Dr. Spahr Webb
Earth Institute Contact: Dr. Spahr Webb
Locations: United States of America
We seek to establish and maintain a pool of 84 ocean bottom seismometers at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO) under the direction of a community based oversight committee. The instruments would be available for community wide use in NSF funded projects. This proposal is in response to the NSF Announcement of Opportunity for the establishment of Ocean-Bottom Seismic Instrument Pools. The instruments that will make up this pool are designed for broad band seismic observations and are capable of deployments of more than one year for experiments using natural seismicity to investigate the structure of the oceanic crust and upper mantle. These instruments can also be used for short-term active source experiments, although it is anticipated that these types of experiments may m ore frequently be conducted using instruments specifically designed for short-term deployments, such as being proposed by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI). In the event that proposals from LDEO and WHOI are funded, we have established a Cooperative Agreement with WHOI, to share technical and engineering support and standardize operational procedures. However, neither facility is dependent on the other being funded. The efficiency of instrument pools will require flexible arrangements such as these.
The instruments in this fleet feature the lowest long period noise levels, lowest power requirements and longest deployment capabilities of any standard OBS. Recent demand for their use to date has been very high, and it is anticipated that demand will increase further with establishment of the instrument pool. The instruments would be made available to any project approved and funded by NSF. The LDEO facility would provide initial guidance for the potential user in use of the instruments, to facilitate the writing of strong proposals. Once the proposal is funded, the facility would provide the instrumentation, and the engineering and technical support necessary to conduct a successful experiment. Once the experiment has been completed, the facility would provide the data in a standard format (SEGY or SAC) to the users and for eventual archive of the data at the IRIS DMS, if and when this is required by the oversight committee.
The formation of the pools represents a complete change in mode of operation within the OBS community, similar to change that took place in land seismology with the formation of IRIS. It is hoped this will mark a similar rapid expansion in the understanding of Earth structure beneath the oceans.
National Science Foundation