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The time for tsunamis.

Geoscientists love to hunt for the pulse beats of the earth, from the monthly patterns in rainfall to periodicities in comet impacts (SN: 1/12/85, p. 24). But there are some things--such as tsunamis, the giant waves generated by seafloor earthquakes--for which no rhythms are expected. However, after analyzing data on 322 tsunamis that occurred in the Pacific Ocean from A.D. 83 to 1967, a scientist at the Institute of Ocean Sciences in Sidney, British Columbia, suggests that there may be a pattern in the frequency of tsunamis too.

Tad S. Murty reports in TSUNAMI NEWSLETTER (Vol. XVII, No. 1) that the months of November, August and March showed an unusually high number of tsunamis relative to the monthly average of 26.8; July and April had a low number. Murty calculates that the probability of obtaining this distribution purely by chance is only 1 in 40. He concludes that his results can only suggest, not prove, a month-related dependence for tsunamis.
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Title Annotation:giant waves generated by seafloor earthquakes
Publication:Science News
Date:Feb 9, 1985
Words:164
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