Earthquake Precursors Assessment in Vrancea Region Through Satellite and In Situ Monitoring Data

  • Maria ZoranEmail author
  • Dan Savastru
  • Doru Mateciuc
Conference paper
Part of the Springer Natural Hazards book series (SPRINGERNAT)


Vrancea active zone has a high seismic hazard in Romania and in the European-Mediterranean region, generating normal, strong or moderate intermediate depth earthquakes on a confined epicentral area. In this paper, for seismic hazard analysis in Vrancea region have been selected the earthquake precursors anomalies detectable from space as well as in situ monitoring: land surface temperature (LST) and air surface temperature (AT), and outgoing long wave radiation (OLR), provided by time-series satellite MODIS (Terra/Aqua) and AVHRR (NOAA), Landsat TM/ETM, as well as seismicity recorded prior to moderate or strong earthquakes. This study investigated March, 4th 1977, Mw = 7.4, H = 94 km and October 27th 2004, Mw = 5.9, H = 96 km earthquakes. The joint analysis of geospatial, geophysical, geochemical, seismological and geological information is revealing new insights in the understanding of the kinematics and dynamics of the complex plate boundary system present in the Eastern Carpathians as support of lithosphere-surfacesphere-atmosphere coupling model.


Seismic hazard assessment Time-series geospatial data Satellite derived geophysical parameters Earthquake forecasting 



This work was supported by Romanian National Authority for Scientific Research, Program STAR, Contract 73/2013 VRAFORECAST and by grant CNDI– UEFISCDI, project number PN-II-PT-PCCA Contract 86/2014 VRAGEO. We are thankful to Oak Ridge National Laboratory Distributed Active Archive Centre (ORNL DAAC) 2014 MODIS subsetted land products, Collection 5.


  1. Choudhury S, Dasgupta S, Saraf AK, Panda SK (2006) Remote sensing observations of pre-earthquake thermal anomalies in Iran. Int J Remote Sens 27(20):4381–4396CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Freund F (2011) Seeking out earth’s warning signals. Nature 473:452CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Geller R (2011) Shake-up time for Japanese seismology. Nature 472:407–409CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Hauser F, Raileanu V, Fielitz W, Dinu C, Landes M, Bala A, Prodehl C (2007) Seismic crustal structure between the Transylvanian Basin and the Black Sea, Romania. Tectonophysics 430:1–25CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Joyce KE, Belliss SE, Samsonov SV, McNeill SJ, Glassey PJ (2009) A review of the status of satellite remote sensing and image processing techniques for mapping natural hazards and disasters. Prog Phys Geogr 32(2):183–207CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Ouzounov D, Freund F (2004) Mid-infrared emission prior to strong earthquakes analyzed by remote sensing data. Adv Space Res 33:268–273CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Ouzounov D, Bryant N, Logan T, Pulinets S, Taylor P (2006) Satellite thermal IR phenomena associated with some of the major earthquakes in 1999–2003. Phys Chem Earth 31(4–9):154–163CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Pan G, Tang DL (2010) Damage information derived from multi-sensor data of the Wenchuan earthquake of May 2008. Int J Remote Sens 31:3509–3519CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Radulian M, Bonjer KP, Popescu E, Popa M, Ionescu C, Grecu B (2004) The October 27th, 2004 Vrancea (Romania) earthquake. ORFEUS Newslett 7:1Google Scholar
  10. Singh RP, Bhoi S, Sahoo AK (2001) Surface manifestations after the Gujarat earthquake. Curr Sci 80:1376–1377Google Scholar
  11. Tramutoli V, Aliano C, Corrado R, Filizzola C, Genzano N, Lisi M, Martinelli G, Pergola N (2013) On the possible origin of thermal infrared radiation (TIR) anomalies in earthquake-prone areas observed using robust satellite techniques (RST). Chem Geol 339:157–168CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Tronin AA, Hayakawa M, Molchanov OA (2002) Thermal IR satellite data application for earthquake research in Japan and China. J Geodyn 33(4–5):519–534CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Zoran M (2010) Earthquake precursors assessment in Vrancea area, Romania by satellite and geophysical in-situ data. ESA SP-677:135–141Google Scholar
  14. Zoran M (2012) MODIS and NOAA-AVHRR land surface temperature data detect a thermal anomaly preceding the 11 March 2011 Tohoku earthquake. Int J Remote Sens 33(21):6805–6817CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Zoran M, Neuner J, Mateciuc D, Ciucu C (2008) Geospatial techniques of seismic zones investigation. Conspress, BucharestGoogle Scholar
  16. Zoran M, Savastru R, Savastru D (2012) Radon levels assessment in relation with seismic events in Vrancea region. J Radioanal Nucl Chem 293:655–663CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Institute of R&D for OptoelectronicsMagureleRomania
  2. 2.National Institute of R&D for Earth PhysicsMagureleRomania

Personalised recommendations