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Compulsory for main focus geophysics: Seismology
Identification number

180 h

Term of studying
1. -3. Semester
Frequency of

Winter term

1 semester
1 Type of lessons
a) Lectures
b) Exercise
Contact times
45 h
30 h
Self-study times
60 h
45 h
Intended group size

Aims of the module and acquired skills

Understanding of physical processes that cause and transport seismic energy.

Acquired skills are the ability to determine basic parameters from seismic records for earthquake location. Basic knowledge of seismological measuring techniques and data processing.

In addition: communication skills, capacity for enthusiasm, self-dependency.


Contents of the module

  • Elasticity theory and seismic waves
  • Body waves and ray geometry
  • Surface waves and free oscillations of the Earth
  • Kinematic and dynamic effects of earthquake sources
  • Seismometry and seismogram interpretation
  • Seismotectonics
  • Local earthquakes
  • Earthquakes and buildings
  • Time series analysis
  • History of seismology
4 Teaching/Learning methods

Lectures and exercises (Compulsory attendance)
5 Requirements for participation

Formal: None.

With regards to content: Basics of mathematics, physics and geophysics

Type of module examinations

Written Examination (graded)

7 Requisites for the allocation of credits

Successful participation in the exercises (50 % of the possible points have to be obtained) and passing of the examination.

At the end of the semester or the beginning of the following semester a possibility to repeat the examination is offered. A failed examination may be repeated twice. Additional possibilities to repeat an examination exist according to the examination regulations (§ 20 section 1).

Assessments which have been passed are not allowed to be taken again, with one exception: If at the end of a module which consists of a lecture and tutorial classes, the student takes the assessment at the first available date after having received admission to the module exam, he/she is then allowed to take the examination again at the next available date for the purpose of improving the grade, even if he/she passed the assessment the first time – in this case, the better of the two grades will count towards the final degree grade (§ 20 section 9).

The module mark is the grade obtained in the assessment. In the case of two passed assessments the module mark is the better grade
8 Compatibility with other Curricula
  • Other modules of equal value can be admitted and announced by the examination board after agreement.
  • Suitable as an elective course for mathematics, physics and geoscience students
9 Significance of the module mark for the overall grade

10 Module coordinator

K.-G. Hinzen
11 Additional information

Compulsory Literature:

P.M. Shearer, Introduction to Seismology, Cambridge University Press, 2006.
T. Lay and T.C. Wallace, Modern Global Seismology, Acadamic Press, 1995.

Additional Literature:

K. Aki and P.G. Richards, Quantitative Seismology, University Science Books, 2002.
D. Gubbins, Time Series Analysis and Inverse Theory for Geophysicists, Cambridge University Press, 2004