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2024-07-22, M2.0, Rockall Trough

At 22:24:11 UTC on the 22nd of July 2024 an M2.0 earthquake occurred in the Rockall Trough, in the North Atlantic ocean (see green circle on map below). The event occurred at a depth of about 29km. The earthquake locates approximately 360km northwest of Donegal, at the western edge of the Rockall Trough. The earthquake epicentre locates in an area where the bathymetry (the depth of the seafloor underwater) changes from about 2000m in the Rockall Trough to 200m at the Rockall Bank. Earthquakes are regularly detected in this region, of which the largest was magnitude M4.0, occurring in April 1980.

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

2024-07-11, M1.1, Malin Sea

At 17:59:33 UTC on the 11th of July 2024 an M1.1 earthquake occurred in the Malin Sea in the North Atlantic ocean (see green circle on map below). The event occurred at a depth of 1km. The earthquake locates approximately 5km north of the Giant’s Causeway, Co Antrim, Northern Ireland, and about 13km west of Rathlin Island. Small earthquakes are regularly detected in this region, of which the largest was magnitude M1.7, occurring in December 1998.

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

2024-05-16, M1.5, Rockall Trough

At 23:39:33 UTC on the 16th of May 2024 an M1.5 earthquake occurred in the Rockall Trough, in the North Atlantic ocean (see green circle on map below). The event occurred at a depth of about 14km. The earthquake locates approximately 150km northwest of Donegal, and about 35km south of the Hebrides Terrace Seamount. Earthquakes are regularly detected in this region, of which the largest was magnitude M4.0, occurring in April 1980.

The event was recorded and located by the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN) and can be seen in the waveforms plotted below. Station ‘DGL2’ in western Donegal commenced operation on 18th April 2024, and has already recorded several local earthquakes.

2024-04-21, M5.3, Iceland

On April 21st, 2024, at 06:37:22 UTC, an earthquake measuring M5.3 struck central Iceland, at a depth of 10 km (refer to the map below for the location). The earthquake occurred near the Bárðarbunga stratovolcano, about 200km east of the capital Reykjavik. This was the largest earthquake to occur in this region of Iceland since 2015. Overall seismic activity at the volcano has been increasing since February 2024, and this earthquake could mark the beginning of a new phase of unrest at the volcano. The previous eruption of the Bárðarbunga volcano began in August 2014 and ended in February 2015.

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

For additional information, visit the following links:

https://www.emsc-csem.org/Earthquake_information/earthquake.php?id=1649429

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us7000mdlk

2024-04-02, M7.4, Taiwan

On April 2, 2024, at 23:58:11 UTC, a powerful earthquake measuring M7.4 struck the eastern coast of Taiwan, at a depth of 35 km (refer to the map below for the location). 13 minutes later, a strong aftershock of M6.5 also occurred. This seismic activity was caused by reverse faulting near the boundary where the Philippine Sea Plate is subducting beneath the Eurasian Plate. At the time of writing, there have been 7 confirmed fatalities and numerous injuries reported. The earthquakes resulted in significant damage to buildings and widespread power outages.

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

More information is available at the below resources:

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us7000m9g4/executive

https://emsc-csem.org/Earthquake_information/earthquake.php?id=1641639

2024-01-22, M7.0, Western China

On the 22nd of January 2024 at 18:09:05 UTC, a M7.0 earthquake occurred in the western Chinese province of Xinjiang, near the borders with Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan, at a depth of 9 km (see map below). A series of aftershocks up to magnitude M5.5 have also occurred. As many as 50 buildings have collapsed as a result of the earthquake, with dozens of injuries reported in the city of Almaty, Kazakhstan. No fatalities have been reported at the time of writing.

Large magnitude earthquakes (greater than M6.0) occur regularly in China, of which the largest in modern history occurred the central Chinese province of Sichaun in May 2008, causing 90,000 fatalities and several hundred thousand injuries.

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

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

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