30 Mar 2011
Ingres Corporation is helping the German Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR) in its global monitoring of earthquakes, including the 7.9 magnitude earthquake that struck ChinaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Sichuan Province on May 12, 2008. The Ingres Database, a leading enterprise open source database, is the backbone of BGRÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Earthquake Monitor System (ERMOS), which is used to track real-time information on earthquakes in China, Germany, Europe, and around the world. Recent data from the monitoring of the China earthquake can be accessedÂ here. In addition, the system also monitors compliance with the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), a prohibition of all forms of nuclear testing underground, underwater, and in the atmosphere.
Despite technological advancement in earthquake monitoring, today it is still nearly impossible for scientists to forecast when and where an earthquake might occur. Even though warning systems are in place in many of the regions most threatened by earthquakes, at present they are still only able to sound the alarm seconds after the event. For this reason, collection of the relevant seismological data is crucial so that it can be made available to research and scientific organizations across the globe. The BGR has historical data on earthquakes dating back to 800 AD, as well as metadata on more than two million seismological events, and the database continues to grow.
The BGR migrated to an Ingres open source database in 2007. The open source business model of the Ingres database brought the institute flexibility and costs savings. In addition, the BGR relies on a double support service Ã¢â‚¬â€œ from active Ingres user groups that exchange ideas and tips, as well as from Ingres itself through its comprehensive support services.
Fast access to data and permanent availability are two of the key requirements for successful operation of the BGR. As a government agency commissioned to monitor and ensure compliance with the CTBT, the BGR must ensure a minimum 98 percent availability of data at all times. The International Monitoring System, (IMS), has 321 monitoring stations around the world that monitor adherence to the CTBT. The BGR is responsible for operating four of these highly sensitive listening posts and assumes the role of a national data center (NDC). The institute acts as expert advisor to the federal government and the CTBT organisation in Vienna.
About the Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR)
The Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR) is the geoscientific centre of excellence within the federal government and is part of its scientific and technical infrastructure. As a Federal Regulatory Authority it is accountable to the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology. The BGR provides neutral and independent advice and information on all geoscientific and natural resource issues. In this way it supports the following Federal Government objectives for:
* stimulating economic development,
* long-term protection and improvement of the quality of life,
* enhancing scientific and technical expertise.
These tasks are divided into three main categories: Natural Resources and Georesources, Geosafety and Geoscientific Cross-Sectional Functions. For further information, click here.