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iSGTW Image of the week - Earth-quaking science in Hollywood

Image of the week - Earth-quaking science in Hollywood

These images show results from simulations of a 4.2 local magnitude earthquake striking Hollywood, California, U.S. The left-hand column compares the effect of two different wave propagation codes when they both use the same velocity model. The top row shows results from one wave propagation code using two different velocity models. The bottom right image is a topographical map showing the epicenter of the event.
Image courtesy of SCEC

Ever wondered what would happen to the world's movie industry if a sizeable earthquake were to hit Hollywood? Now researchers with the Southern California Earthquake Center can find out.

The SCEC have developed several seismological modeling codes that simulate earthquake processes, including earthquake wave propagation. These codes allow researchers to study the impact of the different earthquake source models, velocity models and modeling codes.

Each simulation involves multiple computational stages, including preparation of input parameter files, post-processing of the wave propagation results, and the calculation of large-scale, parallel, three-dimensional earthquake wave propagation simulations.

Get on with your science

Rather than get tied down with computing and coding, geoscientists wanting to access these complex simulations can do so via the SCEC Earthworks Science Gateway.

SCEC Earthworks provides a portal-based interface that allows users to configure and execute earthquake wave propagation simulations that combine different geophysical models and earthquake wave propagation codes. The simulations execute as grid-based workflows, using computing infrastructure from SCEC, USC and TeraGrid.

The SCEC Earthworks system provides much broader access to these complex codes and tools, empowering researchers unfamiliar with high performance computing to investigate and access their benefits.

The SCEC Earthworks Science Gateway is being developed by SCEC working together with teams from USC's Center for High Performance Computing and Communications, the Pegasus workflow planning project at USC/ISI and members of the SDSC's Data Services and Scientific Visualization teams. The SCEC Earthworks Science Gateway is a TeraGrid science gateway project and is funded by the National Science Foundation.

- Philip Maechling, USC

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