Last updated : December 21, 2005
To help scientists
understand the causes of the tsunami so that the world is better prepared for any such calamity in the future, Discovery Channel recently funded an expedition of top scientists from around the world. A team of 27 scientists, comprising seismologists, geophysicists, biologists, seabed visualisation experts and tsunami modelers, spent 17 days at sea exploring the sea floor off the coast of Sumatra. The team also included an Indian scientist, Dr Baban Ingole, a marine biologist with the National Institute of Oceanography, Goa.
The unique expedition has uncovered the startling fact that the December 26 tsunami was caused by a sea floor uplift from the 9.2 magnitude Great Sumatra earthquake - and not a giant underwater landslide as previously thought. Scientists hope these new findings will enable them to be better equipped for a similar calamity in the future.
Commenting on the expedition, Ingole said, "It was the trip of a lifetime - an expedition that provided groundbreaking scientific information that will help scientists predict tsunamis in the future."
Discovery Channel will present the entire expedition - the scientific techniques and technology adopted to study the seabed site of the Asian tsunami and the evaluation of the existing theories - in its programme, 'Unstoppable Wave'. The programme will be aired on Sunday (December 25) at 8 pm, with a repeat telecast at the same time on Monday (December 26).
Raja Balasubramanian, brand director, Discovery Networks India, says, "We are proud to provide the resources that enabled leading experts to explore this scientific phenomenon quickly and accurately while also immersing viewers in a part of the world they have never seen before."
'Unstoppable Wave' was funded by Discovery Channel, BBC and ProSieben and is produced by Darlow Smithson.
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