Microseism in the Wachau Valley in Austria

Yesterday’s earthquake in the district of Melk (Lower Austria), registered 2.5 on the Richter scale. Fortunately, no damages have been reported so far due to the low magnitude. The ZAMG, the Austrian Central Institute for Meteorology and Geodynamics, recorded the earthquake at 9:08 pm CET.

The Richter magnitude scale was developed in 1935 by Charles F. Richter of the California Institute of Technology as a mathematical device to compare the size of earthquakes.

Earthquakes with magnitude of about 2.0 or less are usually called microearthquakes. They are not commonly felt by people and are generally recorded only on local seismographs. On average, about 8,000 earthquakes of that size occur somewhere in the world every day.

Earthquakes with magnitude of about 3.0 are often felt, but rarely cause damages. On average, about 49,000 earthquakes of that size occur every year.

Events with magnitudes of about 4.0 or greater are strong enough to be recorded by sensitive seismographs all over the world.

Great earthquakes have magnitudes of 8.0 or higher. On average, one earthquake of such size occurs somewhere in the world each year.

Although the Richter scala has no upper limit, an earthquake of about 10.0 or greater has never been recorded. The largest recorded earthquake was the Great Chilean Earthquake of May 22, 1960 which had a magnitude of 9.5.

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