U.S. Funds 'Earthquake' in Israeli Desert

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NEGEV- The U.S. Defense Department funded a huge experimental explosion in the Israeli Negev Desert on Wednesday, which simulated an earthquake of 3.0 on the Richter scale.

The experiment was a joint project of the Seismology Branch of the Israel Geophysical Institute, which is part of the National Infrastructures Ministry, and the University of Hawaii.

Earthquakes of that magnitude occur about once a week in this region, but their effects are not usually felt.

Eighty tons of explosives were used in the controlled explosion, which tested seismic and acoustic sensors throughout Israel and around the Mediterranean basin.

Experts monitored the resulting sound waves to better understand earthquakes and atmospheric conditions. 

Data was collected in Italy, France, Greece and Cyprus as well as other countries.

Experts will also use the data to assess Israel's earthquake monitoring system.

Israel is in an earthquake prone region and experts say it is only a matter of time before a major quake will rock the region.

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