16th July 2010 23:10
Link to Post #1
Minor Earthquake In D.C.? Hmmm . . .
I put this thread here because the quake was registered as a 3.6 mag, which disqualifies it for the Earthquakes thread (5.0+ mag). But mostly I put it here because it doesn't 'feel right'. It bothers me.
Minor Earthquake Shakes D.C. Awake
A minor earthquake shook residents awake in the area, rattling windows and jostling dishes but apparently causing no serious damage.
And while Californians might scoff at the 3.6-magnitude quake, Susan Potter, a geophysicist at the U.S. Geological Survey, said it was the strongest to hit within 30 miles of D.C. since they began keeping records in 1974.
The quake hit at 5:04 a.m. EDT and was centered in the Rockville, Md., area, said Randy Baldwin, a geophysicist with Geological Survey's National Earthquake Information Center. Baldwin said aftershocks could occur over the next couple days, but none had yet been reported. He said the aftershocks are generally of a smaller magnitude than the initial earthquake.
Gerasimos Michalitsianos, a rising senior and geology student at the University of Maryland, College Park, said he was sitting on his couch looking at e-mails when the temblor occurred.
"I assumed that maybe a plane was flying low. I didn't actually know that I was in an earthquake," said Michalitsianos, who is studying postseismic relaxation, how the ground changes following major earthquakes.
Michalitsianos said he only found out he'd been through an earthquake when he looked online.
The Washington area has had small, infrequent earthquakes over the years, including a 2.5-magnitude quake in 1997 that was within 25 to 30 miles of Friday's quake and a 2.3-magnitude quake in 1996 that was within 15 miles, Baldwin said.
Full Article: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2010/...akes-dc-awake/
Because of the unlikeliness of natural geologic activity in this area, and the magnitude (3.6) and time (5:04 a.m.) of the event, the first thought that entered my mind was SEISMIC TESTING. Just like any man-made event that might disrupt the routine of the masses (e.g., the closure of a bridge for repairs in a metro area) it would be done during the late-night to early-morning hours, when it would have the least impact on the population.
Why Seismic Testing? Data Gathering! One of the redirects on a Wikipedia search is "Earthquake Engineering", and here it is defined as "the study of the behavior of buildings and structures subject to seismic loading. It is a subset of both structural and civil engineering." It goes on to say:
"The main objectives of earthquake engineering are:
- Understand the interaction between buildings or civil infrastructure and the ground.
- Foresee the potential consequences of strong earthquakes on urban areas and civil
- Design, construct and maintain structures to perform at earthquake exposure up to the
expectations and in compliance with building codes."
Obviously Seismic Data Gathering (Earthquake Engineering) was designed for the benefit of mankind, but could the data collected also be used for evil purposes? Why would such a large-scale test be performed in such a highly populated, geologically stable region? Have there been occurrences in the past? (I believe yes. Two are mentioned in the Fox News report. Pre-911 mind you). How could such a large-scale test be set up without it leaking out? (Compartmentalization. You do your job and you don't need to know anything else).
For some reason I feel that this is a little story that will soon die out and be long-forgotten about, and then . . .
16th July 2010 23:28
Link to Post #2