Earthquakes can generate electromagnetic waves that are detectable by animals hours or even days before the actual event occurs. This phenomenon is known as the “earthquake lights” or “seismic lightning” and is still not fully understood by scientists.
The strange phenomenon of earthquake lights
Have you ever heard of “earthquake lights” or “seismic lightning”? This phenomenon has intrigued scientists for years. The lights appear to be the result of electromagnetic waves. Their faint glow appears to be detectable by animals (and certain forms of technology).
Regardless of its origin, this phenomenon has the potential to provide valuable insights into the physics of earthquakes.
According to National Geographic (cited below), “Earthquake lights can manifest themselves in different ways, from a faint, diffuse glow on the horizon to flame-like streamers emanating from the ground.” They can appear in a variety of colors, including white, blue, yellow, and red.
These lights have been observed in various forms, including:
- luminous clouds
- flashes of light
- glowing balls of light that hover over the ground
Studies have shown that some animals, including dogs and horses, are able to sense the electromagnetic waves produced by earthquakes. As a result, they may exhibit unusual behavior before an earthquake strikes.
Similarly, some researchers believe that the lights themselves may be an early warning sign of an impending earthquake. Eventually, this could allow us to prepare and evacuate before the shaking begins.
These lights have been observed for centuries. But they remain poorly understood by scientists who are still working to determine how and why they are produced. Some suggest that they are the result of electrical charges building up in rocks and soils under stress. Others propose that they may be related to the release of gases from the Earth’s crust.
In 1965, residents of Matsushiro, Japan, witnessed a spectacular display of earthquake lights before a major earthquake struck the area. The lights appeared as bright, white flashes that seemed to be coming from the ground. The earthquake, which had a magnitude of 7.0, caused significant damage in the region.
Source: “Earthquake Lights – Explained” — National Geographic