The end of the Quake Observatory? NSF might stop funding for SAFOD

San Andreas Fault

The San Andreas Fault Observatory at Depth (SAFOD) was one of the most ambitious (and expensive) experiments in the history of active fault research. A borehole was drilled through the San Andreas Fault, 3.2 km deep and 1.8 km in horizontal direction. The borehole was equipped with a number of instruments in order to get data from right where the earthquakes occur, but most of the instruments failed already in 2008 due to the extreme conditions. While analyses of the drill core resulted in some great scientific achievements and enhanced our understanding of fault zones, almost no one seems to have much interest in the in-situ instruments. Or let’s say, no one can pay the necessary amount for re-equipping the hole, millions of dollars…  Continue reading “The end of the Quake Observatory? NSF might stop funding for SAFOD”

Crete and mainland Greece Fieldwork, March 2014

Uplifted algal rims at Sougia.

During the month of March 2014, Sascha and I along with Tobi and Lauretta (BSc students from RWTH University) were in Greece for fieldwork. The fieldwork campaign started on the island of Crete; our institute at RWTH Aachen has a joint project with Mainz University to carry out paleotsunami investigations on the island. The western part of Crete was uplifted by approximately 9 m during the 21st July AD 365 earthquake and also hit by the associated tsunami. Due to the strong seismic and highly tsunamigenic activity of the nearby Hellenic Trench, it is suggested that numerous earlier tsunamis have also struck the island. Continue reading “Crete and mainland Greece Fieldwork, March 2014”

New papers on lacustrine turbidites, coseismic landslides in NZ, active faults in Iran, and paleoseismology in Ecuador

Old books

I came across several interesting papers on paleoseismology and related disciplines, most of them published recently. They deal with “classical” paleoseismology, with earthquake environmental effects like coseismic landslides and tsunamis, and also with geomorphological indicators for active faulting. Let me know if I missed some! Continue reading “New papers on lacustrine turbidites, coseismic landslides in NZ, active faults in Iran, and paleoseismology in Ecuador”

Late Holocene rupture history of the Ventas de Zafarraya Fault in Southern Spain

My latest paper deals with the Holocene activity of the Ventas de Zafarraya Fault in Southern Spain. It was published some days ago in the most recent issue of Cuaternario y Geomorfología. The Ventas de Zafarraya Fault (VZF) west of the Granada basin (36.96° N, 4.14°W) has a beautiful morphologic expression and an exciting history. The fault bounds the Zafarraya polje to the south, with Quaternary sediments to the north (hanging wall) and limestones of the Internal Subbetics in the footwall (Fig. 1). Continue reading “Late Holocene rupture history of the Ventas de Zafarraya Fault in Southern Spain”

The Iberfault 2014 meeting – 2nd Iberian meeting on Active Faults and Paleoseismology, 22-24 October, Lorca, Spain

After the 1st Iberfault meeting in 2010, the 2nd meeting will take place in Lorca, Spain from 22-24 October, 2014. Any research on active tectonics and paleoseismology in Iberia is welcome, a special focus will be set on the QUAFI database. The conference will be organized by José Martinez Díaz (UCM), Eulàlia Masana (UB) and Miguel A. Rodríguez (IGME). Lorca became famous in 2011 when a shallow MW5.1 earthquake killed 9 people and caused severe damages in the city (there is an ongoing discussion whether or not groundwater lowering for irrigation during the last decades has caused, triggered, or influenced the quake).

Continue reading “The Iberfault 2014 meeting – 2nd Iberian meeting on Active Faults and Paleoseismology, 22-24 October, Lorca, Spain”

Special Issue “Geology and Archaeology of Earthquakes” in Cuaternario y Geomorfología

A special issue on “Geology and Archaeology of Earthquakes” has currently been published in Cuaternario y Geomorfología (Quaternary and Geomoprhology, ISSN: 0214-1744), which is the official journal of the Spanish Quaternary Union (AEQUA) and the Spanish Geomorphological Society (SEG): Vol 27, No 3-4 (2013) – Geología y Arqueología de Terremotos. The issue includes an introduction and ten research papers on earthquake geology and archaeoseismology of the Iberian Peninsula. Most papers are in English, few in Spanish. Continue reading “Special Issue “Geology and Archaeology of Earthquakes” in Cuaternario y Geomorfología”

What’s up? The Friday links (59)

Typhoon Haiyan was among the strongest storms ever recorded and likely the strongest one to make landfall in historical times. This mega storm hit the Philippines with windspeeds of more than 300 km/h. It caused thousands of fatalities, widespread flooding and devastation especially in its direct path. NASA’s Terra satellite is equipped with the ASTER sensor. This sensor is perfect for producing false color images of land cover and vegetation. In this image series it becomes clear that typhoon Haiyan destroyed a significant part of the vegetation around Tacloban. Continue reading “What’s up? The Friday links (59)”

Field Training Course and Workshop “Tectonic and climatic forcing on the Late Quaternary landscape evolution of Central Argentina”, 14-18 October 2013

From 14-18 October 2013 a field training course will take place in Central Argentina. The course and a workshop are organized by the Sam-GeoQuat Group, the topic is: “From the Pampean Ranges to the North Pampa: Tectonic and climatic forcing on the Late Quaternary landscape evolution of Central Argentina”. Deadline for registration is 30 August, so hurry if you are interested. Download the 1st circular (pdf, <1 MB) here: 1-course-sam-geoquat2013 Continue reading “Field Training Course and Workshop “Tectonic and climatic forcing on the Late Quaternary landscape evolution of Central Argentina”, 14-18 October 2013”