Calamos Supports Greece
GreekReporter.comGreek NewsCan AI Predict Earthquakes?

Can AI Predict Earthquakes?

Could AI Predict Earthquakes?
AI shows great potential in predicting earthquakes such as the one that hit Turkey and Syria earlier in the year. Credit: Adem,  Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0/Wikipedia

Artificial intelligence (AI) shows great potential in predicting earthquakes with accuracy due to its ability to process large amounts of data quickly.

Following the devasting earthquake in Morocco recently and in Turkey and Syria earlier this year that claimed the lives of more than 50,000 people, scientists are intensifying their efforts to create models based on AI that could predict earthquakes and save lives.

For decades, scientists have been trying to predict earthquakes in order to mitigate their impact. Could AI provide a breakthrough in this field?

Machine learning algorithms can analyze patterns in seismic activity, geological data, and other factors to identify the probability of an earthquake occurring. This technology could potentially provide timely and accurate predictions, allowing authorities to prepare and mitigate the impact of earthquakes.

Previous research has shown promising results for the application of AI in earthquake prediction. For example, researchers at Stanford University used machine learning to predict aftershocks following an earthquake in California. Their model achieved an accuracy rate of over 80%, demonstrating the potential of AI in this field.

Big quakes are hard to miss, but they’re rare. Meanwhile, imperceptibly small quakes happen all the time. Occurring on the same faults as bigger earthquakes, and involving the same physics and the same mechanisms, these “microquakes” represent a cache of untapped information about how earthquakes evolve – but only if scientists can find them.

In a recent paper published in Nature Communications, Stanford University scientists describe a new method for using artificial intelligence to bring into focus millions of these subtle shifts of the Earth.

“By improving our ability to detect and locate these very small earthquakes, we can get a clearer view of how earthquakes interact or spread out along the fault, how they get started, even how they stop,” they said.

Furthermore, researchers at the University of Tokyo have used neural networks to predict earthquakes, achieving a high level of accuracy by analyzing patterns in seismic activity.

Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory announced recently that they had developed a mechanism in a laboratory that can predict future fault friction. The technique, which applies AI to the fault’s acoustic signals, advances previous work, and goes beyond it by predicting aspects of the future state of the fault’s physical system.

“Simply put, we predict future friction. That’s never been done, and it provides a potential path to near-term forecasting of earthquake timing in Earth,” said Chris Johnson, co-lead author of a paper on the findings in Geophysical Research Letters.

Chris Johnson said the AI “takes data of what’s happening right now and says what’s happening next on the fault.”

These studies suggest that AI has great potential in predicting earthquakes.

AI’s current limitations in predicting earthquakes

However, there are also challenges that need to be addressed before AI can provide reliable earthquake predictions.

One of the primary challenges is the lack of data. Earthquakes are rare events, and therefore it is difficult to gather sufficient data to train machine learning algorithms.

Additionally, earthquakes are complex phenomena affected by many factors, and it is challenging to identify causation accurately.

Furthermore, the physical mechanisms that cause earthquakes are not yet fully understood, which makes it difficult to predict them even with the help of AI.

According to Caltech Science Exchange, “It is not currently possible to predict exactly when and where an earthquake will occur, nor how large it will be. However, seismologists can estimate where earthquakes may be likely to strike by calculating probabilities and forecasts.”

The US Geological Survey (USGS) says that “Neither the USGS nor any other scientists have ever predicted a major earthquake. We do not know how, and we do not expect to know how any time in the foreseeable future.”

“USGS scientists can only calculate the probability that a significant earthquake will occur (shown on our hazard mapping) in a specific area within a certain number of years,” the organization adds.

Nonetheless, the future applications of AI in earthquake prediction and disaster mitigation are promising, and more research in this area is necessary to unlock its full potential.

See all the latest news from Greece and the world at Contact our newsroom to report an update or send your story, photos and videos. Follow GR on Google News and subscribe here to our daily email!

Related Posts