Laser monitoring Parkfield fault

Laser monitoring Parkfield fault

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Credit: DAVID PARKER/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Parkfield earthquake prediction experiment. Laser system being used to monitor the movement of the San Andreas fault at Parkfield in central California. Seismologists have predicted that an earthquake of about magnitude six will occur on the fault at Parkfield before 1993. Dozens of researchers have made the town the most heavily instrumented earthquake region in the world. The laser is mounted on a nearby hilltop and is operated by Parkfield schoolteacher Duane Hamann. It bounces light off of a network of 18 reflectors located several kilometres away. The system will pick up movements of less than one millimetre over a total distance of six kilometres.

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Keywords: earthquake, earthquake research, earthquakes, laser monitoring seismic fault, parkfield quake prediction, seismology

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