Improvement of earthquake locations with the Marine Cable Hosted Observatory (MACHO) offshore NE Taiwan

Nai Chi Hsiao, Tzu Wei Lin, Shu Kun Hsu, Kai Wei Kuo, Tzay Chyn Shin, Peih Lin Leu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


In order to improve the locating capability for offshore earthquakes and tsunamis monitored off northeastern Taiwan, a cable-based ocean bottom seismographic observatory named “Marine Cable Hosted Observatory” (MACHO) was constructed and began operation at the end of 2011. The installed instruments of the observatory include a broadband seismometer, a strong-motion seismometer and a pressure gauge. In addition, various scientific instruments could be deployed for other purposes as well. At present, the seismic data are transmitted in real-time via a fiber cable, and integrated into the current inland seismographic network in Taiwan. The ocean bottom station has contributed to provide high quality seismic data already. According to observations from January 2012 to June 2013, there were a total of 15,168 earthquakes recorded by the system. By using the data from the ocean bottom station, the number of relocated earthquakes with an azimuth gap less than 180 degrees substantially increase about 34 %. Meanwhile, the root–mean–square of the time residual, the error in epicenter, and the error in depth of the earthquake locations decrease. Therefore, the implementation of MACHO has the advantage of extending the coverage of existing the Taiwan seismic network to the offshore, providing more accurate and real-time seismic data for offshore earthquakes monitoring. The results show that MACHO is crucial and necessary for monitoring seismic activities in northeastern Taiwan.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)327-336
Number of pages10
JournalMarine Geophysical Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2014


  • Northeastern Taiwan
  • Offshore earthquake
  • Tsunami


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