Q : Do solar flares or magnetic storms (space weather) cause earthquakes?

A: Solar flares and magnetic storms belong to a set of phenomena known collectively as "space weather". Technological systems and the activities of modern civilization can be affected by changing space-weather conditions. However, it has never been demonstrated that there is a causal relationship between space weather and earthquakes. Indeed, over the course of the Sun's 11-year variable cycle, the occurrence of flares and magnetic storms waxes and wanes, but earthquakes occur without any such 11-year variability. Since earthquakes are driven by processes in the Earth's interior, they would occur even if solar flares and magnetic storms were to somehow cease occurring. (contributed by Dr. Jeffrey Love)



Currently geomagnetic field is getting seriously shaken

This article (started on 02/03/201) was prompted by the N. Zealand earthquake to establish if there is a link between the geomagnetic activity (magnetic storms) and acceleration of the earthquake's occurrence. It is not claimed that geomagnetic storm is a primary cause of any earthquake. However if conditions for an earthquake are 'ripe' i.e. tectonic fault 'gone critical', then solar storm could be a trigger (not the cause) for it, and bring it forward for few hours or days.
The Earth's lithosphere and mantle respond to Space Weather through time-varying, depth-dependent induced magnetic and electric fields. A time-varying magnetic field of a geomagnetic storm induces electric currents in the conducting ground. These currents create a secondary (internal) magnetic field. As a consequence of Faraday's law of induction, an electric field is induced in the Earth's lithosphere associated with time variations of the magnetic field. The induced electric field causes geomagnetically induced electric currents.

There is strong evidence of electromagnetic processes responsible for earthquake triggering, that we study extensively. We will focus here on one correlation between power in solar wind compressional fluctuations and power in magnetospheric pulsations and ground H component fluctuations. The variation of the horizontal component H of the geomagnetic field is the crucial parameter in the Magneto-Seismic Effect MSE to be discussed in a companion paper. The connection of earthquake activity to possible solar or solar wind drivers is not well understood; many authors have attempted correlations in the past with mixed results.
Geophysical Research Abstracts,Vol.8,01705, 2006;Lab for Solar and Space Physics, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center,Greenbelt, MD

Scientists have been tracking and studying substorms for more than a century, yet these phenomena remained mostly unknown until THEMIS went into action. Even more impressive was the substorm's power. Angelopoulos estimates the total energy of the two-hour event at five hundred thousand billion ( 5 x 10^14 ) Joules. That's approximately equivalent to the energy of a magnitude 5.5 earthquake
Geomagnetic storm of 10-11 March coinciding with the Japan's mega-quake lasted nearly 24 hours.


Illustration of "Vukcevic Effect"
It is likely that in the electrical terms any tectonic fault is also the weakest point in the global electric circuit.

J A P A N     M E G A  -  Q U A K E
MAP  Mag 9.0   2011/03/11 05:46:24  lat 38.322    lon 142.369  NEAR THE EAST COAST OF HONSHU, JAPAN



More charts can be found here: Graphs and Formulae

© m.a. vukcevic

wordpress stat