Encyclopedia of Natural Hazards

2013 Edition
| Editors: Peter T. Bobrowsky


  • Alik T. Ismail-ZadehEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-4399-4_317


Seismology is a branch of geophysics dealing with earthquakes and other Earth’s vibrations, with the sources that generate the vibrations, with seismic wave propagation, and with the structures through which they propagate.


Seismology can be considered as a tool for exploring the Earth’s interior, and it is deeply rooted in continuum and fracture mechanics, theoretical physics, applied mathematics, and statistics. Seismology has a remarkable diversity of applications in natural hazard research including seismic hazard assessment,  Earthquake forecasting, volcano and  Tsunami warning systems, and detections of sudden movements of glaciers and ice sheets.

There are several geophysical disciplines to explore the Earth’s interior, including studies of gravity, magnetic and electric properties of the planet, but seismology is perhaps the most powerful and informative, especially in studies of the deep mantle and core. Seismologists study the internal structure of the...

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  1. Forsyth, D. W., Lay, T., Aster, R. C., and Romanowicz, B., 2009. Grand challenges for seismology. EOS, AGU Transactions, 90(41): doi:10.1029/2009EO410001.Google Scholar
  2. Stein, S., and Wysession, M., 2003. An Introduction to Seismology, Earthquakes, and Earth Structure. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institut für Angewandte GeowissenschaftenKarlsruher Institut für TechnologieKarlsruheGermany
  2. 2.Institut de Physique du Globe de ParisParisFrance
  3. 3.Institute of Earthquake Prediction Theory and Mathematical GeophysicsInstitute of Earthquake Prediction Theory and Mathematical Geophysics, Russian Academy of SciencesMoscowRussia