All seismicity is local

I have been preparing for a presentation that I have been asked to give at the other private seismic observatory in this hemisphere. Observatorio San Calixto of La Paz Bolivia is celebrating their 100th birthday. Gotta love those Jesuits. I hope OSOP will do the same some day. The topic I was assigned is “Automated Systems for Local Seismicity”. They must know what I like.

If you could only pick one existing seismic sensor in the whole world what would it be?

Well if what you want to do is report local events don’t pick a broadband. When you need it the most, it saturates. So the big manufacturers then say well that’s right so buy a broadband and an accelerometer and you will be covered. Great solution, for the manufacture that is.

In my opinion the ideal sensor would be a strong motion velocity sensor. John Clinton and Thomas Heaton make a good argument for that in their 2002 paper “Potential Advantages of a Strong-motion Velocity Meter over a Strong-motion Accelerometer.” The paper is a little dated in that today there are better sensors than the STS-2 and even better strong motion sensors than the FBA-23. But the premise of the paper is right on.

Today if I could only pick ONE device to report seismicity to the authorities it would be Nanometrics Titan-SMA. Small, smart, rugged and sensitive, just like Selena Gomez, how sweet!

What would you pick?

-Angel

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