DUSAHNBE, August 22, Asia-Plus -- Tajikistan has been shaken by more than 20 earthquakes so far this year.

Internationally known expert in seismology, academician Sobit Nematulloyev has told Asia-Plus that earthquake that struck Tajik capital the late afternoon on August 18 was in the 4.5-point range on the 12-point scale commonly used in the former Soviet Union.  In the epicenter of the Dushanbe quake was roughly 10-15 kilometers southeast of the capital city, the tremors magnitude was in the 4.2-point range on the Richter scale. 

According to Mr. Nematulloyev, the 9-point Richter scale is used for magnitude of tremor in the quake’s epicenter.  Magnitude of tremors in the areas of the earthquake is registered by the 12-point scale, and it depends on of the depth, surrounding soil and other factors in the quake’s epicenter.

“We have studied this so-called Sultonobod center of the last quake very good,” said academician, “It has never caused serious damage and casualties.”  Though relatively powerful, the August 18 quake was of very short duration.  Dushanbe escaped with only minor damage after being hit by a moderately powerful tremor.

Any tremor includes three components: vertical; horizontal north-south; and horizontal west-east.  “This time, all three components were to be observed in the Dushanbe earthquake and residents of the city could feel them.”