Intrusion distance and flow discharge in rivers during the 2011 Tohoku Tsunami

Hitoshi Tanaka, Nguyen Xuan Tinh, Nguyen Trong Hiep, Kosuke Kayane, Min Roh, Makoto Umeda, Mikio Sasaki, Seiki Kawagoe, Mitsukuni Tsuchiya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


On 11 March 2011, the Great East Japan Earthquake generated huge tsunami waves. Then, tsunami propagation occurred in rivers, resulting in further expansion of the flooded area. Full data sets of tsunami characteristics such as tsunami inland and river propagation distances as well as the river geometries from all rivers within the Tohoku District were compiled and analyzed. It was found that tsunami propagation distance in rivers was about 1.2 to 4.5 times that of the inland area. There was a good correlation between propagation distance in rivers and the river bed slope. Furthermore, new empirical formulae for calculating the damping coefficient of tsunami wave height and tsunami intrusion length were successfully derived based on the current comprehensive data sets covering a wide range of river geometry and bottom slope. Moreover, tsunami-induced flow discharge was evaluated by using measured water level variation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number882
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Marine Science and Engineering
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Nov


  • Great East Japan Earthquake
  • Intrusion length
  • River bed slope
  • Tsunami intrusion into rivers
  • Tsunami-induced flow discharge


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