Our Year in Review

Earth Observatory Blog

Our Year in Review

Cover image courtesy of Lin Thu Aung

In March, we kicked off the EOS Institutional Blog. Our goal – create a space for you to learn more about what our scientists and teams are up to. As I look back on the stories we shared covering new research, current hazardous activity in the region, and outreach events, I’m thrilled to have the Institutional Blog as a reminder of the great work we’ve done and the fruitful year we’ve had.

Publications, workshops, awards, marine research and a lot of seismic activity kept us steeped in stories. This year was particularly active throughout the region with more than nine major earthquakes garnering our attention and interest.  From the M 6.2 earthquake near the Java Trench to the M 7.0 near Japan’s Kumamoto to the M 7.8 in New Zealand to the latest M 6.5 that struck Aceh, Indonesia, impactful quakes were consistent throughout Asia-Pacific and are clear reminders of the importance of EOS’ research and how much more we have to do.

Minister for Education (Higher Education and Skills) Mr Ong Ye Kung (center) spent some time speaking to undergraduates from the Asian School of the Environment during his visit to EOS. (Source: Yvonne Soon)

This year, EOS welcomed many visitors, colleagues, and leaders to the Observatory. In March, EOS toured Mr Ong Ye Kung, Singapore’s Minister for Education (Higher Education and Skills), through the Observatory to meet our scientists and learn more about our research and the growing undergraduate programs at the Asian School of the Environment. Through a growing program, EOS partnered with several institutions including the Smithsonian, Australian Research Council, and the Asia Research Centre at Murdoch University, to co-host workshops attended by scientists from across the globe. These workshops included Tropical Peatlands: Past and Future, Building Consilience of Natural and Social Sciences, and the Future of Tropical Forests in Asia.

The international team of scientists that made the MIRAGE expedition a success. (Source: Ben Marks)

We also went out into the world, speaking at conferences, presenting at schools and local museums, and conducting research throughout the Asiatic region. Our Marine Investigation of the Rupture Anatomy of the 2012 Great Earthquake (MIRAGE) Expedition, in partnership with Institut de Physique de Globe de Paris (IPGP), the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI), and Institut Polaire Français Paul Emile Victor (IPEV) took an international team of geoscientists to the Indian Ocean, off the coast of Sumatra. On this second of three journeys in the area, the scientists gathered data to piece together important clues about the 2012 Wharton Basin quake and the breaking up of the oceanic plates.

Local outreach included a private launch of the EOS film The Ratu River Expedition at the Science Centre Singapore with close to 200 invited guests in attendance. The animated shorts, Change and Shadows also screened at the Singapore Eco Film Fest at the ArtScience Museum. In one of many local school programs in Singapore, EOS visited Nanyang Girl’s High School to bring tsunami awareness to this class.

Finally, we are proud to share a few significant awards garnered by our scientific team this year. Assistant Professor Mikinori Kuwata earned the Young Researcher award from the Japan Society of Atmospheric Chemistry. Assistant Professor Emma Hill earned the Geodesy Section award from the American Geophysical Union. Associate Professor Fidel Costa’s PhD student Daniel Krimer earned the Springer Thesis award recognising outstanding PhD research. Professor Isaac Kerlow earned best film awards for The Ratu River Expedition from WorldFest-Houston International Film Festival and the Mountain Film Festival. Kerlow’s short film Shadows also earned best animated short awards from the Albany Film Festival and the Martinique Film Festival, Spring Edition.

As I mentioned, EOS kicked off the Institutional Blog this year. We are so grateful for the many of you who’ve taken the time to follow our work and activities – we want our stories to feel relevant and interesting to you. I, for one, would love to learn more from you about what stories you particularly enjoyed this past year and what you’d like to hear and see more of in 2017. If you have a moment, please drop me an email at sabrinasmith@ntu.edu.sg with your thoughts and ideas.

Thanks so much for being a part of the EOS community, we value your interest and look forward to sharing more great work and impact in the years ahead. Please click on the slideshow below to view more of our activities throughout the year. 


Sabrina Smith

Director, Community Engagement

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