Open Questions: Earthquakes and Seismology

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See also: Plate tectonics

Introduction


Recommended references: Web sites

Recommended references: Magazine/journal articles

Recommended references: Books

Introduction



Recommended references: Web sites

Site indexes

Galaxy: Seismology
Categorized site directory. Entries usually include descriptive annotations.


Sites with general resources

USGS Earthquake Hazards Progam: Learning and Education
Provides educational information on earthquakes, including frequently-asked questions, short articles on many topics, and external links.
QuakeFinder
Commercial organization that is attempting to provide earthquake forecasting using ground-based sensors and low-orbiting satellites. Sensors detect extremely low frequency (ELF) magnetic field fluctuations. Site includes some external links.
Nevada Seismological Laboratory
An earthquake research facility. The site includes general information on earthquakes, lists of frequently-asked questions, and some external links.
About Earthquakes
Contains general information and references on earthquakes, including lists of frequently-asked questions and overviews of various earthquake topics. From the Nevada Seismological Laboratory.


Surveys, overviews, tutorials

Why earthquakes are hard to predict
March 2011 Q&A on the current state of ability to predict earthquakes.
Predicting earthquakes: are we there yet?
April 2009 Q&A with earthquake expert Malcolm Jonston.
Breaking new ground
January 2009 article from Physics World. "The ability to predict earthquakes could save thousands of lives every year. But for most scientists, knowing in advance when and where such events will happen is little more than a pipe dream. Jon Cartwright tells the story of one physicist who believes that such warnings could soon be possible."
Maxwell's equations and earthquakes
Summary of February 2004 article from Physics World. "Predicting earthquakes is one of the biggest challenges in modern earth science. Intermediate and long-term predictions on timescales of between 1 and 100 years are generally based on past records of seismic activity. Short-term earthquake prediction, on the other hand, is more deterministic and relies on the detection of precursory phenomena."
Neutron flashes may forecast earthquakes
February 2001 news article from Physics World, about a report that earthquakes may be preceded by bursts of neutrons from the Earth's surface.
Bad vibrations from acoustic lenses
September 2000 news article from Physics Web about research that suggests acoustic lenses focused vibrations from the 1994 Northridge earthquake to cause especially intense effects in certain locations.
Why earthquakes stop
June 1998 news article from Physics Web about a model that is able to predict limits to the spreading of earthquakes.
Earthquakes within continents
Brief page describing research on earthquake activity in the central U. S. The studies indicate such earthquakes are "episodic, migrating, and clustered." More specifically, "Earthquakes occur for a while on a fault system, which then shuts down for some time while other fault systems becomes active."


Recommended references: Magazine/journal articles

Shaky Forecasts
Kristina Bartlett Brody
Science News, August 29, 2009
Despite past failures, geophysicists think earthquake prediction might yet be possible.
Earthshaking Event
Sid Perkins
Science News, Aubust 27, 2005
Lessons from the temblor that produced tsunamis and other global effects.
Solving the Paradox of Deep Earthquakes
Harry W. Green II
Scientific American, September 1994, pp. 64-71
30% of all earthquakes occur at a depth of more than 70 km., and 8% occur at depths of more than 300 km. It has been a mystery how this is possible, given the way rock is expected to flow under high pressure. Now there is a theory to explain such intermediate-focus and deep-focus earthquakes, which occur around subduction zones in the mantle.


Recommended references: Books


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