Earthquakes 101 | National GeographicJul 03, 2023
The floor begins to shake the glasses ring soon the walls move and everything begins to collapse telltale signs of what could be a devastating earthquake we have seen the destruction they unleash some of us we may have even experienced one and we know that they can be deadly, but where? Where does this force that moves mountains come from? While we may think we are standing on solid ground, the Earth beneath us is not completely stable at all. Our planet's crust is made up of approximately 12 major tectonic plates that fit together like a giant puzzle. Huge slabs of earth float on superheated magma and constantly move, collide and rub against each other.
It is there, along the seams, that
earthquakestend to occur when the friction between the two plates is violent enough. Seismic shock waves propagate through the ground, shaking everything above it. The stronger and shallower the earthquake, the more violent the destruction. The most violent type of earthquake is born in a subduction zone where one tectonic plate is pushed beneath another as one plate is pushed down into the mantle and the other bulges outward. up often violently This is a type of earthquake that struck Nepal in May 2015 and when subduction occurs under the ocean it can create giant, unstoppable waves called tsunamis, like those that killed hundreds of thousands of people in Japan and Indonesia.
earthquakeskill about 10,000 people each year, sometimes the numbers are much higher. that hit Haiti in 2010 killed more than 300,000 people because of some cows, making it one of the deadliest on record. There are an estimated 500,000 detectable earthquakes in the world each year, 100,000 of them can be felt and 100 of them caused damage of approximately 0.1%. The magnitude of an earthquake is measured using the Richter scale, which ranges from 0 to 10. 10 is the strongest. Each whole number increase on the scale means 10 times more changes in ground motion in recorded history. The world has never experienced a 10 on the Richter scale, but scientists predict an average of at least one large earthquake of magnitude 8 or greater each year.
The fact is that the Earth's crust is restless and always in motion we cannot see the earthquakes. They are coming but we can't prepare for them Engineers are now designing stronger buildings durable enough to survive a direct impact Scientists are analyzing data to project the power of future earthquakes and anticipate when and where they will strike next. Right now we can only estimate the probability of an earthquake occurring, but perhaps one day we will learn to predict them. minimizing its destruction and saving countless lives
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