Tsunami Modelling

The research group "Tsunami Modelling" belongs to the scientific computing group at AWI and was established in 2005 as part of the BMBF-project "German-Indonesian Tsunami Early Warning System" (GITEWS).

The group developed the tsunami simulation code TsunAWI, precomputed a database of 4450 tsunami scenarios for Indonesia, and  provided an interface to administrate the database, to extract data products for early warning, and to select the best fitting scenarios in case of an event.

TsunAWI was validated with benchmark experiments and verified with historical tsunamis.

The Indonesian Tsunami Early Warning System - InaTEWS


GITEWS 2005-2011

After the devastating Indian Ocean Tsunami 2004, the BMBF-project "German-Indonesian Tsunami Early Warning System" was part of the German contribution to reconstruction and development. As there had been no system for early warning in the entire India Ocean, the project partners designed and built the state-of-the-art warning system step by step.  In 2008, InaTEWS was inaugurated at the Indonesian Agency for Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics (Badan Meteorologi, Klimatologi dan Geofisika, BMKG) and has since been operational. In 2011, it was fully handed over to Indonesia.

PROTECTS 2011-2014

In the BMBF-"PROject for Training, Education and Consulting for Tsunami Early Warning Systems", training was provided to the technical and scientific staff in Indonesia  to successfully and permanently maintain the tsunami early warning system. AWI held 12 workshops on tsunami modelling and maintenance of the simulation system SIM (scenario database with an interface for administration and selecting the best fitting scenarios in case of an event).

Extending the InaTEWS database, 2015-2017

In a project (2015-2017) supported by the Australian Government through the DMInnovation project, AWI facilitated BMKG to extend the area that is covered by precomputed scenarios to the North-East of the Indonesian Archipelago. The project was performed in collaboration with gempa GmbH.

Maintenance and Support for InaTEWS, 2014-today

AWI now provides maintenance and support for the software components TsunAWI and SIM on a yearly basis for BMKG.

Room for earthquake and tsunami warning at BMKG, Jakarta, Indonesia.

The tsunami simulation code TsunAWI

The simulation code TsunAWI discretizes the non-linear shallow water equations with flooding and drying on an unstructured triangular mesh, which allows to highly resolve the coastal areas of interest. Initial conditions can be given as Okada parameters, the explicit initial uplift caused by the earthquake, or they can be taken from a land slide simulation.

Modular extensions allow to add non-hydrostatic pressure and tides.

TsunAWI is available under the GPL (with the addition that users who modify the code are asked to report the modifications back). It is written in Fortran90 with OpenMP parallelization and netcdf, binary, or ascii output.



TsunAWI computational mesh with an initial condition for the Tōhoku Tsunami 2011.