The three types of seismic waves are primary waves, secondary waves and surface waves. Seismic waves can cause earthquakes and have destructive capability. Primary and secondary waves are known as body waves, and these w... More »

The S wave is the most destructive wave that causes earthquakes. S waves are more dangerous because they are larger than other wave types and produce both horizontal and vertical motion on and under the ground. More » Science Earth Science Plate Tectonics

Compressional waves are waves that move along the direction of propagation in a back and forth motion. Common examples of compressional waves include sound waves and P waves, which are types of seismic waves. More » Science Physics Optics & Waves

The three types of earthquake waves are primary waves, secondary waves and surface waves. Primary waves are referred to as P waves, and secondary waves are called S waves. P waves and S waves move past Earth's crust, whi... More »

Seismic waves occur from actions within the Earth's core, including breaking and splitting rocks, explosions and volcanic eruptions. Seismic waves occur on land and in the ocean; they exist in two primary forms — surface... More »

Surface waves cause the most damage to things like highways, bridges and buildings. Surface waves are one of four types of seismic waves generated during an earthquake. More »

Two main types of seismic waves exist: body waves and surface waves. Body waves include P waves or primary waves and S waves or secondary waves. Surface waves include Love waves and Rayleigh waves. More » Science Earth Science