In the Department of Geophysics, 13 persons are currently devoted to seismological research. Of these two are technical engineers, the others are scientists in the fields of seismology, geophysics and geology.
The main duties of the Department of Geophysics are monitoring of earthquakes and earthquake related changes and research based on instrumental as well as historical earthquake data. It operates the SIL network which consists of 38, 3-component seismic stations in the seismic zones of northern and southern Iceland and the central highland, and a real-time evaluation system in Reykjavík. An alert system watching the seismic activity for different parts of the country is in automatic operation in the Department. Now the continuous monitoring of 7 borehole strainmeters is also included in the SIL system, as well as of 2 gravimeters to mention the most significant real-time monitoring.
The Department now operates 4 stations with continuous GPS monitoring in Southwest Iceland.
The Department of Geophysics is the backbone of the successful SIL project for earthquake prediction research and the construction of the SIL system which is the main achievement of the SIL project. The staff of the Department is also the backbone and coordinator of the PRENLAB and the PRENLAB-2 projects, which are seismic risk projects in the 4th framework programme of EU. The Department also lead other multinational research projects in Iceland. The borehole strainmeter project in the South Iceland seismic zone is one of these projects of benefit for the HOTSPOT project.
The research policy of the Department is focussed towards reducing
seismic risk. It covers everything from general hazard assessment
to the development of technology for short-term alerts. The seismic
system with its alert facilities and the strainmeter system is also
significant for watching volcanoes and thus the Department is contributing
significantly to volcanic research too, and to reducing volcanic risk.
Staff members working on the project: