SSA Annual MEETing 2024

*29 April–3 May 2024 | Anchorage, Alaska

Pre-Conference Program: Seminar & Workshops

Home » Pre-Conference Program: Seminar & Workshops

Field Seminars:

Prince William Sound Field Seminar

Monday, 29 April, 8:00 AM – 6:30 PM

Join your colleagues on the first day of SSA 2024 for a 5.5-hour field seminar cruising on the waters of Prince William Sound. The cruise departing from Whittier will include presentations from experts in tectonics, geology, cryo-seismology, tsunamis, landslides and current instrumentation and research efforts in the region. Participants will receive a field guide of the seminar’s highlights, including historic earthquakes like the 1964 Great Alaska Earthquake, glacier seismology and local and regional seismic and infrasound networks. We may see marine mammals and other wildlife in the middle of some of Alaska’s most stunning scenery!

Alaska Geophysics in the Field

Tuesday 30 April, 8:00 AM – 2:30 PM

Where do your seismic and GPS data come from? Visit an active continuous GPS station in Palmer, adjacent to the National Tsunami Warning Center, and an active multi-instrument seismic station in Glacier View. The two-hour drive to Glacier View takes the scenic Glenn Highway. Experts will explain the key components of each station, as well as the instruments and components that are unique to Alaska. Enjoy the views and learn what it takes to get ground deformation and ground motion from the field to your computers.

Fee includes bus transportation. Be prepared by wearing comfortable shoes, clothing and sunscreen.


Annual Meeting attendees may choose from three workshop options on Tuesday, 30 April.

These pre-meeting learning opportunities include lunch.

Data Mining on the Cloud 101

Tuesday 30 April, 10:00 AM -5:00 PM

Instructor: Marine Denolle

This is an introduction to cloud computing, from concept and best practices to practice, for two main approaches to data mining in seismology: correlation seismology and machine learning. Learn how to port your Python scripts from your laptops to the cloud, analyze intermediate data products and download the final data product. Learn ambient noise seismology software and run it on cloud-hosted data sets of broadband seismometers and distributed acoustic sensing data and explore machine learning in seismology (earthquake catalog building and data discovery of various geohazards).

Seismic Instrumentation

Tuesday 30 April, 10:00 AM -5:00 PM

Organizers: Horst Rademacher, Berkeley Seismology Lab (retired), Kasey Aderhold, Earthscope/Iris

This workshop will discuss seismic instrumentation by explaining different scales and periods of Earth’s vibrations and the large selection of instrumentation necessary to cover all aspects of Earth’s vibrations. Explore the history of the development of inertial seismometers and what is typically used today. Learn how different kinds of inertial seismometers work and watch a detailed demonstration of a commercial broadband seismometer. Participants will:

  • delve into evaluation and testing of seismometers;
  • learn some functionalities and use of digitizers and data loggers;
  • focus on metadata, how important are they and how can they be used;
  •  learn to install and treat different kinds of seismometer; and
  • hear the current and future developments in the field of MEMS accelerometers and DAS on optical fibers.

Publishing: How to Review and How to Be Reviewed

Tuesday 30 April, 12:30 PM – 4:30 PM

Instructors: Allison Bent, editor-in-chief of Seismological Research Letters (SRL); John Ebel, Boston College and founding editor-in-chief of SRL; Brent Grocholski, editor at Science 

Publishing is a key aspect of any academic career. Learn how to review a scientific paper and how to respond effectively to reviews of your own work from three experienced editors. Discussion will also focus on promoting peer-reviewed research to the broader community. This interactive session will combine group discussion with lectures.

Please Note: Lunch will be provided at all workshops

Learn what makes an excellent peer-reviewed paper and how to handle constructive—and not so constructive—reviews from those who know—editors at Science and SRL. This SSA workshop is geared toward students and early-career seismologists but is open to all Annual Meeting attendees. The workshop will include plenty of time to ask any and all questions, including specific questions about manuscripts under development.

The instructors are Allison Bent, SRL editor-in-chief; John Ebel of Boston College, founding editor-in-chief of SRL; and Brent Grocholski of Science and editor of all seismology papers for the journal.

Registration fees:

  • Student and Early-Career Members: $25
  • Standard: $50
  • Non-member: $75

DAS Workshop

Monday, 17 April, 2-5 PM

During this three-hour workshop, we will provide a short introduction on how to acquire, manage and process seismic data recorded by DAS. It targets students and early-career scientists who are interested in working with DAS data but have no prior or limited experience.

Instructors: Zack Spica at University of Michigan, Eileen Martin at Colorado School of Mines, Jonathan Ajo-Franklin at Rice University

Registration fees:

  • Student and Early-Career Members: $25
  • Standard: $50
  • Non-member: $75

Optimizing Seismic Hazard Assessments for Improved Policy Decision Making, Compliance and Individual Safety Actions in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands

Monday, 17 April, 10 AM – 4 PM

The Seismological Society of America (SSA) will host a workshop on Monday, 17 April 2023, titled “Optimizing Seismic Hazard Assessments for Improved Policy Decision Making, Compliance and Individual Safety Actions in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.”

Earthquake scientists, engineers, policy makers, emergency managers and social scientists from and interested in Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Latin America and the Caribbean are invited to a transdisciplinary discussion on seismic hazard assessment, implementation, education and compliance. The findings and recommendations will inform the United States Geological Survey (USGS) 2025 Puerto and U.S. Virgin Islands seismic hazard assessment activities, its timely implementation in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands and identify areas of interest for future national, regional and international collaboration and engagement. 

In 2022, the USGS received funding to update the 2003 Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands Seismic Hazard map. The 2020 Southwestern earthquake sequence revealed ground motion underestimations, coupled with lack of compliance and informal construction leading to significant social and economic impact. As Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands rebuild from 2017 hurricane damage, the 2020 earthquakes and COVID 19, the adoption and enforcement of updated seismic codes is urgently required.

Through this workshop:

  1. Participants will have a clearer understanding of seismic hazard assessments and the USGS methodology.
  2. Recommendations will be made for the timely implementation of the updated seismic hazard assessment in PR building code.
  3. Development of the key elements for a manual for the general public on the 2025 USGS Seismic Hazard Assessment.

The workshop is co-chaired by Christa von Hillebrandt-Andrade of NOAA, Dr. Victor Huerfano of the Puerto Rico Seismic Network, Dr.  José Martinez Cruzado of the University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez and Allison Shumway of the USGS.

Fee to attend: $25. Lunch will be provided.

Click here to register only for this workshop (not the full Annual Meeting).

La Sociedad Sismológica Estadounidense (SSA, por sus siglas en inglés) presentará el lunes 17 de abril de 2023 un taller titulado “Optimización de las evaluaciones de riesgo sísmico para mejorar la toma de decisiones políticas, el cumplimiento y las acciones individuales de seguridad en Puerto Rico y las Islas Vírgenes de Estados Unidos”.

Los científicos especializados en terremotos, los ingenieros, los responsables de las políticas, los gestores de emergencias y los científicos sociales de Puerto Rico, las Islas Vírgenes de EE. UU., Latinoamérica y el Caribe están invitados a un debate transdisciplinario sobre la evaluación de la amenaza sísmica, su aplicación, la educación y el cumplimiento. Las conclusiones y recomendaciones informarán al Servicio Geológico de los Estados Unidos (USGS, por sus siglas en inglés) las actividades de evaluación de riesgos sísmicos en Puerto Rico y las Islas Vírgenes de los Estados Unidos para 2025, su oportuna implementación en Puerto Rico y las Islas Vírgenes de los Estados Unidos e identificarán áreas de interés para la futura colaboración y compromiso nacional, regional e internacional.

A través de este taller:

En 2022, el USGS recibió financiación para actualizar el mapa de riesgo sísmico de 2003 de Puerto Rico y las Islas Vírgenes de EE. UU. La secuencia de terremotos del suroeste de 2020 reveló subestimaciones del movimiento del suelo, junto con la falta de cumplimiento y la construcción informal, lo que llevó a un impacto social y económico significativo. A medida que Puerto Rico y las Islas Vírgenes de los Estados Unidos se reconstruyen tras los daños causados por el huracán de 2017, los terremotos de 2020 y el COVID 19, se requiere urgentemente la adopción y el cumplimiento de códigos sísmicos actualizados.

  • Los participantes tendrán una comprensión más clara de las evaluaciones de riesgo sísmico y de la metodología del USGS.
  • Se harán recomendaciones para la aplicación oportuna de la evaluación actualizada de la peligrosidad sísmica en el código de construcción de PR.
  • Se desarrollarán elementos claves para un manual para el público en general sobre la Evaluación de Peligros Sísmicos 2025 del USGS.

El taller está copresidido por Christa von Hillebrandt-Andrade de la NOAA, el Dr. Víctor Huerfano de la Red Sísmica de Puerto Rico, el Dr. José Martínez Cruzado de la Universidad de Puerto Rico en Mayaguez y Allison Shumway del USGS.

Habrá traducción simultánea español-inglés.

La tarifa para asistir: $25. Se ofrecerá almuerzo.

Para registrarse solo para este taller, haga clic aquí.

Post-earthquake Reconnaissance: Turning Disasters into Knowledge Workshop

Monday, 17 April, 8 AM – 5 PM

Post-earthquake reconnaissance missions play a key role in the advancement of earthquake science and engineering, as well as in community resilience. The NSF-sponsored Geotechnical Extreme Events Reconnaissance (GEER) Association responds to extreme natural events nationally and internationally aiming to systematically collect perishable post-disaster data and develop well-documented case histories that have the potential to advance research and engineering practice. More recently, the vulnerability of communities affected by the convergence of multiple natural hazards (e.g., earthquakes and hurricanes), while seeking recovery from other socio-political and economic stressors (e.g., the COVID19 pandemic) has been highlighted by events such as the 2021, Nippes, Haiti earthquake, and the 2019-2020 Puerto Rico earthquake sequence.

The goal of this workshop is to share GEER’s best practices and tools for post-earthquake reconnaissance missions, providing training modules, hands-on exercises, and opportunities for community engagement.

Attendees will also learn about conducting ethical reconnaissance safely and effectively, GEER’s standard measurement and reporting protocols, best practices for virtual reconnaissance missions, and the incorporation of important social dimensions.

Laptops are recommended to follow along with the examples presented during the workshop.

The organizers: Ashly Cabas of North Carolina State University, Christine Beyzaei of National Institute of Standards and Technology, Alessandra Morales of the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez,  Estefan Garcia of the University of Michigan, Cristina Lorenzo Velazquez North Carolina State University, and the NHERI RAPID facility.

Fee to attend: $25. Lunch will be provided.

Click here to register only for this workshop (not the full Annual Meeting).

Field Trips

2020 Southwestern Puerto Rico Seismic Sequence

Friday, 21 April (7AM to 10PM* estimated return time)

  • Fee to attend: $240/person

Hardy participants will travel to the southwestern portion of the island to learn about the 2020 Puerto Rico Seismic Sequence. Along the way, the group will make stops to learn about the island’s geology, see the local impact of the sequence and visit the Puerto Rico Seismic Network.

This 16-hour field–the trip will depart the Sheraton (conference hotel) at 7 AM, returning late evening.

This trip’s itinerary includes visits to:

  • The Guayanilla River Bluff, where the group will have special access to a bedrock landslide and rock fall triggered by the 2020 shaking events.
  • The Punta Ventana collapsed sea arch will bring attendees as close as one can be on land to the epicenter of the M6.4 event.  
  • At the Punta Montalva fault, the group will observe deformed limestone layers and the fault trace, discussing its role in the seismic sequence.
  • La Parguera overview gives attendees the opportunity to discuss the micro-tsunami generated by the M6.4 earthquake.
  • The trip will conclude with a visit to the Puerto Rico Seismic Network in Mayagüez.
  • Depending on time, the group may also stop at the Great Southern Puerto Rico fault zone, Guánica Bay overlook and Lajas Valley overlook.

Participants must be prepared for heat and walking through thorny brush on unsteady ground.

Please note: This field trip will arrive back to the Sheraton very late in the evening. Traffic in Puerto Rico is unpredictable. We do not recommend planning to catch a redeye home after this trip.

Field Trip Leaders:
Elizabeth Vanacore, University of Puerto Rico Mayagüez
Stephen Hughes, University of Puerto Rico Mayagüez

Old San Juan Walking Tour

Friday, 21 April (8 AM to Noon)

  • Fee to attend: $60/person

Explore the walled city of Old San Juan and discover hidden gems that go unnoticed to the casual visitor.

Led by a local architect and a local earthquake engineer, attendees will learn the historical significance, construction methods and earthquake technologies found in the Spanish colonial buildings and defensive structures. The group will walk the blue cobblestoned streets, venture into local crypts and climb rooftops to explore hidden towers.

Please note: this is a walking tour. Attendees should be comfortable walking for the duration of the event. All attendees must dress for the heat, bring water and wear tennis shoes.

Field Trip Leaders:
José Izquierdo-Encarnación, Porticus Ingenieria
Andy Rivera, Puerto Rico Historic Buildings Drawings Society

TsunamiReady Program

Friday, 21 April (8 AM to Noon)

  • Fee to attend: $60/person

Get an inside perspective on Puerto Rico’s TsunamiReady® Program and the work being done to prepare communities to respond to the next tsunami.

The first stop on this four-hour field trip around the San Juan area will be at Isla de Cabras park in Toa Baja to learn about the tsunami sirens and signage and have a beautiful view of El Morro fortress from across the bay. Then, the group will travel to the mayor’s office in Cataño to visit an evacuation site with the emergency management team.

Departing Cataño, attendees will ride the ferry across the bay of San Juan, arriving in Old San Juan, where the group will walk along an evacuation route from the Paseo de la Princesa to Plaza Colón and discuss tsunami preparedness and evacuation procedures.

The field trip will conclude at Noon. Attendees may stay in Old Town or ride the SSA bus back to the Sheraton. Walking shoes and breathable clothes are required. Be prepared for heat by wearing comfortable shoes, clothing and sunscreen. Bring your own water to stay hydrated. Lunch is not provided. 

Field Trip Leaders:
Christa G. von Hillebrandt-Andrade, International Tsunami Information Center
Roy Ruiz Velez, Puerto Rico Seismic Network 
Wildaomaris González Ruiz, Puerto Rico Seismic Network

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