Scientists are truly struggling to explain what happened with an unusual seismic event that sent what amounts to a shockwave across the planet recently, and some have suggested it’s too unusual and artificial-looking to have been caused by nature and not people.
On November 11, earthquake sensors stationed across the planet picked up this unidentifiable, or rather unexplainable wave, that seemed to shake everything.
The cause of this disturbance is not yet known, but it is believed that the wave is somehow linked to an ongoing swarm of seismic activity that has been shaking the Indian Ocean archipelago of Mayotte for months and months.
Specifically, what these very strange tremors signify or will mean in future is as of yet unknown.
“I don’t think I’ve seen anything like it,” said Göran Ekström, a seismologist from Columbia University.
Just about precisely half a year before the arrival of this totally unexplainable signal, seismologists were shocked by yet another type of abnormal seismic activity, right about in the same vicinity of this mystery wave.
In the same area, a swarm of hundreds of frequent, small earthquakes originating about 31 miles (50 kilometers) off the east coast of Mayotte occurred.
You may have thought that colonialism was over, but the network of islands and islets governed by France, located roughly halfway between the great continent of Africa’s mainland and Madagascar, is also claimed by the island nation of Comoros.
In the early sunrise hours of May 10, this region between Africa and Madagascar was shook by an earthquake that occurred without any warning whatsoever, and it didn’t come by itself. It was followed by a succession of hundreds of tremors that have yet to disappear.
The most intense earthquake of all was a 5.8 magnitude earthquake on May 15, 2018. It constituted the largest earthquake ever recorded in that region of the Comoros basin.
Although since then the consistent swarm of earthquakes has mostly lessened in intensity, although they still just won’t stop, a 5.1 magnitude resurgence of the more intense quake activity just happened this week.
The turbulence isn’t over in this region, people were reminded. Swarms of earthquakes sound rather terrifying, kind of producing the mental image of a swarm of locusts pouring into some chasm in the Earth or something along those lines, they aren’t necessarily always so dangerous.
Researchers from the École normale supérieure in Paris, France conducted a preliminary analysis of the seismic swarm, and they suggested that the tremors actually cannot be accounted for by tectonic movement alone. That means that volcanic activity, or even man-influenced technology although that wasn’t specifically mentioned, must be playing a role in the seismic swarm.
A little less than three weeks ago, during the swarm but on a unique day where no swarm tremors were detected at all, this is where the mystery wave happened.
Scientists registered a completely strange, long, flat vibration that hummed consistently like it was some frequency being blasted through the Earth by human beings or something like that.
The long, flat vibration hummed without the spiky fluctuations or natural details that are a common sense signature of usual quake activity.
It was an “atypical very low frequency signal,” in a direct quote from France’s Bureau de Recherches Géologiques (BRGM). It was also repeated in a wave about every 17 seconds, and this lasted for about 20 minutes in total. “There are a lot things we don’t know,” said Nicolas Taillefer, a research engineer who leads BRGM’s seismic and volcanic risk unit.
The best guess provided by scientists for what this could have been, is that this was just a wave produced by volcanic activity, possibly due to a massive movement of magma underneath the Indian Ocean.
The island of Mayotte is not stationary, and since July after the beginning of the swarm, the island has shifted a huge 2.4 inches to the east and 1.2 inches to the south.
A magma reservoir being emptied nearby may be responsible for this, but they say more research is necessary.
There’s only one question that needs to be asked: why would a shift of magma beneath the Indian Ocean create a flat, consistent low frequency, like a giant 808 bass note, on and off for about 20 minutes? It seems very likely that some human activity caused this.