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Robert Mallet. Portrait of the Irish engineer Robert Mallet (1810-1881). After graduating from Trinity college, Dublin, Ireland, he worked as an engineer both in Dublin and London, England. He is best known for pioneering seismology (the study of earthquakes). In 1857, during a stay in Naples, Italy, he showed a way of determining the epicentre of an earthquake by noting the direction of cracks in the walls and the arrangement of fallen masonry.`He was also the first to accurately determine the speed of earthquake waves by setting off explosives at different depths in different soils and measuring the time shock waves took to travel varying distances.
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