EAS 4803/8803: Observational Seismology, Spring 2013

Zhigang Peng
ES&T 2256

Syllabus (PDF version)
Supplementary Lecture Material

General Information

Time and Location Tuesday/Thursday 12:05 pm - 1:25 pm, ES & T, L1116

Office Hours: Tuesday/Thursday 1:30 pm - 2:30 pm (immediately after class)

Course Description: This is an advanced level course designed to involve students into seismological research. The topics covered include digital signal processing, seismometers and seismic networks, basic and advanced seismic data processing tools, travel time and synthetic seismogram calculations, earthquake locations, etc.

Required Textbook:
  • Stein, S.A.,& M. Wysession, An Introduction to Seismology, Earthquakes, and Earth Structure, Blackwell Publishing, 498 pp., 2003.
Recommended Textbook:
  • Aki, K.,& P. Richards, Quantitative Seismology, Second Edition, University Science Books, 2002.
  • Shearer, P. M. Introduction to Seismology, Second Edition, Academic Press, 2011.
  • Lay, T., & T.C. Wallace, Modern Global Seismology , Academic Press, 1995.
    Additional material will be either handed out in class or made available on the course website.

Course Outline:

This is an approximate outline of topics and timing and is subject to change throughout the semester.
Classes Date Topic Assignments


Your course grade will be based on three criteria: homework (60%), paper reading and discussion (15%), and project (25%).

Homework: There will be four homework problems, which will involve analysis of selected issues, including analytical calculations, computer simulations, or data analysis. The homework is designed for each student to work by him/herself. The homework will count as 60% of your overall course grade, with each counting 15%.

Paper Reading and Discussion: In the last part of the class, we will discuss three topics of modern research in the field of observational and computational seismology. You are required to submit (electronically) a 2-page summary after each topic. Paper reading and discussion comprises 15% of your total grade, and is based mainly on your written summary and in-class participation.

Term Paper Project: You are required to write a term paper with any topic related to this course. These can be literature reviews, or research projects involving calculations, data analysis, or theoretical results done in consultation with the instructor. The topic needed to be approved by the instructor before the spring break. Your paper should be written up in journal form with length, figures and referencing in a format suitable for submission to journals like Geophysical Research Letters (GRL). Preliminary version of the final paper should be shown to the instructor for approval at least two weeks beforehand. You will present your term paper in a 15 minute AGU-style talk; a 12 minute presentation with 3 minutes of questions. The project will count as 25% of your overall course grade, in which 15% will be based on the quality of the project, 10% on written and oral presentation.


It is expected that all students are aware of their individual responsibilities under the Georgia Tech Academic Honor Code, which will be strictly adhered to in this class. The complete text of the Georgia Tech Academic Honor Code is at http://www.honor.gatech.edu/.

Geophysics Home | Updated: Fri Dec 14 17:59:27 EST 2012