Seismologists doubt that the full moon amplifies the earthquake

© RIA Novosti / Vladimir Sergeevicha in photosangelina over the Moscow international business centre Moscow-citySeismologists doubt that the full moon amplifies the earthquake© RIA Novosti / Vladimir Sergeevicha the image Bank

. Full moon and new moon, when tidal interaction between the moon and the Earth reach the maximum, are unlikely to amplify earthquakes on our planet, say scientists in an article published in the journal Seismological Research Letters.

«I read the notes of Charles Richter, and Amateur seismology often wrote him letters in which they expressed similar ideas. Next time there will be a very powerful earthquake during the full moon, these ideas will again emerge and begin to spread through the society that I hope our work will help to stop,» said Susan Howe (Susan Hough) from the U.S. Geological survey (USGS).

The orbit of the moon, the earth and the Sun represent ellipses and not perfect circles, so they periodically approach each other and away from each other. Their products are so-called tidal forces. They are, for example, «pull in» the atmosphere and the Earth’s oceans towards the moon, which creates tides, and similar processes on the moons of the giant planets warm up their breed, allowing the oceans of liquid water exist beneath the ice of Enceladus and Europe.

A year ago, seismologists from the National Observatory in Los Alamos (USA) noticed that something similar is happening on the Ground, revealing an unusual relationship between the strength of earthquakes in California, and the time of day and the phase of the moon.

Their calculations showed that the variation in the frequency and strength of tremors in California was subject to the same 14-day cycles as the action of the lunar attraction on the Earth (14 days – half of the classic cycle of the phases of the moon in 29 days) in combination with similar forces arising from the interaction of the magnet of the Sun, moon and Earth.

As noted by Howe, the initial findings of the authors of this discovery were only the weakest earthquakes that people almost never see or feel their power is only 5-6 points on a scale of MMS.

For this reason, seismologists from the USGS analyzed two hundred strong earthquakes with magnitude 8 and above that have occurred over the last four hundred years, and compared them with those in some point of the orbit at that time was the Moon.

«When you are analyzing completely random data set, they often have different «signals» such as how sometimes a coin can five times in a row to fall tails. In this case something like that happened,» continues Howe.

For example, the collected data shows that some major earthquakes occurred about seven days after the new moon. This «rule», explains How, in this case makes no sense, as this point in time the gravitational interaction between the Moon and Earth will be minimal.

It emphasizes How its findings relate only to the strongest earthquakes – it does not exclude the possibility that weaker shocks, which were being monitored by scientists from the National Observatory in Los Alamos (USA), may actually be associated with the phases of the moon.

«If you carefully read their works, you will notice that they are written very carefully. For example, they never talk about the fact that these data can be used to predict earthquakes, as the shifts in their strength and frequency have always been very small,» concludes Howe.