Difference Between Earthquake Focus and the Epicenter

There is a lot of terminology that can confuse geographic enthusiast. Focus, Hypocenter, Epicenter? What does that exactly mean? When we spoke about seismic waves we mentioned that they originate from different areas. The point of which the wave originates is what we call the Earthquake focus (foci plural). It is also known as the Hypocenter. These foci of natural earthquakes are found at different depths below the ground surface. There are three levels, Shallow at 10-100 km below, Intermediate 70-300 km and Deep foci at 300 km or below.

Shallow earthquakes create the most damage and 3/4 of total energy released of earthquakes in the world. They unlike intermediate and deep focus earthquakes, shallow earthquakes occur at all type of plate boundaries like ocean trenches, subduction zones, etc.

So what is the epicenter of an earthquake, we always hear that. “The epicenter of the quake.” The point on the ground surface directly above the focus is known as the epicenter .

There is also another amazing geographical phenomenon that occurs. It is a major tectonic feature related to foci and it is called the Wadati Benioff (dipping seismic) zone. This is a narrow zone, that dips under the Earth’s crust to depths of up to 700 km. It is a deep foci that generally occurs in Island arcs and deep ocean trenches.

source

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About Rashid Faridi

I am Rashid Aziz Faridi ,Writer, Teacher and a Voracious Reader.
This entry was posted in earth, interior of the Earth, plate tectonics. Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Difference Between Earthquake Focus and the Epicenter

  1. Rashid–

    Thanks so much for the great information on focus and epicenter! I am citing some some of your tidbits in my Geology Lab class Discussion @ Grand Canyon University where I study under Wael Hassinan.

    Stephanie

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  2. Talal says:

    Thanks Rashid for the differences between the two terms. This helped me out alot with my notes…

    Like

  3. arirang says:

    THANKS RASHID….
    😀

    THIS IS SUCH A GREAT HELP FOR MY HOMEWORK….

    Like

  4. tay says:

    THANKS RASHID
    🙂
    THIS HELPED A LOT WITH MY SCIENCE PRODJECT…..

    Like

  5. GOPI says:

    THANKS A LOT.IT HELPED ME UNDERSTANDING ABOUT EARTHQUAKE.

    Like

  6. Caitlin says:

    THANKS RASHID!

    YOU REALLY HELPED ME!!!!! 🙂 THANKS

    HAVE A GOOD DAY

    Like

  7. jasmin says:

    umm, can someone please explain it too me.
    i dont get it :/

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  8. angelica says:

    middleton
    thanks for the informtion that you presented it help me a lot

    Like

  9. sean says:

    Great, it’s a good education page. Thanks for sharing.

    Like

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