Physics Magazine

Japan Earthquake: The Explainer

Posted on the 15 March 2011 by Gerard @presurfer
Around 3 P.M. local time last Friday, there was a massive earthquake about 100 miles off the east coast of northern Honshu Island, Japan. Initially calculated to be a magnitude 8.9, it has since been upgraded to at least a magnitude 9.0. You may have heard that the quake pushed Japan westward by about 8 feet and that it shifted Earth's axis by 6.5 inches.
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, USA, has found that the quake also sped up Earth's spin, just a little a bit. Days are now 1.8 microseconds shorter. Guest blogger Chris Rowan wrote a post for Scientific American that explains all of this.
(via Boing Boing)The Presurfer

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