An earthquake measuring 8.9 on the Richter scale that hit east coast of Japan's Honshu island on Friday is one of the most powerful ever measured, according to the China Earthquake Network Center, Xinhua said.
The following is chronology of major quakes measuring over 8 magnitude around the world since 1900:
Jan 31, 1906: An 8.8-magnitude earthquake struck the coasts of Ecuador and Colombia, killing nearly 1,000 people.
May 21, 1960: A 9.5-magnitude quake, the strongest ever after quakes were first recorded in 1900, rocked Chile and killed 1,655 people.
March 27, 1964: An 8.4-magnitude quake hit Alaska, the US, triggering a tsunami and caused casualties and damage.
Dec 26, 2004: An 8.9-magnitude earthquake occurred in the sea off Sumatra island, Indonesia, and triggered a severe tsunami, killing over 220,000 in Indonesia and nearby countries, including India.
March 28, 2005: An 8.5-magnitude quake took place again in the sea off Indonesia's Sumatra Island, causing heavy casualties and damage.
May 12, 2008: An 8.0-magnitude quake hit southwestern China's Wenchuan county, killing about 70,000.
Feb 27, 2010: An 8.8-magnitude quake struck southern Chile, claiming over 300 lives and triggering tsunami in the region.