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What’s Shaking? It is Scientific Computational Modeling of Earthquakes.

Sep. 18, 2012 ⋅ Categories: Physical Sciences

Scientists utilize high-performance servers  and high-performance clusters to measure and predict the environment’s activity. Earthquakes are an abnormal weather occurrence that certainly plagues the PSSC Labs headquarters in California on a pretty normal basis. While little is known about predicting earthquakes, theorists are beginning to question if oil drilling has had an effect on the increase of earthquake frequency. Oil & Gas computational modeling has been looked at as a tool for future studies. Whatever the reason behind the earthquakes, what is fascinating is how they happen.

An earthquake occurs when two blocks of the earth suddenly slip past one another on a “fault plane.” While the edges of the faults are stuck together, and the rest of the block is moving, the energy that would normally cause the blocks to slide past one another is stored. When the force of the movement finally overcomes the friction of the jagged edges, the faults unstick and the stored energy releases causing the vibrations. The location below the ground where the earthquake begins is called the “epicenter,” where there are three phases of shocks that occur. There are “foreshocks” which happen before the earthquake in the same location, the “main shock” which is the largest and true core of the earthquake. Depending on the size of the “mainshock,” aftershocks continue for weeks, months, or even years. The energy of any shock radiates outward from the epicenter in all directions in seismic waves, much like ripples in a pond. As the waves move,  they shake the Earth, and anything on it.

Navigate through our website to learn more about our  high-performance servers  and high-performance clusters that assist in storing this fascinating information on nature.

Photo Credit: earthquake.usgs.gov & Science Photo Lab

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