are earthquakes measured on richter scales or seismographs?

i am writing a summary of our unit in science and i have seismograph and richter scale written down in my notes but i cant remember which one they use to measure the intensity of an earthquake

15 Answers

Relevance
  • 1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    The richter scale is the measurement of intensity, and the seismograph is the device that is used to graph the intensity of the quake.

  • 1 decade ago

    Well both but they are not really comparable.

    A seismograph is an instrument that measures the amount of shaking at whatever place it is. By itself it can't tell much about the strength of an earthquake because it's measurements are affected by its distance from the epicenter. The farther away the earthquake, the weaker the measurement.

    The Richter scale is a system for estimating the strength of an earthquake based on several different factors. One way this is done is to compare the measurements of several different seismographs which are located a different points around the earth. By noting the time that the signal reaches each instrument and the apparent strength of each signal geologists can locate the epicenter and then calculate the strength of the earthquake based size of each signal and the distance to each seismograph.

    So in a way the seismograph is like the yardstick and the Richter scale is like the units the yardstick is calibrated in such as inches.

    The Richter magnitude of an earthquake is also sometimes estimated by inspecting the aftereffects. This is important in determining the strength of an earthquake that happened before seismographs were invented.

  • 1 decade ago

    Richter scale is giving you the amount of energy released during earthquakes. Mr Char less Richter found a no val way to determine the energy released during earthquakes by using seismograph. The arrival time of S wave minus P wave multiplied by the speed difference will give you the distance of epicenter. The maximum amplitude recorded in seismograph and distance are the two parameters required to calculate the Richter scale. Each Richter scale will release 31.7 times more energy. But the shaking will be increased by ten fold only.The shaking will get reduced by inverse square of distanceThese all are not connected with intensity at all. According the Richter scale magnitude and the distance from epicenter the intensity may differ from place to place for same earthquakes. To know the intensity you have to use only Mercalli scale that needs no instrument.It depends upon only what people felt and the amount of destruction at that place.It may differ place to place for same earthquakes.

    Source(s): My research work in early warning systems.
  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    in science last year it said in the book they were measured on teh richter scale but i have heard of the seismorgraph too so i think it may be both

    yea they both measure an earthquake

    A seismograph is the device that scientists use to measure earthquakes. The goal of a seismograph is to accurately record the motion of the ground during a quake. If you live in a city, you may have noticed that buildings sometimes shake when a big truck or a subway train rolls by. Good seismographs are therefore isolated and connected to bedrock to prevent this sort of "data pollution."

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • 1 decade ago

    Earthquakes are measured by the Seismograph. The Richter scale is how they rate the strength as shown on the seismograph.

  • 1 decade ago

    The seismograph is the scientific instrument that detects when an earthquake is occurring. Depending on the readings from the seismograph, the earthquake is given a certain rating on the Richter scale.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richter_scale

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Seismographs are the devices that measure earthquakes (like a ruler is the device to measure distance).

    The Richter scale is the measurement scale used for earthquakes (like the meter is the measurement scale of distance).

  • 1 decade ago

    They are measured by a seismograph (that is the name of the machine that picks up the shock waves). But the richter scale is what an earthquake is measured in. (like the units it is measured in)

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    seismographs are the machines that measure earthquakes

    the richter scale isn't a actual thing.. just an idea.. like 'rate me on a scale to 1-10' kinda thing

  • 1 decade ago

    the seismograph is the actual measuring device the richter scale is the unit of measurement,

    in other terms think of it like this,

    voltage is measured with a voltmeter and the scale is in volts

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.