SEVO Shimabara Earthquake and
Volcano Observatory (SEVO)

This observatory originally started in February, 1962, as the Shimabara Institute for the Study of Volcano and Hot Spring attached to Faculty of Science, Kyushu University, supported by the Nagasaki Prefecture and the Shimabara City. From 1968 an earthquake swarm occurred around the Shimabara Peninsula and gave fears to the residents. In 1971, the Japanese Government established the Shimabara Volcano Observatory for the purpose of continuous observation in the Unzen volcanic area. In 1984, it was given the present name, "Shimabara Earthquake and Volcano Observatory" by the National Programs for Earthquake Prediction. It has aimed not only for volcanic observation but also for seismic observation, especially around the Beppu-Shimabara Graben.
In this observatory, geophysical and geochemical research for the prediction of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions is being pursued. The research programs cover a broad range including volcanic and tectonic earthquakes, ground deformations, hot springs, volcanic gases and resulting disasters. The observatory is located in the Shimabara City at the eastern foot of Unzen Volcano, and is equipped with a seismic network of 24-hour telemetered stations, global positioning system (GPS), correlation spectrometer (COSPEC) for the remote sensing measurement of volcanic plume, an apparatus for geochemical analyses and data processing systems. Before and during the 1990-1995 eruption of Unzen Volcano this observation system displayed the great power for precursory activities of earthquake swarm and volcanic tremor, volcanological study, and preventing the disasters due to volcanic eruption. The observatory is now growing to a center of seismology and volcanology in the world.

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