Title: Evaluation of the Noise Levels of Stations in the National Academic Co-Located Seismology Network in SA
Author: Mrs Sharon Qwabe
Space Geodesy Programme
HartRAO site, SARAO
Ambient seismic noise is caused by a number of sources within specific frequency bands. The quantification of ambient noise makes it possible to evaluate station network quality and performance. We want to evaluate the noise levels of two stations in South Africa, HartRAO and Matjiesfontein, from the 2015 data set of the National Academic Co-Located Seismology Network. Apart from the station performance, we will evaluate the geographical and temporal variations, and develop a local noise model for both stations. The oceans are a significant source of seismic noise. We will investigate the relationship between oceanic weather conditions and noise levels of the Matjiesfontein station, since oceanic noise was found to influence seismic data with frequency noise between 0.5 and 10 Hz up to 450 km onshore.
From a geographic and temporal perspective, we will investigate both stations, as it is believed that the seismic noise in the Gauteng Province will be larger than that in the Great Karoo. We will also study the effect of seasonal variations on the stations.
The main objective of this study is to provide a practical way to consider noise variations in South Africa as well as detection maps, which can be repeated for all the other stations of the Academic Network as they are being constructed and commissioned.
More about the author:
Sharon Qwabe holds an Honours degree in Geology (Cum Laude) and is currently completing her MSc in Geology at the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT). She has been part of the Space Geodesy Programme at HartRAO from 2013 to date. Her studies focus on characterising seismic stations in South Africa based on their noise level thresholds under the National Academic Co-Located Seismology Network. Considering the damage that each seismic event causes, being able to predict the event will be a great scientific breakthrough. It would then be possible to arrange for early evacuations which will save lives and minimise damage. During her spare time, Sharon enjoys participating in outreach programmes to educate adults and children about science and how important it is to our everyday lives. She also enjoys motivating upcoming students to achieve their goals against all odds.