These are the five most powerful earthquakes, as reported by the US Geological Survey.
The largest of the past century was a 9.5 quake in Chile in 1960.
A 9.2 quake hit Prince William Sound in Alaska in 1964.
A 9.1 quake was recorded off the coast of Sumatra in 2004.
The fourth-largest quake of the past century was Kamchatka’s 9.0 quake in 1952.
Japan’s quake on March 11 was initially listed as an 8.9 magnitude. It was later upgraded to a 9.0 making it tied for the fourth-strongest since 1900.