Deploying the improved infrastructure that will hopefully help prevent future tsunamis from devastating Japan is an expensive endeavour. So researchers across the country are developing new and cheaper ways to protect Japan, like this innovative floodgate that deploys automatically when waters come rushing in—no power or human operators required.
And instead of using water-powered turbines or other complicated mechanisms that require constant maintenance, the floodgate simply uses a reservoir underneath and a highly buoyant material. As the flood waters rise, the reservoir fills, and the gate floats upwards, sealing off an area up to 33 feet across and as high as 16 feet. So while a tsunami can still rush inland, buildings and other structures can be protected even when electricity's been knocked out.