The victory of the Foxes caused an earthquake. We are not joking. Not only the little town is the most talked about of the UK now, but its fans caused a real movement, measured by seismologists.
Richard Hoyle, student of geology at Leicester University, found out that the equipment both at the uni and at the Newarke Museum (4km from the stadium), set up to register every single earth movement, were going a little mad during the home matches; a phenomenon somehow similar, though on a smaller scale, to the ones noted during an earthquake. Could the movement be caused by the football fans? What would happen putting the seismographs considerably closer to the King Power Stadium?
Richard, together with a team of students and professor Stuart Fishwork, decided to find out. They reached out to a local primary school, only 500 metres away from the pitch, and engaged the kids, that responded enthusiastically.
‘We used the opportunity to speak to the school children and get them excited about the experiment. Their home team was doing very well and we grabbed the opportunity to capture their imagination. They were very interested: we discussed with them seismic waves, sound waves and energy. A good way to get them motivated’.
Apparently every time the Foxes scored a goal the instruments jumped. A bus or a car passing by generates waves as well, but of a different shape. ‘The waves generates after a goal are very similar to the ones created by a naturally occurred earthquake’.
When the Foxes scored against Norwich in the 89th minute of the match, the instruments registered a magnitude of 0.3. Not enough to make damages, of course, but still remarkable. ‘Instead of dealing with millions of tons of rocks we are dealing with 32,000 people and their movements are detected half a kilometre away’.
That’s a lot of movement. ‘The same you could feel is a big lorry drives past very close’.
They called it Vardy-quake. They also set up a twitter account @VardyQuake to provide updates.
The Premier League might be over but the instruments are set up now and Richard’s team will go on working on the experiment. ‘We can view the software we use remotely and we want to continue studying it’. The quake is not over yet.