Magnitude and intensity: Measures of earthquake size and severity
Earthquakes can be measured in terms of either the amount of energy they release (magnitude) or the degree of ground shaking they cause at a particular locality (intensity). Although magnitude and intensity are basically different measures of an earthquake, they are frequently confused by the public and new reports of earthquakes. Part of the confusion probably arises from the general similarity of scales used express these quantities. The various magnitude scales represent logarithmic expressions of the energy released by an earthquake. Magnitude is calculated from the record made by an earthquake on a calibrated seismograph. There are no upper or lower limits to magnitude, although no measured earthquakes have exceeded magnitude 8.9.
Additional publication details
|Publication Subtype||Journal Article|
|Title||Magnitude and intensity: Measures of earthquake size and severity|
|Series title||Earthquake Information Bulletin (USGS)|
|Publisher||U.S. Geological Survey|
|Publisher location||Reston, VA|