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Volcanic Monitoring Animations #3: Earthquakes

Information presented is factual at the time of creation.
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Most earthquakes associated with young volcanoes are related to volcanic processes and may indicate that a quiet volcano is becoming active.

Although large eruptions are often preceded by several significant earthquakes and many small rock breaking quakes, there also is a continuous release of seismic energy associated with the underground movement of magma. Volcanic tremor is a seismic vibration caused by the pulsing of pressurized magma and gas. The seismogram is of longer duration and more continuous than rock-breaking earthquakes of the same amplitude.

Earthquake swarms recorded by seismometers and the ground deformation monitored by tiltmeters help scientists determine the depth and location of flowing magma beneath the volcano, which in turn, gives scientists information to issue hazard warnings.


Title: Volcanic Monitoring Animations #3: Earthquakes


Earthquakes serve as an early warning sign for volcanic eruptions, as well as a marker for the location of moving magma. This animation shows magma movement beneath a volcano, simulated seismograms, volcanic tremor and seismicity associated with an impending eruption.

Location: Vancouver, WA, USA

Date Taken: 1/1/2012

Length: 1:05

Video Producer: Jenda Johnson , U.S. Geological Survey-Cascades Volcano Observatory

Note: This video has been released into the public domain by the U.S. Geological Survey for use in its entirety. Some videos may contain pieces of copyrighted material. If you wish to use a portion of the video for any purpose, other than for resharing/reposting the video in its entirety, please contact the Video Producer/Videographer listed with this video. Please refer to the USGS Copyright section for how to credit this video.

Additional Video Credits:

This animation was created for the Mount St. Helens Visitor Center in cooperation with the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Forest Service.

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Tags: earthquake hazard magma seismogram seismometer tremor volcano


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