News Releases

June 20, 2014
Earthquakes are nothing new to Alaskans, but few people understand the significance of strategic earthquake planning. On Tuesday, June 17, 2014, Governor Parnell signed a bill to extend the term of the Alaska Seismic Hazard Safety Commission until June 30, 2020.  Michael West, the Alaska State Seismologist and director of the Alaska Earthquake Center director, part of the University of Alaska...
March 12, 2014
The EarthScope National Office is excited to invite all who are interested to attend the EarthScope Alaska-Yukon Regional Workshop for Interpretive Professionals. This workshop will be the 10th in a series of EarthScope workshops that attempt to connect informal educators with place-based Earth science in North America. The upcoming workshop will have a focus on the geology of Alaska and Eastern...
February 6, 2014
By Ned Rozell An expected event in Alaska could affect millions of Americans. Here’s how: On Thursday, March 27, 2014, a slab of the seafloor larger than human imagination fractures, rumbling beneath the Alaska Peninsula. In several planet-ringing minutes, thousands of years of potential energy releases to become kinetic. A great earthquake occurs right where scientists predicted it...
January 9, 2014
By Ned Rozell On March 27, 1964, California geologist George Plafker was attending a research conference in Seattle when news came of a big earthquake in Alaska. “It was almost quitting time for the day at the meeting when some guys came back from the Space Needle and said they felt rocking,” Plafker said recently at his office in Menlo Park, California. “We said, ‘That’s a serious...
December 19, 2013
By Ned Rozell As Gary Carver stepped through the grasses of a treeless Alaska island with an archaeologist friend, he spotted a bleached driftwood log. The log rested on sand about a half mile from the beach and 50 feet above sea level. Carver, on the island searching out Aleutian mummies for a Discovery Channel program, is an expert on tsunamis. He suspected that only a giant wave...
October 8, 2013
Drop, cover and hold on! On October 17 at 10:17 a.m., more than 19,000 Interior Alaskans will take part in the Great Alaska ShakeOut.

 You can, too!

 Register your organization or family to participate with the Geophysical Institute and others in this annual earthquake drill.  Alaska is the most seismically active state in the United States. Be prepared through practicing drop, cover...
September 4, 2013
The magnitude 7.0 earthquake that struck just 58 miles east/southeast of Adak, Alaska on Aug. 30, 2013 was a whopper, but not unusual for the region. The earthquake occurred at 8:25 a.m. that morning at the interface of the Pacific and North American plates, a region called the Aleutian Arc.

 The Aleutian Arc is home to more than 20 earthquakes of magnitude 6.5 or larger within the last century...
August 9, 2013
 The Alaska Volcano Observatory issued a Volcanic Activity Notice yesterday, indicating the Current Volcano Alert Level has changed to NORMAL for Pavlof Volcano: "Since June 26, 2013, no lava or ash emissions have occurred at Pavlof Volcano and the volcano has exhibited gradually declining levels of unrest. Seismicity is now at background levels and satellite images and web camera views...
July 16, 2013
More than 80 participants have converged at the Geophysical Institute at the University of Alaska Fairbanks for a conference dedicated to seismic imaging. Participants will take in a number of presentations, conduct a poster session, tour the Alaska Earthquake Information Center and create simulations in the Arctic Region Supercomputing Center and more as part of the three-day conference....
May 3, 2013
By Molly RettigRed and blue waves triggered by a magnitude 4.6 earthquake rippled outward from the Anchorage area and fizzled out after 45 seconds. Except in Cook Inlet basin, where the waves were trapped for another half-minute, bouncing back and forth, up and down, within the 7.5-kilometer-thick sedimentary basin.“It’s like throwing a rock in the pond. Except water is a homogeneous material. In...