University's New-Type Seismograph Shows All Phases of Quake on Tape

Equlpped with the means to provide seismologists a complete picture of what is happening inside the earth during quakes, a new kind of earthquake-recorder made its bow at the University Seismograph Station late last month.

The machine, devised by Roland K. Blumberg 4G, may well be the "seismograph of tomorrow," predicts L. Don Lect, professor of Geology and director of the Station. It records earth tremors on special tape in the seismologist's own office, eliminating the need for trips to underground stations to determine which quake messages are being recorded.

Blumberg spent two years research and $2,000 in perfecting the new design, which consists of three different instruments, showing horizontal motion in north-south and east-west direction, as well as vertical motion.

New Type Recorder

A tape recorder produces the three dimensional results immediately without the special photographic processes previously necessary in this operation.


Three ink lines on a ticker tape-like roll in the seismologist's office record the motion. The original signals come from a "seismometer" unit in a vault.

In its first actual test, Blumberg's new set-up recorded the extensive Philippine quake of Saturday, January 24. Only 19 minutes after the earthquake, waves began to "sign in" at the station, 35 miles north of the college, having first made their way through part of the earth's liquid core.

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