Early warning of tsunami from seismo-ionospheric fluctuation after Japan’s March 11, 2011, M=9.0 Tohoku earthquake using two-dimensional principal component analysis

Jyh-Woei Lin


Two-dimensional principal component analysis (2DPCA) is implemented to analyze the total electron content (TEC) anomalies after Japan’s Tohoku earthquake that occurred at 05:46 on March 11, 2011 (UTC) (Mw=9). 2DPCA and TEC data processing were conducted just after this devastating earthquake. Analysis results show an earthquake-associated TEC anomaly near the epicenter that began at 05:47. This may represent an extension of the precursor of the earthquake, to the precursor of China’s Wenchuan earthquake on May 12, 2008, detected by the study of Lin [2012], for which the data were obtained at a height of 150-200 km by the FORMOSAT-3 satellite system. It is impossible that such precursor caused by the acoustic shock waves. Another TEC anomaly near the epicenter occurred at 05:53, and this initiated the propagation of the tsunami effect related to the ionosphere through the acoustic shock waves from the epicenter. However, the TEC anomalies did not appear to be affected by a contemporaneous geomagnetic storm and other non-earthquake effects. The propagation of anomalous fluctuation could be an early warning of the tsunami for the regions far from the epicenter as it began to propagate with the higher speed of 3960-4950 km/h than the tsunami speed (720-800 km/h).



Two-dimensional principal component analysis, Total electron content, Tohoku earthquake, Geomagnetic storm, Tsunami

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.4401/ag-6710
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Published by INGV, Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia - ISSN: 2037-416X