On Wednesday, Truro School hosted a Royal Geological Society of Cornwall Lecture with Mark Vanstone, Director of Studies, and Sixth Form student, Jack, about recording earthquakes with a Raspberry Shake. This was the Society’s first in-person talk since March 2020.
In a letter from Professor Frances Wall, President of the Royal Geological Society of Cornwall, she commended both Jack and Mark for their talk, especially the knowledge Jack showed in answering the many questions. She wrote: “On behalf of the Royal Geological Society of Cornwall, I would like to thank you very much for the excellent talk on Wednesday evening. The talk was enjoyed by all the participants in the Studio in the Heseltine Gallery and online… Your talk fitted the bill perfectly, and the visit to Truro School, including the chance to see the geology labs, was enjoyed by all. Thank you very much for all the work that went into putting together the lecture content and setting up the evening. Please convey our thanks to Justine, Sam and the pupils who helped.”
A Raspberry Shake is a professional grade personal seismograph; the Truro School equipment is part of a local school’s network, provided by Geothermal Engineering Limited. We regularly detect events ranging from the very local demolition of the former Staples store, through quarry blasts near Penryn and the M2.2 2019 Lizard earthquake, to this year’s M8.2 earthquake in Perryville, Alaska. Our seismometer featured in a study of the global COVID-19 quieting (Lecocq et al. 2020), and we regularly detect strong responses from deep earthquakes in Fiji, Tonga and Vanuatu on the opposite side of the Pacific Ocean.