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Lott F.F.,Karlsruhe Institute of Technology | Ritter J.R.R.,Karlsruhe Institute of Technology | Al-Qaryouti M.,Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources MEMR | Corsmeier U.,Karlsruhe Institute of Technology
Pure and Applied Geophysics | Year: 2017

Atmospheric processes, ranging from microscale turbulence to severe storms on the synoptic scale, impact the continuous ground motion of the earth and have the potential to induce strong broad-band noise in seismological recordings. We designed a target-oriented experiment to quantify the influence of wind on ground motion velocity in the Dead Sea valley. For the period from March 2014 to February 2015, a seismological array, consisting of 15 three-component short-period and broad-band stations, was operated near Madaba, Jordan, complemented by one meteorological tower providing synchronized, continuous three-component measurements of wind speed. Results reveal a pronounced, predominantly linear increase of the logarithmic power of ground motion velocity with rising mean horizontal wind speed at all recording stations. Measurements in rough, mountainous terrain further identify a strong dependency of wind-induced noise on surface characteristics, such as topography and, therefore, demonstrate the necessity to consider wind direction as well. To assess the noise level of seismological recordings with respect to a dynamically changing wind field, we develop a methodology to account for the dependency of power spectral density of ground motion velocity on wind speed and wind direction for long, statistically significant periods. We further introduce the quantitative measure of the ground motion susceptibility to estimate the vulnerability of seismological recordings to the presence of wind. © 2017, Springer International Publishing.

Kottmeier C.,Karlsruhe Institute of Technology | Agnon A.,Hebrew University of Jerusalem | Al-Halbouni D.,German Research Center for Geosciences | Alpert P.,Tel Aviv University | And 25 more authors.
Science of the Total Environment | Year: 2016

The Dead Sea region has faced substantial environmental challenges in recent decades, including water resource scarcity, ∼ 1 m annual decreases in the water level, sinkhole development, ascending-brine freshwater pollution, and seismic disturbance risks. Natural processes are significantly affected by human interference as well as by climate change and tectonic developments over the long term. To get a deep understanding of processes and their interactions, innovative scientific approaches that integrate disciplinary research and education are required. The research project DESERVE (Helmholtz Virtual Institute Dead Sea Research Venue) addresses these challenges in an interdisciplinary approach that includes geophysics, hydrology, and meteorology. The project is implemented by a consortium of scientific institutions in neighboring countries of the Dead Sea (Israel, Jordan, Palestine Territories) and participating German Helmholtz Centres (KIT, GFZ, UFZ). A new monitoring network of meteorological, hydrological, and seismic/geodynamic stations has been established, and extensive field research and numerical simulations have been undertaken. For the first time, innovative measurement and modeling techniques have been applied to the extreme conditions of the Dead Sea and its surroundings. The preliminary results show the potential of these methods. First time ever performed eddy covariance measurements give insight into the governing factors of Dead Sea evaporation. High-resolution bathymetric investigations reveal a strong correlation between submarine springs and neo-tectonic patterns. Based on detailed studies of stratigraphy and borehole information, the extension of the subsurface drainage basin of the Dead Sea is now reliably estimated. Originality has been achieved in monitoring flash floods in an arid basin at its outlet and simultaneously in tributaries, supplemented by spatio-temporal rainfall data. Low-altitude, high resolution photogrammetry, allied to satellite image analysis and to geophysical surveys (e.g. shear-wave reflections) has enabled a more detailed characterization of sinkhole morphology and temporal development and the possible subsurface controls thereon. All the above listed efforts and scientific results take place with the interdisciplinary education of young scientists. They are invited to attend joint thematic workshops and winter schools as well as to participate in field experiments. © 2015 The Authors.

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