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Five announcements from the SCEC Community

Date: 12/06/2022

Dear SCEC Community,

Please see below for the following five announcements:

  • 2023 (Virtual) Northern California Earthquake Hazards Workshop - Registration is open!
  • IUGG 2023 Symposium on “Advances in Earthquake and Explosion Monitoring Using Distributed Acoustic Sensing” 
  • Research Geophysics Position at UC Santa Cruz
  • Two Session Announcements for SSA 2023
  • Graduate student opportunities in the Department of Geology & Geophysics at Texas A&M University


On behalf of Shane Detweiler, USGS

2023 (Virtual) Northern California Earthquake Hazards Workshop - Registration is open!

Online registration for the annual Northern California Earthquake Hazards workshop, to be held virtually Jan. 31- Feb. 2, 2023 is now open.  Please register by January 17.  

Click here: https://earthquake.usgs.gov/esc/workshop/

We'll get a detailed agenda out soon, but you can see the topics to be discussed via a link at the above URL as well.

-Shane and the Organizing Committee



On behalf of Herb Wang, Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison

IUGG 2023 Symposium on “Advances in earthquake and explosion monitoring using Distributed Acoustic Sensing”

Abstract submission deadline is 14 February 2023. Author notification of acceptance/rejection is 17 March 2023.


Distributed acoustic sensing has grown into an exciting topic within observational seismology over the last decade. The flexibility of how and where a fibre optic cable can be deployed provides significant opportunities for both novel network designs and a large range of monitoring and sensing applications. Despite this growth in interest, we are still, as a community, trying to understand both what the current limitations are and how far we can push these limits.

Fundamental differences exist between DAS measurements and traditional seismometers. DAS measures strain or strain rate whereas seismometers measure particle velocity. Furthermore, DAS measures deformation at metre-scale and only in the direction of the cable whereas seismometers provide single-point measurements but in three orthogonal directions. While the differences in physical measurements require adaptation to extract meaningful signal characteristics, the continuous spatial measurements provide new opportunities for novel signal processing techniques that can take advantage of the vast quantities of data that are recorded.

Existing DAS networks include fibre-optic cable buried in shallow trenches or vertical boreholes, cable deployed to emulate traditional seismic arrays, and the repurposing of telecommunication fibre and underwater cables for seismological applications. These networks have been used to demonstrate the potential for earthquake early warning, studies of Earth structure, seismic source analysis, global earthquake monitoring and explosion monitoring. Differences in cable construction and cable deployment can produce differences in the recorded signal.

In this symposium we wish to encourage contributions that showcase how DAS can be best used and developed for enhancing seismological analyses relevant to earthquake and explosion monitoring. We are interested in novel methods, applications, networks, and case studies that can enrich our understanding of the topic.

Conveners: Ben Dando (NORSAR), Herb Wang (U. Wisconsin-Madison), Meghan Miller (Australian National U.), Lotte Krawcyzk (GFZ Potsdam)



On behalf of Heather Savage, UC Santa Cruz

Research Geophysics Position at UC Santa Cruz

The Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences at the University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC) invites applications for a research scientist in geophysics as applied to industrial or societal problems. Under the direction of the Department Chair, the research scientist will build a program that is well-integrated with our basic science expertise in earthquakes, seismology and related disciplines. We are particularly interested in candidates who can expand our impact in geohazards. Potential fields of interest include rock mechanics and/or new geophysical observation methods.

The successful candidate should demonstrate broad applicability and a potential for external collaborations and/or industry sponsorship. Scientists in the Professional Research title series are individuals with mature research portfolios who normally serve as principal investigators on grants and develop a full research program. The position is funded at 50% through university funds and is envisioned as a career position with regular merit and promotion reviews.

The current geophysics group at UC Santa Cruz includes expertise in earthquake mechanics, seismology, structural geology, and geodynamics (see https://websites.pmc.ucsc.edu/~seisweb/ for more details). The group collaborates with the researchers working on hazards at the USGS Coastal Science Center and seeks to foster further connections there. The group also includes significant connections to community initiatives such as Subduction Zone in Four Dimensions (SZ4D) and Southern California Earthquake Center (SCEC) that can be strategically complemented by the successful candidate.

The research scientist will be expected to develop their own research program and work collaboratively with existing department members addressing Earth hazards. Science that is complementary to current efforts in the department and community initiatives such as SCEC and SZ4D is of particular interest. Engagement with the active tectonics efforts in the USGS Coastal Center in Santa Cruz is also encouraged.

Applicants with expertise in writing successful grant proposals, excellent interpersonal skills for cultivating collaborations, exceptional communication skills, and strong presentation skills, and/or innovative vision for collaborations are strongly encouraged to apply.

Review of applications will begin after Dec.21 and will continue until the position is filled. Please apply by this date for full consideration.  Application materials include cover letter, CV, research statement, list of publications, and diversity statement. Ph.D. is required.

For additional information and to apply, go to: https://recruit.ucsc.edu/JPF01416

Questions concerning the application process should be sent to Heather Savage at hsavage@ucsc.edu.



On behalf of Patricia Martinez-Garzon, GFZ Potsdam

Two Session Announcements for SSA 2023

Dear colleagues,

SSA 2023 will take place in Puerto Rico, 17–20 April 2023, and submission of abstracts are now open. 

We want to draw your attention on two sessions that can be of interest for you, or some of your colleagues, students or postdocs (see the abstract at the bottom of the mail):

1) Earthquake Preparation Across Scales: Reconciling Geophysical Observations with Laboratory and Theory (Piero Poli, Università di Padova, piero.poli@unipd.it, Patricia Martínez-Garzón, GFZ Potsdam, patricia@gfz-potsdam.de;  Gregory McLaskey, Cornell University, gcm8@cornell.edu)

2) Deciphering Earthquake Clustering for the Better Understanding of Crustal Deformation Mechanisms (Eric Beauce, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, ebeauce@ldeo.columbia.edu; Piero Poli, Università di Padova, piero.poli@unipd.it, Patricia Martínez Garzón, GFZ Potsdam, patricia@gfz-potsdam.de)

Earthquake Preparation Across Scales: Reconciling Geophysical Observations with Laboratory and Theory
Observing and understanding the physical processes occurring before large earthquakes is fundamental for both scientific purposes and to advance our ability to forecast these catastrophic events. Current physical models of earthquake initiation mainly focus on laboratory experiments and theoretical work. While these studies often describe a distinct nucleation phase, direct field observations of similar preparatory processes based on seismological or geodetic data are still lacking. Nevertheless, recent improvements in monitoring capabilities, density of recording stations, data quality and the development of novel data analysis methods, have increased the spectrum of available observations of processes occurring before large earthquakes. These recent observations, often spanning several spatial and temporal scales, can provide insights into the physical conditions promoting or inhibiting a detectable earthquake preparatory process or fault unrest. In this session we welcome (but we are not limited to) (i) contributions focusing on the observation, analysis and modeling of earthquake preparatory processes from seismological and/or geodetic data covering different spatial and temporal scales, (ii) studies focusing on laboratory scale, theoretical analysis and numerical modeling. For both, we welcome presentations providing novel observations and new insights into the complexities involved in earthquake preparation and initiation and new data analysis (e.g., machine learning, big data, unsupervised analysis) which shed light on earthquake preparation.

Deciphering Earthquake Clustering for the Better Understanding of Crustal Deformation Mechanisms
When is the occurrence of earthquakes random and when is it not? How do earthquakes interact and why are interactions stronger in some places? Which physical processes enhance clustering and which do not? More than a century after the first quantitative description of earthquake clustering in aftershock sequences by Omori, clustering has been recognized as the consequence of stress redistribution accompanying deformation in the crust (for example, after a large earthquake). However, high resolution catalogs, application of advanced statistical analyses and numerical modeling in complex fault analogues have started to reveal how earthquake clustering can also emerge from the interplay between fault complexity and physical processes occurring in the lithosphere. The role of transient creep and fault heterogeneity are for example nowadays key factors in controlling the occurrence of time and space synchronization of seismicity. However, much remains to discover about the relationship between the observed spatio-temporal clustering of earthquakes and the driving mechanisms, as well as the host rock properties. In this session we welcome observational, experimental, numerical and theoretical studies tackling the issue of earthquake clustering at different spatial and temporal scales, and which provide interpretation in terms of fault and other crustal mechanisms. Studies focusing on different tectonics settings, and on volcanoes, are welcome, with the aim of shedding new light on the physics of earthquake clustering and understanding the dynamics of complex crustal processes better.



On behalf of Benchun Duan, Texas A&M

Graduate student opportunities in the Department of Geology & Geophysics at Texas A&M University

Three faculty members in Geophysics, with complementary expertise and strength in observation, modeling, and experiment, are recruiting graduate students (PhD/MSc) for Fall 2023 admission. Research areas: Seismology, Earthquake Source Physics, Fault Mechanics, and Rock Deformation. Students will have the opportunity to join the Center for Tectonophysics, an interdisciplinary research group, and access to a wide range of facilities and research topics. Application deadline is January 1st, 2023.

Dr. Xiaowei Chen is an observational seismologist. She uses a variety of tools to understand the subsurface and faulting. Her current research explores earthquake interactions, fluid-induced earthquakes, aseismic slip, earthquake rupture characterizations, geothermal and volcanic microearthquakes. She is also interested in developing methods with dense seismic and DAS arrays for earthquake rupture and near-surface/subsurface structure. She is looking for motivated students with good math and physics background (programming experience is a plus).

Contact: xiaowei.chen@tamu.edu, website: https://sites.google.com/view/xiaoweichen/ 

Dr. Benchun Duan is a computational seismologist and geomechanicist. His expertise is in numerical modeling of dynamic earthquake rupture, seismic wave propagation, and deformation processes of earthquake cycles. His current research projects explore various slip behaviors and their interactions along subduction zones, dynamic rupture behaviors of geometrically complex faults over earthquake cycles, and fluid-injection induced seismicity. His long-term goal is to integrate field and lab observations with physics-based models for predictive modeling of natural and induced earthquakes. Motivated students with strong background in math and scientific programming are encouraged to apply for his group.  

Contact: bduan@tamu.edu, website: https://geogeo.tamu.edu/people/profiles/faculty/duanbenchun.html

Dr. Hiroko Kitajima is an experimental rock mechanicist. Her expertise is in experimental rock and soil mechanics, and she serves as a director of the John W. Handin Laboratory for Experimental Rock Deformation. Her research interest is to characterize hydromechanical and frictional properties of rocks and sediments deformed at different pressure, temperature, and strain rate conditions. She is looking for students who are interested in pursuing experimental studies to understand earthquake physics in subduction zones and rock-fluid interaction at enhanced geothermal systems.

Contact: kitaji@tamu.edu, website: https://geoweb.tamu.edu/people/profiles/faculty/kitajimahiroko.html



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