Home / Science / Yellowstone: USGS Experiment Induces Earthquake Swarm at Volatile Supervolcano | Science | news

Yellowstone: USGS Experiment Induces Earthquake Swarm at Volatile Supervolcano | Science | news



The volatile Yellowstone Supervolcano was shaken by a swarm of 91 earthquakes in just 24 hours this week. To put this into context, the Yellowstone volcano was rocked by a total of 82 earthquakes during the entire month of August. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) confirmed the swarm of earthquakes, but said most of them had been induced on purpose by the scientists themselves.

In an alarming twist, Michael Poland, the scientist in charge of the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory, stated that a “seismic vibrator” had been used to trigger earthquakes.

The so-called “vibroseis”, or “seismic vibrator”, is a truck mounted device capable of injecting low frequency vibrations deep into the earth.

Dr. Poland confirmed that the USGS had deployed this machine to induce a swarm of earthquakes in the area as part of an experiment.

The test, conducted by the University of Utah and the University of New Mexico, was aimed at creating images of the Yellowstone magma chamber, the so-called “supervolcano”

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The amount of earthquakes in the volatile region, believed to be delayed for an eruption, has raised concern among observers.

A Yellowstone enthusiast, who runs the MrMBB333 YouTube channel, said the earthquakes shook the area “for hours”.

He said, “Some of these earthquakes were only 0.7 miles deep, so it’s very close to the surface.

“There is a lot of activity across Yellowstone. I haven’t seen Yellowstone Supervolcano this busy in a while.”

Others simply remarked: “Don’t mess with mother nature.”

Yellowstone is one of the most seismically active regions in the United States.

Dr. Poland said: “This group of earthquakes is large in terms of number and intensity, but it is nowhere near the largest.”

The park usually experiences an average of 1,500-2,000 earthquakes per year, according to the USGS.




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