Scientific Sessions

Scientific Sessions:


Scientific Committee:

  • Haluk Ozener (Turkey)
  • Luisa Bastos (Portugal)
  • Mathias Becker (Germany)
  • Machiel Bos (Portugal)
  • Ludwig Combrinck (South Africa)
  • Tonie Van Dam (Luxembourg)
  • Rui Fernandes (Portugal)
  • Teresa Ferreira (Portugal)
  • Mustapha Meghraoui (France)
  • Rob Reilinger (U.S.A.)
  • Tim Wright (United Kingdom)
  • Susanna Zerbini (Italy)

Local Organising Committee:

  • Rui Fernandes (UBI)
  • Machiel Bos (IDL)
  • Marlene Antunes (SR-Azores)
  • Teresa Ferreira (UAc-CIVISA)
  • Hugo Valentim (UBI)
  • Rafael Couto (UBI)

Session 1: Current Plate Motions, Inter and Intraplate Deformation with a Focus on Europe, the Mediterranean, Africa and Middle East

We look for geodetic, geophysical and geologic studies focused on plate motions and how they relate to elements in the deforming zones inter- and intra-plates, like faults, slip, great earthquakes, and mountains and rifts generated by active deformation.
Among many questions, we seek answers for:
How do the estimates of plate motions from different techniques compare?
What fraction of plate motion is being taken up by elastic strain that will be released in earthquakes?
Do the estimation of the velocity of the stations improve significantly in the recent years with the use of other GNSS constellations besides GPS, improved orbits, better models?
Although we are particularly interested on the plate boundary between Eurasia and Nubia, we invite contributions for any active deformation zone in the globe.

Session 2: Continental Faulting and Earthquake Cycle

Recent large seismic events in either subduction zones, oceanic transform or continental faults have been the subject of multidisciplinary studies using seismic waveforms, geodetic (GPS and InSAR) and geologic investigations (field, airborne and satellite investigations of fault ruptures, geomorphology, and palaeoseismolgy). At the same time, improvements in the quantity and quality of geodetic observations are allowing us to improve our understanding of the earthquake deformation cycle. Thanks to this new wealth of data the complex nature of seismotectonic structures at plate boundaries is unravelled, helping us improve our understanding of the role of earthquake ruptures in accommodating regional deformation, and to constrain physical models of fault-scale and regional-scale deformation.
The aim of this session is to present updated results from seismogenic faults at all types of plate boundary,to discuss methods of integrating geodetic results with those from different disciplines, and to explore the implications for our understanding of faulting and the mechanics of lithospheric deformation. We particularly encourage submission of abstracts on the relationship of fault complexity to the occurrence of large earthquake ruptures, the measurements and modelling of the active deformation at regional or fault scales, and on crust/lithosphere deformation processes along plate boundary zones, and those that link present-day observed deformation with longer-term geological processes.


Session 3: Elastic surface displacements, surface and satellite  gravity observations, global and regional sea-level change

Changes in environmental mass on the surface of the Earth and within the subsurface sedimentary layers load and displace the Earth’s surface that can be measured with a number of geodetic techniques.  This session will focus on:

  • advancements in determining the loads themselves through inversion of observational data;
  • trends in the changing surface displacements and hence loads;
  • models that estimate these signals;
  • new Earth models that govern the amplitude of the loading effects.

In addition, sea level has been recognized by the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) as one of the 50 Essential Climate Variables, which are key for advancing climate research and for supporting decision makers in public and private sectors. This session will also focus on:

  • improved physical understanding of the sea-level components;
  • the relevance and contribution of space geodetic techniques for observing and quantifying ice-sheet dynamical changes and sea level change.


Session 4: Data and infrastructures, Instrumentation & Co-location for continuous monitoring of the changing Earth

Collocation of astronomical, timing, geodetic, meteorological, geophysical and oceanography equipment provide synergistic applications and scientific opportunities which otherwise would not be possible. This is exemplified by observatories where the four main space geodesy techniques (VLBI, SLR, GNSS, DORIS) are collocated, as these sites are typically used to constrain global solutions of the ITRF. The constrained solutions and combinations of the results of the independent techniques require very accurate site ties and it is currently expected that the inter-technique offset vectors between reference points of each technique be accurately measured to within 1 mm. Similar requirements are expected of smaller installations such as the tie between a tide gauge collocated with a GNSS receiver.
Collocation of equipment creates unique challenges for data and infrastructure requirements, especially when sites are remote and local connectivity is not available and other resources (GPRS, satellite link etc.) need to be utilized. The provision of adequate power, security and often complicated logistics lead to a challenging environment for collocation projects.
At the same time new earth-observation techniques such as InSAR and Lidar are about to create an enormous amount of new types of freely available data and products, e.g. by the EU Copernicus program.  In combination with the classical space techniques they widen the applications of space and open new approaches for the geosciences. Therefore the need for an infrastructure to make data from multi-technique and multidisciplinary observation networks accessible and easy to use will be essential for future research. It has to be supplemented by geological data repositories, virtual data gained from numeric modelling and simulation, and experimental data with tools to provide products for the study of the changing Earth and natural hazards.
For this session, we invite papers that address both topics.  On the one hand we need to address the complexities, challenges, technical solutions and implementations of collocated stations which are installed for continuous monitoring of the Earth. On the other hand, we have to consider the development and design of the infrastructures that provide sustainable access and usage of the wealth of information provided by a unified approach to Earth observation and geodetic techniques.

Session 5: Transient signals in Geodetic Time Series: detection and modeling

Geodetic time series cover a wide frequency spectrum of the Earth surface deformation, from the secular motion down to seismic waves. Nonetheless, the precise quantification of small deformation at different time scales remains challenging because of the superimposition of signals coming from different physical processes with geodetic artifacts like offsets, outliers and any mismodelling of the geodetic observable.
This session welcomes any contribution related to new methodology related to geodetic time series such as improved analysis techniques and detection of transient signals such as those caused by post-seismic relaxation. The session also invites contributions on modelling of the physical processes related to the time dependent deformation.