Los Angeles Times

A quake every 3 minutes: California shaken by 10 times more temblors than previously known

LOS ANGELES - California has experienced 10 times more earthquakes than previously known, according to groundbreaking new research that has helped scientists better understand the region's seismology.

Scientists documented 1.8 million earthquakes in Southern California over the last decade - with 90% of them newly discovered and so small they had long been undetectable to modern computing systems. Previously, only 180,000 earthquakes were on record for the last 10 years.

Researchers now have a better ability to identify undiscovered faults, detect patterns of moving earthquake swarms, and identify faint clusters of foreshocks that occur before a larger earthquake.

"We see incredible details," California Institute of Technology seismologist Zachary Ross said of the newly discovered earthquakes he outlined in a study released Thursday in the journal Science, of which he was the lead author. "We start to see new faults emerging."

"It is a pretty exciting moment in seismology," said Kate Scharer, a U.S. Geological Survey research geologist who

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