Locating Epicenter and Determining Magnitude of Earthquake




The objective of this exercise is to locate the epicenter of an earthquake and determine the earthquake’s magnitude. To begin the exercise, go to the web site below:






On the first page of this site, there is a choice of 4 earthquakes to examine; you will be looking for choice number 2, the earthquake in Los Angeles (click on that button) .


Start the program, then just follow the instructions to:


1.     Find the distances to the epicenter by measuring the P-S travel time (lag time) from the seismograms from 3 different locations in the western U.S., then converting to distance using the travel-time graph. The program will automatically do the triangulation to locate the epicenter for you once you determined the epicenter distances.


2.     Determine the Richter magnitude from the maximum amplitude measured off of each seismogram, then plotting the amplitude and epicenter distance from each seismogram, convert to magnitude using the Richter nomogram.


Once you have successfully completed your earthquake analysis, you will get a certificate of completion; save a copy for yourself, and email a copy to me so you get credited .


My name is going to be on that certificate (Abdullah Alali)


Earthquake Report:


1.     Before shutting down the program, be sure to record the name of the Earthquake, the location, and the magnitude.


2.     Then put together a 2 page report on this quake . supplementing your earthquake information with additional, detailed information from the internet about:


a.     Areal extent of earthquake,


b.     Intensity of shaking,


c.     Damage to structures, and


d.     Deaths,


3.     Don’t forget to list your internet sources.


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