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Precariously balanced rocks reveal earthquake history in Israel

from Eos

Rock formations that look like they could topple at any moment, aptly named "precariously balanced rocks," are effective earthquake barometers because they're easily destroyed by ground shaking. Now, researchers working in the Negev Desert of Israel have combined observations of precariously balanced rocks with models of seismic shaking to constrain the magnitudes of historical earthquakes known from archaeological records to have struck the region. They found that earthquakes within the past 1,300 years along some of the region's faults were at most magnitude 5.0, weaker than previously thought. more


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