Seismology and Its Applications in Kansas

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Seismology is the study of mechanical waves that travel on and beneath the surface of the earth. It was first recognized as a scientific discipline in the 1800s with the emergence of the quantitative study of earthquakes, one of the most common natural sources of seismic waves. Although instruments designed to detect earthquakes date back to 132 A.D. (Dewey and Byerly, 1969), the first modern seismometers were developed and installed in observatories around the world in the late 1800s and early 1900s to study the cause of earthquakes and investigate the structure of the earth's interior (Agnew, 2002). The first network of seismometers and seismographs to record earthquakes in Kansas was established by the Kansas Geological Survey (KGS) in 1977 to assess the level of seismic activity in the state.

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  • Fact Sheet


  • critical issues, database publication, earthquake, hazards, oil and gas, kansas