The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation (http://www.moore.org/) has awarded $6.5 million to the United States Geological Survey and three West Coast universities to create a prototype earthquake early warning system for the Pacific Coast of the United States. The grant will allow seismologists at the University of California, Berkeley, California Institute of Technology (Caltech), and University of Washington, Seattle, in collaboration with the U.S. Geological Survey, to learn about the science of earthquakes and the best way to capture and analyze seismic data in order to give schools, utilities, industries and the general public as much time as possible—most likely seconds to several minutes—before the ground begins to shake.
Doug Given, USGS's National Earthquake Early Warning Coordinator, presented the status of Earthquake Early Warning to a group of earthquake scientists and engineers at the National Earthquake Conference in Memphis in April 2012. During his talk, Given updated the group on the latest prototype testers, sharing the platform with one such: the President of the Board of Directors of Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART), John McPartland. During this special session, the audience heard the progress being made by the collaborating partners in Caltech & UC Berkeley, as well as what steps were being taken for engineers to be able to give input as to how they could see the system used once fully developed. This opportunity allowed the nation's foremost leaders in earthquake science and application to get engaged in the early warning effort being led by the USGS.
The Southern California Seismic Network (SCSN), of which the United States Geological Survey is a founding agency, will be upgrading outdated analog station equipment and replacing it with state-of-the-art digital equipment over the next several years. These upgrades will ultimately affect ~100 stations located throughout southern California, bringing them up to the modern earthquake recording standards employed at the other ~250 stations in the network. The new equipment to be installed at each station includes four channels of ground motion information, which allows for recording of stronger ground motions, including accelerations up to 4g, at each site. This will substantially increase the network's ability to record large earthquakes at these stations and also mean these stations can contribute to the Earthquake Early Warning effort. Once these final analog sites have been upgraded, all SCSN stations will contribute to Earthquake Early Warning.