[ RadSafe ] radon, lucas cells, earthquakes

Joseph Preisig jrpnj01 at gmail.com
Thu Feb 25 13:45:41 CST 2016


     The recent email about Lucas Cells is fairly interesting.  I guess
they allow one to get radon samples for counting without the presence of
hot particles, other radionuclides etc.  Quite a while ago now I had a
student job at the Jet Propulsion Lab and there was some interest in using
radon as an earthquake precursor/predictor.  Someone left a stack of
documents on my desk about radon and earthquake prediction.  Funny, how
these documents somehow suddenly appear on one's desk.  Another time at BNL
some mysterious person left me a copy of R. Grover Brown's Kalman Filtering
book.  Mystery.

     The Chinese (mainland) have earthquake prediction interests using
vp/vs ratio, precursory animal behavior (mice running up walls, horses
busting out of corrals), radon, acoustic noise precursors, lights in the
sky prior to earthquakes etc.  There is a nice American Geophysical Union
book (a big blue book) on Earthquake Prediction by Simpson and Richards.
The elementary Earthquake book by Bruce Bolt also has a discussion of
earthquake precursors.  Nance also wrote a popular book on earthquakes ---
quite readable by the average guy.

    Radon is probably pretty useless for doing prediction of large/great
subduction earthquakes.  But strike-slip events that are on land could
probably produce interesting radon signals.  Perhaps some West Coast health
physicists could collaborate with the folks at Caltech/JPL to instrument
the San Andreas fault line somewhat.

    I see news reports that there is some sort of Cell-Phone APP that is
somewhat sensitive to earthquake shaking.  Imagine giving a lecture in
California when all of a sudden all the student's phones start giving an
earthquake imminent signal.  Run for the doorway or outside???

     Joe Preisig

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