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Boaters, other volunteers sought for quake study

STANFORD -- A Stanford University researcher is seeking boaters and other volunteers for a project exploring whether the Loma Prieta earthquake of October 1989 was the precursor of another great quake.

Geophysics Prof. Simon Klemperer and his students and volunteers will seek to create the first three-dimensional images at the San Andreas, Hayward and Calaveras faults.

The project begins Sept. 3, the day after Labor Day, and will take about two weeks. Volunteers can sign up for shorter periods.

Volunteers may call Klemperer at (415) 723-8214.

"We want to learn how deep the faults penetrate and whether or how they are structurally linked at depth," Klemperer said. "This linkage has important implications for the way stress is transmitted between the different faults of the San Andreas transform system."

The results will help geophysicists predict whether the Loma Prieta earthquake of October 1989 precedes a similar or possibly larger shock on one of the East Bay faults.

Geophysics students will make up the core of the research team, but others are invited to volunteer, especially those who have boating experience.

"This is an onshore-offshore controlled source seismic study," Klemperer said. "We will record marine data from the Farallon Islands in the Pacific, through the Golden Gate, to Antioch in the Sacramento delta. We need volunteers to work at sea, driving small boats, deploying buoyed hydrophones, surveying and buoying receiver sites.

"We are looking also for people to work on land, deploying seismometers. We'll record data on land around the bay from Santa Cruz to Santa Rosa," he said.

People need not be earth scientists to volunteer.

"In fact," Klemperer said, "we'll also need a fish biologist."

Training will be provided if required, especially for boat drivers, probably at the end of August, Klemperer said.

The project is funded by the Stanford Office of Technology and Licensing, the Stanford School of Earth Sciences, the Dean and Dorothea McGee Fund, the National Earthquake Hazard Reduction Program, and the National Science Foundation.



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