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Onderdonk To Discuss Earthquake Research Updates On Oct. 6

Published: October 3, 2011

Last March’s earthquake in Japan, considered the most quake-ready nation in the world, took that country and earthquake experts around the globe by surprise with its ferocity and scope of damage.

Californians are no strangers to seismicity, but the Japan event brought even more attention to the possibility of a major quake on the San Andreas Fault. Geologists are learning a great deal from the Japan event and are reassessing the complex interconnection of fault zones to better predict the size, damage, likelihood and location of earthquake hazards in Southern California.

Nathan Onderdonk, assistant professor of geological sciences at CSULB, will share lessons from Japan and discuss the latest findings in predicting earthquakes during “Anticipating the ‘Big One,’” a colloquium sponsored by the Fellows of the CSULB College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics (CNSM), at 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 6, in the campus Pyramid Annex conference room.

Onderdonk is studying the rotation of tectonic blocks in California, pre-historic large earthquakes and seismic hazards associated with the Inland Empire’s San Jacinto fault zone, and mud volcanoes along the southern San Andreas Fault.

He earned his Ph.D. in geology from UC Santa Barbara followed by two years of post-doctoral research at the University of Oslo, Norway, studying Arctic geology. Onderdonk teaches geomorphology, tectonic geomorphology and field geology as well as the popular natural disasters course at CSULB.

The program is free to the public, but reservations are required and seats are limited. For reservations and to learn more about this and upcoming colloquia, visit www.cnsm.csulb.edu/fellows or contact Nicole Algarin-Chavarria at 562/985-7446.

–Anne Ambrose