Coronavirus - Earth is shaking less now

Coronavirus - Earth is shaking less now

Coronavirus - Earth is shaking less now

Around the world, seismologists observe much less ambient seismic noise - that is, the vibrations generated by cars, trains, buses and people going about their daily business.

Seismometers are stationed all around the world, monitoring continuously for vibrations passing through the Earth's crust.

First recorded at the Royal Observatory in Belgium by Thomas Lecocq, a seismologist, the city of Brussels witnessed a whooping 30 to 50 per cent reduction in seismic noises. These stations are likely to see a smaller decrease or no change at all in noise, said Emily Wolin, a geologist at the US Geological Survey in Albuquerque, New Mexico. A drop in seismic noise - the vibrations in the planet's crust - is giving scientists the rare chance to monitor small earthquakes, volcanic activity and other subtle tremors that are usually drowned out by the everyday movement of humans.

While there has been little good news resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, seismologists in the UK, US and Belgium have reported significant declines in local seismic noise following government-ordered lockdowns and decreased travel. Seismologists, who use highly sensitive equipment, have noticed a difference in the hum caused by human activity, according to Fast Company. That of Brussels was however built over a century ago and the city has since grown around it.

Due to the buzzing in the city, the station in Brussels can not record small seismic movements.

The Belgium study goes on to say vibrations in that immediate area caused by human activity has fallen by at least a third in recent weeks, which means people aren't driving on the roads, walking about. or cranking their machines almost as much as they normally do.

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Seismologists in other cities see similar effects in their own cities.

For example, Paula Koelemeijer published a graphic on Twitter that shows how it has been affected by the noise in west London, while a student of Los Angeles shared a graph that shows a decline particularly marked in that city.

The number of coronavirus cases worldwide continues to soar, with more than one million confirmed positive cases and more than 56,000 deaths on Friday.

"Seismologically, we can motivate people to say", OK look, people.

About four billion people - about half the world's population - have would have They were told to isolate themselves at home to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Everyone does the same. "Everyone is following the rules, '" says Lecocq.

The data can also be used to identify where containment measures might not be as effective, said Raphael De Plaen, a postdoctoral researcher at Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. All are doing the same thing.

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