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Friday, 29th August 2008
In General Japan News,

Seamounts linked to earthquakes

Japanese scientists are hopeful that new research might be able to teach them more about where and when earthquakes will happen.

The Earthquake Research Institute at the University of Tokyo believe there could be a link between submerged seamounts and earthquakes, Mainichi reports.

Researchers have put forward the theory in the latest edition of Science after discovering that a seamount off the coast of Ibaraki Prefecture has been responsible for a series of large tremors inland.

On the findings, one of the team said: "In the future, if we can identify the location of seamounts though marine surveys, then there is a possibility that we will be able to predict the focal area of major earthquakes."

According to the Japanese Meteorological Agency, there have been three earthquakes in the country this week - in the Kyoto Fu Hokubu, Kii Channel and the Niijima-Kouzushima regions.

The strongest took place in the Kii strait, measuring 4.2.