SPIN Short Course 1 - Wave Propagation & Computational Seismology

30 March - 1 April, 2022

Scientific Program

The main focus of this short course will be on computational seismology.

We will cover the following topics:

  • Fundamentals of wave propagation: wave equation, moment tensor, source time functions, reciprocity, Green’s functions
  • Finite-difference method, pseudo-spectral methods, linear finite-element method
  • Spectral element method, finite volume method, discontinuous Galerkin method
  • Community solvers: Specfem, AxiSEM3D, Seissol
  • Discussion: bring along your wave modelling problem

In addition to lectures and discussions, there will be practical exercises using Jupyer notebooks and Python. A solid grasp of Python and Obspy is therefore a prerequisite for participation in the short course.

The short course schedule can be found here.

The lectures have been recorded and are posted to the SPIN Youtube channel.

Confirmed speakers include:

Thanks to Dominik Strutz and Sebastian Noe for their support during the short course!


The Jupyter Notebooks for the practical exercises can be found on the SPIN github https://github.com/spin-itn/SPIN-SC1. They can also be run in your browser through binder there.

If you would to run the practicals locally on your own computer, you will need an anaconda install, with a Python version 3+ environment with numpy, scipy and matplotlib.

SeisSol session:
Please install Docker (https://docs.docker.com/engine/install/) and visit https://github.com/SeisSol/Training/ for the hands-on parts.

AxiSEM session:
For the AxiSEM(3D) session, we will look at three software packages:

  1. axisem.info
  2. instaseis.net
  3. https://github.com/kuangdai/AxiSEM-3D/wiki

For AxiSEM3D, please refer to the installation instructions. Some of the dependent packages (eigen, boost, netcdf) might not be pre-installed on your systems, and have been known to cause trouble. For the shortcourse, we don’t expect participants to have the code running, and can subsequently help with installation, but any prior familiarisation with the dependencies will of course be useful. Much of this wiki and installation (including some code bugs!), as well as user mailing lists are in the making, so please bear with us as we get these tasks up and running smoothly over the next little while.


The short course will take place online, via zoom. A zoom link will be sent after registration.


In case of questions or for clarifications, please contact SPIN-management@uni-hamburg.de.