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  • Writer's pictureSteve Elkington

The Seismic Team

Me and Joyce have a long month ahead of us with seismological research. As earthquakes are produced by tectonic activity (which happens a lot in Costa Rica), it is important to accurately located where it’s epicenter is. This is because earthquakes can tell us a lot about recent tectonic movement and can help predict future areas of concern. Me and Joyce will be locating earthquakes by observing waveforms of single earthquake events on multiple seismic stations. This is done by using the software seisan, which allows us to pinpoint the exact time at which the earthquake occurred at multiple stations and then uses an algorithm to find its location. An exact location of where an earthquake occurred is important to seismological research of many forms.

Our goal is to the locate the 6.4 magnitude earthquake of June 23 and its ~300 subsequent aftershock earthquakes. Important fieldwork related to our work in Costa Rica is servicing seismic stations. This includes finding stations planted all over Costa Rica and making sure they have been recording ground vibrations accurately as well as collecting the data they have been receiving the past year. This past Thursday me, Joyce, Vadim, and Roberto serviced two stations, but I will let Joyce describe that adventure in her blog tomorrow! 

This is a photo of the seismic lab me and Joyce will be working in for the next 5 weeks. It constantly records seismic activity from seismological stations all across Costa Rica. It is also one of the only buildings that has air conditioning :)

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