Experts are on high alert fearing that a rift in the ocean floor could trigger an apocalyptic earthquake. Read the story below for the full news. The hole, just 50 miles off the Oregon coast, spews a hot liquid that scientists warn could trigger a magnitude 9 earthquake with the potential to devastate the West Coast. It is located along a 600-mile fault line that runs from California to Canada, known as the Cascadia Subduction Zone. Although the hole was first detected in 2015, scientists now warn that the fluid coming out is the so-called “fault lubricant”, which allows tectonic plates to move easily. Therefore, the more fluid there is in the fault cracks, the less pressure there is between the two tectonic plates. Without it, the pressure below the earth’s crust can build, leading to an incredibly powerful earthquake.
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Scientists believe the Cascadia Subduction Zone will one day be responsible for the Big One, an earthquake of such destruction not seen in centuries that it could devastate many cities in the western continental United States. A robotic diver first found the hole eight years ago after methane bubbles were seen rising from the ocean floor. The data showed that the liquid in the spring was coming from the plate boundary line and appeared warmer than the surrounding area.
Co-author Evan Soloman, a professor of oceanography at the University of Washington and co-author of a report on the area, said: “They explored in that direction and what they saw was not just methane bubbles, but water coming up from the sea floor like a He added that the loss of fluid from the offshore megathrust interface through this slip fault is important because it reduces the fluid pressure between the feeling particles and therefore increases the friction between the plates. oceanic and continental.
Comparing the process to an air hockey table, he went on to say, “if the fluid pressure is high, it’s as if the air is on, which means there’s less friction and the two plates can slide.” Subduction systems in which one tectonic plate slides past another have been responsible for some of the deadliest earthquakes in recent years, including the 2011 earthquake in Japan that killed an estimated 20,000 people. Scientists believe that the last powerful earthquake in the Cascadia area was in 1700. The temblor is believed to have been 30 times more powerful than the strongest earthquake forecast along the San Andreas fault, which runs along the California.
Solomon said the fluid being released from the fault zone is the first known site of its kind discovered. However, they believed that there may be similar holes that have not yet been discovered. The hole was named Pythias Oasis, after the ancient Greek oracle who could “predict” the future by hallucinating vapors emanating from an underground hot spring. Thanks for being a patient reader.