Sandia releases GeoTess software to public

Sandia National Laboratories, Los Alamos National Laboartory and the National Nuclear Security Administration's Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation R&D announced on Thursday that they have released a standardized version of GeoTess software to the public.

The new software can be downloaded by seismologists and researchers around the world. Users have the flexibility of deciding how they store data with the program. The software is being released under BSD Open Source License, which is available in Java and C++, and has been tested in multiple platforms including Linux, SunOS, MacOSX and Windows.

"GeoTess makes models compatible and standardizes everything," Sandy Ballard, a Sandia geophysicist, said. "This would really facilitate sharing of different models, if everyone agreed on it."

GeoTess uses scalable triangular tessellation and seismic tomography to map the Earth's seismic velocity. This makes the software able to detect explosions and other seismic events previously impossible to record, including seismic events over a geographical area that was 26 percent smaller than the traditional model and nine percent smaller than the recently developed Regional Seismic Travel Time model.

"If you have material that has very high seismic velocity, the waves travel very quickly, but the energy travels less quickly through other kinds of materials, so it takes the signals longer to travel from the source to the receiver," Ballard said.