A shallow explanation for tsunamis

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Science  05 Feb 2016:
Vol. 351, Issue 6273, pp. 572-573
DOI: 10.1126/science.351.6273.572-g

The Mw 8.3 Illapel, Chile, earthquake generated violent shaking and triggered a large tsunami that required the evacuation of 1 million people. Melgar et al. found that the ground shaking was primarily driven by deep fault rupture, whereas the tsunami was generated by fault rupture near the surface. Their modeling suggests that strain accumulates at different rates in the deep and shallow portions of the Chilean subduction zone. This means that shallow rupture is less frequent and could explain the lack of historic tsunamis in the region.

Geophys. Res. Lett. 10.1002/2015GL067369 (2015).

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