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

The origins of a false COVID meme
A rubber stamp.
Picture of Bonnie KristianBonnie Kristian

The origins of a false COVID meme

The daily business briefing: July 27, 2021
Blue Moon
Business briefing

The daily business briefing: July 27, 2021

PayPal's reckless foray into regulating speech
The PayPal logo.
Samuel Goldman

PayPal's reckless foray into regulating speech

The used-car buying frenzy
Used cars.
Feature

The used-car buying frenzy

Most Popular

A tie for gold led to one of the most joyful celebrations at the 2020 Olympics
Gianmarco Tamberi, Mutaz Barshim.
2020 Tokyo Games

A tie for gold led to one of the most joyful celebrations at the 2020 Olympics

Tom Brady's 'gentle' roast of Trump at Biden's White House: 'Deeply vicious'?
Tom Brady, Joe Biden
Quotables

Tom Brady's 'gentle' roast of Trump at Biden's White House: 'Deeply vicious'?

Israeli data suggest infected, vaccinated individuals have low chance of spreading COVID-19
Sharon Alroy-Preis.
sunday shows

Israeli data suggest infected, vaccinated individuals have low chance of spreading COVID-19