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Slippery Clay at Fault in 2011 Japan Earthquake
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Slippery clay that looks like scaly black dragon skin is the crucial clue needed to explain the 2011 Japan earthquake's surprising impact, according to three studies published Thursday in the journal Science.

Scientists now have four lines of evidence (including a February 2013 study also published in Science) that help explain why Japan's earthquake-generating fault acted so weirdly during the 2011 temblor.

"It seems that frictional resistance at this location is getting close to zero, and we never really thought it could go so low," said Patrick Fulton, a geophysicist at the University of California, Santa Cruz and lead author of one of the studies. "This is definitely providing new ideas and challenging our understanding of earthquakes and fault ruptures." Read more...

More about Earthquake, Japan, Science, Japan Earthquake, and Natural Disaster
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