Why are Earthquakes More Frequent During Nights?

Disasters are always scary but with advanced technologies, we humans have learned quite a bit about the early prediction of many disasters. However, the same does not hold true for earthquakes. We are yet to unravel many mysteries related to earthquakes. The relation between the occurrence frequency of earthquakes and time of the day is one such area that has posed many curious questions for our scientists. Scientists have been trying to understand the correlation between the sun and earthquakes.  In this article, we attempt to discuss all the angles and perspectives related to the frequency of earthquakes during night time. Is it an earthquake misconception or an actual fact?

Most educational resources available over the internet claims that earthquakes can happen at any time. It is neither associated with any season nor with any particular time of the day. During the daytime, we do not feel the tremors as we are engrossed in our word and the noises coming from the surrounding somewhere restrict our senses from identifying a tremor. On the contrary, during nighttime, we become more sensitive to the tremors. We feel it more evidently in absence of surrounding daytime noises.

While the explanation above seems like a valid and rational answer, we are still hesitant in taking it as the “right answer”. The reason behind this indecision on our part comes from a research paper titled “Evidence for diurnal periodicity of earthquakes from midnight to daybreak” authored by Jinlai Hao, Jin-Hai Zhang, and Zhenxing Yao published in OUP’s National Science Review (Volume 6, Issue 5) in September 2019. The paper suggests that there is evidence that suggests that earthquakes have a dominant diurnal period, at least from midnight to daybreak. This research has open doors to many possibilities that could help us in understanding the physical mechanism of earthquakes even better.  Until then, human curiosity has to settle with some uncertainty!

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