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    Tuesday, April 22, 2008

    Quake Catcher Network

    Unfortunately my laptop is too old, so it doesn't have an accelerometer, and I don't have internets at home, but if you do, someone has to help build an acceptable early warning system before the whole place goes in the drink.

    With scientists now saying there's a 99 percent chance "the big one" will finally hit California sometime during the next 30 years, seismologists are scrambling to come up with new ways to detect and analyze quakes as soon as they happen.

    One team of researchers is now hoping to employ the distributed computing approach to detection and create a giant, low-cost tremor-sensing network that takes advantage of the motion sensors that may already be in your laptop.

    The Quake Catcher Network, while not replacing the slew of sophisticated seismometers are already in place in California, will "fill in the gaps," Paul Davis, a professor of geology at UCLA, told Technology Review.

    In related news of course;

    Southern California stands a much greater chance of a huge temblor in the next 30 years than Northern California, according to a statewide earthquake forecast released Monday.

    The report, which brought together experts from the U.S. Geological Survey, USC's Southern California Earthquake Center and the State Geological Survey, also found that California is virtually certain to experience at least one major temblor by 2028.

    According to the research, the chance of a 6.7 magnitude temblor -- the size of the 1994 Northridge quake -- during this period is 97% in Southern California and 93% in Northern California. The chance of a 7.5 quake -- which shakes at 16 times the intensity of a 6.7 quake -- is 37% in Southern California and 15% in Northern California.

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