Data Services Newsletter

Volume 9 : No 1 : March 2007

IRIS Software Tutorials

Online tutorials


QUACK is a software package under development at the IRIS DMC for analyzing the quality of realtime seismic data flowing into the IRIS DMC’s BUD (Buffer of Uniform Data). The Quack program has a simple, consistent modular design that that is tailored to allow developers to easily create custom modules for monitoring seismic data quality.

Read the Quack Tutorial

Screencasts: Step-by-step Video Tutorials

Learn software the easy way – watch a video demonstration. The IRIS Data Management Center is developing online tutorials (screencasts) to make it easy to learn to use the data access software, including JWEED and VASE. The step-by-step videos will highlight the essential features of the application to help the beginner access seismic data from the DMC. IRIS staff are developing the screencasts to compliment the software manuals that are available from the Software and Manuals page.

Currently, there are screencasts available for how to install JWEED and VASE software. Step-by-step tutorials of how to use the JWEED and VASE are in development.


JWeed is a DHI utility that allows users to seamlessly retrieve seismic data using arrival time selections relative to cataloged earthquake events from sensing stations around the globe. Written in Java, JWeed can run on most computer platforms.

JWEED Screencast
Figure 1: Map window of the JWEED tutorial.

The online tutorial explains the features of the application and presents step-by-step instructions on how to select events and networks, map events, generate a request, view seismograms, and download data. This application is used by scientists who are interested in accessing seismic data for research projects.

VASE – Viewer and Seismogram Extraction tool

The purpose of VASE is to allow a person to extract station waveforms. In addition to archive data, VASE can extract data in near-realtime.

Using VASE to view recent events

VASE Screencast Recent Event
Figure 2: Seismogram display in the VASE tutorial.

This screencast highlights the functions of VASE and presents step-by-step instructions on how to view and extract waveform data. Selected waveform data can be saved in SAC format for use with the Seismic Analysis Code software. This application is popular with scientists, teachers, and the general public for viewing waveforms of recent events.

Using VASE to access archived events

VASE Screencast Archived Event
Figure 3: Map window (left) and seismogram display (right) of the Sumatra Earthquake of December 2004

Using VASE, a user can select a region on the map, query the archive for a specific time period, load networks, map stations, and display seismograms to download. Data can be saved in SAC or SAC ASCII format.

For an example of how to view waveform data from archived events, see the VASE demo for the Sumatra Earthquake of 2004.

Software Manuals

IRIS: Seismology Software and Manuals

by Tim Knight (IRIS Data Management Center)

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