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Girl using smart phone to scan exhibitThe Incorporated Research Institutes for Seismology (IRIS) has selected the East Kentucky Science Center and Planetarium (EKSC), powered by Appalachian Wireless, to receive an Active Earth kiosk, which is an interactive computer-based museum-type display that provides a way to engage audiences with Earth science information without spending resources on a large exhibit.

The kiosk consists of a customizable set of web pages about plate tectonics, earthquakes, volcanoes and tsunamis that runs in an Internet browser, but fills up the entire screen.

IRIS is a consortium of over 120 U.S. universities dedicated to the operation of science facilities for the acquisition, management, and distribution of seismological data. Its mission is to advance awareness and understanding of seismology and earth science while inspiring careers in geophysics.

The Active Earth Monitor is a customizable computer based earth science display designed for K-12 schools, museums, visitor centers, libraries, and universities, and provides a way to engage audiences with earth science information. All Active Earth Monitor content can be interactive using a touch screen, mouse or trackball.

Parts of Kentucky are located near the New Madrid Seismic Zone, where the largest series of Earthquakes in United States history took place in between December of 1811 and February of 1812. That Earthquake was felt in 20 states and was so powerful that for several hours, the Mississippi River actually ran backwards!

Recently, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) warned that a serious earthquake in the New Madrid Seismic Zone could result in "the highest economic losses due to a natural disaster in the United States," further predicting "widespread and catastrophic" damage across Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas, and particularly Tennessee.
The IRIS Active Earthquake Kiosk is located in the Drs. George D. and Joyce Edwards Exhibit Hall at the EKSC through January.

For more information, contact Steve Russo, director of the EKSC, at (606) 889-4809 or email