The largest earthquake because 1900 follow to the United claims Geological inspection (USGS) to be Richter-9.5 magnitude quake in Chile in 1960. Room magnitude 10 earthquakes possible? If so, what is the most most likely frequency of such earthquakes, and where are they the most most likely to occur?


Adding a small bit of handy data to the over answer about the Gutenberg-Richter relationship, right here is a plot that the per-year cumulative probability of earthquakes in a particular province in Japan, based upon observed frequencies over plenty of hundreds the years:



The connection is plausibly log-linear (in accordance through G-R); if you expropriate that the relationship will hold up to greater magnitudes, you would certainly estimate the probability of a M10 event in this place at as soon as every 30,000 years.

To obtain an calculation for "anywhere in the world" friend would require the accumulation data because that all. A an excellent place to begin is the USGS website - they have actually a comfortable table through data due to the fact that 1900.

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Taking this data and also plotting them on a log-linear graph, climate extrapolating a linear fit, provides the complying with chart:


This is rather scary due to the fact that it argues that there is about a 1:100 chance of a M10 earthquake everywhere in the world, in any type of given year. Note that i plotted the data for magnitude x come x.9 in ~ the ar of x - which tends to underestimate points a tiny bit.

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Note also that at the extreme finish of very big earthquakes (8 and above), the data looks like it might be deviating from the right line - but there room not enough data points to draw any kind of firm conclusions around the shape.

There are several other caveats. First - the presumption that the model can be extrapolated can be challenged: a particular fault might not be created in such a method as to keep the power required because that an M10 event, together it will constantly release the energy prior to it it s okay there (and there might be a "stress shadow" effect, which states that after a large earthquake, the possibility of another huge one is in the interim reduced due to the fact that stresses have been relieved; this is why this model can only be used "over a lengthy period", and also does not accurately reflect the risk of earthquake in the next 5 years).