Motional induction is the process by which the motion of conductive seawater in the ambient geomagnetic main field generates electromagnetic (EM) variations, which are observable on land, at the seafloor, and sometimes at satellite altitudes. Recent years have seen notable progress in our understanding of motional induction associated with tsunamis and with ocean tides. New studies of tsunami motional induction were triggered by the 2004 Sumatra earthquake tsunami and further promoted by subsequent events, such as the 2010 Chile earthquake and the 2011 Tohoku earthquake. These events yielded observations of tsunami-generated EM variations from land and seafloor stations. Studies of magnetic fields generated by ocean tides attracted interest when the Swarm satellite constellation enabled researchers to monitor tide-generated magnetic variations from low Earth orbit. Both avenues of research benefited from the advent of sophisticated seafloor instruments, by which we may exploit motional induction for novel applications. For example, seafloor EM measurements can serve as detectors of vector properties of tsunamis, and seafloor EM data related to ocean tides have proved useful for sounding Earth’s deep interior. This paper reviews and discusses the progress made in motional induction studies associated with tsunamis and ocean tides during the last decade.
Surveys in Geophysics – Springer Journals
Published: Jun 17, 2017
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