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Dynamic Planet
Investigation 5:
Earthquakes, Volcanoes, and Mountains

This investigation will help you to:

To learn more about the earthquakes, volcanoes, and mountains visit the following web sites:

The Nature of Earthquakes

Savage Earth, Restless Planet: Earthquakes,
This web site accompanies the PBS Series Savage Earth and includes background information on the connection between faults, earthquakes, and seismic waves.

Virtual Courseware: Earthquake,
Virtual Courseware
This site contains deatailed pictures of earthquake damage. There are also activies such as travel time and epicenter to use along with a demonstration.

Earthquake and Plate Movements

Earthquakes, Faults, Plate Tectonics, Earth Structure,
Read answers to some commonly asked questions about earthquakes, faults, and plate tectonics. In some cases, the answers include links for further information.

Earthquakes and Plate Tectonics,
USGS Earthquakes Hazards Program
This article aims to explain why earthquakes happen along plate boundaries, and often in the same area as volcanoes or mountain ranges.

Plate Tectonics, the Cause of Earthquakes,
Nevada Seismological Laboratory
Review a technical explanation with images of different types of faults, spreading centers, or collision zones in connection to earthquakes.

The Nature of Volcanoes

Savage Earth, Mountains of Fire,
This web site accompanies another portion of the documentary, Savage Earth, with general information about different types of volcanoes, the location of volcanoes, and different types of volcanic eruptions.

Volcanic Gases,
USGS Volcano Hazards Fact Sheet
Discusses why volcanic gases are important to study, how geologists study volcanic gases, and what they have learned.

Volcanoes and Plate Movements

Location of Volcanoes,
NASA Classroom of the Future
Find out more about how and why volcanoes form along plate boundaries or above hot spots. Note the links to other related pages about plate tectonics and heat flow or looking inside the Earth.

The Association of Earthquakes and Volcanoes

Earthquakes, Volcanoes, and Plate Tectonics,
Map showing earthquakes and volcanoes in relation to plate movements.

Reply to Ask-An-Earth-Scientist,
University of Hawaii
What is the relationship between volcanoes, earthquakes, and plate-tectonics? Find out what a geologist from the University of Hawaii said in response to this question.

Mountain Building

Mountain Building,
Okanagan University College
Information, including diagrams, about the evolution of mountains.

To complete part 8 of the Investigation, you will need information and data on specific earthquake events or volcanic eruptions.


Near Real-Time Current World Earthquakes Data,
United States Geological Survey, National Earthquake Information Center
Find data on earthquakes that happen today all over the world.

Largest Earthquakes in the US,
USGS Earthquake Hazards Program
There are two lists on this page: the top 15 earthquakes in the United States and the top 15 earthquakes in the contiguous United States. The reason being that eleven of the fifteen happened either in Alaska or Hawaii.

Unusual Events of March-April 1868,
Hawaiian Volcano Observatory
Learn about the largest earthquake ever to hit the Hawaiian Islands.

Information About Past and Historical Earthquakes,
This site contains chronicles of historic earthquakes that significantly changed the way scientists viewed the earth and earthquakes. Each event is unique in how it helped us better understand our world.

History of Big Earthquakes,
Find out about five major earthquake events in California from 1906 to 1994.

Historic Earthquakes,
This page offers a centralized list of the worst earthquakes both in the US and around the world.


Volcanic Eruptions and Activity,
This site lists links to historical volcanic eruptions.

Deadliest Volcanic Eruptions Since 1500 A.D.,
View social and scientific information on Deadly volcanic eruptions.

20th Century Volcanic Eruptions and Their Impact,
View social and scientific information on volcanic eruptions that have happend since 1900.

Current Volcanic Activity,
View links to current volcanic activity around the world.



Investigation 1

Investigation 2

Investigation 3

Investigation 4

Investigation 5

Investigation 6

Investigation 7

Further Research


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Last updated: January 26, 2009

This project is supported, in part, by the National Science Foundation and the AGI Foundation. Opinions expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the Foundation.

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