Infographic Video: Watch Japan's Quake Ripple Through the Pacific

A remarkable set of infographics shows the vast amounts of energy at play.

It will be days or even weeks until we know the full extent of the destruction caused by today's earthquake and tsunami that originated in the seas off Sendai, Japan, but new infographics by the scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration will give you a sense of the jaw-dropping magnitude of the energy that has been traveling through the Pacific Ocean.

Here's a video of the earthquakes energy propagating across thousands of miles, like ripples in a sink:

And here's a chart showing exactly how large the resultant waves have been, all around the rim of the Pacific:


The Times has an astonishing collection of videos of the tsunami coming ashore, and you can read a running tabulation of the latest news at Gawker.

Our thoughts are with the victims.

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  • lee de cola

    We geographers insist that maps of unfamiliar territory show spatial scales representing the ratio between a distance on the map and that distance in the real world. This beautifully clear animation needs a temporal scale telling the viewer that 1 minute = 24 hours, for a temporal ratio of 1:1440.

    Lee De Cola
    Data to Insight