A statistical analysis of TIR anomalies extracted by RSTs in relation to an earthquake in the Sichuan area using MODIS LST data

Zhang, Ying; Meng, Qingyan

Research in the field of earthquake prediction has a long history, but the inadequacies of traditional approaches to the study of seismic threats have become increasingly evident. Remote sensing and Earth observation technology, an emerging method that can rapidly capture information concerning anomalies associated with seismic activity across a wide geographic area, has for some time been believed to be the key to overcoming the bottleneck in earthquake prediction studies. However, a multi-parametric method appears to be the most promising approach for increasing the reliability and precision of short-term seismic hazard forecasting, and thermal infrared (TIR) anomalies are important earthquake precursors. While several studies have investigated the correlation among TIR anomalies identified by the robust satellite techniques (RSTs) methodology and single earthquakes, few studies have extracted TIR anomalies over a long period within a large study area. Moreover, statistical analyses are required to determine whether TIR anomalies are precursors to earthquakes. In this paper, RST data analysis and the Robust Estimator of TIR Anomalies (RETIRA) index were used to extract the TIR anomalies from 2002 to 2018 in the Sichuan region using Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) land surface temperature (LST) data, while the earthquake catalog was used to ascertain the correlation between TIR anomalies and earthquake occurrences. Most TIR anomalies corresponded to earthquakes, and statistical methods were used to verify the correlation between the extracted TIR anomalies and earthquakes. This is the first time that the ability to predict earthquakes has been evaluated based on the positive predictive value (PPV), false discovery rate (FDR), true-positive rate (TPR), and false-negative rate (FNR). The statistical results indicate that the prediction potential of RSTs with use of MODIS is limited with regard to the Sichuan region.

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Zhang, Ying / Meng, Qingyan: A statistical analysis of TIR anomalies extracted by RSTs in relation to an earthquake in the Sichuan area using MODIS LST data. 2019. Copernicus Publications.

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Rechteinhaber: Ying Zhang

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