News

NDPTC and NOAA conduct ComMIT: Community Model Interface for Tsunami training


Posted on Jan. 6, 2015



NDPTC and NOAA conduct ComMIT: Community Model Interface for Tsunami training

The National Disaster Preparedness Training Center (NDPTC) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratories (PMEL) deliver ComMIT: Community Model Interface for Tsunami training at the University of Hawaii at Manoa campus. This inaugural demo training is in preparation as NDPTC works with NOAA to create a FEMA certified training course. The current course is a five-day course from January 5 - 9, 2015, and is jointly sponsored by the University of Hawaii's Department of Urban and Regional Planning, and Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance Graduate Certificate Program. The class is composed of graduate students, researchers, and observers from the emergency management and tsunami training outreach community. After completion of the five-day training, graduate students are able to earn 3.0 credits of graduate level coursework upon completion of additional work, which may be used towards an advanced degree.

The ComMIT tool was developed in the aftermath of the deadly 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami after officials identified the need for accessible modeling tools. ComMIT enables government agencies and others in the coastal region to run tsunami models, using data from local or remote databases with an internet-enabled interface. This internet-based approach also creates a virtual, regional, and global community of modelers using the same tools and approaches to understand tsunami threats; all of which are capable of sharing information and insights among themselves. The workshop instruction will be led by Dr. Vasily Titov and Mr. Christopher Moore, who developed ComMIT. Dr. Titov is the Director of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Center for Tsunami Research and has been the Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory’s (PMEL) senior tsunami modeler since 1997.  Mr. Moore is a physical oceanographer at the NOAA Center for Tsunami Research.

"This is an excellent opportunity for us to collaborate with NOAA's PMEL in furthering knowledge and applications of tsunami science and modeling,” said NDPTC Executive Director Karl Kim, who also is a UH Mānoa urban and regional planning professor. “In Hawaii, tsunamis have killed more people than all other natural hazards combined. We need to understand not just the generation and propagation of tsunamis, but their impact, especially in coastal, urban communities. This course will help us to better plan for and mitigate the potentially devastating effects of tsunamis."