About the Napa Valley Seismic Project

The Napa Valley Seismic Project was started as a way to increase our geologic and geophysical understanding of the Napa Valley.

California is incredibly diverse geologically, and the Napa Valley, a small wine growing region north of San Francisco, encompasses most of what makes California unique. Many Oenologists credit the unique terroir of the valley for the award winning wine the valley produces known around the world.

Conventional land seismic can be noisy and invasive, requiring loud thumper trucks, explosives, and drilling in order to extract useful geologic information from the subsurface. Instead, the NVSP decided to use passive-seismic methods such as MASW and H/V testing in order to understand and quantify the Napa Valley geologically.

Passive surface wave methods are non-invasive and provide high-quality shear-wave velocity and HVSR information for the near subsurface. Shear waves and surface waves are the primary destructive wave types generated by an Earthquake, and a more comprehensive knowledge of shear wave velocity through the Napa Valley will help guide earthquake risk management. Napa experienced a M6.0 earthquake on 08/24/2014 and a M4.9 earthquake on 09/03/2000.

Primary Contributors:

Stefan Burns | Founder – Napa Seismic

Geometrics – Sr. Geophysicist – Digital Marketing Project Lead

Stefan is a SF Bay Area Geophysicist who was born and raised in Napa. Stefan has been the primary data contributor.

Koichi Hayashi | Top Advisor, Researcher

OYO Corporation – Senior Researcher

Koichi is a SF Bay Area Seismologist originally from Japan. Creator of SeisImager.

Goals of the NVSP

The Napa Valley Seismic Project has a few primary goals. They are:

  • Use the Napa Valley as an extensive and geologically variable field site for the testing and development of passive surface wave methods.
  • Share the results of the data publicly for educational and research purposes.
  • To better understand the earthquake hazards of the Napa Valley and California.
  • To inspire the younger generation to pursue a career in geophysics and STEM.

Please Contribute!

The Napa Valley Seismic Project is a organization free for all to contribute too. Whether it is with geological information, photos of rock outcrops from the field, self-collected seismic data, or participation during a group event, all contributions are welcome.