According to a new research conducted by the Kevin Chao, earthquakes can damage and change the elastic properties of earth’s crust. if that quake is large enough, it can damage the elastic and stress endurance capacity for over 6000 kilometres for up to 3 weeks. Kevin also illustrated that Earth is a sphere of interconnected and dynamic system, where any effect occurring at one end may show its effects on diametrically opposite end too.
These researchers proved this in an article in the journal Science Advances, in which they stated that the 2012 quake in the coast of North Sumatra in The Indian Ocean, with 8.6 reading on Richter scale was followed by two earthquakes in Japan with a magnitude more than 5.5 on the same.
Earth is a made up of tectonic plates that always keeps on moving slowly but measurably. If in any case these tectonic plates slides or strikes on any other then a big and series of earthquake is observed. The tectonic plates are on the lithosphere, the outer and the only visible shell of the earth. There are seven major tectonic plates in mother earth namely, African plate, Antarctic plate, Eurasian plate, Indo-Australian plate, North American plate, Pacific plate and South American plate.
The research headed by Kevin Chao, a postdoc in Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, who is also a member of a research team led by Andrew Delorey at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Chao stated that earthquakes are in the form of waves (known as ‘Seismic waves’) keep on moving to infinity with a decreasing amplitude, starting from the hypocentre. It’s just that the effect of these waves can be observed by a seismograph only up to 6000 kilometres. It takes almost 3 weeks for the earth to recover its elastic properties.
“When surface waves pass through, all of these properties rearrange and change. If a fault with high stress is ready to fail, it will accumulate more stresses in the fault, meaning an earthquake could occur at any time,” Chao said.