Prof. Shoichi Yoshioka (URL), Assistant Prof. Yasumaro Kakehi (URL), Yingfeng Ji (Postdoctoral researcher at RCUSS), Nobuaki Suenaga (Postdoctoral researcher at Graduate School of Science), 4 Senior students, 1 Research student, 1 Technical staff
Location: The Graduate School of Science and Technology Bldg 3, room 615 (Yoshioka), 616 (Kakehi), 617 (Postdoctoral researchers), 621 (senior students, a research student and a technical staff)
Earthquakes can be regarded as a physical phenomenon that ruptures occur suddenly in the lithosphere covering the Earth's surface with generating seismic waves.
They are amazingly large-scale ones among natural phenomena occurring on the Earth with relatively short time scale.
For example, the 2011 Great East Japan earthquake (magnitude 9.0) was a huge event with maximum slip of approximately 50 to 60 m on the subduction fault with a length of 450 km and a width of 200 km.
Such activities of the Earth can sometimes bring tragic disasters, which have been demonstrated clearly by the catastrophic damages caused by this earthquake's strong ground motions and tsunamis and the Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake Disaster brought by the 1995 Hyogo-ken Nanbu earthquake.
We can say that seismology is a manifestation of hope of mankind to reduce such disasters as much as possible.
At the same time, it is a manifestation of intellectual curiosity for the mystery why and how such huge events occur.
Seismology also plays an important role in the basic science surveying the interior of the Earth, because seismic wave is a carrier of abundant information of the Earth's interior.
The Solid Earth laboratory of Kobe University approaches the mystery of earthquakes by the physical and geological researches on seismic sources and field of earthquake generation with various approaches - theory, observation, data analysis, and numerical simulation using computers. Current research themes are listed below:
elastic and viscoelastic deformations caused by a large earthquake
thermal, flow, and deformation fields driven by the subduction of an oceanic plate
generation mechanisms of low frequency earthquakes and slow earthquakes
Numerical simulations of dynamic fault rupture
Numerical simulations of tsunamis
earthquake source process
interaction between earthquakes via change of stress field