Musical Plates
Edison Middle School., West Orange New Jersey
Submitted June, 2002

Dear Mr. President,

After much study and survey of recent earthquakes I would like to state my findings. I have found many facts that can help further research. For one, I have discovered the main cause of earthquakes all over the globe. I have narrowed down where most of the earthquakes take place in the world. After analyzing

the trends of the earthquakes around the world I can explain them to you. I strongly believe that further
funding for plate tectonic research is necessary.

The first thing I wish to explain from my findings is how earthquakes occur. The main reason an earthquake occurs is from a sudden tremor or movement of the earth's crust, which originates naturally at or below the surface. The origin of an earthquake is at its focus. The focus is where rocks break and move under Earth's surface. Directly above the focus on Earths surface is the epicenter. The epicenter is where the earthquake hits first, and where it will be the most destructive. From the focus seismic waves spread away creating faults. Faults are breaks or cracks along which rocks move. The size of the fault mostly depends on the impact from the type of wave. The most destructive seismic wave is the L wave. Then come the S wave, and finally the P wave.

The second thing I want to explain from my findings is where most earthquakes occur. Stress that causes earthquakes is created by movement of almost rigid plates that fit together and make up the outer shell of Earth. I have found that most earthquakes occur around the Ring of fire surrounding the Pacific Ocean. Ninety percent of the Earths quakes occur here.

The last thing I wish to discuss are the trends of global earthquakes. One major trend I have seen is the magnitude of the earthquakes on the Richter scale. The deepest of earthquakes, which are 6 and up on the Richter scale seem to form around the Ring of Fire. All other earthquakes I have studied were 4-6 in depth. Most of the earthquakes were shallow.

I hope that you have learned much from my findings. I also hope that you can provide further funding for my research. I strongly believe that further funding is necessary because every year one million quakes tremor around the Earth. Even though most of these quakes are minor and don't do much they still cause problems for many that feel their impact. I believe that with further funding it can be made possible to predict where and when the next quake will hit.

Thank you for you time and your funding,


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