GNDT-SN1 project


Design and development of a seismic monitoring and alarm underwater network in areas highly exposed to seismic risk - Development of a first node in Eastern Sicily (SN-1)

Period: January 2000 - December 2002

Contact: Paolo Favali


The project was aimed at establish a multiparameter seafloor observatory off-shore eastern Sicily and create the conditions of an optimal exploitation of the observatory data through revision of tectonic, geodynamic and seismicity frame of the eastern Sicily from the Tyrrhenian coasts to the southernmost Ionian coasts. The observatory data themselves are used for the knowledge updating and are analysed to demonstrate the increased monitoring capacity of a land-marine network. 

The realization of SN-1 benefits from experiences previously developed in design and manifacturing of autonomous multidisciplinary seafloor observatories  during the GEOSTAR project.

Accordingly, the project was based on technological and scientific research components and had the following general objectives:

  • Development and deployment of a deep-sea multiparameter observatory (SN-1) for at least 6 months off-shore Eastern Sicily and validation of the system through the observatory data quality control and analysis;
  • Revision and updating of the knowledge of the tectonics, geodynamics and seismicity, of the Eastern Sicily and western Ionian Sea area through combination of traditional (e.g., tomography) and new methodologies and techniques of data analysis to already data available from other studies and through the acquisition of new observations also in marine areas.
  • Evaluation of the improvement in earthquake locations determined by the integration of land network data and marine network data in sample areas of the north eastern Sicily using data from previous seafloor seismological monitoring campaigns.

The deployment and recovery operations confirmed the complete feasibility and reliability of the observatory management from the sea surface through MODUS down to more than 2100 m w.d.. Monthly inspections during the mission on the deployment site by means of a ship of opportunity allowed the check of the observatory functioning through the acoustic communication system.


Campaign list of this project
# campaign observatory site period
GNDT 2 NEMO-SN1 EMSO > Western Ionian Sea September 20, 2005 - April 20, 2008
GNDT 1 NEMO-SN1 EMSO > Western Ionian Sea October 09, 2002 - February 20, 2003