Feature

The future of earthquake prediction

Each week, we spotlight a cool innovation recommended by some of the industry's top tech writers. This week's pick is a new tool to predict earthquakes.

A Boeing subsidiary called Liquid Robotics has developed "automated surfboard-like devices" to help scientists forecast earthquakes, said James Hookway at The Wall Street Journal. These Wave Gliders capture data transmitted from "aviation-style black-box beacons" buried in the ocean floor, enabling scientists to build better computer models to identify "where the Earth's tectonic plates are moving smoothly," and where they might trigger an earthquake.

The devices can't precisely predict the next earthquake, but they can provide "clues to where really big ones are most likely to occur." The Gliders use solar power and "an underwater element that captures and transforms wave motion" to stay active for months at a time. They were originally designed to eavesdrop on the singing of humpback whales.

Recommended

Founder of eBay reportedly helping Facebook whistleblower
Jabin Botsford-Pool/Getty Images
Facebook fallout

Founder of eBay reportedly helping Facebook whistleblower

Facebook reportedly believes now is a great time to change its name
Mark Zuckerberg
What's in a name?

Facebook reportedly believes now is a great time to change its name

Facebook can be its own country when it gets an army
The pledge of allegiance.
Picture of Joel MathisJoel Mathis

Facebook can be its own country when it gets an army

Should the CDC hide unverified vaccine data?
Vaccination.
Picture of Bonnie KristianBonnie Kristian

Should the CDC hide unverified vaccine data?

Most Popular

Where outing the GOP lawmakers at Jan. 6 proved futile
Jan. 6 riot.
'his street cred went up'

Where outing the GOP lawmakers at Jan. 6 proved futile

Republicans see inflation as Democrats' downfall
Grocery store tomatoes.
inflation nation

Republicans see inflation as Democrats' downfall

The American 'Great Resignation' by the numbers
Help wanted sign
Help Wanted

The American 'Great Resignation' by the numbers