An updated earthquake catalog for Bangladesh: an attempt at a seismic risk evaluation




earthquake catalog, seismic hazard, magnitude, deformation front


A unique, consistent, and uniform earthquake catalog is crucial for assessing seismic hazards in any locality. This study aims at compiling and processing a better uniform earthquake catalog, using this catalog to identify the probable subduction zone, and assessing seismicity parameters for Bangladesh. The study area is bounded by the geographical limits 16–29°N and 86–96°E. It includes a sum of 48,342 events which are compiled as 1.0 to 8.5 magnitudes (MW) and time period from 1548 to 2020 yrs. Uniformization is made between the body, surface wave, and moment magnitude scales to unify the catalog in terms of MW. For seismic hazard assessment or prediction studies, this catalog comprises earthquake events from Bangladesh and adjoining regions. The assessed MC obtained is around 4.0–5.0, which leads to a, b value varying between 0.71–1.12 and an a value varying between 4.85–7.12. The findings show that the MC is lower at the border of the Chittagong-Sylhet through Hill tracts than the northern part of the area with an MC 4.5–5.0 and a, b value close to 1.00. The results indicate that the study area is a seismically highly active zone in the context of seismicity parameters. Finally, the compiled catalog, seismicity of the area and a probable deformation front are presented and are recommended for use in assessing seismic hazard analysis in Bangladesh.


Download data is not yet available.


Akhter S.H., 2010. Earthquakes of Dhaka. [in:] Islam A. (ed.), Environment of Capital Dhaka: Plants Wildlife Gardens Parks Air Water and Earthquake, Dhaka Celebration Series, 6, Asiatic Society of Bangladesh, 401–426.

Akhter S.H., Steckler M., Mondal D., Seeber L. & Goodbred S., 2016. Interseismic deformation at the leading edge of obliquely converging Burmese plate in densely populated Bangladesh. AGU Fall Meeting Abstracts, T13A-2692.

Alam E. & Dominey-Howes D., 2016. A catalogue of earthquakes between 810BC and 2012 for the Bay of Bengal. Natural Hazards, 81, 2031–2102.

Ambraseys N.N. & Melville C.P., 1982. A History of Persian Earthquakes. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Amorese D., 2007. Applying a change-point detection method on frequency-magnitude distributions. Bulletin of the Seismolog-ical Society of America, 97(5), 1742–1749.

Ansary M.A., Al-Hussaini T.M. & Sharfuddin M., 2000. Damage assessment of July 22, 1999 Moheskhali earthquake, Bangla-desh. [in:] 8th ASCE Specialty Conference on Probabilistic Mechanics and Structural Reliability, 22–26 July 2000, The University of Notre Dame, Australia, 1–6.

Bath M., 1981. Earthquake magnitude – recent research and current trends. Earth – Science Reviews, 17(4), 315–398.

Bilham R., 1995. Location and magnitude of the 1833 Nepal earthquake and its relation to the rupture zones of contiguous great Himalayan earthquakes. Current Science, 69(2), 155–187.

Bilham R. & England P., 2001. Plateau “pop-up” in the great 1897 Assam earthquake. Nature, 410, 806–809.

Biswas S. & Majumdar K.R., 1997. Seismicity and tectonics of the Bay of Bengal: Evidence for intraplate deformation of the northern Indian plate. Tectonophysics, 269, 323–336.

Bolt B.A., 1930. Earthquakes. Freeman and Company, New York.

Brunnschweiler R.O., 1966. On the geology of Indoburman ranges. Journal of the Geological Society of Australia, 13(1), 137–194.

Bürgi P., Hubbard J., Akhter S.H. & Peterson D.E., 2021. Geometry of the décollement below eastern Bangladesh and implica-tions for seismic hazard. Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, 126(8), e2020JB021519.

Cao A. & Gao S.S., 2002. Temporal variations of seismic b-values beneath northeastern Japan island arc. Geophysical Research Letters, 29(9), 1334.

Das R., Wason H.R. & Sharma M.L., 2012. Temporal and spatial variations in the magnitude of completeness for homogenized moment magnitude catalogue for northeast India. Journal of Earth System Science, 121(1), 19–28.

Dunbar P.K., Lockridge P.A. & Whiteside L.S., 1992. Catalog of significant earthquakes, including quantitative casualties and damage. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Ser-vice, National Geophysical Data Center.

Gardner J.K. & Knopoff L., 1974. Is the sequence of earthquakes in southern California, with aftershocks removed, Poissoni-an? Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 64(5), 1363–1367.

Gahalaut V.K. & Gahalaut K., 2007. Burma plate motion. Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, 112(B10), B10402.

Gupta H.K., Rajendran K. & Singh H.N., 1986. Seismicity of the north-east India region. I: The data base. Journal of The Geo-logical Society of India, 28, 345–365.

Gutenberg B. & Richter C.F., 1944. Frequency of earthquakes in California. Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 34(4), 185–188.

Karimiparidari S., Zaré M., Memarian H. & Kijko A., 2013. Iranian earthquake, a uniform catalog with moment magnitude. Journal of Seismology, 17, 897–911.

Kaviris G., Papadimitriou P., Chamilothoris L. & Makropoulos K., 2008. Moment magnitudes for small and intermediate earth-quakes. [in:] 31st General Assembly of the European Seismological Commission, Crete, 7–12 Sept. 2008.

Khan P.K., Ghosh M., Chakraborty P.P. & Mukherjee D., 2011. Seismic b-value and the assessment of ambient stress in north-east India. Pure and Applied Geophysics, 168(10), 1693–1706.

Knopoff L., Kagan Y.Y. & Knopoff R., 1982. b-values for foreshocks and aftershocks in real and simulated earthquake se-quences. Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 72(5), 1663–1676.

Kolathayar S., Sitharam T.G. & Vipin K.S., 2012. Spatial variation of seismicity parameters across India and adjoining areas. Natural Hazards, 60(3), 1365–1379.

Mignan A. & Woessner J., 2012. Estimating the magnitude of completeness for earthquake catalogs. Swiss Seismological Ser-vice, ETH Zurich.

Milne J., 1911. A Catalogue of Destructive Earthquakes, A.D. 7 to A.D. 1899. Report of the 81st Meeting of the British Associa-tion for the Advancement of Science, The Association, London.

Morino M., Kamal A.S.M.M., Muslim D., Ali R.M.E., Kamal M.A., Rahman M.Z. & Kaneko F., 2011. Seismic event of the Dauki Fault in 16th century confirmed by trench investigation at Gabrakhari Village, Haluaghat, Mymensingh, Bangladesh. Journal of Asian Earth Sciences, 42(3), 492–498.

Oldham T., 1883. A catalogue of Indian earthquakes from the earliest times to the end of 1869 A.D. Memoirs of the Geological Survey of India, 19, 163–215.

Rafi Z., Lindholm C., Bungum H., Laghari H. & Ahmed N., 2012. Probabilistic seismic hazard analysis and zonation of Paki-stan, Azad Jammu and Kashmir. Natural Hazards, 61(3), 1317–1354.

Rahman S.M., Rahman M.H., Faruk M.O. & Islam M.S.-U., 2018. Seismic status in Bangladesh. Science of the Earth, 40(2), 178–192.

Reasenberg P., 1985. Second-order moment of central California seismicity, 1969–1982. Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, 90(B7), 5479–5495.

Reddy D.V., Nagabhushanam P., Kumar D., Sukhija B.S., Thomas P.J., Pandey A.K., Sahoo R.N. et al., 2009. The great 1950 Assam earthquake revisited: Field evidences of liquefaction and search for paleoseismic events. Tectonophysics, 474(3–4), 463–472.

Scordilis E.M., 2006. Empirical global relations converting Ms and mb to moment magnitude. Journal of Seismology, 10, 225–236.

Steckler S.M., Akhter S.H. & Seeber L., 2008. Collision of the Ganges–Brahmaputra Delta with the Burma Arc: Implications for earthquake hazard. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 273, 367–378.

Stickler M., Mondal D.R., Akhtar S.H., Seeber L., Feng L., Gale J., Hill E.M. & Howe M., 2017. Locked and loading megathrust linked to active subduction beneath the Indo-Burman Ranges. Nature Geoscience, 9, 615–618.

Tahsin M., Salman M.A. & Akhter S.H., 2018. Earthquake catalogue of Bangladesh. International Journal of Science, Envi-ronment and Technology, 7(3), 2018, 939–949.

Tandon A.N., 1950. The very great earthquake of August 15, 1950. Science and Culture, 16(4), 147–155.

Uhrhammer R., 1986. Characteristics of northern and southern California seismicity. Earthquake Notes, 57, 21.

Vigny C., Socquet A., Rangin C., Chamot-Rooke N., Pubellier M., Bouin M., Bertrand G. & Becker M., 2003. Present-day crus-tal deformation around Sagaing fault, Myanmar. Journal of Geophysical Research, 108(B11), 2533.

Vigny C., Simons W.J.F., Abu S., Bamphenyu R., Satirapod C., Choosakul N., Subarya C. et al., 2005. Insight into the 2004 Sumatra–Andaman earthquake from GPS measurements in southeast Asia. Nature, 436, 201–206.

Wiemer S., 2001. A software package to analyze seismicity: ZMAP. Seismological Research Letters, 72(3), 373–382.

Wiemer S. & Wyss M., 2000. Minimum magnitude of complete reporting in earthquake catalogs: examples from Alaska, the western United States, and Japan. Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 90(4), 859–869.

Wyss M., Hasegawa A., Wiemer S. & Umino N., 1999. Quantitative mapping of precursory seismic quiescence before the 1989, M7.1 off-Sanriku earthquake, Japan. Annali di Geofisica, 42(5), 851–869.

Zare M., Amini H., Yazdi P., Sesetyan K., Demircioglu M.B., Kalafat D., Erdik M. et al., 2014. Recent developments of the Middle East catalog. Journal of Seismology, 18(4), 749–772.




How to Cite

Salman, M. A., Nomaan, M. S. S., & Saha, A. (2023). An updated earthquake catalog for Bangladesh: an attempt at a seismic risk evaluation. Geology, Geophysics and Environment, 49(1), 37–51.