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Science

Do Earthquakes Spread Like Wildfire? 26

Posted by samzenpus
from the a-whole-lotta-shaking-going-on dept.
sciencehabit writes "A simple model of forest fires could help explain the distribution of the sizes of earthquakes and their aftershocks, a theoretical physicist says. In the so-called Drössel-Schwabl model, trees sprout at random on a square grid like a vast checkerboard. Once the forest gets dense enough, lightning sets a random tree on fire, and fire spreads instantaneously among trees that occupy adjacent squares. The conflagration continues until there are no more neighbors to jump to. Then, the process starts all over again. In the team's model, the 'forest' is the plane of a fault cutting through Earth's crust, divided into a 10,000-by-10,000 grid. Sprouting trees correspond to the buildup of stress along the fault; burning areas, to the part of the fault that moves during a quake."
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Do Earthquakes Spread Like Wildfire?

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  • Re:Can we (Score:5, Funny)

    by foobar bazbot (3352433) on Sunday December 08, 2013 @01:49PM (#45633487)

    do a car analogy instead?

    Very well.

    In the so-called DrÃssel-Schwabl-rossdee model, Ford Pintos sprout at random on a square grid like a vast checkerboard. Once the traffic jam gets dense enough, a minor collision sets a random Pinto on fire, and fire spreads instantaneously among Pintos that occupy adjacent squares. The conflagration continues until there are no more neighbors to jump to. Then, the process starts all over again.

    (Yes, I'm aware that Pintos weren't in reality the blazing firetraps I'm using them as here. Artistic license ftw!)

  • by Fwipp (1473271) on Sunday December 08, 2013 @01:54PM (#45633531)

% APL is a natural extension of assembler language programming; ...and is best for educational purposes. -- A. Perlis

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