Monday, March 31, 2014

Polaris, Rest in Peace

Final POLARIS Report

Today marks the formal end of the POLARIS Consortium. The Consortium of university and Government researchers created a geophysical infrastructure in which arrays of stations equipped with seismometers, accelerometers, magnetometers, infrasound sensors, geodetic GPS receivers and other devices were installed and operated all over the world, for about 14 years, and provided live data for geophysical research.

The remains of the stations that were originally part of POLARIS are now operated by various Canadian universities or divisions of the Natural Resources Canada. Appendices A to D show the distribution of the geophysical stations, their current operator or custodian and the original ownership of their equipment. Negotiations are currently underway to resolve the future of equipment that are owned by one institution but are deployed at stations owned by others.

The POLARIS Consortium also owned and operated two types of magnetotelluric (MT) equipment
manufactured by Narod and Phoenix Geophysical companies. The Narod MT equipment is now on loan to the IRIS Consortium and, after upgrades, will be available to researchers for future field deployments. The Phoenix MT equipment is still actively used by a small community of Canadian researchers and negotiations are currently underway between Carleton University and the Geological Survey of Canada (GSC) to allow for GSC to manage the deployments of this equipment for the next five years.

The POLARIS Website, is now closed to the public but some components of the site are still available at

Such fond memories when I was in on this at the beginning.  There was a lot of money handed out, which made our seismic monitoring better than anything in the Eastern US.  This was a program for new equipment, and I am confident I can put on enough pressure to keep the instruments lit in Ontario.  :)  Ok, maybe it isn't all me....

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Not enough earthquakes in Oklahoma - video

Great song.  Here is my latest video lecture.  Now that we are getting regular 4's it's time to go Hollywood.  :)

Update: M4.4 just came in.  My nightly prayer:  "Please let there be at least 6's before these guys wake up."  I'm very absolute-biblical, you know, at least about OK, which seems appropriate.  :)

Update2:  Upgraded to an M4.5.  New solution gives it nearly pure shear along the megathrust, with some thrust.

Update3:  Ah, too much thrust!  They knocked it down to 4.1

Oklahoma M4.3 earthquake

This is out in the shear disturbance zone, up the slope of the megathrust.  I'm sad there is no fault plane solution, even though it is over M4.  Perhaps everyone is asleep.  :)

I'm still looking for my big thrust earthquake, and the extension of the shear zone.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Boomers on easy street

Nice to be a boomer.  Canada is in a massive goods deflation, and the money saved is chasing after housing.  After all, money can only be destroyed in wars, or building giant white elephants such as the Niagara Tunnel and the Bruce Black Hole.

It all started with the generation after us (like my kids).  They became giant gluttons for digital content.  I remember spending a fortune on the kids on vcr tapes, cd's, and games.  There was one problem with this massive consumption - it was good for nothing!  Didn't produce wealth, didn't do diddly squat.  The content cartel just blew it on drugs.

Can the kids get jobs today as Professional Content Consumers?  No, but they naturally drift into content creation, but nobody's buying any more.  When's the last time you paid for digital content?  We are awash in garbage content, and we don't even want it any more.

The last industry to suck up the graduating kids is the retail industry.  That's right, that's what your degree is good for.  But this industry is striking out, since the Mighty Fish is now ordering directly from China!  After years of us sleeping at the switch for boring industry, the Chinese have taken up all manufacturing.  But that left lots of business for Dollarama and such to sell this stuff cheap (with a 200% markup).  All over now.

I just bought an LED plant light from Amazon, directly from China.  I figure it is about 3 times less than anything from a store.  It flew directly from Hong Kong to here.  Who cares about a warranty?  That's deflation, which is great for a guy on a fixed income.

It's not true Japanese-style deflation, since it is a productivity improvement.  Can't wait to buy my next car directly from Korea!  This type of goods deflation liberates money which goes to inflating scarce energy and fuelling housing speculation.  I can't see it going into local productivity, which would mean more jobs for the kids.  For that you need brain power, and it's all going to California.

So, I just sit here and make fun of everybody.  Sucks to be me (NOT!).

* The preceding was satire.  I apologize in advance for everything.

Los Angeles M5.1 - A Fine Foreshock to a Northbridge

Yeah, I can be totally irresponsible here because nobody reads me, and I have established my reputation as a nut.  So liberating!

Very weird that an M5.1 has a 10 km long aftershock zone.  This makes it a potential M6.5.  And it is thrust, probably along one of those deep blind thrusts that nobody has mapped.  California puts all its trust on mapped surface faults - Big Ha Ha!  There is never going to be another earthquake along one of those.

Having said all this, the recent Greek earthquakes did exactly the same thing and nothing happened.  It's a wonderful consequence of an uncertainty fuzz that exceeds all trends, much like global warming.  The M5.1 has a thrust component which makes it even more suspicious.

But, getting down to brass tacks, the odds of this going runaway are the same as the average odds, which is something like 1-10% chance of an M6.5 in the next 48 hours.  This is slightly above the standard odds of this happening without any foreshocks.  Residents should be prepared as they always are and don't do anything stupid.

Update:  It seems to have a very high PGV in the hammer zone (for a 5.1).  I hope they get some strong ground motion readings.

Update2:  The fault is continuing to grow, which places it firmly into the 'exactly the same' camp.  Some foundations were destroyed but no PGV's yet.  The USGS is asleep in their fav. snoozing zone!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Ex-OPG Scientist blasts them about the Bruce Black Hole

Man, what has the world come to?  Imagine an ex-OPG scientist opening his mouth about this.  I am shocked, shocked.

Here is his letter.

And here is bunch of mealies, from the Mealie Kings.

And finally, we have the news article.

This is so much fun, especially since the physics it totally against them.  The last people to argue against physics was that Landslide State.

OK M3.1 earthquake in a new place

New places are exciting, especially in this earthquake business.  Normally, we expect two shear wings joined by the thrust, appearing like a thunderbolt.  This is what we have in New Madrid.  But I think this is only for a fully grown NM.  A baby NM like OK can take other geometries.  Much like Arkansas, we can see a single shear wing, with the sense of shear reversed on both sides of the thrust.

Yeah, this M3.1 could be the first!  If the location is right.  We can perhaps now expect other earthquakes marching down that shear wing.  So exciting!  More stress liberation along the shears makes it more likely for my big thrust earthquake, which is extraordinarily late for the party.

Update:  M3.4

Monday, March 24, 2014

Linux - Dealing with the dash cam

I ran the dash cam for our trip from Lake Louise to the Ice Fields.  Fairly long, but great mountains.  So I used Openshot to fuse all the segments together, speed it up 16x, and add a Youtube soundtrack.

I ended up with four parts, which I can't double-fuse together with Openshot.  Weird.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Back from the mountains to OK earthquakes

I was out visiting beautiful Lake Louise, first real vacation since both the kids and the old company left my life.  Mostly I hang around the cottage, but the sister convinced us to go.

Being surrounded by such tectonic beauty, it is easy to forget the sad Okies, but they got an M4 while I was away, pure strike-slip, or shear.

It was on the shear zone, but part of a huge mess of earthquakes.

Since it was shear, it was not later downgraded.  I am still waiting for the bigger quakes.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Flurry of OK earthquakes

The largest was an M3.7.  I was away in Montreal, and we got up at 4:30 AM to try and sneak into Toronto before the storm shut things down.  Just made it!  I'm looking outside, and thinking I'd rather have a snow storm, than an earthquake storm!  Then after that drive, I really abused my eyes trying to look at those satellite photos for the plane.  Who could do that all day?

Other than that, this is just the usual bunch of earthquakes.  I do expect them to get larger, but it might be next year.  Since the faults are well delineated, we could always skip a couple of stages, and go right for the Big Ones, but I doubt it.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

The great OK model - First deformation

Man, I'm getting silly.  I made the northern hanging wall transparent, and embedded a dark sphere.  I should actually cut a hole for the sphere first, and I think the glass is a bit too leaded.  Anyway, that's where the first deformation starts as a thrust.  It is important to inject right there.

I'm leaving this alone for a while, until we have something significant.

The great OK fault model - thrust

Here we have a few from above.  Don't forget that the main lines are trending NE towards Toronto.  All the stress is down this trend, so you can't have a good earthquake without a break.  Although the last movement of the megathrust was downwards, the plane of the megathrust just acts as a weakness.

The weakness that gives us a New Madrid is a transform, or adjustment fault.  The old mountain ranges weren't perfectly straight.  Where there was a curve, or a change in strength, you got a crack.  Wasn't much movement, but it became a weakness.  The intersection of the two faults is an essential thing to get a growing fault mechanism.

Friday, March 7, 2014

The Oklahoma hanging wall

This deserves it's own chapter.  The footwall is boring.  How did the hanging come to this sorry state?

A long time ago (1 billion years), there was just a stump of continent.  The ocean out east was big, but was closing, much like the ocean around Japan.  There was a succession of big subduction zones off the coast.  In crustal geology, they are called terranes.  Then it all got schmooshed together.  The terranes got plastered on to the continent like bugs on a windshield.  The hanging wall rode up the footwall into giant mountain ranges, that would rival the Big Ones.  The ranges were straight as an arrow down the side of the continent.

Somebody turned off the squoosh switch.  Now these mountains had nothing to hold them up, and they started to slide down the footwalls.  Then see what few hundred million years of erosion would do to you!  It went down to rolling hills, and giant basins filled with Cambrian sands.

After that, all this nice rock got silted up.

Starting to model the mighty OK fault

This zone will one day go down in history as the first man-made New Madrid.  As long as they are dumber than the other states, we have a chance to go up to M7.  Since this will be historic, I have started my 3d modelling, actually just illustration modelling.  It's probably useless to do stress models.

This is my footwall.  It's semi-transparent, and I will eventually place red spheres for earthquakes.  The footwall is absolutely solid rock, perfect for nuclear waste.  :)  It carries very high horizontal stress down the length (NE direction).  No earthquakes will be in this rock.  As has happened many times, if they drill into this for waste injection, they have wasted their money.

Next, I shall work on my hanging wall.  It has many arcs and it busted up, so it will be more difficult.  After, I have to cut the transform fault.  OK is tricky as it has three zones of earthquakes, and I don't know where or how deep they inject.

ps.  Oh, it's so beautiful, I had to add it.

It starts to resemble the reflection seismic.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Asymmetric felt map matches OK M3.9 solution

So, there is no question that the recent M3.9 was a thrust on my postulated fault.  I am only flogging this horse because we haven't had our big thrust.  As well, all the energy of a thrust goes up, and so this would be an M4.5 in terms of energy equivalence with the strike-slip earthquakes.

Here is the felt area.

And here the the fault-plane solution.

Fixing it as a NW fault, we can assume it slid up towards the south, since this is the 'hammer zone'.  These are high-angle reverse faults, and it is significant that the main pulse is towards the city.  I am also assuming that this is all dry red dirt, as I read somewhere.  No major swamps.

By having the thrust this way, the city is set up for a good pulse, should the larger earthquakes happen.  I must admit I am losing hope.  :(   Please inject like bandits, people, nothing will happen!

Addition:  Okay, it was downgraded to an M3.3.  This is the typical thrust downgrade.  I thought they had already done this.  It's because the nearby seismometers go through the roof but the distant ones say meh.

Add2:  Also they removed the fault plane solution.  Thrusts get no respect.

Add3:  M3.1 in the shear zone.  This would be a direct response to the thrust, so we should expect a lot in the zone over the next few days.  Death by a thousand cuts.

Give me a break! Snow is Wrath For Fords

Another 6 inches of snow this morning.  Nowhere else in the province!  It's still snowing heavily.

I blame the Fords and their need for speed.  They have offended somebody.  If we vote them back in, we get snow all year.  :(

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Crazy Toronto driving

Here is my chance to compare Montreal and Toronto driving, now that I have a fancy, cheap dash cam.  Here we have a typical Toronto scene, the catering truck accelerates and speeds tremendously to beat the light.  But I don't think he did.  He is clearly incompetent.  In Montreal, they are crazy like a fox, and I never see anything blatant.  Everybody thinks they own the road, and are careful with it.  :)

Theoretically, there is a on-line form to fill out to send it to the police, but I gave up trying to fill it out.

Addition:  Although the Toronto cops are in the stone age, the OPP got that truck.

Warm weather coming for OK earthquakes

We had a nice Tuesday burst of earthquakes in the hanging wall, which is mucking up the main pattern.  This was observed in Arkansas, where only the first few earthquakes were on the lines.  Once the main earthquakes hit, everything was a blob.

As we know, they have surreptitiously stopped injecting the juice at Azle.  The poor seismologist they hired, nothing to do!  Better get the CV dusted up.  But I still don't think the northern sites have gone back to full fracking yet due to the cold.  That's why the OK overall injection rate might be down.  But I do know it will come back with a vengeance soon.

Add1:  M3.9 on the thrust, giving an oblique thrust solution.  I'll bet that was a good explosion sound!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Linux: The new router

I'm in Canada, with Bell.  The Fibe service is great, and now I'm on unlimited downloads, which I never use for anything illegal, just Linux upgrades.  :)  But Bell is notoriously cheap on their hardware.  That Fibe router is Windows quality, and it craps out for anything else.  The quality is Panasonic grade, and I've had one replaced already.  It totally barfed with an ip phone.

What to do, what to do.  I bought the TP-Link WDR4300 router from Costco.  It is a powerful Linux machine.  Then I looked up Openwrt and downloaded the latest version (look up the model #).  It worked perfectly.  Now I have to wait for everyone to leave the house, so I can make the final connection.  You can turn the Bell router into a bridge for the Fibe protocol.  That will be Part 2.

Addition:  I'll just do it here.  I set up the router, and then pressed the reset button on the Fibe router for 10 seconds.  This makes it into a brainless bridge.  I just plugged the new router out port into one of the standard ports of the Fibe thingie.  It all worked like a charm.  Now to see if there is any improvement.

Add2:  Browsing seems snappier.

Add3:  Found out how to update to the latest build, which works.

Add4:  If you go with Fibe TV, you are stuck with the rotten router.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

New OK earthquakes extend thrust

It isn't very much.  I've been expecting larger earthquakes for some time now.  This miserably slow rate doesn't completely blow my hypothesis, since there are many unknown factors at play.  This M3.2 and partner extend the thrust zone down a little bit.  Since I don't know where the injection points are, this could be interesting if there is fluid flow down the whole length of the fault.

Other than that, we just have to wait for the larger quakes.  Even though it is very cold, I am sure new f-waste has arrived.  Natural gas prices have doubled and everybody and their dog are fracking.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Linux: New 3.13.5 kernel makes things run cooler

That is just plain weird, but I have noticed that my fans were turning up in the past few weeks.  I suspected Chrome, since it is always going weird.  My memory and CPU indicators were up, and I used a temperature utility that said the CPU was 45oC.  Now, its down to 42 and the memory bar is way down.  Best of all, the fans are quieter.

This is always the wonderful world of Linux.  Two steps forward, and one back.  :)

Update:  After several days, the temperatures are back up again.

Up2:  Another general upgrade and it's down again.  I must be taking crazy pills!