Section 2.1: Physics of Earthquakes and Volcanoes

We investigate earthquake and volcano processes. How do earthquakes nucleate, rupture and interact, how do volcanic unrest develop and possibly lead to eruptions, how the hazard of earthquakes, volcanoes and tsunamis can be assessed and how to rapidly obtain and provide information on such extreme events after their occurrence? Our research helps to reduce risk from natural hazards as earthquakes and volcanoes.

We cover a unique set of skills and expertise in the fields of:

Physics of Earthquakes

We analyse seismic and geodetic data to image complex rupture processes of natural and induced seismic events over a broad range of scales, developing and applying waveform based advanced methods.

We analyse and model seismicity data by means of statistical methods in order to improve our scientific understanding of earthquake triggering and interactions as well as to improve the evaluation and testing of earthquake forecasts, early warning and seismic hazards assessments.

Physics of volcanoes

The GFZ working group on volcanotectonics and volcanic hazards deals with physical and geological processes associated with volcanism and structure formation, such as surface deformation, faulting, erosion and gravitational mass movements.

My team and I develop process-oriented analytical, numerical and analog models for the propagation and storage of magma and other fluids in the Earth’s crust.

Our section offers also the International Training Courses .


Feodor Lynen Research Fellowship for  Dr. Mehdi Nikkhoo
The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation has granted Dr. Mehdi Nikkhoo from section 2.1 “Phys-ics of earthquakes and volcanoes” a Feodor Lynen Research Fellowship. Mehdi Nikkhoo will join Prof. Yehuda Ben-Zion’s lab at University of Southern California in Los Angeles for a two-year time period. The project will focus on mechanical models of lava dome deformation.

A full list of our publications is given here

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