Featured Research Projects
Monitoring locations of temporary and continuous GPS instruments in the Pacific Northwest.
Detecting and accurately locating seismic events and slower crustal movements depends on sensitive instruments and good models (equations that describe characteristics of the earth’s structure). Scientists are performing research to improve several aspects of monitoring:
- Changes to allow NEIC to trigger on smaller earthquakes.
- Evaluation of alternate method of locating earthquakes.
- Improving earthquake early warning and rapid response using real time high rate GPS data.
- Enable objective, automated geodetic data monitoring and rapid deformation event analysis.
Recognition of the phenomena of slow slip is perhaps one of the most exciting discoveries in geophysics in the last decade. These phenomena are providing new clues and understanding about the processes involved in the loading and relaxation of deformation in subduction zones and elsewhere, which in turn will ultimately help us assess and reduce the hazard associated with the relaxation that occurs as damaging earthquakes. The newness of this discovery, and the explosion of related studies and data, require new efforts to coordinate information exchange about these phenomena and their connections to earthquakes. USGS is coordinating with other groups studying slow slip, and the results of these studies will be conveyed to various sectors of the public.
There is also research to improve the timeliness, scope, and reliability of authoritative earthquake information, reducing the impact to life and property. These efforts are focused at allowing an integrated and evolving view of any significant earthquake as soon as possible, providing earthquake source parameters, shaking distribution, shaking intensity, population exposure to shaking, and economic and casualty loss estimates.
Real-time Products for Response
PAGER - population exposed to different levels of shaking in the M6.0 South Island, New Zealand earthquake on June 13, 2011.
Research supports the following real-time products:
- Did You Feel It? -DYFI is a citizen science web application that invites users to answer a questionnaire about their experience of an earthquake, and then creates a map of the felt shaking (macro seismic intensity) with all the information collected.
- ShakeMap - ShakeMap is an emergency response tool designed to rapidly portray the extent and degree of damaging ground motions recorded in a seismic network.
- PAGER - PAGER rapidly assesses the overall impact (casualties and losses) for all damaging earthquakes within minutes of the earthquake and automatically transmits that information following damaging events to critical users and decision makers (including utilities, global corporations, governments, aid agencies, and search and rescue operations).
- Fast Finite Faults (FFF)/InSAR Modeling - Improve rapid finite-fault determination and source modeling waveform (WF), InSAR and real-time GPS modeling.
- Moment Tensors (RMT/MT/CMT) - Automated computation of source duration and source-time function for all M6+ earthquakes.