To understand Plate Tectonic processes on the Earth, and to better understand where future earthquakes are likely to occur, it is important to know how to locate earthquakes as they occur. In this activity students use recent, three-component seismic data to locate a global earthquake.
Students will create their own P- & S-wave travel chart and develop a better
understanding of the relationship between the two wave types, travel times, and travel distances.
Discuss with students where earthquakes are mostly likely to occur. If they don’t know, they can look at a map of earthquake hot spots or at theJava Earthquake Globe. If students live near one of these areas, discuss life in “earthquake country.”
This lesson helps students understand the processes used to identify the location of an earthquake’s epicenter and how the Richter magnitude of the earthquake is determined.