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Heather R. DeShon

Associate Professor

Ph.D., University of California Santa Cruz

Research Interests

  • Earthquake generation within subduction zones and intraplate settings
  • Seismogenic zone processes
  • Local earthquake tomography and waveform cross-correlation
  • Volcano seismology

    For further information follow link to research page


B.S., Geophysics and Mathematics, Southern Methodist University, May 1999
Ph.D., Earth Sciences (Geophysics), University of California Santa Cruz, June 2004
Thesis title: Seismogenic zone structure along the Middle America subduction zone, Costa Rica (link)

Current Research Projects

Subduction Studies

  • Imaging 3D Seismic Velocity and Attenuation Heterogeneity Along the Seismogenic Zone of Costa Rica and Nicaragua, NSF MARGINS Program, PI: H.R. DeShon (UoM)
  • Defining locations and patch sizes for slow earthquake ruptures in subduction zones, NSF Marine Geology and Geophysics, PIs: H.R. DeShon (UoM), S.L. Bilek (New Mexico Tech), E.R. Engdahl (U. Colorado)

New Madrid Studies

  • Northern Embayment Lithosphere Experiment, NSF Earthscope, Collaborators: C. Langston, H.R. DeShon, C.A. Powell, S. Horton (UoM), C. Ammon (Penn State), and B. Hermann (SLU)  
  • Imaging Body Wave Attenuation Heterogeneity within the New Madrid Seismic Zone using Local Earthquakes, USGS NEHERP, PI: H.R. DeShon (UoM)
  • Detection and Location of Non-Volcanic Tremor in the New Madrid Seismic Zone, USGS NEHRP, PIs: H.R. DeShon, C. Langston, S. Horton, M. Withers (UoM)
  • Waveform Cross-correlation and Swarm Activity within the New Madrid Seismic Zone

Past Projects
  • High-precision teleseismic relocation and tomography for the M 9 and M 8.7 Sumatra great earthquake sequences, NSF Geophysics,  Collaborators: H.R. DeShon (UoM), Cliff Thurber, Haijang Zhang, Jeremy Pesicek (Univ. Wisconsin), E.R. Engdahl (Univ. Colorado), M. Brudzinski (Univ. Miami Ohio), and F. Waldhauser (Lamont Observatory, Columbia Univ.)
  • Imaging 3D Seismic Velocity and Attenuation Heterogeneity Along the Seismogenic Zone of Costa Rica and Nicaragua and Costa Rica Seismogenic Zone Experiment (CRSEIZE), NSF Margins Program, PIs Schwartz (UCSC), Dixon (Miami), Dorman and Brown (Scripps)
  • Earthquake Location and 3D Velocity Determination of Alaskan Volcanoes using Waveform Cross-correlation and Double-difference Tomography, PIs Thurber (U. Wisconsin) and Prejean (AVO)

Selected Recent Publications

Bilek, S., E.R. Engdahl, H.R. DeShon, and M. El Hariri (2011), The 24 October 2010 Sumatra tsunami earthquake: Slip in a slow patch, Geophys. Res. Letts., accepted.

DeShon, H.R., C.H. Thurber, and J. Power (2010), Earthquake waveform similarity and evolution at Augustine volcano, Alaska, from 1993-2006, in The 2006 Eruption of Augustine Volcano, Alaska, eds. J.A. Power, M.L. Coombs, and J.T. Freymueller, USGS Professional Paper 1769, p. 103-118.

Dunn, M., S. Horton, H.R. DeShon, and C.A. Powell (2010),  High Resolution Earthquake Location in the New Madrid Seismic Zone, Seismo. Res. Letts., 81, 406-413.

Pesicek, J.D., C.H. Thurber, H. Zhang, H.R. DeShon, and E.R. Engdahl (2010), Teleseismic Double-difference Relocation of Earthquakes along the Sumatra-Andaman Subduction Zone using a Three-Dimensional Model, J. Geophys. Res., 115, B1030, 10.1029/2010JB007443.

Pesicek, J.D., C.H. Thurber, S. Widiyantoro, E.R. Engdahl, and H.R. DeShon (2010), Sharpening the Tomographic Image of the Subducting Slab below the Sumatra-Andaman Region, Geophys. J. Int., 182, 433-453, doi: 10.111/ j.1365-246X.2010.04630.x.

Powell, C.A., H.R. DeShon, and M. Withers (2010), Intrusions and Anomalous Vp/Vs Ratios Associated with the New Madrid Seismic Zone, J. Geophys. Res., 115, B08311, doi:10.1029/2009JB007107.

Sumiejski, L., C.H.  Thurber, and H.R. DeShon (2009), Relocation of eruption-related earthquake clusters at Augustine volcano, Alaska, using station-pair differential times, Geophysical J. Int., 176, 1017-1022 .

Pesicek, J., C.H. Thurber, S. Widiyantoro, E.R. Engdahl, and H.R. DeShon (2008), Folded slab subduction beneath Sumatra, Geophys. Res. Letts, 35, L20303, doi:10.1029/2008GL035262. 

Link to a complete publications listing with PDFs

Courses (link)

Curriculum Vitae (link)

Graduate Student Opportunities

I am seeking a Ph.D. level graduate student to work on lithosphere-athenosphere boundary and attenuation studies of the central US.  This work is part of the NELE Earthscope project.

I am also interested in MS and/or PhD students interested in global subduction zone studies. If you would like more information, please email me.