Seismic Waves are created when energy builds up in rocks and causes them to fracture. They are also known as Earthquake waves. There are three different types of seismic waves: – P-waves, S-waves and Surface waves.
P-waves or Primary waves are the fastest of all the three and cause just a slight vibration. S-waves or Secondary waves are the second fastest and cause more damage as compared to P-waves. Surface waves are the slowest while travelling and cause the highest damage while compare to other types of waves.
Fast Facts: –
- These waves can also help to determine the depths of layers of molten and semi-molten rock and other things within the earth.
- When there is an earthquake about to occur, Primary Waves are the first one to arrive.
- P-waves can move through both solid rocks and fluids and S-waves can only move through solid rock.
- Primary Waves and Secondary waves are collectively known as the body waves.
- One kind of Surface waves are known as Rayleigh Waves and another kind of surface waves are known as Love Waves.
- Rayleigh Waves travel as ripples and Love Waves cause horizontal shearing of the ground.
- Seismic Waves radiate from the focus of an earthquake and they temporarily turn soft deposits of the earth in jelly.
- These waves are calculated by geophysicists that are known as seismologist using instruments including seismometer, accelerometer and hydrophone.