Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
Catalán P.A., Aránguiz R., González G., Tomita T., Cienfuegos R., González J., Shrivastava M.N., Kumagai K., Mokrani C., Cortés P. and Gubler A. (2015)

The 1 April 2014 Pisagua tsunami: Observations and modeling

Revista : Geophysical Research Letters
Volumen : 42
Número : 8
Páginas : 2918-2925
Tipo de publicación : ISI Ir a publicación


On 1 April 2014, an earthquake with moment magnitude Mw 8.2 occurred off the coast of northern Chile, generating a tsunami that prompted evacuation along the Chilean coast. Here tsunami characteristics are analyzed through a combination of field data and numerical modeling. Despite the earthquake magnitude, the tsunami was moderate, with a relatively uniform distribution of runup, which peaked at 4.6 m. This is explained by a concentrated maximal slip at intermediate depth on the megathrust, resulting in a rapid decay of tsunami energy. The tsunami temporal evolution varied, with locations showing sustained tsunami energy, while others showed increased tsunami energy at different times after the earthquake. These are the result of the interaction of long period standing oscillations and trapped edge wave activity controlled by inner shelf slopes. Understanding these processes is relevant for the region, which still posses a significant tsunamigenic potential.