Processing Systems in Seismology Today


This document was written in support of a series of short courses dubbed the Earthscope USArray Data Processing and Analysis Short Course.   These began in 2009 with direct support from the National Science Foundation but since 2012 the course has been continued as an graduate education program by the Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology (IRIS).  The intent of these pages is a comparative overview of software packages used in the course.   Key points are briefly reviewed in a common template for each of these packages.

We emphasize this is by no means a complete list of software the exists in our community for data processing let alone data analysis (meaning, for example, various inversion codes for a long list of seismology applications).   We have also not considered several alternative that exist for real time data acquisition and processing to the scope of these courses.   Surveys have shown, however, that the packages listed here are used as component if not the key component of nearly every research group in seismology.   Hence, they will be the key components covered in this course. 

There is one exception that is noteworthy.   There is a link at the end of this page to a dream data processing system.   Near the end of the course we will have a brainstorming session where you will be asked to contribute ideas to this idealized system.   We hope to make that page an evolving document to help the community improve the data processing infrastructure to take advantage of modern computing infrastructure.

Major Current Processing Systems

Seismic Analysis Code (SAC) is a workhorse that is the presently the most heavily used application in seisimology.
ObsPY is a python framework rapidly evolving to be the new SAC.
Antelope is a large toolbox of seismology oriented tools including a flat file database system called Datascope, a rich collection of tools to manipulate miniseed data, and a complete solution to produce earthquake bulletins and catalogs.
Seismic Unix is the definitive open-source package for processing of seismic reflection data.  

Dream Processing System is dyamic page on which we will post ideas for a future ultimate processing system that builds on the existing infrastructure.