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What is a Tsunami? Explain the difference between a tsunami wave and a tidal wave.

Topic: Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc.

2. What is a Tsunami? Explain the difference between a tsunami wave and a tidal wave. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Insights on India

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 1 and mentioned as part of Mission-2022 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

To explain the process of Tsunami and how it is caused. In the later part, to differentiate between a Tsunami Wave and tidal wave.

Directive word: 

Explain – Clarify the topic by giving a detailed account as to how and why it occurred, or what is the context. You must be defining key terms wherever appropriate and substantiate with relevant associated facts.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Define Tsunami and briefly mention a few examples of Tsunamis witnessed.

Body:

Draw a simple illustrative diagram and explain the phenomenon of the Tsunami. In the explanation, talk about how the wave is formed, propagates (including Shoaling effect) and the destruction caused by it at the end.

In the second part, differentiate between Tsunami Wave and Tidal wave on Wave Speed, Wave period, wavelength, Origin etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude by throwing light on Indian preparedness in the early warning mechanism of Tsunamis.