Richter scale

noun
Rich·​ter scale | \ ˈrik-tər- How to pronounce Richter scale (audio) \

Definition of Richter scale

: an open-ended logarithmic scale for expressing the magnitude of a seismic disturbance (such as an earthquake) in terms of the energy dissipated in it with 1.5 indicating the smallest earthquake that can be felt, 4.5 an earthquake causing slight damage, and 8.5 a very devastating earthquake

First Known Use of Richter scale

1936, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for Richter scale

Charles F. Richter

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about Richter scale

Dictionary Entries near Richter scale

richt

Richter

richterite

Richter scale

richweed

Ricimer

ricin

Statistics for Richter scale

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for Richter scale

The first known use of Richter scale was in 1936

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on Richter scale

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with Richter scale

Comments on Richter scale

What made you want to look up Richter scale? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

not to be persuaded, moved, or stopped

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Latin Quiz

  • roman forum
  • Which of the following months comes from a Latin word for “ten”?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Citation

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!