Tonga is a seismologists’ paradise, and not just because of the white-sand beaches. The subduction zone off the east coast of the archipelago racks up more intermediate-depth and deep earthquakes than any other subduction zone, where one plate of Earth’s lithosphere dives under another, on the planet. Tonga is such an extreme place, and that makes it very revealing,” said S. Shawn Wei, a seismologist who earned his doctorate at Washington University in St. Louis and now is a postdoctoral fellow at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego. That swarm of earthquakes is catnip for seismologists because they still don’t understand what causes earthquakes to pop off at such great depths.
Most volcanic eruptions on Earth happen in a hidden, dark place: deep underwater. Scientists rarely detect these outbursts on the sea floor, but last year, they caught a seamount eruption in the act. Now, researchers have characterized it in unprecedented detail—showing how a rash of earthquakes preceded the eruption and how bulging of the volcano’s surface was used to successfully forecast the eruption. Scientists say the results will help them understand how other volcanoes around the world behave.
What may be the largest exposed fault on Earth has been seen and documented by scientists for the first time. The ‘Banda Detachment’ fault in eastern Indonesia would explain a 7.2km (4.4 mile) deep abyss under the Banda Sea, which until now has remained a mystery to geologists. This area where the fault was found sits in the Ring of Fire, an area in the basin of the Pacific ocean where many volcanic eruptions and earthquakes occur. Sitting under the Banda Sea is the Weber Deep – the deepest point in our planet’s ocean that does not sit in a trench.
After an earthquake, less than 20% of the carbon in the water from plants and soil had been released through oxidation before being carried away by the river. Thus, they estimate that most of the 14 megatonnes of carbon that was probably released by the earthquake ended up being stored away.
The motion of the ocean is rocking our world, or at least helping to give it a vigorous shake in some locations when the conditions are right, a team of seismologists says.
There will be a 7-day training workshop at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory for students and early-career scientists who want to gain experience with the analysis of multichannel seismic reflection data from June 22-29, 2015.
An ocean engineer at the University of Rhode Island has found that a massive underwater landslide, combined with the 9.0 earthquake, was responsible for triggering the deadly tsunami that struck Japan in March 2011.
Researchers analyze sediment records to reveal region’s tsunami potential.
New research has revealed the causes and warning signs of rare tsunami earthquakes, which may lead to improved detection measures.
California biologists plan to test coastal kelp for traces of radioactive material three years after the nuclear meltdown in Fukushima, Japan.
Every morning, hundreds of pounds of fresh fish, hauled in from ports across eastern Japan, is rushed to this sleepy town hours away from the capital.
On March 11, 2011, a magnitude 9.0 earthquake—one of the largest ever recorded—occurred 80 miles off the coast of Japan.