Latest Geology of Tennessee Stories

Airplane Scans New Madrid For Geological Activity
2013-07-10 09:36:18

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Folks living near the Mississippi River where Arkansas, Tennessee, Missouri and Kentucky converge should expect to see a low-flying, red-and-white Cessna today. Do not be alarmed, U.S. Geological Survey officials announced. The region, known as the New Madrid seismic zone, is of particular interest to geologists and the federal agency is using low-level flights, being performed by specially trained pilots, to detect subtle local...

2011-02-08 23:23:55

2000 years of Chinese records shows migrating mid-continent earthquakes This December marks the bicentennial of the New Madrid earthquakes of 1811-12, which are the biggest earthquakes known to have occurred in the central U.S. Now, based on the earthquake record in China, a University of Missouri researcher says that mid-continent earthquakes tend to move among fault systems, so the next big earthquake in the central U.S. may actually occur someplace else other than along the New Madrid...

2010-12-25 06:40:00

Central Arkansas has been hit with a series of earthquakes recently, more than 500 since September 20. According to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), most were hardly noticeable but one stood out prominently when it hit the Richter scale at a 4.0 on October 11. Geologists can't say whether the quakes will end anytime soon. Dr. Horton of the University of Memphis feels that the ample amount of earthquakes in this state is quite unusual. "In the New Madrid Seismic Zone there's approximately...

2010-07-29 07:20:00

Researchers said on Wednesday that the risk of earthquakes in the U.S. Midwest may be more widespread than geologists had previously thought.  They found that swept away sediments at the end of the last ice age could have triggered a series of large earthquakes that started in 1811 in the New Madrid seismic zone. They reported in the journal Nature that this suggests these fault segments are unlikely to fail again soon, but the same process could trigger earthquakes on nearby fault...

2009-03-13 14:04:16

U.S. scientists say the New Madrid seismologic fault system in the Midwest and South may be in the process of shutting down. Purdue and Northwestern University researchers have been using global positioning system measurements to determine the earthquake risk to parts of Illinois, Indiana, Tennessee, Arkansas and Kentucky. The fault motion has been much less than expected, Purdue researchers said Friday. The last major earthquake in the New Madrid seismic zone was in 1812. Our findings...

2009-03-13 13:10:20

The New Madrid fault system does not behave as earthquake hazard models assume and may be in the process of shutting down, a new study shows.A team from Purdue and Northwestern universities analyzed the fault motion for eight years using global positioning system measurements and found that it is much less than expected given the 500- to 1,000-year repeat cycle for major earthquakes on that fault. The last large earthquakes in the New Madrid seismic zone were magnitude 7-7.5 events in 1811...

2005-10-11 18:44:57

MONTPELIER, Vt. -- A 71-acre section of 450 million-year-old rock that is believed to be part of the world's oldest coral reef will be preserved and opened to the public, officials announced Tuesday. Two local preservation groups bought the parcel in the middle of the Isle La Motte at the northern end of Lake Champlain. The purchase price was not disclosed. The Chazy Reef formed a half-billion years ago in the warm shallow sea south of the equator. Over the eons, it drifted north to its...

2005-06-23 21:50:41

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) -- The New Madrid seismic zone remains under enough strain to unleash devastating earthquakes, University of Memphis researchers say. The Memphis research team study published in the journal Nature rebuts the conclusions of a Northwestern University researcher's 1998 report that the dangers of the seismic zone had been "vastly overstated." The U of M team studied the New Madrid, a network of faults branching from near Cairo, Ill., to Marked Tree, Ark., through Global...

2005-06-03 07:06:04

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The temblor felt across northwest Tennessee on Thursday caused little damage, but it was strong enough to remind people they live in one of the country's most active earthquake zones. The 4.0 quake on the New Madrid Fault system was centered about 10 miles northwest of Dyersburg near the town of Ridgely. The New Madrid seismic zone produces close to 200 quakes a year. But most are around magnitude 2.0 and unnoticed by anyone but scientists. Quakes of magnitude 4.0 are...

Word of the Day
  • Like a worm in form or movement; vermiform; tortuous or sinuous; also, writhing or wriggling.
  • Like the track or trace of a worm; appearing as if worm-eaten; vermiculate.
  • Marked with fine, close-set, wavy or tortuous lines of color; vermiculated.
  • A form of rusticated masonry which is so wrought as to appear thickly indented with worm-tracks.
This word ultimately comes from the Latin 'vermis,' worm.