What the intensity by definition of an earthquake.

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Last updated: July 17, 2019

What is the Mercalli scale? The mercalli scale is the scale used when measuring the damage of the earthquake. The scale varies from instrumental, weak, and slight to intense, extreme, and cataclysmic. Instrumental meaning; not felt by many people unless their condition is extreme. Cataclysmic meaning; total destruction, everything is destroyed. Lines of sight and level become distorted due to earthquake. Objects thrown into the air.

The ground moves moves in relate to a wave or ripples. Large amounts of rock move out of position. Landscape altered, or leveled by several several meters. In some cases, even the routes of rivers are changed. It’s kind of like a scale of 1-10 on an earthquake and its effects, it doesn’t necessarily measure with numbers but measures with descriptions. For example, if an earthquake is lowly mild, it would be defined as instrumental or weak.

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The scale measures in intensity and characteristics of the wave. For instance, if buildings are falling, or the road is splitting in half, bridges are collapsing it would range in the extreme or even cataclysmic category. The Mercalli scale is basically a classification and description of the certain earthquake. Why was the scale developed? The scale was created to examine the effects of earthquakes, and is the scale used currently in the USA, called the Modified Mercalli Intensity Scale. The mercalli intensity scale is a scale used for measuring the intensity by definition  of an earthquake. It measures the effects and characteristics of an earthquake. What is the difference between the Richter scale and the Mercalli scale? The mercalli scale gives you a description name, and the characteristics of that earthquake.

Rather than the Richter scale, which just gives you a number for the category earthquake. You get more of a description with the Mercalli scale. The Richter is scale is where discreet numbers are used while the mercalli scale has a little description of the earthquakes features.

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