-generated cousins.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Fritz, colleagues find surprising clue to severity of Indonesia tsunami

Screenshot of BBC News story about new data collected by Hermann Fritz and his colleagues after the tsunami in Indonesia in September.

Scientists have puzzled over the size of the tsunami that washed ashore in Palu, Indonesia, since it devastated the community in September. Now researchers report they may have a new clue.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

LISTEN: Studying volcano eruptions deep underwater with Hermann Fritz

Hermann Fritz helping install the Volcanic Tsunami Generator at the O.H. Hinsdale Wave Research Laboratory at Oregon State University earlier this summer. (Photo: Angela Del Rosario / Courtesy: Natural Hazards Engineering Research Infrastructure)

Professor Hermann Fritz has spent the summer traveling between Atlanta and Corvallis, Oregon, building a new one-of-a-kind tool for his landslide research.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Eyewitness accounts fill in details of 1946 Dominican Republic tsunami

Claudio Martinez from the Dominican Republic’s Oficina Nacional de Meteorologia in Matancitas with local resident Patria, right, who took Martinez and Georgia Tech’s Hermann Fritz back to the site of a 1946 tsunami in the area. Patria remembered how high waters had reached at this palm tree, helping the team reconstruct the tsunami’s impacts more than seven decades after it happened. (Photo Courtesy: Hermann Fritz)

Almost 70 years later, the man remembered the August day in Playa Rincon, when he clung to the top of an almond tree to survive a tsunami where the waters rushed about 700 meters inland after a magnitude 8.1 earthquake.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

After recon trip, researchers say Greenland tsunami in June reached 300 feet high

University of Oregon volcanologist Thomas Giachetti stands with an iceberg washed ashore by a landslide-generated tsunami in Greenland in June. (Photo: Hermann Fritz)

A massive June landslide in Greenland spawned a tsunami that shattered chunks of a glacier and sent water more than 90 meters (300 feet) up the sides of a fjord. That preliminary data comes from Georgia Tech Professor Hermann Fritz and a reconnaissance team that has just returned from a trip to the site of the landslide and tsunami to collect important perishable data about the disaster.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Two weeks in China and Japan teaches students about disaster engineering, Asian culture — and themselves

The International Disaster Reconnaissance Studies class on the Great Wall of China, one of their first stops during their two-week trip to China and Japan.

They climbed the Great Wall of China and explored the Forbidden City. They visited a town destroyed by an earthquake then preserved as a monument to the lives lost. They saw baby pandas and flood control systems, Japanese towns devastated by a tsunami and the Hiroshima memorial. But in the end, it was the relationships they built and an overnight summit of Mt. Fuji in Japan that etched this trip into the memories of four engineering students who traveled to China and Japan in early August.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Understanding landslide-generated tsunamis — and predicting their impact

A simulated landslide splashes into a wave basin at Oregon State University.

Scientists better understand the formation of rare but deadly kinds of tsunamis as a result of first-of-their-kind experiments by two Georgia Tech researchers.

Monday, June 27, 2016

VIDEO: Fritz details impacts of Chile earthquake on CNN Chile

Earthquake and tsunami expert Hermann Fritz traveled to Chile last week after a magnitude 8.4 earthquake off the coast. Fritz, an associate professor in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, talked with CNN Chile September 19 about the quake's impacts and the country's response.

Monday, September 21, 2015

What we've learned, 10 years after the Indian Ocean tsunami that killed 250,000 people

The day after Christmas in 2004, a massive earthquake shook the ocean floor, sending a tsunami rippling through the Indian Ocean. When that surge reached the shore — from Thailand to Africa — it left more than 250,000 people missing or dead in 12 countries. Millions more lost their homes. Hermann Fritz, a renowned tsunami expert, did extensive research after the disaster, and he recently talked about the event a decade later.

Friday, December 19, 2014

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