Thursday, August 19, 2010

South Pacific Tsunami Caused by Earthquakes

In the beginning scientists supposed that one earthquake had set off the deadly tsunami that struck Samoa, American Samoa, and Tonga in September of 2009. Other than two studies to come out tomorrow in Nature disagree that instead of one there were really two earthquakes that took place in rapid series.

Used for some scientists, the studies clear up strange behavior that didn’t fit with the originally blamed “normal-fault” earthquake in the Pacific Northwest.

    “We know right off the strike that something was strange about this earthquake,” says geophysicist Eric Geist of the U.S. Geological Survey in Menlo Park, Calif. Geist wasn’t concerned in the current studies but has confused over the irregular signs produced by the quake. “This is a very complicated event, and these studies, for me, really helped clarify a lot.”

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