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Published on Mar 11, 2011
Tsunami simulation Japan by ARCADIS
The animation shows the propagation of the tsunami generated by the Japan earthquake of 11 March 2011 across the Pacific Ocean. The flow solver Delft3D has been used to simulate the tsunami wave generated by a sudden change of water level at the earthquake location. The wave propagates over the seas at hundreds of kilometers per hour (...comparable with the speed of a Boeing Jumbo Jet...), a speed largely independent of wave height. Upon shoaling over coastal areas, the tsunami wave eventually modifies its nature and can take the form of a bore, with the disastrous proportions near the epicenter seen from the news. While this coarse-resolution application does not capture the nearshore developments and the wave heights are subject to considerable uncertainty, the tsunami arrival times are reliably estimated. The animation thus gives a powerful impression of its worldwide scale. 'Ocean-size', literally.