Study of a 1,000-Year-Old Tsunami in Indian Ocean Reveals Previously Unknown Hazards for East Africa

Kent State Geology Professor Part of International Team That Analyzed Sediments

Dr. Joseph D. Ortiz, a professor in the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Geology at Kent State University, was part of an international team of researchers that co-authored an article about a deadly tsunami that occurred about 1,000 years ago in Tanzania. The study suggests that the tsunami risk in East Africa could be higher than previously thought.


Ortiz processed and interpreted the grain size data using a multivariate statistical analysis method, demonstrating the deposit was composed of sediment from both terrestrial and marine origin, which supports the tsunami interpretation.


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This research was also featured on National Geographic's web site:


Photo caption: Tsunami wave hitting Ao Nang in Krabi Province, Thailand. Photo by David Rydevik (email:, Stockholm, Sweden, December 26, 2004.

POSTED: Thursday, May 21, 2020 09:00 AM
Updated: Friday, December 9, 2022 11:44 AM
Jim Maxwell