Showing posts from May 21, 2011

Large Earthquake Closer to Tokyo Is Possible, Study Suggests

The earthquake that shook Japan in March, triggering a tsunami that left more than 24,000 people dead or missing, was bigger than seismologists expected and may indicate another large temblor closer to Tokyo is possible, U.S. researchers said.Before the 9-magnitude quake on March 11, the buildup of tension along a fault had suggested a smaller tremor, scientists led by Mark Simons, a professor of geophysics at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, wrote yesterday in Sciencexpress, the online version of the journal Science.The so-called Great East Japan Earthquake happened on a fault known as the Japan Trench megathrust, where the Pacific Plate sinks below the plate on which Japan sits at about 8 centimeters (3 inches) a year, the researchers said. During the quake, some parts of the Pacific Plate slipped as much as 60 meters, which is as much as three times more than the temblor that rocked Chile in February last year.“The extent to which the 2011 earthquake was unexpect…