No natural force is more destructive than earthquakes. The energy released by a magnitude 6.0 earthquake lasting 45 seconds, is several thousand times greater than a nuclear bomb. Furthermore, according to the USGS (united states geological survey), earthquake forecasting remains little more than an elusive goal. Sadly, many earthquakes strike locations where the population and government institutions have little or no capability to deal with the aftermath. Places like southern Iran and rural China.
Looked at from another perspective, an earthquake would make an ideal tool of destruction. Able to strike without warning, and appearing to be an act of nature, can you imagine any government or military organization that wouldn't want to add such an awesome capability to it's arsenal? But of course generating synthetic earthquakes is pure science fiction. Or is it?
The standard model:
If you ask a geologist what causes an earthquake, he/she will tell you it's caused by slippage or abrupt movement between two plates of rock at a location called a fault zone. They will go on to explain there is a slow but constant differential motion between the plates, and over time this results in deformation and the buildup of stress between the plates. When this stress exceeds the frictional resistance of the fault zone, slippage occurs causing an earthquake.
There are several problems with the standard model of earthquakes. First, not all earthquakes are associated with fault zones. Second, and even more troubling, the origin points for many earthquakes are greater than 100km below the surface of the earth. At this depth, the rock is either plastic or fully liquefied and therefore no longer able to support the frictional slippage mechanism postulated by geologists as the primary cause of earthquakes. Another poorly explained phenomena is the tendency of earthquakes to cluster over a brief period of time, lasting from hours to days and sometimes even weeks. The mechanical slippage paradigm would seem to predict just the opposite should take place, since the initial earthquake lowered the deformation stresses in the plates, making further slippage less likely.
While the standard model of earthquakes is appealing in it's simplicity, it is also clearly insufficient to explain many of the observed phenomena.
Chemical phase change:
When two or more substances are involved in a chemical reaction, the resulting compound will occupy a different volume than that of the original substances. In other words, the total volume will shrink or expand as a result of chemical reaction. Furthermore, pressure and/or temperature can cause the internal molecular arrangement of a compound to undergo an abrupt shift or phase change, thereby causing a change in volume of the compound. In many cases, the reaction or rearrangement is very swift, requiring mere fractions of a second to complete.
Piezoelectric & electrostriction effects:
Under the influence of mechanical stress, dielectric materials exhibit a phenomena known as the piezoelectric effect. Simply stated, an electric field or potential is generated within the material due to physical deformation created by the applied mechanical stress. While generally considered to be an exclusive property of crystalline dielectrics, the phenomena is also observed in both amorphous solids and liquids. Any material that exhibits piezoelectric activity, will also exhibit electrostriction phenomena. This is the inverse of the piezoelectric effect, whereby the material changes shape and/or volume under the influence of an externally applied electric field.
Acoustic wave guides:
Most people associate acoustic (or sonic) waves with air, however these waves also travel through liquids and solids. Different materials conduct acoustic waves at different propagation velocities. In general, propagation velocities in liquids are greater than in gases, and propagation velocities in solids are greater than in liquids, however each unique material has a specific propagation velocity, that is also dependent on environmental variables such as temperature and pressure.
Whenever an acoustic wave undergoes an abrupt change in propagation velocity, the wave is reflected to a greater or lesser extent, depending on the degree of propagation velocity shift. A large change in propagation velocity will result in nearly total reflection, while a small change in propagation velocity will result in a partial reflection of the acoustic wave. Changes in acoustic wave propagation velocity are caused by transitions between differing materials, or because of a change in the environmental conditions within a single material.
A related phenomena known as a surface acoustic wave, results from the entrapment of the wave energy by an extreme shift in propagation velocity between differing materials. In effect the boundary between very dissimilar materials acts as a wave guide, thereby channeling the acoustic wave energy along the surface of the boundary. Both cathedral whisper galleries, and pressure zone microphones (also known as boundary microphones) make use of the effect. The fault zone between two plates (1.1.1) is also an excellent acoustic wave guide.
Acoustic energy transformation:
The energy contained in an acoustic wave is the product of both displacement (length of movement) and pressure (force per unit area). This relationship is shown in Equation 1.
Eq. 1 Implies that a high pressure small displacement acoustic wave contains the same energy as a low pressure large displacement wave.
Consider an acoustic wave with a 1 millimeter displacement, generated over a 1 meter square area, 5 kilometers below the surface of earth. The pressure at this depth will be over 100 million Pascals, and therefore this small (1 millimeter) displacement represents an enormous quantity of energy.
Next consider what happens as this acoustic wave travels upward to the surface of the planet. At the surface, atmospheric pressure is approximately 100,000 Pascals. Conservation requires the energy contained in the wave to be constant. Therefore as the pressure drops, the displacement must increase. If the wave remained focused, and the pressure at a depth of 5 kilometers was exactly 100 million Pascals, the displacement at the planet surface would be 1 kilometer! The acoustic wave energy would have to be spread over a surface area of 1 square kilometer to retain a 1 millimeter displacement. As this example clearly demonstrates, small displacements within the earth will create very large movements at the surface of the planet.
The alternant model:
Suppose a one cubic kilometer volume of mineral such as perovskite undergoes an abrupt chemical phase change, caused by a small alteration in pressure and/or temperature, thereby creating a change in volume of just 0.0001%. A volumetric change of 0.0001% in one cubic kilometer represents a change of 1,000 cubic meters, or approximately 0.17 millimeters of displacement on all sides of the cubic kilometer volume. Furthermore, suppose this reaction takes place at a depth of just 10 kilometers. The pressure at any depth can be calculated by:
Using granite, the mass is 2691 kilograms per cubic meter, and earth standard gravity at 9.8 meters per second2, gives a value of 2.637 x 107 Pascals. A displacement of 0.17 millimeters at this pressure, over a surface area of just 1 square meter represents an energy (1.1.5 Eq. 1) of 4.48 x 103 Joules per meter2, and when multiplied by the surface area of our 1 cubic kilometer of perovskite mineral (6 million meters2) equals a staggering 2.69 x 1010 Joules, or over two hundred billion Joules of energy! Spread this energy over one hundred square kilometers of planetary surface, and you still have 2,690 Joules of energy per square meter. More than enough energy to transform a home into a smoking pile rubble...
On May 26, 1998 United States patent number 5,757,177 was issued to one David F. Farnsworth (inventor) located in Forest Grove, Oregon and assigned to a company called OTW LLC located in Paradise Valley, Arizona. The seemingly innocuous title of this patent is: "Infrasonic frequency resonant circuit and method for use thereof". However, a careful reading of the section entitled "Background of the Invention" reveals something far more intriguing. The following are three direct quotes from the patent (bold emphasis added). [Note: ISF = Infrasonic frequency]
One emerging, particularly valuable application for receiving and evaluating ISF signals is to identify electromagnetic energy produced by tectonic activity which has been found to precede the occurrence of earthquakes.
Receiving and identifying ISF electromagnetic signals has been found to be valuable in studying and evaluating various naturally occurring electromagnetic phenomena, as well as man made signals.
It has now been recognized by the inventor herein that ISF electromagnetic energy produced by tectonic activity preceding earthquakes induces ISF signals on the power line and that an electric power distribution system, of which a power line is a part, makes an especially good ISF antenna.
Quote number 3 when coupled with quote number 2, begs the question: Receiving OR transmitting antenna? Remember ANY material that produces electro-magnetic energy under the influence of mechanical deformation, ALSO produces mechanical deformation under the influence of electro-magnetic energy. The piezoelectric and electrostriction effects are completely complimentary AND reversible (1.1.3). In other words, an antenna that will intercept the electro-magnetic energy preceding an earthquake, can also be used to transmit electro-magnetic energy, thereby producing an earthquake.
Furthermore, under the alternant model (1.2.1) if some deeply buried volume of mineral was at or near the critical pressure/temperature required for chemical phase change, a relatively small mechanical shock (deformation of surrounding material) is all that would be required to trigger a massive earthquake. By analogy, the transmitted electro-magnetic energy acts in a manner similar to a blasting cap inserted in a stick of dynamite.
Several of the references cited in this patent are also rather disturbing. In particular:
1. "The Acoustical Laser", pre-1994, pp. 9-11.
2. "The Silent Sound that Kills", Science & Mechanics, Dunning, 1968, pp. 31-33, pp. 75-76.
3. "Silent Sound Can Make You Nervous, Exhausted and Physically Ill", McCrindell, pre-1994, p. 1.
A search of Arizona state corporation records shows no company by the name of "OTW LLC". Obviously the company name listed in the patent is either ruse, or misspelled. Either way, we are left with a plethora of unanswered questions. For instance, if it's possible to forecast earthquakes, why does the USGS ignore a technology that could save thousands of lives every year? And why is this patent entitled "Infrasonic frequency resonant circuit and method for use thereof"? While accurate in the narrow sense, a far more descriptive title would be "Method and apparatus for detection of earthquake precursors".
Diplomacy by other means:
In the post 9-11 environment, American foreign policy has adopted a new strategy known as the "Bush Doctrine". This strategy calls for pre-emptive strikes against any nation, group or individual that threatens American national security interests. As I write this document (in early December 2004), several apparently coincidental events weigh heavy in my mind. Was the massive earthquake in southern Iran, near the city of Bam a natural occurrence, or was it an example of the Bush Doctrine in action? Recently the American government has expressed it's displeasure with the Japanese and Chinese governments over their continued technological and financial involvement with Iran. Both Japan and China have also experienced a sudden rash of earthquake activity. Coincidence or something more sinister? Perhaps you should ask George W. Bush.
ALL information contained herein is derived from public sources and/or widely accepted scientific principles. The author has NO written or verbal agreement with ANY governmental agency forbidding disclosure of the information contained herein. In disclosing this information, the author is exercising his right to free speech as a private citizen of the United States of America.