Spring 2016 Seismic service run completed

April 20, 2016

We visited 29 of the 70 passive seismic sites between April 15-17, with two teams of 2 people based in the Randle and Kelso areas. A stormier winter with more snow meant more possibilities for problems, but there was no major damage found to the stations. Several had issues that were corrected, and they should stay running until we remove them in August. We did encounter a couple of landslides and several trees across roads, which required extra time walking or driving around, or sawing through trees when needed. A couple of sites we were hopeful to get to had too much snow to drive to, so we'll wait until July to access those. We only had one flat tire, which is about average for the roads we were on and the vehicles we were using. Overall, a successful service run, with beautiful weather and quite a few sightings of deer and elk and volcanoes!

Fall 2015 service run complete

November 1, 2015

We completed our fall service of the broadband array between Oct. 5-10, 2015. We had four field teams spread between Randle, Kelso, and Trout Lake. Everything went pretty smoothly, despite a couple rainy days. We almost made it a whole service run without a flat tire until we were foiled with ~4 sites to go!  These last sites were completed within days; one requiring a mountain bike trip of 1 km.


Main summer service run started

June 28, 2015

Six field drew headed out today to service all passive seismic stations, many of which have not been visited since last fall. With some novice crew along today was devoted to getting three vehicles loaded with all gear possibly needed and doing training on two easy to reach sites. We hope to be done in a little over a week.

Passive seismic array serviced

October 24, 2014

Despite some serious wet weather in the area over the past week crews from UW and CVO completed a total service run collecting data from all passive seismic stations.  Minor problems with a few stations were corrected or repaired and many stations setup with enough memory to go through the long winter.  Many of the data sets have already been uploaded to the IRIS DMC and the rest should be within days. 

Third set of shots to be done Thur. night

July 30, 2014

Thursday, July 31 will again be hopping and popping in the Mount St. Helens area with the third and final set of shots to take place over night.  Again some 2,500 instruments have been installed in the area and one can view the seismic records on the PNSN permanent stations in near realtime.

Press release about Active Seismic Experiment

July 17, 2014

The Active seismic experiment is on for next week.  Lots of details are available from the official Press Release from Rice University or the University of Washington.

Realtime seismic recordings of shots next week being planned

July 16, 2014

Watch for a blog entry soon to give lots of information about watching the seismograms from the permanent Mount St. Helens monitoring network of the PNSN for the active seismic experiment shots.

Final passive installs next week and start of active experiment

July 12, 2014

The last 6 passive seismic stations will be installed by two crews next week and a service run to collect data and check operations from most of the previously installed stations will take place late in the week and weekend.  On the active seismic side, a large crew of field personnel (mostly students) will arrive next Friday for training and then deploying instruments next Sunday through Tuesday.

Installation of passive seismic stations is done

July 3, 2014

Sixty-three passive seismic stations are in the ground and recording and all field crews have returned to their home bases.  Seven more stations are to be added in a couple of weeks once a few additional permits are in hand and the snow melts at higher elevations.  A more complete summary, some photos and a map will be shortly forthcoming in a blog.  The next big push is the active seismic experiment to start in late July.  Rumor is that crews are starting to arrive in the area but details are so far sketchy.

5 volcanoes in one day

July 1, 2014

One of the last few stations left is installed is just west of Mount St. Helens. From near the site, on the way in five different volcanoes could be spotted.

It takes a village

June 30, 2014

With crews diminishing in size as members leave for returns to the normal world the last few groups are struggling to finish all sites up.

This PI is done

June 27, 2014

A report from Geoff Abers: I am home now and finally have a chance to catch up on some reporting.

Is it a race

June 25, 2014

It is the World Cup of station installations; the Trout Lake team Against the Randel team.  Sketchy reports from the field seem to indicate that the former is winning.  Great progress is being made all around.  A map in the blog section will be updated as reports come in of completed installations.

A few more sites installed and staging areas moved

June 23, 2014

While not all teams have reported results from yesterday it seems that despite the time and effort it took to move base of operations from Kelso to Randel and Trout Lake that at least a couple more stations were installed.  Today is full speed ahead again.

Moving day after big install day yesterday

June 22, 2014

After working for 4 days out of Kelso the crew splits up today, half working out of Randel, half out of Trout Lake.  16 sites are now complete and running, a few more partially completed. See today's blog for lots of install details

Great TV story and more progress

June 21, 2014

While one team was giving TV interviews others made real progress on more installations. 12 now completed.

Seismic Installation Ramping Up

June 20, 2014

Seven sites are now up and running.

Installing the first Passive seismic station

June 19, 2014

Here are some details on the first installation day for passive seismic stations.

UW press release on the start of the experiment

June 18, 2014

The UW has put out a press release on the passive seismic and magnitoteluric start up activities and background.

Passive seismic team staging in Kelso, WA

June 16, 2014

A group of 16 field personel from UW, CVO, Lamont and the PASSCAL instrument center gathered in Kelso, WA  today to organize, test equipment, pre-build vault parts and plan for heading for the first installation on Wednesday.

Passive install date and team finalized

May 30, 2014

We are planning to use Kelso, WA as the base of operations for the passive seismic experiment installation.  Equipment and crew from IRIS-PASSCAL is scheduled to arrive there on June 12 to unpack and do initial testing over the next couple of days.  The rest of the 19 person crew (8 vehicles) will arrive over the weekend to do training on Monday and Tuesday (Jun 16-17) with the first set of stations to go in on June 18.

Local news papers run special articles on iMUSH

May 18, 2014

On Sunday, May 18 (34 year aniversary of Mount St. Helens big eruption) articles about iMUSH are in the Tacoma News Tribune and the Longview Daily News.

Passive seismic test site installed

May 12, 2014

IRIS PASSCAL shipped us the equipment last week for one seismic station. Today we installed this as a test at the home of a PNSN staff member. Some details of the test installation are covered here.

Instrument installation plans are firming up

April 29, 2014

With many of the permits in hand and others in the final stages we are now firming up plans for the installation of the passive seismic stations.  The current plan calls for 4-6 teams of 2-3 people per team to spend 2-3 weeks in the field in mid-June building the vaults and installing instruments. A service run to check station operations and fix any start-up problems will be done in mid July just before the planned active seismic experiment begins which will take in late July to early August.

Siting complete but permitting is held up

October 20, 2013

A couple of additional siting trips in late summer determined the details of all but two sites, which are at known spots and can be "sited" at the same time as installation.  Because of the federal government shutdown in October, permits for US Forest Service sites are now delayed and probably will not be ready before spring.  We are also making the final decisions on the details of seismic vault construction and will use the winter for testing these with plans to install a few vaults in early spring to be ready for doing all the installations in early summer.

It is summer and site selection continues

July 23, 2013

In the past week a siting trip was again made to the MSH area with a dozen more locations chosen for the passive monitoring seismic stations.  These sites are mostly to the west of the volcano on private timber company land.  This leaves only about 18 locations out of a total of 60 yet be visited which should be done within a month.  We will then start to construct seismic vaults at the sites for which the permitting process is complete.

Permitting under way

June 11, 2013

After a quiet winter in the iMUSH project, permitting is moving into high gear.  Several meetings and phone conferences with the US Forest Service have taken place to finalize the process of application, review and permit documentation. Preliminary documents for all passive sites on USFS land have been submitted and the USFS is reviewing them for submission to a public comment period.  We are also preparing more documents for public information and education.  Check back soon on this web site.

Winter is a "down time" this year

December 17, 2012

Since there is no monitoring equipment in the field and weather precludes doing any type of field work, this is the time of year when we all concentrate on other activities unrelated to this project.  We will begin to make plans for the summer field work (station siting, permitting and preparation) in the spring.

Almost half seismic stations have been sited

October 8, 2012

Three different siting trips over the past two weeks have resulted in a total of 32 passive seismic stations now being sited.  This entailed a visit to each place we want to put a station, evaluating its noise characteristics, exposure to sun for power, ease of access and construction and security.  Photos and GPS coordinates were taken at each site.  Currently all but one of the proposed stations on US Forest Service land have been sited and our permit application to the Forest Service is being prepared.

8 more seismic sites found

September 19, 2012

Two UW scientists just spent two days driving the (VERY rough) back roads in the northeast section of the study area and came up with 8 specific sites for passive seismograph deployments.  A couple of these sites are less than ideal and may still be changed based on future siting trips.

First siting trip completed

August 27, 2012

A crew was in the field the past couple of days doing site selections for the passive seismographs.  Four sites have been chosen.  Also, papers for the general permitting of sites in the National Forest have been filed with the US Forest Service.  Its nice to get going with some actual field work after many months of proposing and planning.

Columbian news article about iMUSH

August 21, 2012

There is a nice review article about the iMUSH project just published in The Columbian. An interview with Seth Moran, a USGS seismologist participating in iMUSH provides a good summary of the goals and our plans for the coming years.

iMUSH Web page open for review and edits by participants

August 15, 2012

The iMUSH web page has been under construction for the past month but had enough technical problems to make it inappropriate for general use by participants. While not totally completed it is now in a state to go public and iMUSH participants are encouraged to review it and make changes.

Official Start of Funding

July 1, 2012

Official Start date and receipt of funding.

Tentative Approval

December 1, 2011

Participants received preliminary results of NSF reviews, tentative approval of the project and a revised budget was submitted.

Proposal Submitted

July 1, 2011

Collaborative Proposal submitted to National Science Foundation for funding the iMUSH project.