Joe DelNero

Mines students partner with Colorado Geological Survey to install seismometer on campus

Earthquake Seismology class with their newly installed seismometer

A team of geophysics students, along with Assistant Professor Ebru Bozdag (left) and the Colorado Geological Survey, installed a broadband seismometer behind the GRL Annex building on campus as a temporary seismic station. (Photo courtesy of Lauren Broes, Colorado Geological Survey)

Colorado School of Mines geophysics students enrolled in Assistant Professor Ebru Bozdag’s Earthquake Seismology class have a literal ear to the ground for the next two weeks.

With help from Kyren Bogolub, a graduate student at the University of Colorado and seismologist with the Colorado Geological Survey, and Lauren Broes, a geologist with the Colorado Geological Survey, students installed a broadband seismometer behind the GRL Annex building on campus as a temporary seismic station.

In addition to monitoring and listening to ambient noise including the local construction work, the class hopes to record local and distant earthquakes from around the globe. Over the next two weeks, the class will analyze the data, characterize recorded signals and report observations.

The instrument was borrowed from Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology (IRIS), a consortium of more than 120 U.S. universities responsible for acquisition, management and distribution of data from around the globe freely. 

The group is planning to collaborate with the Colorado Geological Survey to deploy a permanent station close to the Mines campus, but in a quieter area to increase the quality of earthquake and other environmental signals such as landslides, recording continuous seismic data that would be open-access through IRIS and available for students and researchers.

Student digs a hole for seismometer
First, students have to dig a hole to place the seismometer on a quieter and flat surface.
Person installing a seismometer
Placing the seismometer aligning to north. Then it will be covered and buried to reduce the noise level.
Students connect the digitizer to the seismometer
Students connect the digitizer to the seismometer.
The seismometer is recording
The seismometer will be recording ground movement continuously for the next two weeks.


Joe DelNero

Digital Media and Communications Manager
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Colorado School of Mines is a public R1 research university focused on applied science and engineering, producing the talent, knowledge and innovations to serve industry and benefit society – all to create a more prosperous future.