Most Canberrans will have witnessed the power of a stadium full of Green Machine supporters, clapping together in unison as the Raiders run out on to the field at a home game.

Now, researchers are getting in on the action, brining some high-tech equipment to the sidelines in a bid to measure the earth moving phenomenon that is the ‘Viking Clap’.

ANU Professor Malcolm Sambridge and his team will be on hand at this weekend’s Raiders clash with the Dragons as they look to measure the seismic activity of the Green machine’s cheering fans.

“We’re hoping to be able to see a ‘footy quake’ when a try is scored.”

“It’s likely to be slightly bigger when the Raiders score of course.”

A seismometer, the same tool used to measure earthquakes, will be installed underneath the stands at GIO stadium and will be able to measure both the audio waves and those transmitted into the ground from fans.

“It’s a general interest project for us, something we are curious to understand but it’s also a fantastic way of connecting with the public and showing them what science can do.”


However, the research is also set to provide some practical benefits as well.

“Measuring these shallow, human induced waves can come in handy when it comes to things like evaluating buildings and roads.”

The ANU team will share its results on social media via @AusisEdu.

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