facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Studies suggest big earthquakes make nearby volcanoes sink

July 1, 2013 at 6:04 PM   |   Comments

ITHACA, N.Y., July 1 (UPI) -- Recent large earthquakes in Japan and Chile caused several volcanoes located on land, parallel to the country's coastlines, to sink, studies found.

In two unrelated studies, Youichiro Takada and Yo Fukushima of Kyoto University and Matthew Pritchard and colleagues of Cornell University used satellite data to analyze the deformation of Earth's surface caused by the 2011 magnitude 9 Tohoku earthquake in Japan and the 2010 magnitude 8.8 Maule earthquake in Chile, respectively.

Following both of those earthquakes, volcanoes situated near the ruptured faults subsided by almost 6 inches, the researchers reported in the journal Geoscience.

The effect may occur in most big earthquakes, they said.

"There's every reason to suspect this is a widespread feature," Pritchard said.

Nobody had noticed the subsidence before because satellite imaging was not sensitive enough to detect it, he said.

Pritchard, who studied the Chilean quakes, said he suspects the shaking opens cracks in the rock, allowing water trapped underground to escape to the surface in hot springs, and triggering subsidence.

Takada and Fukushima, on the other hand, say they suspect volcanoes' magma chambers can be deformed by quakes, allowing the rock above to settle.

© 2013 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended UPI Stories
Most Popular
1
Rock-eating bacteria discovered in buried Antarctic lake
2
Spiders prefer the city life
3
Endangered bats find sanctuary in Vermont power plant
4
Seals, sea lions likely spread tuberculosis to humans
5
Bill Gates to Mark Zuckerberg: I'll take the ice bucket challenge, and improve it
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback