EWRICA: Early-Warning and Rapid Impact Assessment with real-time GNSS in the Mediterranean

Funding by: Federal Ministry of Education and Research, Germany

Funding period: 2020-2023

High precision real-time global navigation satellite system (GNSS) is quickly developing as a monitoring approach for natural hazards. While Japan, USA and Chile are now actively developing national GNSS networks to improving their earthquake and tsunami early warning capabilities, in Europe only Italy and Greece are building up such complementary networks. Portugal, Spain and other countries may follow in near future. This development provides large potential for improving earthquake and tsunami early warning in the high seismicity regions in Europe and the Mediterranean. However, the implementation is still challenging and needs research and development. Our purpose is, together with key partners in Italy, Greece, Portugal and Malta, to improve the high precision real-time GNSS processing and to implement novel approaches of collocated sensor processing to obtain more robust ground displacement measurements.

We aim to develop fast kinematic and point source inversion and modeling tools combining GNSS-based near field data with traditional broadband ground velocity and accelerometer data. The joint inversion of near-field displacement and local velocity and acceleration is a key to improve fast estimates of seismic moments, depth and rupture directivity, all parameters that control ground shaking and secondary effects as tsunamis and landslides. We will provide measures to improve the prompt impact assessment after large earthquakes, as tsunami wave height maps, long period ground shaking maps, and maps indicating enhanced potential for landslide occurrence. Our prototype systems will be developed and tested in close cooperation with our partners, who run operational earthquake monitoring and tsunami warning as NEAMTWS TSP (North-eastern Atlantic, the Mediterranean and connected seas Tsunami Warning Service Provider) at their centres.