Testing seismometers.

The Berkeley Seismological Laboratory conducts essential research on earthquakes and solid earth processes while collecting and delivering high quality geophysical data.

We provide robust and real-time earthquake and hazard information on Northern California earthquakes, in collaboration with our partners.

We enable the broad consumption of earthquake information by the general public while educating and training students at all levels.

Map showing earthquakes and faults at the Mendocino Triple Junction

Our Research: Complicated Creep Where Three Plates Meet

Aseismic creep, movement of the ground along a fault in the absence of earthquakes, is an important characteristic of faults. To get at the aseismic creep rates in the Mendocino Triple Junction, Kathryn Materna and colleagues analyzed so-called repeating earthquakes - earthquakes that occur when the same patch of ground fails over and over again....

Plot of recent earthquakes on the Philippine Islands

Feeling Quakes Under Water

Earthquakes and scuba diving don't seem to have anything in common. If you happen to be on land when a temblor strikes, you will notice the shaking of the ground. Your legs may feel unsteady, you may even be thrown off balance and fall, if the ground motion is strong enough. The experience is certainly unnerving and it may even cause you to panic...

Google Earth image of seismic activity in Southern Africa

The Quake of the Kalahari

An extremely unusual earthquake occurred in southern Africa Monday evening around 8 pm (local time). The tremor with a magnitude of at least 6.5 struck a very remote region of the Kalahari desert in Botswana, as indicated by the yellow dot in the center of the Google Earth map. The seismic waves were felt in the country's capital Gabarone about 150 miles from the epicenter...

Google Earth image showing location of station ORV

Oroville Dam Makes its own Earthquakes

The immediate danger to the highest dam in the United States, the Oroville Dam, is over - at least for now. While more than 180,000 people who had been evacuated along the Feather River downstream from the dam were able to return home earlier this week, the future of the 770 foot high earthen dam in California's Butte County is all but secure...