Ocean Dynamics

, Volume 60, Issue 5, pp 1115-1138

First online:

Towards spatially distributed quantitative assessment of tsunami inundation models

  • John Davis JakemanAffiliated withThe Australian National University Email author 
  • , Ole M. NielsenAffiliated withGeoscience Australia
  • , Kristy Van PuttenAffiliated withGeoscience Australia
  • , Richard MleczkoAffiliated withGeoscience Australia
  • , David BurbidgeAffiliated withGeoscience Australia
  • , Nick HorspoolAffiliated withGeoscience Australia

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This paper presents a framework and data for spatially distributed assessment of tsunami inundation models. Our associated validation test is based upon the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, which affords a uniquely large amount of observational data for events of this kind. Specifically, we use eyewitness accounts to assess onshore flow depths and speeds as well as a detailed inundation survey of Patong City, Thailand to compare modelled and observed inundation. Model predictions matched well the detailed inundation survey as well as altimetry data from the JASON satellite, eyewitness accounts of wave front arrival times and onshore flow speeds. Important buildings and other structures were incorporated into the underlying elevation model and are shown to have a large influence on inundation extent.


Tsunami Inundation Modelling Spatially distributed Verification Validation