The Physics Behind Earthquakes

Amy O'Brien

UBC Department of Physics and Astronomy


A UBC Physics 420 project

This project uses several simple demonstrations to help explain the physics behind earthquakes. It focused on explaining plate motion and the waves that propogate when an earthquake occurs.

This website has a list of the demonstrations used along with a step by step guide on how to build and use them in the demonstrations page. It also explains the basics of the physics that can be used to explain earthquakes. Lastly, the powerpoint slides I used while presenting my project are in a link below.

It is meant to be a help to high school teachers that are introducing waves and explaining earthquakes at the grade 11 physics level.



The Physics

Powerpoint presentation

I would like to thank Professor Kotlicki, the staff in the outreach lab, and my fellow students in the PHYS 420 class for their support and advice throughout the term.