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Measuring Earthquakes. Definitions. P-wave: (Primary) The first and fastest wave of energy sent out from an earthquake. The wave motion is in the same direction as the energy.

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definitions
Definitions
  • P-wave: (Primary) The first and fastest wave of energy sent out from an earthquake. The wave motion is in the same direction as the energy.
  • S-wave: (Secondary) The 2nd and slower wave of energy sent out from an earthquake. The wave motion is perpendicular to the direction of the energy.
definitions1
Definitions
  • Surface wave: The slowest and most destructive wave sent out from an earthquake. The wave motion is in all directions--up/down, side-to-side, back and forth.
  • Focus: The point below the surface where the movement begins from an earthquake
  • Epicenter: The point on the surface above the focus of an earthquake