Large, underwater earthquakes generate many types of waves – elastic Pand S body waves, surface Rayleigh and Love waves or normal modes, acoustic waves in the ocean (T phase) and ocean gravity waves (tsunami). The latter are often the most devastating and cause the greatest loss of life. In this presentation, personal experiences of the tsunami from the Boxing Day 2004 Sumatra earthquake will be presented together with data from all the types of waves. The basic physical features of the excitation and propagation of this tsunami will be described together with the properties that made this tsunami so devastating, and how the other waves can be used to issue tsunami warnings.
Chris Chapman obtained his first degree in theoretical physics and then his Ph.D. in geophysics from the University of Cambridge. He then moved to Canada where he was an Assistant and Associate Professor at the University of Alberta, and an Associate and Full Professor at the University of Toronto. In 1984 he returned to Cambridge as Professor of Geophysics. In 1990 he left academia and joined Schlumberger Cambridge Research as a Scientific Advisor. In 2005 he retired although he still consults for SCR and is Emeritus Honorary Professor of Theoretical Seismology at UofC. He was a Green Scholar at Scripps Institution of Oceanography in 1978-9 and 1986, and a Killam Fellow in 1981-3. In 2013, he was awarded the Royal Astronomical Society Gold Medal (G). He is an author of the textbook “Fundamentals of Seismic Wave Propagation” (CUP, 2004).
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