A long time ago, people inhabiting settlements at the boarder of Dykoye Pole (Wild Field) used to bury empty jugs into the ground: if they started buzzing this meant that a cavalry detachment was galloping across the steppe and it was time to escape to the outpost from the foray. Specialists of the Institute of Physics of the Earth, Russian Academy of Sciences, suggest a similar way for tracking oncoming natural disasters like earthquakes or catastrophic landslides.
“The main task of the forecast is to get a reliable warning about the time and place of a destructive event. The task can be simplified if the long-term observation location is chosen in advance – in that case the major effort can be focused on determination of time of disaster in that particular region. To this end, it is necessary to deploy the observation network within the bounds of a big town or in the vicinity of particularly important objects,” says Alexy Nikolayev, Corresponding Member of the Russian Academy of Sciences. One of the observation methods applied may be the measurement of noise which occurs in the the interior of the Earth.
The history of the method dates back to slightly more than a century. In any case, at the end of the 19th century, De Rossi from Rome installed a microphone at the depth of 20 meters and discovered a multitude of various sounds. Sometimes they became unbearably loud, especially once, half an hour prior to an earthquake. Back in the 50s of the last century, Professor Rikitake from the Tokyo Earthquake Research Institute came to the conclusion that investigation of vibrations in the audio-frequency range might be useful for disaster forecasting. In Russia, research of the “Earth’s voice” started twenty years ago. In 1999-2000, researchers placed sensors in Obninsk, Kislovodsk and Petropavlovsk-Kamchatski, the sensors being installed in deep boreholes (about one hundred meters deep), and since that time they have been accumulating statistics in order to later correlate parameters of sounds heard with certain events. Sometimes they manage to do that. Thus, the sensors in Kislovodsk proved that the noise produced by the interior of the Earth was evidently louder during massive bombing of Iraq in March 2003 than that after downfall of Bagdad and the campaign termination.
Sergey Komarov | alfa
In times of climate change: What a lake’s colour can tell about its condition
21.09.2017 | Leibniz-Institut für Gewässerökologie und Binnenfischerei (IGB)
Did marine sponges trigger the ‘Cambrian explosion’ through ‘ecosystem engineering’?
21.09.2017 | Helmholtz-Zentrum Potsdam - Deutsches GeoForschungsZentrum GFZ
Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.
A warming planet
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.
Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...
19.09.2017 | Event News
12.09.2017 | Event News
06.09.2017 | Event News
22.09.2017 | Medical Engineering
22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy