Eden Park crowd literally shook the earth

09:00 Fri Oct 28 2011

A seismometer has proven that a packed Eden Park has the ability to shake the earth after ground movement peaked during the Rugby World Cup final.

The seismometer, buried 25 meters beneath the stadium, usually measures seismic waves. However, it is proven to be sensitive enough to register the impact of 60,000 cheering fans.

New Zealand’s win over France to win the Webb Ellis Cup can be noticed in data collected by University of Auckland scientists.

Movement in the ground can be seen about one hour before kick-off, and a spike is evident around the time the All Blacks perform the haka.

A further jump can be seen at 10.30pm when France missed a penalty kick which would have given them the lead.

The biggest spike occurred at full-time and lasted for a good 30 minutes after the final whistle.

"It really is quite beautiful data," Auckland University geophysics technician Annie Zaino said.

"It's actually really impressive, you can see right from the moment the fans start coming into the stadium. They're making enough noise for that to register."

The scale used to measure the movement of the earth is similar to the Richter scale which measures the strength of earthquakes.

The loudest point during Sunday's game, however, would have registered less than one thousandth of the 2.9 earthquake that struck Auckland in July.

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