How Earthquakes Make Buildings Vibrate 1 - Introduction
Every building has its own fundamental frequency.
If the ground below the building started to shake to
and fro at the buildings natural frequency, it would cause
the building to vibrate very strongly. This
is known as resonance.
If the ground vibrated at a different frequency, the building
would not vibrate as strongly. In fact the building's vibrations
get much smaller, as the frequency of shaking moves further
away from the natural frequency of the building.
When the ground shakes during an earthquake, it does not
have one frequency of vibration, but it is
made up from a mixture of frequencies. A building will vibrate
more strongly when any of those frequencies are close to its
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