We have lift off! Years of planning, months of preparation and hours of travelling have culminated in a keen team of international scientists assembled in Gisborne ready to investigate the fascinating geology of the Hikurangi subduction zone.
The Hikurangi subduction zone is particularly shallow which makes it more accessible and easier to study than others around the world. It has consequently attracted international interest and funding from scientists attempting to understand plate boundary tectonics and the natural hazards with which they are associated.
Over the next few weeks Project NZ3D will install around 100 seismometers in the Gisborne region. These instruments will record the ground shaking associated with earthquake activity and allow us to image the subsurface structure of the plate boundary lying off the east coast. This research is part of a larger series of projects which aim to help us understand the behaviour of the subduction zone how to minimise the risk posed to communities along the east coast from earthquakes and tsunamis.
The scientific team comprises researchers, technicians and students from far flung corners of the world such as Imperial College London and SEIS-UK as well as those a little closer to home from Victoria University and GNS Sciences. So what did we do on day 1? Recover from jet lag? A spot of sight-seeing? Nope, we got stuck straight in testing the equipment in a garage on an industrial estate... who said science was glamorous? Once we were sure we had everything in order, it was time head to our first field site and practice the full deployment. What could go wrong, right?
Stay tuned, more on this coming soon!
And if you just can't wait, catch us on Twitter: @NZ3D_FWI
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