The R/V Falkor, a Schmidt Ocean Institute (SOI) ship, is currently conducting research under the sea in the Mentawai Islands regency, West Sumatra, to assess the risk of tsunamis triggered by earthquakes along West Sumatra’s coast.
SOI communications manager Charlie S. Wiener said the vessel, equipped with dozens of scientists from various countries, including those from the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI), Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore and France’s Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris (IPGP), had been conducting research off Mentawai Islands and would berth at Teluk Bayur Port in Padang on Monday.
“The scientists, grouped in the Mentawai Gap Tsunami Earthquake Risk Assessment [Mega-Tera] Expedition, are mapping out the ocean floor with high-resolution cameras to examine seismic theory at the meeting point of ocean plates in Mentawai Islands,” Wiener said in his presentation at state-run Andalas University, Padang, on Monday.
During the event, Wiener conducted a teleconference call with researchers who were on board the ship. The co-leader of the Mega-Tera expedition, Nugroho Nanato from LIPI, said from on board the Falkor that the team was collecting metric data on the ocean floor, at the location where a tsunami hit the Mentawai Islands on Oct. 30, 2010, and to map out the geological structure.