Six years after the tsunami disaster of December, 26, 2004, a technical set-up of tsunami early warning system for the Indian Ocean has been completed, researchers say.

According to the researchers, the system will generate a warning no more than 5 minutes after a submarine earthquake, based on information from 300 stations built throughout Indonesia in the past six years, including seismometers, GPS stations, tide gauges and buoy systems.

The system is based on a combination of different sensors, whose central element is a fast and precise detection and analysis of earthquakes, supported by GPS measurements, says Professor Reinhard Huttl, Scientific Director of the GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences.

Via a tsunami-simulation system, the information is converted into a situation map providing the appropriate warning levels for the affected coastline.

The joint German-Indonesian project began immediately after the 2004 disaster when the government of Germany contracted the GFZ to develop and implement an early warning system for tsunamis in the Indian Ocean, funded by 45 million euros ($59 million) from the aid-for-tsunami-victims pool.

The project ends on March 31, 2011, after which Indonesia will assume the sole responsibility for the overall system.