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XIV.

Earthquakes
Earthquake Intensity and magnitude
Mercalli intensity scale
o intense ground shaking caused by sudden release o Intensity of shaking & damage at a
of energy
o can be generated by bomb blasts, volcanic specific location
eruptions and sudden slippage along faults o Depends on distance to earthquake
o a geologic hazard for those living in earthquake- & magnitude of earthquake
prone areas Magnitude
o also provided valuable information about the o A measure of the energy released in an
Earths interior earthquake
o Depends on size of fault that breaks and
Terms: displacement
Fault - crack in Earth where slip occurs o Richter Scale/Moment Magnitude
Earthquake focus (hypocenter) - fault slip location Seismograph Record and Pathway of Three Types of
Aftershocks - small earthquakes that follow an initial Seismic Waves
earthquake in same vicinity
Foreshocks - small earthquakes that sometimes P-waves & S-wave travel at different speeds
precede a large one by few days Use this difference to locate
earthquakes!
The Earthquake Source Measure time between P and S wave
Elastic Rebound Theory [H. H. Reid,1911] on seismogram
Use travel-time graph to get distance
suggests that rocks are being stretched
to epicenter
and strained as they are subjected to Draw circle on a map with radius of
deformation. Elastic energy is slowly that distance
being stored and accumulated. Three or more circles should intersect
Eventually, rupture of faulting occurs at EQ!
and elastic potential energy is released
as seismic energy Earthquake Destruction
Earthquake Generators Hazards
Movement in plate boundaries o ground shaking
Active faults o ground rupture
- Moved for the past 10,000 years Opening/splitting of ground
- Observable geomorphic features surface
Seismology o others:
the study of earthquake waves and landslides
earthquakes liquefaction
seismograph - instrument to record seismic tsunamis
waves fires
seismogram - recording of ground shaking important factors:
from seismographs o Wave amplitudes
Types of seismic waves o Duration of vibrations
Body waves - travel in Earths interior o Nature of material upon which the structure
1. P-waves (P for primary) rests
o expansion/compression: push/pull o Design of structure
motion Earthquake Prediction
o Weakest, can only be detected by Earthquake patterns
seismometer Seismic swarms, seismic gaps
o Fastest and arrives first Ground deformation
o Travels through solids and liquids GPS, tiltmeters
2. S-waves (S for Seismic gaps
secondary) Gas Emissions
o Shear side-to- Chemicals released during or before
side motion earthquakes
o Stronger than P waves Unusual animal behaviour
o Slower than P-waves, will arrive next
o Can only travel through solid

Surface waves - travel on Earths surface


1. Love waves side to side motion; causes damage
to infrastructure
2. Rayleigh waves up and down motion