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5 more seismic stations set up

posted on 20/06/2012: 2716 views



Any possible impact of tremors or aftershocks in the region on the skyscrapers and vital buildings in Dubai can now be assessed within seconds, thanks to five new seismic stations set up by the Dubai Municipality.

Authorities can make use of the data provided by these seismic stations to meet future infrastructure requirements in areas prone to seismic activities and to take measures to minimise the impact of any possible tremors in the region.

Director of Survey Department at the municipality Mohammed Mahmoud Mashroom said the new devices further strengthened the already existing network in Dubai that monitors seismic activities in the region.

Prof. Kamal Mohamed Atiya, a seismology specialist with the department, said Dubai was the first to install a seismographic network in the UAE in June 2006 with four broadband seismic stations.

"But these stations record weak motions (of the earth). We tried to upgrade the system and came up with these five new ones that are much more capable of assessing any seismic activity in urban areas, especially close to the critical buildings and skyscrapers,” he told Khaleej Times.

He said the devices are installed near critically important facilities, including one in Safa Park close to Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest man-made structure. Two others are located on the premises of Dubai Police Academy and Higher Colleges of Technology, while the remaining ones are installed in Mushrif Park and an industrial area in Jebel Ali.

With their installation, Mashroom said, the department could monitor the entire emirate with regards to seismic activities.

"The new devices are similar to what are used in the USA and countries in European Union for this purpose. During earthquakes, these devices monitor the actual ground acceleration of seismic waves and its impacts on the buildings and will send data spontaneously using GPRS to the data processor in the survey department.”

The main server at the main building of the municipality will carry out proper analysis and automatic mapping of seismic intensity and possible seismic-effect-range in Dubai and in the whole of Gulf region, he explained.

Head of Geodetic and Marine Survey Section Eman Khatiby said these devices would enable the municipality inform the bodies concerned with disaster management, data and maps of seismic intensity, which will help them take adequate measures in time.

Mashroom said such preparations should not signal any wrong impression that Dubai is prone to face tremors.

"The nature is so unpredictable. So we need to be prepared to meet any eventualities. Our network is already connected with global seismic stations and hence we instantly get the data from across the world.”

Atiya said most of the seismic activities in the UAE have been reported in the east cost of the country. "The global station in Sharjah is also important for the country since the emirate is closer to southern Iran that has a seismically active area.” – Khaleej Times

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