October 28, 2021

Pouya Manshour

Faculty: Faculty of Nano and Biotechnology


High-quality measurements of seismic activities around the world provide a wealth of data and information that are relevant to understanding of when earthquakes may occur. If viewed as complex stochastic time series, such data may be analyzed by methods that provide deeper insights into their nature, hence leading to better understanding of the data and their possible implications for earthquakes. In this paper, we provide further evidence for our recent proposal [P. Manshour et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 102, 014101 (2009)] for the existence of a transition in the shape of the probability density function (PDF) of the successive detrended increments of the stochastic fluctuations of Earth’s vertical velocity Vz, collected by broadband stations before moderate and large earthquakes. To demonstrate the transition, we carried out extensive analysis of the data for Vz for 12 earthquakes in several regions around the world, including the recent catasrophic one in Haiti. The analysis supports the hypothesis that before and near the time of an earthquake, the shape of the PDF undergoes significant and discernable changes, which can be characterized quantitatively. The typical time over which the PDF undergoes the transition is about 5–10 h prior to a moderate or large earthquake