Seismograph Activity

The Seismograph Project can be found in the Using Computational Thinking to Understand Earthquakes lesson plan. This lesson plan explores seismic activity, plate tectonics, and modern infrastructure techniques that help mitigate earthquake damage to buildings. When building the seismograph, students may run into some problems. Here are some troubleshooting tips to help them get unstuck: 

Problem - My graph shows no data/My graph doesn’t show enough amplitude. 

Solution - Make sure that coil wire leads are sanded and the connection with the alligator clips is secure. 

  • Make sure that the magnet is swinging close to the coil

  • Make sure that there are enough winds on the coil (at least 125)

  • Make sure that your microcontroller is flashed using the correct cod

  • Make sure that you are using the correct Excel Workbook

  • Change the Data rows number in the Workbook Settings tab to 500

Workbook settings

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