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Earthquakes Precoursor Studies


Organization of the Russian - Japanese Geophysical Observatory for Complex Studies of Electromagnetic and Seismic Precursors of Earthquakes

Tech Area / Field

  • ENV-SEM/Seismic Monitoring/Environment

8 Project completed

Registration date

Completion date

Senior Project Manager
Novozhilov V V

Leading Institute
Institute of the Geophysical Services, Russia, Kaluga reg., Obninsk

Supporting institutes

  • Institute of Physics of the Earth, Russia, Moscow


  • University of Electro-Communications, Japan, Tokyo\nInstitute for Physical and Chemical Researches (RIKEN), Japan, Saitama, Wako

Project summary


The goal of the suggested project is the deployment of a complex Russian-Japanese Geophysical Observatory at Kamchatka for the coordinated monitoring of electromagnetic and seismic precursors of earthquakes. The scientific objective of the project consists of the solution of fundamental problem of recognition, classification and physical interpretation of electromagnetic disturbances preceding the earthquakes.

Technical Approach and Methodology

This project is dedicated to the investigation of electromagnetic activity of the Earth's crust related to seismic and tectonic processes. The project is intended to fill the gaps in our knowledge concerning the properties of seismo-electromagnetic precursors of the earthquakes and also it is intended to increase our understanding on electrodynamics of the rocks in the natural settings.

A request for a unique set of experimental equipment, including sensors for electromagnetic measurements and data acquisition system, is included in this proposal, while Russian participants will provide wide-band digital seismometers.

The suggested complex will include the equipment for the investigation of the monitoring of the following geophysical phenomena:

- seismic and micro-seismic;
- acoustic emissions;
- electromagnetic phenomena, electric fields in the atmosphere, electrotelluric fields and currents, geomagnetic fields, control of the electromagnetic background in the wide frequency band;
- meteorological parameters.

It will also include a data acquisition system, a satellite JPS time synchronization system, a powerful computer center for operative analyses and interpretation of information obtained.

The project will synergetically combine the efforts of experimentalists, engineers, computer modelers and theoreticians from different branches of geophysics in developing new approaches of the earthquake prediction.

Expected Results

Realization of the project will lead to the enrichment of our knowledge on seismo-electromagnetic phenomena and give the new way for obtaining nontrivial information on tectonic processes in the earthquake center.

The following main problems are to be solved as a result of the project realization:

- Organization of the international open laboratory in Kamchatka; installation of the testing ground equipment for electromagnetic monitoring with high sampling rate and data acquisition system.

- The creation of the database with electromagnetic and seismic observations at Far East for the comparative analysis and sophisticated data processing.
- Elaboration of the methodology for the short-term earthquake prediction (for the events with magnitudes M>5), using the integrated data on seismic regime and electromagnetic fields, including ULF and VLF emissions recorded at the Earth surface; ionospheric and magnetospheric disturbances.
- Experimental and theoretical investigations of physical processes in all the geophysical media, including lithosphere, atmosphere, and ionosphere for the aims of development of reasonable coupling mechanisms.
- Development of the new quantitative theoretical models for description of different seismic regimes prior to the earthquakes.
- Formulation and experimental verification of the criteria of seismic danger on the base of parameters of natural geophysical fields on the Earth surface and in the ionosphere.
- Estimation of spatial-time scales of precursory phenomena, study of the dependence of seismo-electromagnetic phenomena on geological and geophysical properties of the crust.

The proposed project will provide the job (maintenance of the equipment, data processing, development of analytical and computer models, etc.) for highly qualified scientists and engineers previously involved in military research activities.

Foreign Collaborators

The following Japanese scientists have shown strong interests in this project, and have sent support letters to the ISTC, agreeing to become the official foreign collaborators after the funding of the project is realized:

(1) Prof. Dr. Seiya Uyeda, RIKEN International Frontier Program on Earthquake Research at Earth Prediction Research Center, Tokai University, Shimizu, Japan
(2) Prof. Dr. Masashi Hayakawa, NASDA International Frontier Program, The University of Electro-Communication, Chofu, Japan.


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ISTC facilitates international science projects and assists the global scientific and business community to source and engage with CIS and Georgian institutes that develop or possess an excellence of scientific know-how.

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