Earthquake engineering – withstanding nature’s shakes
Engineers who are earthquake specialists study the behavior of buildings and how they react when an earthquake strikes. These engineers usually study structural or civil engineering then specialize as earthquake engineers.
In areas that are expected to be hit by earthquakes it is important to predict how buildings and other structures will withstand an earthquake and think of ways to make them safer.
Engineers can test structures by using a ‘shake table’ and moving them around as would happen in a real earthquake. In Europe there is a European research centre in Italy where this kind of testing is undertaken.
There was a very famous Irish engineer Robert Mallet ‘the father of seismology’. He was born in Dublin in 1810 and was very interested in earthquakes.