tectonics

Sciencelog: Earthquakes

With the powerful earthquake that recently struck Alaska on January 24, 2016, I though it would be helpful to gather some of my earthquake related resources onto a single page. The quake registered 7.1 on the Richter Scale, making it one of the most powerful quakes to hit Alaska in recent decades.

Hopefully this information will make it easier to understand some of the news coverage, as well as helping you spot some of the common misconceptions, and answer some of the questions you may have.

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Foliated and Unfoliated Rocks


One of the first steps towards identifying metamorphic rocks is to determine if it has foliation or not. Luckily, this is usually easy to do. Foliation means banding or alignment of the minerals resulting from pressure. A good example of that is the banding present in a metamorphic rock called gneiss, pronounced "nice".

This piece of gneiss formed from granite similar to the rock sample seen on the left hand side of the photo.

Earthquakes and Tsunamis

I frequently get questions about earthquakes that causes devastation, so I thought we would experiment a bit to help you understand more about them. This is a topic that many people, and the news media especially, frequently misunderstand.

You will need:

75% Water

When you read that 75% of the Earth's surface is covered by water, what does it really mean? The answer goes far beyond just a simple fact. As with many topics in science, the deeper you go, the more you find.

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