Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Earth Science, Biodiversity & Environmental Science @ ISGC 2013

So I found myself in the first Earth Science & Environmental Science & Biodiversity this afternoon. Sadly Feng-Cheng Lin did not make it to the meeting as his work on real time processing of images from Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) sound pretty cool.

Instead John Hsu from the physics group here at ASGC opened the session with a very in-depth talk into his group's work on simulating tsunamis. This is particularly relevant for them as the South China Sea has some very large population centres like Taipei, Hong Kong & Manila and the Manila trench has not had a earthquake over 7.8 since the Spanish conquest of Luzon in the 1570s! They are long overdue one and if/when it strikes they need to be ready. John's group has worked on improving all aspects of the application they use. The code has been optimised for use on distributed computing systems, the user interface is better  and you can even get your results and see settings on an iPhone! They have validated the code against the 2011 tsunami in Japan and are continuing to work on optimisation and how to display results and outputs. You can read more in a paper that used their work "Deterministic Study on the Potential Large Tsunami Hazard in Taiwan".
We hopped back to Europe next with Yannick Legré with an introduction to the ENVRI project. Their aim is to create a workflow from discovery to publication and work out what the common requirements of environmental researchers. They are going to use open standards and take a data-orientated approach to support the various infrastructures and taking into account the different ways data and systems can be seen depending on your viewpoint.

And actually that was the session in the end, very short but informative, now better go get ready for the reception tonight!

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