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World Scientists Identify New Tsunami Hazard With Devastating Potential For Coastal Cities

01:15  08 may  2021
01:15  08 may  2021 Source:   sciencealert.com

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Scientists have identified a new and potentially devastating tsunami risk in certain areas of the world, linked to undersea strike-slip faults in the Earth's crust – where blocks of rock along a fault line slide horizontally past one another. Coastal cities near strike-slip faults are at risk, especially when the faults traverse inland bays; the San Francisco Bay Area, Izmit Bay in Turkey, and the Gulf of Al-Aqaba in Egypt are examples. Essentially, the boundaries of these narrow bays are getting pushed and pulled.

Scientists have identified a potential tsunami risk in the region chosen by Indonesia for its new capital. The team plans also to visit the coastal areas of Borneo to look for physical evidence of ancient tsunami and to model the type of waves that could hit the coastline. Ben Sapiie, from the Bandung Institute of Technology in Indonesia, said: "This research enriches the Indonesian geological and geophysical communities' knowledge about sedimentation and landslide hazards in the Makassar Strait.

Scientists have identified a new and potentially devastating tsunami risk in certain areas of the world, linked to undersea strike-slip faults in the Earth's crust – where blocks of rock along a fault line slide horizontally past one another.

a large body of water © Darwin Fan/Moment/Getty Images

Up until now, it was thought that earthquakes at strike-slip faults could only generate major tsunamis if they also triggered underwater landslides – but through some detailed modeling and with the help of the Blue Waters supercomputer, scientists have shown the risk is much greater.

In fact, the lateral movement and generated energy at strike-slip faults can produce significant tsunamis all of their own, the findings show. It's a little bit like shaking a cup of water from side to side, the researchers say.

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Scientists have provided a clear record of past tsunamis along East China that clearly indicate the potential for future tsunami damage to China. In this work we will assess from analyzing the probability for tsunami waves to hit the Chinese coast in the next century from large earthquakes This analysis is important because of the sharp increase in coastal population density in China, the intense development of harbors and the exploitation of mineral resources in coastal areas, ranging from Xiamen in the north to Hainan in the south. The probability seismic studies for the South China Sea

are potential tsunami source. The Manila subduction zone is regarded to be a highly hazardous tsunamigenic. earthquake source, since the Eurasian Plate subducts the Philippine Sea Plate at a speed of 70 mm/year. The Okinawa Trench in the East China Sea and the Manila Trench in the South China Sea are considered to be the regions with high risk of potential tsunamis induced by submarine earthquakes. Tsunami waves will impact the southeast coast of China if tsunamis occur in these areas.

"The physics-based model used in this study provides critical insight about the hazard associated with strike-slip faulting," says civil engineer Mohamed Abdelmeguid from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

"Particularly, the need to account for such risk to mitigate future damage to other bays traversed by strike-slip faults."

For the tsunami to happen, the researchers found an 'intersonic' earthquake is required: an event where the rupture happens so quickly that the movement at the fault line is faster than the seismic shear waves generated in the crust.

Coastal cities near strike-slip faults are at risk, especially when the faults traverse inland bays; the San Francisco Bay Area, Izmit Bay in Turkey, and the Gulf of Al-Aqaba in Egypt are examples. Essentially, the boundaries of these narrow bays are getting pushed and pulled.

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Catastrophic tsunami events like those occurred in Papua New Guinea in 1998, Sumatra in 2004 and Japan in 2011, attracted the attention of the scientific community and promoted the development of different tools for assessing tsunami hazard . A preliminary step towards this goal is the knowledge of the events which might affect a specific coastal zone. In this context, we propose a method to identify the tsunami events possibly occurring in areas characterized by scarce data and a non-conservative environment.

In 1964, tsunamis devastated coastal communities in Alaska. Impacts were felt along U.S. and Canadian west coasts and in Hawaii… Tsunami warnings come in different forms. There are official warnings issued by tsunami warning centers that are broadcast through local radio and television, wireless emergency alerts, NOAA Weather Radios, NOAA websites, and social media. They may also come through outdoor sirens, local officials, text message alerts, and telephone notifications.

That leads to three phases that join together: the initial movement and shockwaves, the displacement of water during the earthquake, and the movement of the resulting tsunami wave. Each phase can develop differently depending on the local conditions.

"Each of these phases will have a different effect depending on the unique geography of the surrounding land and bathymetry of the bay," says civil engineer Ahmed Elbanna.

"Unlike the earthquakes and subsequent water displacement that occur many miles offshore, an earthquake and tsunami that occurs within the narrow confines of a bay will allow for very little warning time for the coast."

The aim here is to understand more about how tsunamis are created and which parts of the planet are most at risk – so that we're better prepared for future events. Before now, this particular risk hasn't been factored into models.

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Key Words : tsunami inundation, experiment, coastal city model, complex tsunami train, roughness. Effective environmental flow management depends on identification of ecologically-relevant flow attributes to maintain or restore in the context of other natural and human influences on stream ecosystems. This study in sub-tropical eastern Australia identified associations of fish with climatic and flow gradients, catchment topography, reach geology, habitat structure and land-use across 20

The threat of rising sea levels to coastal cities and communities throughout the world is well known, but new findings show the likely increase of flooding farther inland from tsunamis following earthquakes. As sea levels rise due to climate change, so do the global hazards and potential devastating damages from tsunamis , according to a new study by a partnership that included Virginia Tech.

The relationship between strike-slip faults and tsunamis has been looked at before, but only in specific geographical spots. Here, the researchers examined the fundamentals of these types of faults, enabling them to identify various places around the globe that could be vulnerable to this scenario.

The researchers think that the huge September 2018 tsunami that hit Palu on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, triggered by a 7.5 magnitude earthquake, was caused by the mechanism outlined in this study.

"It looked like a bulldozer had come in and leveled the town," says civil engineer Costas Synolakis from the University of Southern California. "This is why it is so important that we try to understand what really happened."

The research has been published in PNAS.

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