ISTI Presents at AGU in San Francisco, December 2016

agu-poster-dec-2016-grid-search-approachISTI is presenting  at the AGU Fall Meeting being held in San Francisco, 12-16 December 2016. In addition, ISTI welcomes you to visit our team at our AGU exhibit (booth 1115) throughout the week.

View the ISTI poster schedule and abstract links below.

Paul A Friberg (w/ Hawaiian Volcano Observatory presenters) S23C-2791: Modernization of the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory Seismic Processing Infrastructure Tues., 13 Dec. 13:40 – 18:00
Ilya Dricker (w/CTBTO presenters) S31A-2696: IMS Seismic and Infrasound Stations Instrumental Challenges Wed.,  14 Dec. 08:00 – 12:20
Ben Baker (w/Univ. of Washington and USGS presenters) S31C-2781: Refined modeling of Seattle basin amplification Wed.,  14 Dec. 08:00 – 12:20
Kirill Khrustalev S31A-2691: Improvements in Calibration and Analysis of the CTBT-relevant Radioxenon Isotopes with High Resolution SiPIN-based Electron Detectors Wed.,  14 Dec. 08:00 – 12:20
Josh Stachnick & Ben Baker (w/CTBTO presenter) S31A-2704: An Improved Method for Seismic Event Depth and Moment Tensor Determination: CTBT Related Application Wed.,  14 Dec. 08:00 – 12:20
Josh Stachnick & Ben Baker   (w/ JAMSTEC and CTBTO presenters) S33E-05: Synthetic seismograms of Jan. 6, 2016 DPRK event calculated by the Earth Simulator Wed.,  14 Dec. 15:18 – 15:33
Paul A Friberg S43C-2888: 2016 Hydrofracture Induced Earthquakes in Ohio Thurs., 15 Dec. 13:40 – 18:00
Paul A Friberg, Josh Stachnick & Ben Baker S51E-3176: Moment Tensor Estimation using a Grid-Search approach for the Pawnee, Oklahoma Mw 5.8 Earthquake Fri.,      16 Dec. 08:00 – 12:20

*All take place at Moscone South, Poster Hall


ISTI is also mentioned in the LASSO poster for the software we developed for IRIS.


ISTI presents at the EGU in Vienna and SSA in Reno

ISTI is one of 4 sponsors for the SSA meeting being held in Reno Nevada this week, April 20-22, 2016. With HMSC we are co-sponsoring the annual luncheon on Wednesday.

ISTI’s Paul Friberg is presenting in the induced seismicity session at 8:30AM on Wednesday. The abstract for Paul’s talk can be reached via the link below.


We are also present at the EGU meeting in Vienna. Meet up with Josh Stachnik in Vienna at the EGU this week where he is co-author on a poster on Nuclear Test Depth Determination with Synthetic Modelling: Global Analysis from PNEs to DPRK-2016.

FAQ About North Korea’s Claims that it Detonated a Nuclear Bomb

Questions and Answers About North Korea’s Claims that it Detonated a Nuclear Bomb

How does one measure the size of a nuclear or hydrogen bomb explosion?
The size of any seismic event is determined from the amplitude of the waves recorded at stations of varying distance from the event.  The seismic magnitude is determined independent of the source type. The absolute amplitude of arriving body waves and surfaces waves are needed to determine the size of the event.  The Earth also modifies the seismic waves as they travel from the source to each receiver, so some information about Earth structure is also needed.  One of the largest pieces to determining the size or yield of an explosion is the depth of the event.  This key piece of information is used in converting seismic magnitude to the amount of explosive material needed to make a potential bomb.

What are the tell tale signs?
Man-made explosions are detonated very close to the Earth surface.  Seismically, this means that certain seismic surface waves should be recorded and, in contrast, certain seismic “depth” phases are not likely to be present in the seismograms.  Depth phases are upgoing waves that bounce off the Earth’s surface and are accurate indicators of the source event depth. In addition, explosive sources produce a different signal which is outward everywhere. This is different than earthquakes which are sliding motions on faults where motions will be different depending on where the observation is made.

When will experts be able to confirm what actually happened?
As soon as possible. Ok, the seismic component of the forensics is probably the most straightforward.  All the seismic data are in-hand and agencies are working on the determining the depth of the event to better estimate the yield (kilotons).  The noble gas and radionuclide airborne detectors will be the most key in determining the exact nature of the explosion, whether it is really a thermonuclear event or not.  This analysis should be complete within a few days.  Other news agencies have been reporting that some countries will be doing air surveys to collect more data.  In the end, it’s likely that no single agency will possess all the available data on this event.  Each country and agency determines what happened based on the information they have available.  Not everybody shares well.

If it wasn’t a hydrogen bomb, what was it?

The explosion measures [5.1] on the Richter scale, that is the equivalent of about 10 kilotons of TNT (smaller than the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima during WWII). The seismic impact of a Hydrogen bomb likely would be much bigger, so there is legitimate doubt about what actually took place. It’s possible the bomb tested was relatively small, failed, or that the explosion was created with chemical explosives, or conventional atomic bomb. It’s difficult to say what type of bomb it was from the seismic signal and more in-depth analysis of potential radionuclides that escaped from the blast could tell.

How many seismic events around the world raise legitimate concern of nuclear or hydrogen explosion on a yearly basis? Is this number rising or falling or staying constant?

There have been well upwards of 2,000 nuclear explosions recorded since 1945. North Korea is believed to have detonated nuclear bombs in four separate tests since 2006. Other nations are believed to be building or maintaining undisclosed nuclear programs like North Korea’s, but the number of measureable tests associated with these programs is irregular.


2016 Nuclear Test in North Korea is studied by ISTI seismologists

ISTI is currently working on projects with researchers in the field of Nuclear Test monitoring to study the Magnitude (Mb)  5.1 event in North Korea  (also known as the DPRK) this morning.  This is the fourth such event in North Korea. ISTI’s seismologists provide research tools to scientists trying to discriminate between nuclear and chemical blasts, induced earthquakes, and tectonic (or natural) earthquakes. Contact ISTI for more details on our research activities.

To learn more about the North Korean test visit these public links from some of our customers:

CA Dept of Water Resources upgraded to AQMS

The California Department of Water Resources (DWR) had ISTI upgrade their windows-based Earthworm system to AQMS this past week. The new system consists of 2 virtual machine Linux-based Earthworm seismic acquisition and processing systems with Winston Wave Servers and 2 AQMS post-processing computers (also virtualized and running Linux). The use of ISTI’s EZW tool allows DWR to easily configure and maintain the virtualized Earthworm systems. In addition, the entire Water Resources (WR) network is now monitored by SeisNetWatch and has been made more redundant with hot swap-able acquisition computers.

DWR_upgrade2 DWR_upgrade1

ISTI at AGU 2015


ISTI will have our annual booth at the Fall American Geophysical Union meeting December 14 to 18, 2015. Please come by our booth number 612 and let us know how things are, how we can help solve your problems and just to say hi.

We will have a number of our scientific and programming staff on hand and will be demonstrating some new Tsunami monitoring software we are working on for NOAA. We will also be demonstrating some of our Induced Seismicity monitoring tools including EZ Earthworm, our web admin tool for Earthworm systems. ISTI is a geophysical service and software company that specializes in Earthquake science and monitoring, Infrasound science and monitoring, and Radionuclide monitoring. We look forward to meeting and talking with you at AGU.

In addition, our staff scientists are presenting a number of interesting posters and talks at this Fall’s meeting. They include:

Follow up after AGU: This was a great AGU and we had a lot of good visits by friends and customers. Thank you for coming by our booth and for the interesting discussions.

We even spotted some Star Wars critters in the exhibit hall this time.


ISTI presents and helps sponsor SSA Meeting

ssa_posterISTI is one of the sponsor’s of the 2015 Seismological Society of America annual meeting, going on this week in Pasadena California. Stop by the ISTI booth and talk with CEO Paul Friberg.

In addition we are presenting a poster (#86) on some of our work in Ohio on Thursday’s session on Induced Seismicity. We look forward to a busy meeting at SSA which is turning out to be the largest one yet with over 800 participants. Stop by and say hi to Paul at our booth (which is not hard to find) or at the poster!

We also have friends from Silicon Audio showing off their new broadband low-noise accelerometer at the ISTI booth. Come and see this revolutionary new sensor and talk with one of the company representatives on-site.