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Home / Science / Yellowstone volcano: Why USGS scientists might fear earthquake swarms could spark eruption | Science | News

Yellowstone volcano: Why USGS scientists might fear earthquake swarms could spark eruption | Science | News



The Yellowstone Caldera is a supervolcano located below Yellowstone National Park in the Western US. It sits between the states of Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho, and is monitored by the United States Geological Survey (USGS) due for its capability to inflict disaster on a global scale if a super-eruption occurs. Earlier today, a magnitude 3.1 earthquake was recorded in Manhattan, Montana, just 100 years ago miles from the Yellowstone caldera.

USGS's.

Though the tremors were small, they are still in a short period of time website explains: " Since 1973, there have been 48,000 earthquakes located in the Yellowstone region.

"Over 99% of those earthquakes are magnitude 2 or below and are not felt by anyone.

 Earthquake swarms raise fears of eruptions

Earthquake swarms raise fears of eruptions (Image: GETTY)

 A 3.1 magnitude earthquake struck today "A 3.1 magnitude earthquake struck today"

A 3.1 magnitude earthquake struck today (Image: GOOGLE)

USSR

"Earthquake swarms (earthquakes that cluster in time and space) account for about 50 percent of the total seismicity in Yellowstone, and they are most common in the east-west band of seismicity between Hebgen Lake and the Norris Geyser Basin.

"Most swarms are small, containing 10-20 earthquakes, and short, lasting for 1-2 days.

"

Earthquake swarms pose a threat as they can trigger a volcanic eruption, although scientists are unsure exactly how."

19659003] The earthquake system

There are a number of cases in the world in 2018, when "rapid-fire" swarms occurred.

earthquake swarms that seemingly appear out of nowhere that can churn out at least or even small to moderate quakes within a very short time frame.

In December 2008, continuing into January y 2009, more than 500 earthquakes were detected in the northwest end of Yellowstone Lake over a seven-day span, with the largest register of a magnitude of 3.9.

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Scientists. (19659010) Scientists. (19659010) Scientists have taken earthquake swarms before have recorded earthquake swarms before [Image: GETTY]

Jacob Lowenstein, who was tasked with monitoring the activity for the USGS, revealed during a lecture at Menlo Park, California, how his team were put on alert. [19659003] He explained in 2014: "Here's a couple of maps that show you what's happening during that period of time.

"It turns out that the earthquakes were on a linear trend."

"It started with the blue, which are the early earthquakes, and then the red which are the latest.

[194559003] "This is another one of the cross sections."

Though Mr Lowenstein was confident the earthquake activity would not be enough to spark it volcanic eruption, he did admit it was unsettling.

He added: "This is a pretty nervous time for us, not because there was a lot of earthquakes, but because people were getting more agitated about things happening in the lake."

"Lakes freak people out for some reason,

"So people just hypothesised all sorts of crazy stuff and it was a very nervous time."

"There's a lot of earthquakes, but there's no steam or anything more than small earthquakes. "


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