Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Earthquake Time Lag Explanation

Why did a half hour elapse between the Conway Springs, Kansas, earthquake and the report of the location/magnitude/depth from the US Geological Survey?

While a single radar can detect a tornado, it takes at least three seismometers to locate and measure an earthquake. Once the earthquake occurs, the waves spread out from the epicenter at a speed of 600 mph.

Even though 600 mph is fast, the seismometers in the central Plains are far enough apart that it takes time for the waves to reach enough instruments so geologists can determine the parameters of the quake.

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