Thanks BBC Persian

- July 1, 2004 -

BBC Persian in London, UK is one of the most popular websites among Persian-speaking people mostly in Iran. It has 10 million hits a month.

On behalf of BBC Persian, a Senior Producer, whose name is requested not to show, wrote me for an interview to reply the questions of Iranian people on June 14, 2004. I gave him a positive response immediately. Afterwards, his team solicited questions from Iranian people, selected 13, and sent me them in English. I replied them on June 23. They translated my response into Persian, published it with a title "Chinese Earthquake Predictor Has Answered Your Questions", and sent me a link [1] on June 29. Here are the questions and my response.

1. Many of our readers have asked about the possibility of an earthquake happening in Tehran. They asked was the earthquake which you predicted the one that happened recently or is there another one coming? When will that happen? What would be the power of that earthquake?

Shou: Yes, there will be one along ABC of Image 20040612 21:00[2]. Due to a lack of necessary data to show where the vapor was erupting, the epicenter out of "ABC" is possible. If so, it should be in the west or southwest direction of Iran or its neighbors. It will happen within 103 days or before Sep. 24. Its magnitude will be more than or equal to 5, or a couple of 4~4.9.

2 Regarding Tehran, can you announce it one day or at least, a few hours before the earthquake so thatpeople can save their lives? Why don't you work with international organizations to predict earthquakes and prevent the killing of people?

Shou: The former question belongs to a serious work called "Evacuation". Scientists in the world have tried to reply it with abounding funds for more than a century, but the Nature Debate in 1999 showed no result [3].

Although, my Bam prediction, the best in history, offers a possibility, there are six impediments due to no fund to overcome them. First, satellite images do not show the trace of earthquake vapor in a warm or hot surrounding. Second, satellite may lose short-life clouds. Third, satellite can not distinguish a large earthquake from a group of moderate, very close earthquakes. Forth, some big earthquakes happened in one day after their clouds quickly. Fifth, it is still a puzzle of whether or not 103-day is the longest delay universally. Sixth, earthquake data have large error that makes predicting magnitude very difficult.I proposed an essay "Evacuation" to explain this question. More details can be found by the following link [4]

For the latter question, the problem is not due to me. For example, I appealed, "I hope the American scientists would like to hear people's cry and to cooperate with me to solve those satellite data problems" in the end of Essay "The 7.0 Hector Mine, Southern California Earthquake Shows That I Am Right (Rewrite)" in 2002 [5]. However, they ignore my friendly request. I also wrote some seismologists, but they ignore, too. Therefore, I suggest you convincing international organizations, especially those in Iranian because the problem is not from me. Afterwards, please inform me your results.

3. Why several earthquakes are happening in Iran in such a short time?

Shou: I do not understand this question. Please explain what the "several earthquakes" are.

4 Many people asked about your technique to predict earthquakes: They asked how accurate can you predict earthquakes (in terms of percent)? How long before the earthquake, are the "earthquake clouds" created?

Shou: Limited by a lack of both necessary data and experience as a pioneer on earthquake prediction, the accuracy is 68% according to a set of 50 independent earthquake predictions, reported to the US Geological Survey (USGS) from 1994 to 2001. According to about 500 events, the longest span from the appearance of an earthquake cloud to its subsequent event is 103 days, the shortest is in one day, and the average is about 30 days.

5 Many people asked why many earthquake experts DO NOT approve of your method of earthquake prediction? Is your method a scientific one?

Shou: It is better to ask those earthquake experts for this question because I am not a cell of their brains.

On the other hand, many scientists do approve my work. For example, our behalf Dr. Amoli presented our paper "Bam Earthquake Prediction & Space Technology" [6] in the United Nations/Islamic Republic of Iran Regional Workshop on the Use of Space Technology for Environmental Security, Disaster Rehabilitation and Sustainable Development in Tehran, Iran on May 9, 2004. He wrote me that those international experts "were so excited of your approach and asked me its hardcopy" on May 10, 2004.

Moreover, a similar version was sent to China as my response for an interview of Chinese Scientist Chen, Advisor of the Committee of Natural Hazard Prediction, China Geophysics Society. He translated a part of it into Chinese, and presented it in the meeting of theCommittee in Nanchang, Jiangxi province on May 12, 2004. You can see how my work excited those experts by the following link [7]

Besides the above, my work was reported in different counties by TV 4 times, newspaper 9 times, web 4 times, and workshop 3 times. Furthermore, I published 4 articles. My work has spread to over 120 counties, and gotten uncountable links with different languages. Those facts reveal how welcome my work is. Some details can be found by this link [8]

For the last question, I hope you, yourselves, to reply it after asking why the Bam cloud was being glued to the fault for 24 hours in spire of moving to the southeast by the following animation [9]

Moreover, click this link [10] to ask yourselves why the Bam earthquake happened at the fault AB where I predicted or where the vapor had erupted exactly.

People should not suppose themselves to be slaves of those "earthquake experts" who have used a lot of budgets, but have not predicted one reliable earthquake, yet. I suggest studying statistics of my Bam prediction in Table 4 and the set of 50 predictions reported to theUSGS in Table 5. The former has a probability of 1 in 50 and close 0 for my coarse and fine Bam prediction respectively. The latter has a chance of 1 in 16,000 to be successful. For details, please read the two tables from the following link [6]

I would like to offer a link of earthquake catalog by the USGS [11]You can simulate either my Bam predictions or the set of 50 predictions with the same sizes of time, area, and magnitude, but with a series of random beginning times. Then you can check your simulation with the data from the USGS to see if yours is better than mine or not.

You can also invite those "earthquake experts" to simulate my predictions to see whether or not they do better although they should because they have funds to do what they want to do.

6 Can you say how powerful would be an earthquake by looking at the amount of these clouds?

Shou: Yes, if I got a fund to do what I want to overcome, I believe that it would work to pinpoint out all large epicenters like the Bam cloud. If more work were done, an evacuation would be possible. However, I do not have a fund, so it works well only for a few cases like the Bam cloud.

7 If - as you say - you have predicted powerful earthquake - including the one in Bam (Iran) - so why didn't you announce it properly in advance in order to save people's lives?

Shou: Yes, I did predict the Bam earthquake in our web site at 17:58 of Dec. 25, 2003 UTC according to the web recorder. Moreover, there are thousands witnesses in the world. The two earliest congratulations were from Orhan Cerit: Head of Informatic Department, Cumhuriyet Univ., Turkey, and Chen I-wan: Advisor of the Committee of National Hazard Prediction of China Geophysics Society, China. They knew my success even much earlier than me.

Now, let me ask you who proposed this question a question. Why did not you in Iran know my Bam prediction, while foreign people or Iranian people in foreign countries knew?

8 How many earthquakes have you predicted so far? Have the advances in satellite technology been helpful in predicting the earthquakes?

Shou: About 1,000. Yes, of course. Relying on space technology, I can predict earthquakes in the world by a computer home

9 To predict earthquakes you need local data, how do you get them? For example about Iran, do you work with Tehran Geophysics Centre to get the local data? If not, how do you get the information you need to predict earthquake?

Shou: In general, I predict earthquakes only by satellite data or my observation. I check mypredictions with earthquake data from the USGS usually to improve my knowledge. The USGS loses data sometimes, in these cases, I need local data. Moreover, there are too many small earthquakes in the world for the USGS to record, while they are important in some cases that is another reason. Moreover, due to meteorological satellite data problems that can not show where an earthquake cloud comes from in general, local half-hourly temperature maps are helpful. The former can be found from the internet, but only California, Washington state, and so on in the USA have records as precise as 0.1. The latter does not exist in the world.

About the Tehran Geophysics Center, they and I have not made cooperation, yet. I would like to appeal for a cooperation of them, other Iranian organizations, and those from other countries.

10 How do you distinguish the "earthquake clouds" from the normal clouds?

Shou: I explain this question in my article "Earthquake Clouds, a reliable precursor" in 1999[12] and also in our paper "Bam Earthquake Prediction & Space Technology"[6]. In the latter, I wrote, "An earthquake cloud can be distinguished from weather clouds by the following properties: a sudden appearance, a fixed source location (a fault), and a special shape such as a line, a snake, a few parallel lines, a bind of parallel waves, a feather, a radiation or a lantern pattern". Fig.3 depicts how the Bam cloud appeared from the fixed fault suddenly. Fig. 4 shows six different configurations of the clouds. Fig. 5 describes heat with earthquake clouds.

11 Some of earthquake signs that you mentioned in your website are very difficult to distinguish: for example, how can a person who lives in an apartment in can smell sulphur or hear underground noises?

Shou: No fund to overcome satellite data problems, I propose those knowledge for Tehran people against possible large earthquakes. Before the 7.3 Haicheng, earthquake in 1975, Chinese people smelt scent like sulfur. Before the 7.9 India earthquake in 2001, some Indian people heard noise from underground, and so did some Bam people before December 26, 2003. Ibelieve that people can go outside to smell and listen to except having physical problems.

12 Has the Chinese traditional knowledge and culture given you the ability to predict earthquakes?

Shou: Yes, my mother, my father's mother, and my mother's mother taught me a lot about weather forecast when I was a little boy. Afterward, I went to work by bike for a long distance, so weather forecast was important for me. However, the Chinese forecast wasnot very good, so I had to try by myself. After long practice, my weather forecast was a little better sometimes. For example, on the evening of August 7, 1988, I saw a strong typhoon or hurricane cloud. Then, I closed and nailed the windows of our apartment. My neighbors and even my wife laughed at my craze. However, a strong typhoon killed about 30 people, turned over many large trees and some buildings, and broke uncountable windows in the next early morning.

This traditional knowledge was important for me to make my first earthquake prediction by a sudden, linear, single cloud, and is still important for me to distinguish an earthquake cloud from weather clouds, and find new precursors like geothermal eruption, and geothermal bulge. I would like to thank my mother and two grandmothers here although they were gone.

I also read a lot about the Chinese traditional knowledge of earthquakes. I carefully read themajority of the publications of the Tangshan earthquake, the Haicheng Earthquake, and many others. I cited them for my theory "Earthquake Clouds, a reliable precursor", published in 1999 [12].

I also comment on some study by it. For instance, the Chinese scientists predicted the Tangshan earthquake in 1970 by geodetic data, but it happened in 1976. Therefore, geodetic is not a short term precursor. However, the USGS with Multi- million dollars predicted the next large earthquake in Los Angeles by geodetic on August 3, 1999. To reply many email messages, I proposed an essay "California Earthquake Situation Analysis" on August 10, 1999 [13] to deny it, and predicted the next largest in either "the black triangle, or the California- Nevada border" of the following image [14] On October 16, 1999, the 7.0 Hector Mine Earthquake proved my prediction to be successful.

13 Can you give us more information about the major fault lines in Terhan and around it? Will the ones around Teheran become active if an earthauke happens in Tehran?

Shou: Yes. The following series of images shows an active fault in Image 20040227 8:00 and a Black triangle ABC in 20040227 9:00 [15] .

The following series shows another active fault from the 6.3 epicenter to southeast from Image 20040215 to 20040216 3:00 besides some repeat of the above series [16]

Here are others [17] [18] [19]

Besides the above, I would like to show a couple of charts, one by satellite [20], and the other by earthquake data [21]. You can compare a black line AB of the satellite image with that of the seismic chart. They are consistent with each other.

Thanks for the questions, and hope to be lucky.


  • Chart: Seismic act after the M6.3 at 36.37N, 51.64E on May 28, 2004
  • Image 200406130300xIranCB
  • Mohammad comment An Iranian seismologist in Norway

  • References

    1. BBC Persian Online
    2. Images 20040612 21:00
    3. Nature Debate
    4. Evacuation
    5. The 7.0 Hector Mine, Southern California Earthquake Shows That I Am Right (Rewrite)
    6. Bam Earthquake Prediction & Space Technology
    7. Chinese Scientist Chen's Comment
    8. Publication & News Report
    9. Animation
    10. The Bam Epicenter, predicted exactly
    11. Earthquake catalog by the USGS
    12. Earthquake Clouds, a reliable precursor
    13. California Earthquake Situation Analysis on August 10, 1999
    14. images1999/199907260900eSCalGB.jpg The black triangle, or the California- Nevada border
    15. An active fault in Image 20040227 8:00 and a Black triangle ABC in 20040227 9:00
    16. An active fault in Image 20040227 8:00 and a Black triangle ABC in 20040227 9:00
    17. Another active fault from the 6.3 epicenter to southeast from Image 20040215 to 20040216 3:00
    18. Image 20040618 0:00
    19. Image 20040612 14:00
    20. Image 20040621 12:30
    21. Image 20040613 3:00
    22. Iran Seismic Chart after the M6.3 on May 28, 2004
    23. Mohammad's comment An Iranian seismologist, a witness, in Norway

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