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Tsunami - All you need to know about Tsunamis -

Tsunami - All you need to know about Tsunamis -

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Published by: Zimvi on Mar 11, 2011
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Tsunami
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
For ot her uses,see Tsunami ( disambiguation).
A
tsunami
(Japanese:
津波
 [ts
ɯ
nami], lit. 'harbor wave';
[1]
 
English pronunciation:
 
/su
ːˈ
n
ɑː
mi/  
oo 
NAH 
-mee 
) or
tidalwave
is a series of water waves (called a
tsunami wave train
[2]
) caused by the displacement of a large volumeof a body of water, usually an ocean, but can occur inlarge lakes. Tsunamis are a frequent occurrence in Japan;approximately 195 events have been recorded.
[3]
Due to the immense volumes of water and energy involved,tsunamis can devastate coastalregions. Earthquakes,volcanic eruptionsand otherunderwater explosions(including detonations of underwaternuclear devices),landslidesand othermass movements,meteorite ocean impacts or similar impact events, and other disturbances above or below water all have the potential to generate a tsunami.TheGreekhistorianThucydideswas the first to relate tsunami tosubmarine earthquakes,
but understandingof tsunami'snature remained slim until the 20th centuryand is the subject of ongoing research. Many early geological,geographical, andoceanographictexts refer to tsunamis as "
seismic sea waves
."Somemeteorologicalconditions, such as deepdepressionsthat causetropical cyclones, can generate astorm surge, called ameteotsunami, which can raise tidesseveral metres above normal levels. The displacement comes from lowatmospheric pressurewithin the centre of the depression. As thesestorm surgesreach shore, they may resemble (though are not) tsunamis, inundating vast areas of land. Such a storm surge inundatedBurmain May 2008.
 
Contents
 
[hide]
Etymology
 
Lisbon earthquake and tsunamiin1775. The Russians ofPavel Lebedev-LastochkininJapan, with their ships tossed inland by a tsunami, meeting some Japanese in 1779.
The term
tsunami 
comes from the Japanese, meaning "
harbor
" (
tsu 
,
) and "
wave
" (
nami 
,
). (For the plural,one can either follow ordinary English practice and add an
, or use an invariable plural as in the Japanese.
[6]
)Tsunami are sometimes referred toas
tidal waves
. In recent years, this term hasfallen out of favor, especially in the scientific community, because tsunami actually have nothing to do with tides.The once-popular term derives from their most common appearance, which is that of an extraordinarily hightidal bore. Tsunami and tides both produce waves of water that move inland, but in the case of tsunami the inland movement of water is muchgreater and lasts for a longer period, giving the impression of an incredibly high tide. Although themeanings of"tidal" include "resembling"
or "having the form or character of"
the tides, and the term
tsunami 
is no moreaccurate because tsunami are not limited to harbours, use of the term
tidal wave 
is discouraged bygeologists andoceanographers.There are only a few other languages that have a native word for this disastrous wave.In theTamil language, the word is
aazhi peralai 
. In theAcehnese language, it is
ië beuna 
or
alôn buluëk 
[9]
(Depending on the dialect.Note that in the fellowAustronesianlanguage ofTagalog, a major language in thePhilippines,
alon 
means"wave".) OnSimeulueisland, off the western coast of Sumatra in Indonesia, in theDefayan languagethe word is
smong 
, while in theSigulai languageit is
emong 
.
[10]
Generation mechanisms
The principal generation mechanism (or cause) of a tsunami is the displacement of a substantial volume of wateror perturbation of the sea.
[11]
This displacement of water is usually attributed to either earthquakes, landslides,

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