Sunday, September 29, 2019

Drunk on Seismology - Aftershock

What better alcohol to follow up on the last entry's Earthquake with than this liqueur - After Shock.

After Shock is a product of the Jim Beam company with several varieties. The main one I am aware of (and the one pictured below) is the Hot and Cool Cinnamon version. It is a rather strong drink (80 Proof) with a strong cinnamon taste.

As defined by the USGS, an aftershock in geology is an...
"earthquake that follows the largest shock of an earthquake sequence. They are smaller than the mainshock and within 1-2 fault lengths distance from the mainshock fault. Aftershocks can continue over a period of weeks, months, or years. In general, the larger the mainshock, the larger and more numerous the aftershocks, and the longer they will continue."
The primary earthquake is defined as the strongest shaking event. An earthquake can be preceded by foreshocks, which are defined as earthquakes smaller than the largest earthquake. Foreshocks can only be identified after everything is said and done because future prediction of the largest earthquake is pretty much impossible.

Illustration showing the magnitudes of the foreshocks and aftershocks in relation to the primary earthquake. Image courtesy of the Geology Page.

After the largest earthquake, the size of the earthquakes generally diminish. These are the aftershocks. The aftershocks are frequently a result of the stresses along a fault readjusting following the movement along the initial event. An earthquake is caused by movement along a fault. This movement releases energy, causing the earthquake, but that movement also causes stress to build up elsewhere along a fault line. The aftershocks are a result of those stresses being released after further movement along the fault.

Aftershocks will often decrease in strength by orders of magnitude following the main earthquake, such as a magnitude 5, following a magnitude 6, or a magnitude 4 following a magnitude 5.

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