Research Interests

Colin Zelt
(Department of Earth Science, Rice University, Houston, TX)

The highest peak in the Andes (Cerro Aconcagua, 7000 m elevation) seen above the clouds at sunrise from 100 km offshore.

My research interests include the development, assessment and application of seismic modeling and inversion techniques for studies of the near-surface (upper 100m), basins and crust. More specifically, this includes 2D and 3D traveltime inversion and tomography methods, including a newly developed frequency-dependent form of tomography that is applicable to controlled-source (picked) traveltime data. My students and I are also applying 2D full waveform tomography methods for P-wave and S-wave data.

We develop models of the seismic properties of the subsurface in two- and three-dimensions using artificial sources, and receiver arrays that are a few tens of meters to a few hundred kilometers long, both on land and at sea. In most cases this involves the interpretation of seismic refraction/wide-angle reflection data. We often interpret these models along with existing information that may include surface geology, well data, or results from seismic reflection, earthquake or gravity studies. Recently, my focus has turned to the shallow subsurface (upper tens of meters) for environmental, engineering and risk assessment studies.

I sometimes get involved in acquiring land and marine seismic data with colleagues at Rice and at other academic and government institutions. I also study methodological aspects of traveltime and waveform tomography and inversion. Finally, I am also interested in, and teach an introductory course in, geophysical inverse theory.

Rice University
Department of Earth Science, MS-126
P.O. Box 1892
Houston, TX 77251-1892

(713) 348-4757 (office)
(713) 348-5214 (fax)