AGU 2017: Science, Seafood, and Soul in New Orleans

Earth Observatory Blog

AGU 2017: Science, Seafood, and Soul in New Orleans

The annual American Geophysical Union (AGU) conference brings together the world’s experts in geophysical science (Source: Rachel Siao)

In December 2017, the city of New Orleans welcomed 22,500 of the world’s leading geophysical science experts for the annual American Geophysical Union (AGU) conference. Each year, AGU brings together the earth, atmospheric, space, and hydrologic science communities to share their research, exchange ideas, and meet colleagues and friends. The Earth Observatory of Singapore (EOS) sent a group of representatives to join the activity at AGU 2017.

Our researchers conducted 21 oral presentations and two workshops, with topics ranging from the recurrence interval of tsunamis in the 7,400 years before the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, to how music can be used to communicate geoscience in films, videos and interactive games. 

Each year, AGU provides an opportunity for EOS researchers to meet and mingle with colleagues, collaborators, and friends (Source: Rachel Siao)

We also exhibited 29 posters throughout the week. Research Associate Anna Perttu presented her research on using film sound techniques to clean up infrasound data, and Research Fellow Dr Eric Lindsey presented on how stress shadows prohibit interseismic coupling.

Research Fellow Dr James Moore reported that Dr Eric Lindsey’s presentation was a highlight of his AGU experience. “Eric’s presentation sparked a major reassessment within the community of what interseismic coupling studies mean for seismic hazard and potentially tsunamigenic earthquakes,” he said. “Everyone assumed if megathrusts were frictionally unlocked, they wouldn’t present a hazard, but Eric’s presentation showed us that they can actually present a very significant one.”

Priyamvada Nanjundiah was invited to partake in AGU’s new eLightning Presentation session, presenting her award-winning research on the tectonic setting of the Pamir Plateau (Source: Rachel Siao)

Priyamvada Nanjundiah, a PhD student at EOS, was a winner of the Outstanding Student Paper Award at AGU 2016 for her research on the interaction between complex fault systems in the Pamir Plateau in Tajikistan. Based on the success of her research last year, Priyamvada was invited to give an eLightning Presentation at this year’s AGU. During the eLightning Presentation, she had just three minutes to present an update on her continued research. The new eLightning format digitalises posters, and encourages scientists to condense their research into just three minutes of their most fundamental facts and findings.

More than 100 people attended the EOS Annual Reception at the New Orleans Social House, near the historic French Quarter (Source: Rachel Siao)

Being in New Orleans provided an opportunity for everyone to enjoy the food and music that the city is known for. AGU kicked off with a brass band performance, and the EOS Annual Reception provided a lively space for people to mingle over delicious Cajun dishes and wine. EOS researchers and their collaborators talked well into the night about ideas, partnerships, and future plans.

 The Community Engagement Office shared EOS’ work with conference-goers, while giving out EOS merchandise (Source: Rachel Siao)

The Community Engagement team set up a booth and spoke to visitors about our work. They handed out merchandise, and encouraged people to sign up for the EOS e-newsletter. EOS faculty members, research fellows, and graduate students also spoke to curious conference attendees about their experiences living and working in Singapore.

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