All new IoT-enabled strong-motion earthquake detection sensors with high detection precision with modular and extendible design.

Introduction to Seismic Sensors and Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) System

Introduction to Seismic Sensors

Seismic activities are on rise all across the world. Himalayan region is due for a mega earthquake as confirmed by geological experts all over the world. Minimizing the seismic damage on the existing civil, electrical and telecommunication structures emerged as one of the prime goals for local and national authorities. Although most of the structures are designed and built to resist earthquake upto 8.5 (Richter scale), in reality weathering on structures and damages from minor seismic activities continually degrade the capability to withstand mega-seismic activities.  

Therefore, scientists and authorities all over the world, are deploying seismic sensors along with structural health monitoring(SHM) sensors (such as 3 axis deflection, vibration, stress, strain etc. )  on important structures like bridges, power transmission poles, hospitals etc. in active seismic zones. Such seismic monitoring equipment and instruments help the scientists to estimate the damages from minor earthquakes. Then using mathematical models,  it is possible to extrapolate and predict the extent of damage on the structures that can be caused by mega earthquakes.  

However, to achieve such goal at scale is difficult.  The entire stretch of Himalaya region or Californian Faultline runs over thousands of miles and millions of structures. Even if we handpick a few critical structures, their number will run into couple of tens of thousands. Therefore, to practically isolate the structures that may be devasted during megaquakes would require cost effective seismic sensors, seismic detectors and sensor network in mass scale. Machinesense patented 3-axis deflection and seismic sensors connected via a small local server are unique innovation in this area that will meet the cost and scale criteria of the project. In addition, it is run by a open PYTHON based platform so that the seismic experts can easily add their mathematical model to estimate damages from Seismic activities in real time. 

 Machinesense Seismic sensor and SHM platform are unique low cost and yet the most advanced technology option for seismic monitoring. 

Key Features

  • Unique SI value calculation algorithm
  • Superior cost performance
  • Automatic power shut-off using user configurable threshold
  • Broadband and 4G enabled
Key Features of Seismometers

How It Works?

How Earthquake Detection Sensor

Application Areas

Application Areas of Seismometers (Industrial equipment)

Industrial equipment such as machine tools, control panels, semiconductors, etc.

Application Areas of Earthquake Detection Sensor (Home appliances)

Home appliances such as distribution panels, fire-prevention systems, heaters, etc.

Application Areas of Seismic Sensor

Chemical plants, electricity meters, gas meters, etc.

Application Areas of Earthquake Detection Sensor

Bridges, tunnels, expressways, and railroad appliances such as distribution panels, fire-prevention systems, heaters, etc.

User Interface

  • User friendly user interface.
  • Real time data-records as well as historical data records of SI and
    PGA (Peak Ground Acceleration).
  • Data download in csv format.
  • Alarm setting: Synchronized with user defined trigger threshold
  • Alarm method: Email/SMS.
User Interface of Seismic Sensor
User Interface of Seismometers

Seismic FAQ

Answer: Seismic sensor is an instrument used for measuring ground motion. It measures ground motion in a dynamic manner. Seismic sensors can be of displacement type, or velocity type, or acceleration type. Before the invention of modern sensors, earthquakes used to be measured by the displacement of a stylus representing amplified ground motion. Modern seismic sensors include geophones that measure velocity or accelerometers that measure acceleration of the ground.

Answer: Seismic sensors can be of inertial mass type or piezoelectric types. In inertial mass type seismic sensor, the mass is kept stationary because of its inertia or by applying external means. Because of an earthquake, the support of the sensor vibrates producing a relative motion between the mass and the frame of the sensor. This relative motion is used to measure the earthquake magnitude.

In piezoelectric type seismic sensor, a piezoelectric material is placed between the inertial mass and the casing of the sensor. Due to ground motion, base of the sensor experiences an oscillation. Due to the motion of the ground, a pressure differential is created across two planes of the piezoelectric material. Due to piezoelectric property, the pressure differential generates voltage across mutually perpendicular planes. This voltage is used to quantify seismic motion.

Answer: Seismic sensors can be of displacement type, velocity type, or accelerometer type. Seismic vibration sensors are those that measure vibration of the ground. Seismic vibration sensors are mainly of two types:

  • Broadband sensors
  • Strong motion sensors

Broadband sensors are used to detect seismic signals over a wide frequency range (thus the name broadband). Usually, the frequency range is from 0.001 Hz to 100 Hz. Broadband sensors are capable of capturing extremely low frequency seismic waves. But the amplitude range is relatively low. Higher amplitude signals are clipped in these types of sensors.

On the other hand, strong motion sensors are capable of measuring large amplitude signals. These sensors, however, don’t capture very low frequency signal.

Answer: Seismographs provide a low cost approach for recording ground motion. Seismographs are in use to detect earthquake for a long time. Before the use of sensors to detect earthquake, seismograph provided a convenient method to record earthquakes. Seismograph in its simplest form is composed of a simple pendulum attached to a recorder by a mechanical arrangement. A large mass is suspended from a cable and the cable is attached to a casing that rests on the ground. When the ground shakes because of an earthquake, it also shakes the casing. But the mass remains stationary for some time after the excitation because of its inertia. Thus, a relative motion is observed between the mass and the casing. This relative motion is amplified and recorded on a moving drum. From the amplitude of the recorded signal, earthquake intensity is predicted. This is how seismographs detect an earthquake.

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