Scaling, universality and spatio-temporal clustering in seismicity and rock fracture phenomena

  • Date: 10/04/2007

Joern Davidsen (University of Calgary)


University of Calgary


In this talk, Dr. Davidsen will give an overview of new methods from nonlinear sciences and complex network theory to characterize temporal and spatio-temporal clustering of point processes with a particular focus on their application to seismicity and rock fracture. Many striking features of natural processes can be portrayed as patterns or clusters of localized events. A generic attribute in all these cases is that one event can trigger or somehow induce another one to occur - or possibly numerous further events. Sometimes, an accounting of causal connections between clustered events is explicitly rationalized by the microscopic state and rules of the dynamical system. More often than not, though, the causal connections cannot be resolved from the data at hand and remain ambiguous. Thus, one is confronted with inferring a plausible causal structure from clusters of localized events without a detailed or ``fundamental'' knowledge of the true microscopic dynamics.
Dr. Davidsen will discuss new approaches to search for such signs of causal structure and their application to earthquake triggering and microfracturing. One of the most striking results is that certain properties of fracture processes are independent of time, space and magnitude scales relating lab experiments on microfracturing to earthquakes.

Other Information: 

PIMS is presenting a series of lectures at the Calgary Place Tower 1 in downtown Calgary. These lectures, given by experts from the PIMS Universities, will focus on mathematical techniques and applications relevant to the oil and gas industry and will demonstrate the utility and beauty of applied mathematics. The talks are aimed at a general audience. Attendance may qualify for APEGGA Professional Development Hours.