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2024-01-01, M7.5, Japan

On the 1st of January, 2024, a M7.5 earthquake occurred on the west coast of Japan, at a depth of 10 km (see map below). A series of aftershocks have also occurred. At the time of writing 48 deaths have been reported with major damage to roads and houses on the the west side of the island.

Japan experiences high seismic activity due to the subduction of the Pacific Plate beneath its eastern coast. However, the recent event occurred along the less seismically active western coast, where certain shallow faults accommodate broader plate movements. Shallow earthquakes, such as this one, typically lead to more pronounced surface ground shaking compared to deeper earthquakes, as the energy is released closer to the Earth’s surface.

The seismic stations of the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), which is managed by the geophysics section in the School of Cosmic Physics at DIAS, detected the M7.5 earthquake, see figure below.

More information is available at the below resources:

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us6000m0xl/executive?utm_medium=email&utm_source=ENS&utm_campaign=realtime

https://www.data.jma.go.jp/multi/quake/quake_detail.html?eventID=20240101162429&lang=en

2023-12-18, M5.9, China

On the 18th of December 2023 at 15:59:30 UTC a M5.9 earthquake occurred in north-central China at a depth of 10km. The map below shows the earthquake epicentre (marked with a red circle). Over 100 deaths have been reported with rescue efforts ongoing.

The earthquake struck in the Gansu-Qinghai border region which is in north-central China. The Gansu province is within an intraplate region, but situated on the north-eastern margin of the tectonically active Tibetan Plateau. Seismicity in the Tibetan Plateau largely results from the continental collision of the India and Eurasia plates. Within 250 km of the Gansu province event, there have been 23 M5.5 and larger earthquakes since 1900. The largest of these was a M7.7 earthquake that occurred in May 1927 which resulted in approximately 40,000 fatalities.

The seismic stations of the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), which is managed by the geophysics section in the School of Cosmic Physics at DIAS, detected the M5.9 earthquake, see figure below.

Further information can be obtained at the following links:

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us7000ljvg/executive

https://emsc-csem.org/Earthquake_information/earthquake.php?id=1594055

2023-12-10, M1.3, Donegal

At 06:48:00 UTC on the 10th of December 2023 an M1.3 earthquake occurred on the Fanad peninsula in northern Co. Donegal, Ireland. The earthquake occurred at a depth of approximately 5 km, and the epicentre was approximately 5 km east of Kerrykeel (see map below). The Irish National Seismic Network (INSN) operated by DIAS has received several reports that the earthquake was experienced by members of the public near Kerrykeel, whereby most stated that they heard a loud, thunder-like noise. The Fanad peninsula experiences regular seismic activity; the most recent earthquake to occur near Kerrykeel was M1.4 in August 2017, and the largest earthquake on the Fanad peninsula was M2.4 in January 2012.

The map below shows the location of felt reports from the public.

The event was recorded by the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN) and can be seen in the waveforms plotted below:

2023-10-07, M6.3, Afghanistan

On the 7th of October 2023 at 07:12:50 UTC an M6.3 earthquake occurred in Afghanistan at a depth of 10km (see map below for the earthquake epicentre, marked with a red circle). The earthquake struck in western Afghanistan near the city of Herat, close the Iranian border. Media reports estimate hundreds of deaths and thousands of causalities with rescue efforts still ongoing.

Afghanistan and the Middle East are prone to earthquakes due to the interaction of several large tectonic plates (Arabia, Eurasia, India and Africa). These interactions result the region experiencing several major geological processes such as subduction, faulting, mountain formation and stretching of the Earth’s crust.

The M6.3 earthquake was recorded by seismic stations operated by DIAS in the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), see figure below.

Further information can be obtained at the following links:

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us6000ldpm/executive?utm_medium=email&utm_source=ENS&utm_campaign=realtime

https://www.emsc-csem.org/Earthquake_information/earthquake.php?id=1563081

2023-07-09, M5.2, Iceland

On the 9th of July at 22:22:57 UTC a M5.2 earthquake occurred in the Reykjanes peninsula in southwest Iceland, at a depth of 5km (see map below; the red circle denotes the earthquake epicentre). The Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO) reported that the earthquake was proceeded by a seismic sequence between Fagradalsfjall and Keilir caused by a magmatic intrusion just north-east of the location of the 2021 and 2022 Fagradalsfjall eruptions. According to IMO the intrusion than led to a volcanic fissure eruption that started Monday the 10th July at 16:40 local time.

An eruption in the same area in 2021 saw lava flows and fountaining for months, with hundreds of thousands of people heading to see the volcanic activity. Icelandic Civil Defence said it is dangerous to visit the current eruption area because of gas pollution and people should stay away. The eruption site is located about half way between the capital Reykjavik and the town Grindavik on the southern coast of the Reykjanes peninsula.

At time of writing the Icelandic airport authority Isavia reported that no ash has been detected in connection with the eruption and there is therefore no impact on air traffic.

The M5.2 earthquake was recorded by seismic stations operated by DIAS in the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), see figure below.

For further information about the earthquake see:

https://www.emsc-csem.org/Earthquake_information/earthquake.php?id=1526848

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us6000kr82/executive

Information about the volcanic eruption is available at:

https://en.vedur.is/about-imo/news/earthquake-activity-in-fagradalsfjall-area

https://www.ruv.is/english/2023-07-05-eruption-begins-387050

Map from www.ruv.is, the orange area depicts the extent of the new lava flow at time of writing.

2023-06-16, M5.7, France

On the 16th of June at 16:38:29 UTC (18:38:29 Local time), a M5.7 earthquake occurred in western France, at a depth of 14km (see map below; the red circle denotes the earthquake epicentre). The earthquake occurred approximately 20km east of the city of La Rochelle, situated along the western coast of France. At the time of writing, no fatalities had been reported, however the earthquake caused damage to several hundred buildings in the region. Although earthquakes are frequently recorded within France and its surrounding offshore regions, earthquakes of magnitude M5.0 or greater do not occur very often. The previous M5 event recorded in France occurred on the 20th of March 2019, approximately 60km north of Bordeaux in western France.

The event was recorded by seismic stations operated by DIAS in the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), see figure below.

2023-05-10, M2.4, Goban Spur, North Atlantic

On the 10th of May 2023 at 16:21:53 UTC, a magnitude M2.4 earthquake occurred near the Goban Spur, in the Porcupine region of the North Atlantic ocean, locating approximately 350km south-south-west off the coast of Kerry. The earthquake occurred at a depth of 10 km. The location of the epicentre is indicated with a red circle in the map below. While earthquakes are known to occur in this region, it is not often that they are detected. As almost all seismometers are land-based, only larger magnitude events (M > 2) are seen from this region. Several earthquakes of similar magnitudes (between M2.0 and M4.4) have been detected in this region since 1980. Previously, the most recent earthquake detected from this area occurred on 2022-03-10 (M3.4, in the Porcupine Abyssal Plain), and the largest earthquake detected (since 1980) in the Porcupine region was M4.4, occurring on the 17th of February 1980.

The event was recorded by the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN) and can be seen in the waveforms plotted below:

2023-05-06, M2.5, Donegal

At 00:32 UTC on the 6th of May 2023 an M2.5 earthquake occurred at a depth of approximately 10 km. The event occurred near Glenveagh National Park in northwest Donegal, Ireland (see map below). The Irish National Seismic Network (INSN) operated by DIAS has received reports that the event was felt throughout the Donegal area.

The event was recorded by seismic stations operated by DIAS in the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), see figure below.

If you felt this event, please consider making a report at https://www.insn.ie/you-felt-a-seismic-event/questionnaire/

The map below shows the locations from where the INSN received felt event reports. Nearly 300 reports of the event being felt or heard were received, particularly from Letterkenny, Ballybofey and Dungloe. Approximately 85% of respondents heard the earthquake, 76% felt the earthquake and 32% were awakened by the earthquake.

The earthquake was also detected by several Raspberry Shake seismometers operated in Ireland by citizens and schools. The plot below shows the recorded data, the distance between each station and the epicentre is shown in the top right corner of each sub-panel.

Below we show the seismogram and spectrogram for the the citizen station AM.R0FF0 (located in Sligo) as generated by the Raspberry Shakenet mobile app.

2023-03-04, M3.0, Rockall Plateau

On the 4th of March 2023 at 03:45 UTC a magnitude M3.0 earthquake occurred in the Rockall Plateau in the North Atlantic, approximately 600km northwest of Donegal. The earthquake located with a depth of 10 km. In the map below the epicentre of the earthquake is indicated with a red marker. Major fault zones in and around Ireland are shown with red lines. While earthquakes in the Rockall Trough are regularly detected by the INSN, only one previous event has been detected from the Rockall Plateau – a M3.5 earthquake from the 10th of January 2016. As the nearest land-based seismometers are 500km from the Rockall Plateau, only larger magnitude (M2.5+) events are expected to be detected from this region. Earthquakes with magnitudes up to M4 are known to occur in the Rockall Trough.

The event was recorded by the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN) and can be seen in the waveforms plotted below:

2023-02-06, M7.8, M7.5, Turkey

On the 6th of February 2023 at 01:17:35 (UTC) an M7.8 earthquake occurred in South-Eastern Turkey (see map below). The event effected Turkey, Syria and surrounding areas. The earthquake struck 30 km WNW of Gaziantep, Turkey and 108 km NNW of Aleppo, Syria, both of which are densely populated areas. Several strong aftershocks have also been observed in the region, notably a magnitude M7.5 about 100km north of Gaziantep at 10:24:49 (UTC) the same day. Over five thousand deaths and many injured, largely due to building collapse, have been reported. The M7.8 and M7.5 earthquakes occurred at depths of 18km and 10km respectively. Such large, shallow earthquakes produce significant ground shaking.

For a radio interview on RTE Radio 1 titled “Why is Turkey so prone to earthquakes?” with Chris Bean, Head of Geophysics at DIAS follow this link: https://www.rte.ie/radio/radio1/clips/22208567/

Chris Bean also talked on The Pat Kenny Show on Newstalk radio, the clip can be accessed here: https://www.insn.ie/wp-content/uploads/2023/02/The-Paty-Kenny-Show-7th-Feb-2023-Chris-Bean.mp3

The event was recorded by seismic stations worldwide, including stations in the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), see figure below.

More information about the M7.8 earthquake is available at the following resources:

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us6000jllz

https://www.emsc-csem.org/Earthquake/earthquake.php?id=1218444

Information about the M7.5 earthquake is available at these sites:

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us6000jlqa

https://www.emsc-csem.org/Earthquake/earthquake.php?id=1218771

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Past Spectrograms
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