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NASA’s CIRES mission satellite to give volcano and earthquake warnings.

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NASA's CIRES system is designed to detect volcanoes and earthquakes from space, The Gazette Today

Earth had faced many deadliest calamities but the earthquake of January 12,2010 in Haiti killed nearly 316,000 people (magnitude of 7.0) and on December 26,2004 in Indonesia killed 227,898 people (magnitude of 9.1).

In an earthquake, two types of waves are generated alternatively P( primary) and S(secondary) waves. The speed of P waves is about 3 km/s while S waves travel at half the speed of the P waves. The damage done by the P waves is much smaller than the S waves thus NASA Tries to detect arrival of P waves, and issue the warning. Since all our early warning Earthquake system are based on Earth, NASA thought perhaps it is time to change and create a new alert system that will function from the low earth orbit.

CIRES (CUBESAT IMAGING RADAR FOR EARTH SCIENCE) is a very small Satellite looks like cube, will be designated to provide help to the decision-makers to be prepared to deal with the disaster. The data available from interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) can also help in identifying the location of the disaster.

NASA’s CIRES system is designed to detect volcanoes and earthquakes from space

According to NASA, CIRES is “designed to detect each time the volcano took a breath, as its caldera swelled and deflated”. The US space agency tested the technology on 4th July,2018 by flying over the Kilauea Volcano in Hawaii. A team used CIRES radar and was able to create a detailed map of the changes in terrain that is caused by volcano eruption.

Although this mission is still in the works, it gives us an indication about where the science and technology of early earthquake monitoring is going.

ISRO should act on this particular idea and launch their own version of “CubeSat Imaging Radar for Earth sciences” and take step forward in south Asia.

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