Scoring IDC SEL1 events for identifying misformed events

Y. Ben Horin*, David M. Steinberg

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The International Data Center (IDC) produces several automatic seismic event lists followed by a reviewed event list as part of the verification regime for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty. For the time period from 2005 to 2011, on average, approximately 160 events per day were included in the first IDC automatic Standard Event List (SEL1). For the same time period, "only" 86 events per day were included in the IDC Reviewed Event Bulletin (REB). Several possible reasons may explain why an event included in SEL1 is excluded from the REB; for example: misassociation, namely, the association process generated an artificial event by associating information from stations that recorded several different events. Reducing the number of SEL1 events that are ultimately excluded from the REB would improve the automatic process relying on the SEL1 Bulletin and would reduce the workload of the analysts at the IDC. In this work, we present a scoring method that indicates the probability that an SEL1 event will "survive" the analysis process and be included in the REB. The method tries to imitate "good" analyst practice. Namely, based on the experience gained in analyzing information from a specific region with a seismic network, the analyst can decide if an event is a "real" event or not. The score was created for the International Monitoring System primary seismic stations based on the REB for the time period of 2005 to the beginning of 2011. The score is designed to indicate if the set of stations contributing/not contributing to the event is consistent with what is expected based on the analysis of past events that occurred in the same region. A byproduct of the analysis needed for the score is a statistical measure that assesses the typical contribution of a specific station to a specific region. This information can be useful in its own right, for example, to design subnetworks that will increase automatic processing efficiency.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1109-1123
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Seismology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2013


  • Bulletin screening
  • CTBT
  • Seismology


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