Managing Data from Seismic Networks

Pretoria, South Africa

2017-08-20 — 2017-08-26

Background Information


The Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology (IRIS) Data Services (DS), in cooperation with the International Federation of Digital Seismograph Networks (FDSN), is organizing a workshop focused on the management of metadata and time series data from seismological networks. The goal is to enable open data sharing and exchange of ideas between networks in Africa as well as with the global seismological community through the IRIS DMC. Primary financial support for the workshop is provided by the National Science Foundation through the SAGE grant to IRIS. (NSF Grant number EAR-1261681).

The local host for the workshop is the Council for Geosciences.


The objective of the workshop is to assist operators of seismic networks in the generation of time series and metadata that describes their seismic stations. We shall provide training in a variety of areas including; seismic station installation and instrumentation, methods of transmitting real time data, development of station metadata using the SeisComp3 system, how to access data from the FDSN data center operated by IRIS, and introduce participants to the IRIS MUSTANG Quality Assurance system that monitors the quality of seismological data. We expect participants to come away from the workshop with all the necessary knowledge to set up and maintain their own database and to link their network to the growing global network for data access.

A tutorial on ObsPy, a Python based toolkit for seismological observatories, will be presented. ObsPy is an open-source project dedicated to providing a Python framework for processing seismological data. It provides parsers for common file formats, clients to access data centers and seismological signal processing routines which allow the manipulation of seismological time series.

The workshop will also provide an introduction and training to the workshop participants on the SeisComp3 seismological network management system. The SeisComp3 system supports several FDSN standard methods of accessing data and is available at no cost to seismic network centers. Operating a SeisComp 3 system allows networks to participate in a Federated FDSN data center system

See the agenda for more details on the full scope of the DS workshop.

Network Reports

Network representatives MUST provide a summary of their seismic network and present an Oral Report at the workshop. Network reports will be due at least 2 weeks prior to the start of the workshop. Network reports must be concise, limited to no more than 10 slides and contain at a minimum the following:

  • A map of the current network
  • A short description of the instrumentation (type of digitizer, seismometer, and seismic network analysis system used)
  • The primary product of your seismic network, such as an earthquake catalog
  • Plans for your network in the next several years (3-5)
    Additional information can be provided as long as your presentation is no longer than 10 slides and take no longer than 10 minutes to present.


Participants will be asked to support the FDSN goals of sharing data with neighboring networks and the global community by having the appropriate individuals at their network sign an IRIS Data Provider Agreement (DPA). While signing a DPA is not a requirement to be accepted to attend the workshop, it will help determine who will be accepted if the workshop is oversubscribed.

Due to the size constraints of our facilities, our class size will be limited to 25 participants. Applicants from Africa will receive priority, as this is the focus area for this workshop.

Participants will be asked to share a hotel room with one other participant. Upgrades to a single room are possible, but participants will be responsible for the cost difference. (Approximately $59 USD/night plus tax)

Letters of Invitation will be provided by CGS, if needed. Visas and entry requirements will need to be arranged by the participant.

Financial Support

There will be no registration fee.

IRIS Data Services will arrange and pay for flight and hotel accommodations. All transportation needs for the Data Services workshop will be provided by IRIS. Breakfast and lunch will be provided by IRIS also.

IRIS will provide $20 per day for the evening meal and incidental costs such as visas, transportation to and from their home airport, etc.

Location Details

City Lodge Lynnwood
Corner Lynnwood and Daventry Roads
Lynnwood Ridge, Pretoria,0040

Technical Requirements

Participants MUST be able to bring their own laptops to the workshop. Laptops are REQUIRED to meet one of the specifics listed below:

Machine and OS requirements

  • Intel or AMD-based CPU dual core processor
  • 2GB RAM, recommended 4GB
  • 100 GB of disk space
  • A spare USB port
  • Operating System ( 1 of the following)
    • MAC OS 10.5 or later
    • Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8
    • Linux 2.6.32 kernel or later
  • Virtual Box for Seiscomp 3 (Virtual Box Image will be prepared)
    • Ubuntu 12.04 or 14.04 64 bit for Seiscomp 3

Java Requirements

  • Java 1.6.0 or later



Important Dates and Venue

2017-08-20 — 2017-08-26

Workshop will be held in Pretoria, South Africa.

Workshop Contacts

NSF SAGE Contact(s)

Local Contact(s)

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