Articles | Volume 11, issue 2
Research article
18 Feb 2011
Research article |  | 18 Feb 2011

Identification of earthquake precursors in the hydrogeochemical and geoacoustic data for the Kamchatka peninsula by flicker-noise spectroscopy

G. V. Ryabinin, Yu. S. Polyakov, V. A. Gavrilov, and S. F. Timashev

Abstract. A phenomenological systems approach for identifying potential precursors in multiple signals of different types for the same local seismically active region is proposed based on the assumption that a large earthquake may be preceded by a system reconfiguration (preparation) on different time and space scales. A nonstationarity factor introduced within the framework of flicker-noise spectroscopy, a statistical physics approach to the analysis of time series, is used as the dimensionless criterion for detecting qualitative (precursory) changes within relatively short time intervals in arbitrary signals. Nonstationarity factors for chlorine-ion concentration variations in the underground water of two boreholes on the Kamchatka peninsula and geacoustic emissions in a deep borehole within the same seismic zone are studied together in the time frame around a large earthquake on 8 October 2001. It is shown that nonstationarity factor spikes (potential precursors) take place in the interval from 70 to 50 days before the earthquake for the hydrogeochemical data and at 29 and 6 days in advance for the geoacoustic data.