Ring of Fire...Amazing map of 203,186 quakes - a century of earthquakes mapped
Earthquakes since 1898 - a century's worth of big earthquakes: 203,186 in total - Includes last year's 9.0 magnitude Japan earthquake.The 9.5 magnitude 1960 quake in Valdivia, Chile, is the biggest on record.
Amazing visualisation: showing earthquakes since 1898, by magnitude, the map pinpoints the Ring of Fire in vivid green.
AN AMAZING map plotting every earthquake of magnitude 4.0 or above in more than a century dramatically visualises the Ring of Fire and other quake hotspots.
In vibrant fluoro green, the map pinpoints the dynamic contact points where continental tectonic plates grind underneath each other, raising mountain ranges and causing the biggest earthquakes on the planet.
Fiery neighbours: Australia is seismically quiet compared to Indonesia, Papua New Guinea and New Zealand. Our biggest recorded earthquake was a 7.2 magnitude tremble at Meeberrie in 1941, that caused severe shaking at its epicentre, and minor damage in Perth, 500km away.
Also clearly visible are the spots where mid-ocean plates are moving away from each other, particularly in the Atlantic and Indian Ocean.
According to the map, Australia is one of the most geologically stable countries on Earth.
The map was created by designer John Nelson of IDVSolutions, a US software company that visualises data.
It merges data from America's Advanced National Seismic System and the United States Geological Survey with a map of the world centred on the Pacific Ocean.
Waiting for The Big One: San Francisco and Los Angeles sit on California's San Andreas fault, the tectonic boundary between the Pacific and North American plates.
The 7.9 magnitude 1906 quake killed more than 3000 people in San Francisco. A 9.2 earthquake and resulting tsunami in Alaska in 1964 killed 143. Central America is one of the most seismologically active regions on Earth.
Danger zone: the map reveals that Japan is one of the most seismically active spots on Earth.
2011's Thoku 9.0 magnitude earthquake caused an estimated $122 billion property damage. The quake and resulting tsunami killed approximately 16,000.
In March 2011, a massive magnitude 9.0 earthquake hit Japan, causing a huge tsunami than killed an estimated 15,800 people. It was the biggest quake recorded.
Earthquake aftermath: a Japanese girl searches through the debris as a ship sits atop a building after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, which devastated the country's east coast. (AP Photo/Yomiuri Shimbun, Yasuhiro Takami)
Nelson points out that agencies only started properly recording "hard core" earthquakes in the 1960s.
Source: Supplied by: Simon Crerar From: news.com.au