Zoran, M (2012). MODIS and NOAA-AVHRR l and surface temperature data detect a thermal anomaly preceding the 11 March 2011 Tohoku earthquake. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF REMOTE SENSING, 33(21), 6805-6817.
Geospatial data, coupled with ground-based observations where available, enable scientists to survey pre-earthquake signals in areas of strong tectonic activity. On 11 March 2011, at local time 14:46 JST (05:46 UTC), a mega-earthquake of moment magnitude (M-w) 9.0 and shallow focus (24 km), known as the Tohoku-Oki earthquake, occurred on the Japan Trench plate boundary off the eastern shore of northern Honshu, followed by a large tsunami on the Pacific coast of Japan. This article is an attempt to analyse the development of thermal anomalies in land surface temperature (LST) preceding the 11 March 2011 Tohoku earthquake. In order to correlate LST variations and the Tohoku earthquake, we analysed time-series Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) Terra/Aqua satellite daytime/night-time and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration-Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (NOAA-AVHRR) data. A clear rise of LST (1-10 degrees C), which is apparently related to pre-seismic activity, was observed 2 weeks before the major event in all analysed satellite data around the earthquake epicentre.