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Nearly 100 earthquakes swept Yellowstone in 24 hours. This is what the experts say



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A swarm of 91 earthquakes struck the Yellowstone National Park area in just 24 hours on Thursday, according to the US Geological Survey. Earthquakes shiver southwest of Yellowstone Lake, between Lake Heart and West Thumb.

Although the region is one of the most seismically active in the United States, the group of earthquakes “is on a large scale in number and size, but nowhere near the largest,” Michael Bolland, Yellowstone Observatory in charge, for McClatchy News in an email.

Poland said, “Yellowstone has swarms that include several hundreds of earthquakes in a single day.” “For example, there was a 3-month swarm that occurred from June to September 2017 with 2,400 earthquakes with a maximum (magnitude) of 4.4.” The last set of earthquakes did not exceed 3.0 degrees. The largest tremor was recorded at 2.8 magnitude, while the weakest was measured at 0.1 magnitude. When earthquakes reach magnitudes between 2.5 and 5.4, activity is usually felt, with minimal damage.

Moreover, the 91 earthquakes shook along with the “phantom” tremors released by a “vibroseis” truck traveling through Old Faithful, West Thumb, Canyon Village and Lake Butte as part of an experiment conducted by the University of Utah and University of New Mexico, Poland added. .

These trucks are gigantic vehicles that can weigh up to 70,000 pounds and vibrate steel plates on the ground, sending low-frequency energy through them; They are helping create images of the top of a magma chamber in Yellowstone – or that a dormant “supervolcano” will erupt without warning – with the help of hundreds of makeshift seismometers located across the park.

Fortunately, there are no signs of an outbreak imminent. The USGS Volcano Hazards Program declared a “normal” alert level on September 1.

For some, one Twitter user wrote: “2020 is not just the year that things like the Yellowstone magma chamber are messed up.”

But scientists say there is nothing to worry about. “Fortunately, the volcano does not know what year it is. Fortunately, the magma chamber in Yellowstone is mostly solid!” The US Geological Survey tweeted on Friday in response.

Poland said the latest swarm of earthquakes was good news for seismologists on the project.

“So, the 91 earthquakes were real earthquakes and they happened when there was also an artificial experiment going on, which is really cool because it means that the natural swarm was” seen “by hundreds of temporary seismometers!” Poland wrote to McClatchy News. “It will be the best earthquake swarm ever recorded in Yellowstone!” The park typically sees 1,500 to 2,000 earthquakes a year, according to the USGS.

Aftershocks of the 1959 earthquake shook Yellowstone in 2017-18

© 2020 The Idaho Statesman (Boise, Idaho) distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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