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Primeur weekly 2016-12-19

Crowd computing

Quake-detection app captured nearly 400 temblors worldwide ...

Quantum computing

Microsoft intensifies quantum cooperation with QuTech ...

Fast track control accelerates switching of quantum bits ...

Two electrons go on a quantum walk and end up in a qudit ...

Researchers discovered elusive half-quantum vortices in a superfluid ...

Focus on Europe

New e-IRGSP5 support project held its kick-off meeting in Barcelona ...

European Commission to organize eInfrastructure Proposers' Day on January 19, 2017 ...

ARM extends HPC offering with acquisition of software tools provider Allinea Software ...

Martin Kersten appointed ACM Fellow ...

PRACE Preparatory Access Type D expected for early 2017 ...

PRACE SHAPE 4th Call awards 4 new innovative European SME projects ...

Middleware

DDN collaborates with Synergy Solutions Management to offer video surveillance and HPC design, test and training at new Innovations Lab ...

GridGain Professional Edition 1.8 adds in-memory SQL Grid to industry-leading in-memory computing platform ...

Technique shrinks data sets for easier analysis ...

Hardware

Intersect360 Research to launch 9th Annual HPC Budget Map survey ...

DDN named a global leader in object storage by IDC ...

Mellanox 25G/100G Ethernet solutions enables Artificial Intelligence Speech Recognition Technology at iFLYTEK ...

Applications

BMW Group to start research with IBM Watson ...

Fincantieri selects IBM Cloud to meet growing international demand for more efficient shipbuilding ...

Better ranking for Big Data using seriation solution ...

Eye-popping view of CO2, critical step for carbon-cycle science ...

Supercomputer simulation reveals 2D glass can go infinitely soft ...

Extraordinary animation reveals ocean's role in El Niños ...

Pitt engineers receive $500,000 award from NASA to advance additive manufacturing ...

Rice and Baylor team sets new mark for 'deep learning' ...

Method enables machine learning from unwieldy data sets ...

Barrow identifies new genes responsible for ALS using IMB Watson Health ...

Global brain initiatives generate tsunami of neuroscience data ...

The Cloud

Q2 SaaS and PaaS Cloud revenues for Oralce up 81%, and up 89% in non-GAAP constant currency ...

Quake-detection app captured nearly 400 temblors worldwide


From February 12, 2016 - the release date of the MyShake app - until December 1, 2016, 395 earthquakes with confirmed waveforms were detected by MyShake users around the world. Credit: Berkeley Seismological Laboratory.
14 Dec 2016 Berkeley - The University of California, Berkeley's worldwide network of smartphone earthquake detectors has recorded nearly 400 earthquakes since the MyShake app was made available for download in February, with one of the most active areas of the world the fracking fields of Oklahoma.

The Android app harnesses a smartphone's motion detectors to measure earthquake ground motion, then sends that data back to the Berkeley Seismological Laboratory for analysis. The eventual goal is to send early-warning alerts to users a bit farther from ground zero, giving them seconds to a minute of warning that the ground will start shaking. That's enough time to take cover or switch off equipment that might be damaged in a quake.

To date, nearly 220,000 people have downloaded the app, and at any one time, between 8,000 and 10,000 phones are active - turned on, lying on a horizontal surface and connected to a wifi network - and thus primed to respond.

An updated version of the MyShake app is available for download as of December 14 from the Google Play Store, providing an option for push notifications of recent quakes within a distance determined by the user, and the option of turning the app off until the phone is plugged in, which could extend the life of a single charge in older phones.

"The notifications will not be fast initially - not fast enough for early warning - but it puts into place the technology to deliver the alerts and we can then work toward making them faster and faster as we improve our real-time detection system within MyShake", stated project leader Richard Allen, a UC Berkeley professor of earth and planetary sciences and director of the seismology lab.

In a presentation on December 14, during the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco, UC Berkeley developer and graduate student Qingkai Kong summarized the app's performance. Ten months of operation clearly shows that the sensitivity of the smartphone accelerometers and the density of phones in many places are sufficient to provide data quickly enough for early warning. The phones readily detect the first seismic waves to arrive - the less destructive P waves - and send the information to Berkeley in time to issue an alert that the stronger S wave will soon arrive.

"We already have the algorithm to detect the earthquakes running on our server, but we have to make sure it is accurate and stable before we can start issuing warnings, which we hope to do in the near future", Qingkai Kong stated.

The app can detect quakes as small as magnitude 2.5, with the best sensitivity in areas with a greater density of phones. The largest number of phones to record a quake was 103, after the 5.2 magnitude quake that occurred on the San Jacinto fault near Borrego Springs in San Diego County on June 10. Phones 200 kilometers from the epicenter detected that tremblor. The largest quake detected occurred on April 16 in Ecuador: a 7.8 magnitude quake that triggered two phones, 170 and 200 kilometers from the epicenter.

Richard Allen, Qingkai Kong and their colleagues at Deutsche Telekom's Silicon Valley Innovation Center believe the app's performance shows it can complement traditional seismic networks, such as that operated nationally by the U.S. Geological Survey, but can also serve as a stand-alone system in places with few seismic stations, helping to reduce injuries and damage from earthquakes.

While the app has detected quakes in seismically active areas such as Chile, Mexico, New Zealand, Taiwan, Japan and the West Coast of the U.S., one surprising hot spot has been the traditionally quiet state of Oklahoma. The practice of injecting oil well wastewater deep underground has activated faults in the area to the extent that the state is rattled hundreds of times a year.

"Oklahoma is now clearly no. 1 in terms of the number of earthquakes in the lower 48 states", Qingkai Kong stated.

Most of Oklahoma's earthquakes are small, but MyShake users in the state, which number only about 200, easily detected the September 3 magnitude 5.8 quake, the strongest ever to hit the state. During that event, 14 phones in the state triggered, but even this relatively small number of phones allowed the seismology lab to peg the magnitude within 1 percent of estimates from ground seismic stations, and located the epicenter to within 4 kilometers (2.5 miles).

"These initial studies suggest that the data will be useful for a variety of scientific studies of induced seismicity phenomena in Oklahoma, as well as having the potential to provide earthquake early warning in the future", Qingkai Kong stated.

He summarized the Oklahoma data during a poster session on December 16.

The MyShake app and the computer algorithm behind it were developed by Richard Allen, Qingkai Kong and a team of programmers at the Silicon Valley Innovation Center in Mountain View, California, which is part of the Telekom Innovation Laboratories (T-Labs) operated by Deutsche Telekom, owner of T-Mobile. Louis Schreier, the leader of that team, co-wrote a paper with Richard Allen and Qingkai Kong on the first six months of MyShake's observations, published September 29 in the journalGeophysical Research Letters.

Source: University of California - Berkeley

Back to Table of contents

Primeur weekly 2016-12-19

Crowd computing

Quake-detection app captured nearly 400 temblors worldwide ...

Quantum computing

Microsoft intensifies quantum cooperation with QuTech ...

Fast track control accelerates switching of quantum bits ...

Two electrons go on a quantum walk and end up in a qudit ...

Researchers discovered elusive half-quantum vortices in a superfluid ...

Focus on Europe

New e-IRGSP5 support project held its kick-off meeting in Barcelona ...

European Commission to organize eInfrastructure Proposers' Day on January 19, 2017 ...

ARM extends HPC offering with acquisition of software tools provider Allinea Software ...

Martin Kersten appointed ACM Fellow ...

PRACE Preparatory Access Type D expected for early 2017 ...

PRACE SHAPE 4th Call awards 4 new innovative European SME projects ...

Middleware

DDN collaborates with Synergy Solutions Management to offer video surveillance and HPC design, test and training at new Innovations Lab ...

GridGain Professional Edition 1.8 adds in-memory SQL Grid to industry-leading in-memory computing platform ...

Technique shrinks data sets for easier analysis ...

Hardware

Intersect360 Research to launch 9th Annual HPC Budget Map survey ...

DDN named a global leader in object storage by IDC ...

Mellanox 25G/100G Ethernet solutions enables Artificial Intelligence Speech Recognition Technology at iFLYTEK ...

Applications

BMW Group to start research with IBM Watson ...

Fincantieri selects IBM Cloud to meet growing international demand for more efficient shipbuilding ...

Better ranking for Big Data using seriation solution ...

Eye-popping view of CO2, critical step for carbon-cycle science ...

Supercomputer simulation reveals 2D glass can go infinitely soft ...

Extraordinary animation reveals ocean's role in El Niños ...

Pitt engineers receive $500,000 award from NASA to advance additive manufacturing ...

Rice and Baylor team sets new mark for 'deep learning' ...

Method enables machine learning from unwieldy data sets ...

Barrow identifies new genes responsible for ALS using IMB Watson Health ...

Global brain initiatives generate tsunami of neuroscience data ...

The Cloud

Q2 SaaS and PaaS Cloud revenues for Oralce up 81%, and up 89% in non-GAAP constant currency ...