Research Fellow


(+65) 84356918

Sea Level Research

Sea Level, Tsunamis, Geoarchaeology


I am currently working on research projects related to past sea level changes, and paleo tsunami events.

In the sea level group, we study corals and other proxies to assess sea level fluctuations both recently and over the duration of the Holocene. Coral microatolls allow us to reconstruct the sea level fluctuations at very high precision. Additionally coral microatoll records from living corals can be used to extend the, sometimes sparse, tide gauge records back in time, by decades and in some cases centuries.

In order to gain high precision we study fossil coral microatolls in tectonically stable parts of the Sunda Shelf, which record the sea level during their lifetime. By comparing the sea levels during their lifetime with today’s levels we can trace the sea level changes over time.

In the tsunami group, we focus on finding tsunami deposits on the coast of Northern Sumatra, in particular Aceh, and Palu Bay in Sulawesi. Both regions experience earthquakes and tsunami associated with some of them. We aim to collect data on the paleo tsunami history to gain more insight into the nature and reccurence intervals of tsunami events.

We investigate the geological racord by studying ancient tsunami sediment deposits, best preserved in coastal lakes and caves. We can find additional information about the interaction between tsunami events and people by studying ancient and historical occupation sites through geoarchaelogical excavations.

Our improved understanding of both the sequence of tsunami events, in Aceh and Sulawesi, and the information on past sea levels on the Sunda Shelf will allow for better planning of coastline development.



Extending instrumental sea-level records using coral microatolls, an example from Southeast Asia

Jedrzej M. Majewski, Adam Switzer, Aron J. Meltzner, B. W. Suwargadi, Benjamin P. Horton, D. H. Natawidjaja, et al.


Fluvial and coastal landform changes in the Aceh River delta (northern Sumatra) during the century leading to the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami

Stoil Chapkanski, Adam Switzer, Annika Steuer, Benjamin P. Horton, Bernhard Siemon, Camille Tricot, et al.


The impact of Ming and Qing dynasty maritime bans on trade ceramics recovered from coastal settlements in northern Sumatra, Indonesia

Yew Seng Tai, Andrew C. Parnell, Edmund Edwards McKinnon, Jedrzej M. Majewski, Kerry Sieh, Michael Feener, et al.

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