Earthquake Science Center


The Earthquake Science Center in Menlo Park, California is the largest USGS research center in the West and houses extensive research laboratories, scientific infrastructure, and library facilities.

Our priority is to continue the important work of the Department of the Interior and the USGS, while also maintaining the health and safety of our employees and the community. Based on guidance from the White House, the CDC, and state and local authorities, we are shifting our operations to a virtual mode and have minimal staffing within our offices.

Earthquake Science Center Seminars

Earthquake Science Center Seminars

Seminars typically take place at 10:30 AM Wednesdays in the Rambo Auditorium (main USGS Conference Room). The USGS Campus is located at 345 Middlefield Road, Menlo Park, CA.

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Earthquake Science Center Campus Video

Earthquake Science Center Campus Video

This short, 7-minute video gives an overview of the USGS Earthquake Science Center in Menlo Park, California. It briefly introduces you to the San Francisco Bay Area, shows the campus and facilities, and includes interviews with scientists.

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Handbooks to Help You Prepare for an Earthquake

Handbooks to Help You Prepare for an Earthquake

USGS handbooks that describe the threat posed by earthquakes in the San Francisco Bay region and explain how you can prepare for, survive, and recover from these inevitable events.

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Date published: April 13, 2021

Women of Hazards Featured During Women’s History Month on @USGS_Quakes Instagram

For Women’s History Month in March 2021 the @USGS_Quakes Instagram featured dozens of photos of female earthquake scientists and shout-outs with the hashtag #EarthquakeWomen from the Earthquake Science Center, Geologic Hazards Science Center and the Office of Communications and Publishing (OCAP).

Date published: February 16, 2021

ShakeAlert Earthquake Early Warning Delivery for the Pacific Northwest

Starting March 11, 2021, ShakeAlert®-powered earthquake early warning alerts will be available for delivery directly to wireless devices in Oregon. In May 2021, Washington state will follow suit and complete the ShakeAlert public alerting rollout across the entire West Coast. California enabled ShakeAlert-powered alerts in October 2019. 

Date published: February 4, 2021

The Disaster that Helped the Nation Prepare for Future Earthquakes: Remembering San Fernando

The San Fernando earthquake struck Southern California 50 years ago, killing 64 people and costing over $500 million in damages. The quake prompted federal, state and local action to reduce earthquake risks and bolster public safety.


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Year Published: 2021

Physics‐based evaluation of the maximum magnitude of potential earthquakes induced by the Hutubi (China) underground gas storage

The world’s largest underground gas storage facility in Hutubi (HUGS), China, is a unique case where cyclic gas injection‐extraction induced both seismicity and ground deformation. To assess the potential for future induced seismicity, we develop a framework physically based on a well‐constrained hydro‐geomechanical model and on fully coupled...

Jiang, Guoyan; Liu, Lin; Barbour, Andrew J.; Lu, Renqi; Yang, Hongfeng

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Year Published: 2021

Earthquake magnitudes from dynamic strain

Dynamic strains have never played a role in determining local earthquake magnitudes, which are routinely set by displacement waveforms from seismic instrumentation (e.g., ML">MLML⁠). We present a magnitude scale for local earthquakes based on broadband dynamic strain waveforms. This scale is derived from the peak root‐mean‐squared strains...

Barbour, Andrew J.; Langbein, John O.; Farghal, Noha Sameh Ahmed

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Year Published: 2021

Rapid strain release on the Bear River fault zone, Utah–Wyoming—The impact of preexisting structure on the rupture behavior of a new normal fault

Earthquake clustering (grouping in space and time) is a widely observed mode of strain release in the upper crust, although this behavior on individual faults is a departure from classic elastic rebound theory. In this study, we consider factors responsible for a cluster of earthquakes on the Bear River fault zone (BRF), a recently activated...

Hecker, Suzanne; Schwartz, David P.; DeLong, Stephen B.