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Richter Scale Day: What is the significance of this day?


New Delhi, Apr 26: April 26 is observed as the Richter Scale Day to honour the birth of the inventor of the Richter Scale. The Richter magnitude scale is a scale of numbers used to tell the size of earthquakes. It was developed to assign a single number to quantify the energy released during an earthquake.

Representational Image

Richter Scale Day honors the birth of the Richter Scale inventor, Charles F. Richter (April 26, 1900 - September 30, 1985). After the Richter Scale was published in 1935, it immediately became the standard measure of earthquake intensity.

Richter first used the scale in 1935 after developing it in collaboration with Beno Gutenberg; both worked at the California Institute of Technology.

The scale is a base-10 logarithmic scale. The magnitude is defined as the logarithm of the ratio of the amplitude of waves measured by a seismograph to an arbitrary small amplitude. An earthquake that measures 5.0 on the Richter scale has a shaking amplitude 10 times larger than one that measures 4.0, and corresponds to a 31.6 times larger release of energy, as per www.cute-calendar.com

The earthquake with the biggest recorded magnitude was the Great Chilean Earthquake. It had a magnitude of 9.5 on the Richter scale and occurred in 1960. About 6,000 people died because of the earthquake.

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