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Open Access

Feasibility study on the potential of satellite altimetry for detecting seismic geoid changes due to the 2004 Sumatra-Andaman earthquake

  • Yutaka Hayashi14Email author,
  • Kenji Hirata14,
  • Tsurane Kuragano24,
  • Toshiyuki Sakurai34,
  • Hiromi Takayama14,
  • Yohei Hasegawa44 and
  • Nobuo Hamada44
Earth, Planets and Space200759:BF03352062

Received: 22 July 2005

Accepted: 2 October 2007

Published: 30 November 2007


Sea surface height data obtained by satellite altimetry from Jason-1 and TOPEX/Poseidon were analyzed to explore the possibility of a seismic geoid change due to the 2004 Sumatra-Andaman earthquake. This analysis identified a weakly positive geoid change in a region between the trench and outer arc. A subsequent investigation of the characteristics of this coseismic geoid change based on the dislocation theory revealed that a positive peak should indicate the upper edge of the high-slipped area or asperity and that a negative peak is responsible for the lower edge of the earthquake fault. An attempt at modeling the difference in the sea level anomaly failed to explain the observation since a large scatter in the original dataset obstructed its confirmation.

Key words

Asperitycoseismic geoid changeJason-1satellite altimetrysea surface heightTOPEX/Poseidon2004 Sumatra-Andaman earthquake