Early on the morning of Nov. 16, Cyclone Sidr hit Bangladesh and showed no mercy. The death toll continues to rise even today. Hundreds of thousands of people were left homeless. But, nearly 24 hours in advance of the storm, Hassan Mashriqui, assistant extension professor of coastal engineering with LSU, the LSU AgCenter and the Louisiana Sea Grant College Program, gave Bangladesh emergency officials storm surge maps so detailed that area agencies were able to take action, saving countless lives.
“It’s nice to know that LSU’s capabilities helped people there before disaster struck,” said Mashriqui. “It’s the practical application of all of our theoretical research.”
On Nov. 12, he saw that the cyclone had developed in the Bay of Bengal. Watching its progress closely, he contacted Imtiaz Hossain, assistant to Robert Twilley, the very next day. Twilley, associate vice chancellor of research and economic development at LSU, director of the Coastal Systems and Society Agenda, professor of coastal sciences and leader of the Shell Coastal Environmental Modeling Laboratory, or CEML, immediately gave Mashriqui access to a large portion of CEML’s supercomputing capabilities to facilitate the development of storm surge models.
The following day, Mashriqui went to Tampa, Fla., to give a lecture at a hurricane conference. It was from his hotel room that he was able to access the LSU supercomputing network and run the first model. What he saw sent him scrambling to contact Bangladesh officials.
“These models are incredibly accurate and highly detailed,” Mashriqui said. “You can pinpoint events down to small counties and towns. We were looking at a 10 – 12 foot storm surge that would devastate anything in its path.”
Through an LSU student whose father is employed at the Bangladesh Ministry of Food and Disaster Management in the Office of Disaster Management and Relief Bhaban, a unit that operates much like FEMA, Mashriqui was then able to communicate his findings to dozens of agencies who could then act by raising the danger signal to its highest level, moving people out of harm’s way and concentrating relief efforts before the storm even hit.
A native of the area, Mashriqui first began running storm surge models on the Bay of Bengal several years ago in conjunction with LSU’s Center for Computation & Technology, or CCT, forming the Bay of Bengal Cyclone Surge Modeling Program. This project provides modeling support for the Bay of Bengal basin and strives to build partnerships with appropriate agencies.
“The advance notice we were able to provide certainly saved lives and helped to lessen the devastation,” said Mashriqui. “When you can pinpoint the areas of impact and determine the level of storm surge that far ahead of landfall, it provides critical time for agencies and officials to focus energy and resources to the areas that will need them most.”
Hassan Mashriqui | EurekAlert!
Stable magnetic bit of three atoms
21.09.2017 | Sonderforschungsbereich 668
Drones can almost see in the dark
20.09.2017 | Universität Zürich
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.
Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...
MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems Holding GmbH about commercial use of a multi-well tissue plate for automated and reliable tissue engineering & drug testing.
MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems...
19.09.2017 | Event News
12.09.2017 | Event News
06.09.2017 | Event News
21.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
21.09.2017 | Life Sciences
21.09.2017 | Health and Medicine