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Regular version of the site

Article

Transoceanic Propagation of 2011 East Japan Earthquake Tsunami

Ocean and Polar Research. 2014. Vol. 36. No. 3. P. 223-232.
Pelinovsky E., Choi B. H., Kim K., Min B.

The 2011 Tohoku earthquake triggered extremely destructive tsunami waves which propagated over the Pacific Ocean, Atlantic Ocean through Drake Passage and Indian Ocean respectively. A total of 10 tide-gauge records collected from the UNESCO/IOC site were analyzed through a band-pass digital filtering device to examine the observed tsunami characteristics. The ray tracing method and finite-difference model with GEBCO 30 arc second bathymetry were also applied to compare the travel times of the Tohoku-originated tsunami, particularly at Rodrigues in the Indian Ocean and King Edward Point in the Atlantic Ocean with observation-based estimates. At both locations the finite-difference model produced the shortest arrival times, while the ray method produced the longest arrival times. Values of the travel time difference however appear to be within tolerable ranges, considering the propagation distance of the tsunami waves. The observed tsunami at Rodrigues, Mauritius in the west of the Madagascar was found to take a clockwise travel path around Australia and New Zealand, while the observed tsunami at King Edward Point in the southern Atlantic Ocean was found to traverse the Pacific Ocean and then passed into the Atlantic Ocean through the Drake Strait. The formation of icebergs captured by satellite images in Sulzberger in the Antarctica also supports the long-range propagation of the Tohoku-originated tsunami