January 16, 2003
Nine years to the week after the magnitude 6.7 Northridge earthquake, a NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory geophysicist who foresaw the likelihood of a large quake there will share the latest developments in space-based quake research at a pair of free, public lectures. The lectures will be held at JPL on Thursday, Jan. 23, and at Pasadena City College on Friday, Jan. 24.
Dr. Andrea Donnellan, deputy manager of JPL's Earth and Space Sciences Division, will speak on "Using Space Technology to Understand Earthquakes." She will discuss the development of space-based techniques that make it possible to measure quiet motions associated with plate tectonics and the earthquake cycle. These measurements are revolutionizing our understanding of earthquake processes and fault interactions.
"During the last decade, crustal deformation data from space have transformed solid Earth geophysics and the study of earthquakes," she said. "For example, Synthetic Aperture Radar data are revealing how Earth's crust deforms and how faults interact. Resulting computer models are providing insights into earthquake fault system behavior."
Donnellan has studied crustal deformation related to earthquakes since 1986, joining JPL as a geophysicist in 1993. She is currently developing general earthquake models using computational technologies to study earthquake physics and fault systems. She holds a master of science degree and doctorate in geophysics from Caltech's Seismological Laboratory and is a research professor at the University of Southern California.
Both lectures begin at 7 p.m. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. The Thursday lecture will be webcast live and will also be available after the event on the JPL Web site. The lecture at JPL, located at 4800 Oak Grove Dr., Pasadena, off the Oak Grove Drive exit of the 210 (Foothill) Freeway, will be held in the von Karman Auditorium. The Friday lecture will be held in Pasadena City College's Vosloh Forum at 1570 E. Colorado Blvd. For more information, call (818) 354-0112. Information on the von Karman lecture and webcast is available at
The California Institute of Technology in Pasadena manages JPL for NASA.
JPL/Alan Buis (818) 354-0474