TriNet is a web of over 600 seismometers across Southern and Central California. These seismometers are located underground in phone company control rooms, electrical company switching stations, and in specially-constructed underground vaults. Whether they are "strong-motion accelerometers" or "broad band seismometers", these instruments all send measurements of seismic movements via digital phone lines, radios, microwave links and the internet back to the Caltech Seismo Lab in Pasadena, California. When an earthquake happens, TriNet is how computers and geologists are immediately able to determine where exactly the earthquake occurred and how strong it was.
These modern seismographs are affectionately called "squash boxes".
The Seismo Lab Media Center is set up to handle the swarms of television crews the descend upon geologists after earthquakes. In fact, while we were live to the Exploratorium floor, an ABC News team waited rather impatiently outside for their turn to spin the facts.

On the Road with the Faultline Project
©1999 Exploratorium