The Atlantic has posted “An Excellent Visual Comparison of Earthquake Strength” in their online magazine. Click the link below. But first a little background on the Richter Scale to help you gauge the size of an earthquake.
The Richter Scale, used to gauge the energy contained in an earthquake, is a logarithmic scale, not a linear scale. According to Wiki, an earthquake that measures 5 on the Richter Scale has a shaking amplitude 10 times larger and corresponds to an energy release that is 31.6 time greater than one that measures 4 on the Richter Scale. Every step up in a whole number is a ten-fold increase in the size and severity of the quake.
Click here to see Atlantic’s visual comparison: