Researcher Information



Earthquake and volcano observation

Institute of Seismology and Volcanology, Seismological Observation


Geophysical observation for earthquake, volcano and regional tectonics researches.

FieldEarthquake seismology, Volcanology, Geodesy, Natural disaster science
KeywordSeismic activity, Volcanic activity, Crustal deformation, Plate motion, Geothermal exploration, Gravity, Northeastern Asia

Introduction of Research

Governmental authority evaluates high probability for M>8.8 giant earthquake in southwestern Kuril trench. Geophysical observation for interplate coupling investigation is most important research for tsunami disaster evaluation. We will try to install ocean bottom benchmarks and measure crustal deformation directly. Improvement of evaluation method for inland earthquakes is also one of the important tasks.
Disastrous earthquakes in Japan Sea and Inland Hokkaido to Sakhalin might be due to eastward motion of continental micro plate. Regional tectonics research in northeastern Asia using GNSS in cooperation with Russia and Chinese institutions is carried out.
Volcano deformation observation in Hokkaido and Kamchatka have been in operation. Dynamic and static processes of magma and geothermal activities are recorded by tilt and gravity sensors. Geophysical exploration in geothermal resource is a target of researches.


Representative Achievements

The 2018 Hokkaido Eastern Iburi Earthquake and its Aftermath, H. Takahashi and R. Kimura, Journal of Disaster Reseach, 14, 2019.
Implications of Seismic Velocity Structure at the Junction of Kuril‐Northeastern Japan Arcs on Active Shallow Seismicity and Deep Low‐Frequency Earthquakes, T. Shiina, H. Takahashi, T. Okada and T. Matsuzawa, Journal of Geophysical Research, 123, 2018.
Analysis of the far-field crustal displacements caused by the 2011 Great Tohoku earthquake inferred from continuous GPS observations, N. V. Shestakov, H. Takahashi, M. Ohzono, A. S. Prytkov, V. G. Bykov, M. D. Gerasimenko, M.a N. Luneva, G. N. Gerasimov, A. G. Kolomiets, V. A. Bormotov, N. F. Vasilenko, J. Baek, P. H. Park, M. A. Serov, Tectonophysics, 524-525, 76-86, 2012.
Volcanic strain change prior to an earthquake swarm observed by groundwater level sensors in Meakan-dake, H. Takahashi, T. Shibara, T. Yamaguchi, R. Ikeda, N. Okazaki, F. Akita, Journal of Volcanology and geothermal researches, 215-216, 1-7, 2012.
Static strain and stress changes in eastern Japan due to the 2011 off the Pacific coast of Tohoku Earthquake, as derived from GPS data, H. Takahashi, Earth Planets Space, 63:42, 2011.
Affiliated academic societySeismological Society of Japan, Geodetic Society of Japan, Volcanological Society of Japan, The Japanese Society of Hot Spring Sciences
Room addressFaculty of Science Building 4

Institute of Seismology and Volcanology, Seismological Observation



What is your dream that you want to achieve through your research?

My major research interest is mitigation of natural disaster due to earthquake, tsunami and volcanic eruption. Earthquakes and tsunamis frequently cause serious human damage and great difficulties for people’s lives. It is one of the most important measures to construct resilient social system for natural disaster. Earth science researches tell us history and give clues to forecast the future. Tsunami records just tell us high probability of mega-earthquake and tsunami along Pacific coast of Hokkaido. Earthquake is, however, not predictable in deterministic way because of its complex characteristics. What strategies are possible and effective within these boundary conditions for disaster mitigation? Science can only solve a part of problems. Multidisciplinary research to integrate subdivided knowledge is necessary.

Please briefly introduce us to the big project you have been tackling.

Dynamics of Japanese Islands is controlled by tectonic plate interaction in eastern Asia. Total understanding of geodynamics frame in eastern Asia is an interesting subject, starting from strong northward collision along Indian-Himalaya, subsequent active deformation in China and continental opening at Baikal lake, and finally terminating along Japanese Island arc. International cooperative research with Chinese and Russian researchers using GNSS crustal deformation data is in progress.

Ocean bottom crustal deformation observation system deployed on the seafloor in southwestern Kuril trench.
Please tell us what you think is good about your lab.

Our research institute has operated permanent and temporal seismic, geodetic and geophysical observation network in Hokkaido. Realtime data is transmitted to Sapporo campus and analyzed together with other institutions seismic data. Basic information of seismological and volcanic researches is observation data. I usually climb up to active volcanoes with observation equipment in order to obtain data. We welcome  those who wish to carry out field observation together in Hokkaido and neighbor countries.

Field observation at Klyuchevskoy active volcano in Kamchatka, Russia. This is the highest active volcano in Eurasia (4750m).