in minutes

An illustrative look at news and events
Strong shaking Very strong / severe shaking Nuclear plant Oil refinery
SOME NUCLEAR PLANTS AND REFINERIES HAVE BEEN SHUT DOWN DUE TO FIRES.

Japan’s mega quake
SEVENTH-LARGEST QUAKE IN RECORDED HISTORY
Paci c Ocean Indian Ocean
Valdivia Alaska Sumatra Kamchatka Arica Cascadia Sendai Maule Esmeraldas Sumatra Chile United States Indonesia Russia Chile (then Peru) Canada / U.S Japan Chile Ecuador Indonesia May 22, 1960 March 28, 1964 December 26, 2004 November 4, 1952 August 13, 1868 January 26, 1700 March 11, 2011 February 27, 2010 January 31, 1906 November 25, 1833 9.5 9.2 9.1 9.0 9.0 9.0 8.9 8.8 8.8 8.8

The March 11 “super earthquake” is the strongest to hit Japan in at least 300 years. A 30-foot tsunami engulfed cars and buildings in northern Japan, killing hundreds and forcing tens of thousands of people to evacuate their homes. Some nuclear power plants and oil refineries were damaged.
Sea Of Japan (East Sea)

100km 60 miles

Akita

Onagawa Fire at plant

E LIN LT U FA

Sendai Niigata
EPICENTRE 00:46 EST 130KM FROM SENDAI

Paci c Ocean

Sendai Kyoto Osaka

JAPAN

JAP

AN
Tokyo

8.9 magnitude
Many aftershocks

Tokyo
Yokohama

Fukushima Residents near plant evacuated after cooling system failure Chiba Refinery on fire

Epicentre

How quakes happen
Sources : Graphic News, News Reports, USGS RESEARCH: PIERRE-ETIENNE PARADIS; INFOGRAPHIC BY JUSTIN STAHLMAN/QMI AGENCY

The earth is divided into four layers: • Crust • Mantle • Outer core • Inner core The crust is broken up into pieces called tectonic plates. Currents in the magma mantle cause these plates to move in di erent directions.

The quake
Convection current

Magma mantle

• Plates push very tightly together and friction is caused • If friction is high enough, plates become locked together • The plates continue to push against each other, increasing pressure applied to the fault • When the pressure become too high, the blocks suddenly snap • Built-up energy becomes kinetic and an earthquake occurs

3

Seismic Waves
1 Felt as a sudden jolt 2 Felt as side to side
shaking Secondary waves Primary waves

1

2
Hypocentre

3 Surface waves Travel over the

Types of faults

A fault is a fracture between two blocks of rock. • Faults allow the blocks to move relative to each other. • They can be a few millimetres to thousands of kilometres long.

surface of the earth, like ripples in a pond. Generally cause the worst damage because the waving motion rocks the foundations of structures.

Normal fault Crust is being pulled apart.

Reverse fault Plate is being compressed.

Strike-slip fault Plates sliding against each other.

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