During the European Geosciences Union (EGU) Convention in Vienna on 9 April, a Russian scientist declared that Japan would face a giant earthquake of magnitude 9.0 within the next year and a half.
Alexei Ryubushin of the Schmidt Institute of the Physics of the Earth presented his findings which were arrived at from collecting low frequency seismic noise data through F-net.
F-net is a “full range seismograph network of Japan” which promotes earthquake research by providing high sensitivity seismic data, crustal deformation observations and other information which could be useful in monitoring the behavior of earthquakes.
During the convention he pointed out that there is still stress remaining on the crust following the Great Tohoku Earthquake of 2011. However, he predicts the next quake to take place in another location.
“From 2013 to 2014 a great earthquake will occur in the region of the Nankai Trough (a trench that extends along the bottom of the sea from Shizuoka to Kyushu pictured below).”
Along the east coast of Japan subduction is constantly occurring. As the tectonic plate in the Pacific Ocean moves towards Japan it is pushed under the plate on which the islands sit. This action continuously causes friction along the trench where the two plates touch.
Since 2012, Russia has been increasingly active in developing earthquake prediction technology. They have been collaborating with the UK on TwinSat, a satellite and ground station network which hopes to accurately predict earthquakes by detecting variations of Earth’s electromagnetic field in orbit.
The TwinSat project is expected to be completed in 2018 and hopefully will usher in a new era of accurate quake predictions.