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The USGS is trying to achieve a denser and more uniform spacing of seismographs in select urban areas to provide better measurements of ground motion during earthquakes. These measurements improve our ability to make rapid post-earthquake assessments of expected damage and contribute to the continuing development of engineering standards for construction. To accomplish this, we developed a new type of digital seismograph that communicates its data to the USGS via the internet. The seismographs connect to a local network via WiFi and use existing broadband connections to transmit data after an earthquake. The instruments are designed to be installed in private homes, businesses, public buildings, and schools with an existing broadband connection to the internet. The NetQuakes seismographs access the internet via a wireless router connected to your existing broadband internet connection. The seismograph transmits data only after earthquakes greater than magnitude 3 and otherwise does not consume significant bandwidth.

Project URL:

Geographic Scope: International but focus is on US and particularly Alaska, California, Nevada, Hawaii, Haiti, and Eurasia

Project Status: Active -not recruiting volunteers

Participation Tasks: Download software for distributed computing projects,

Start Date: 2009

Project Contact:

Federal Government Sponsor:

USGS logo DOI logo

Other Federal Government Sponsor: Pacific Northwest Seismic Network (PNSN)

Name of Nonfederal Sponsors: Pacific Northwest Seismic Network (PNSN), University of Alaska at Fairbanks, Oklahoma Geological Survey, Boston College, Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, University of Memphis, University of Nevada at Reno, University of Utah, Southern Methodist University, Oklahoma State University, Memphis Gas, Light, and Water

Fields of Science: Computers and technology, Disaster response, Geology and earth science,

Intended Outcomes: Programmatic, Research development, Individual learning,