David Ponce

Dave Ponce is a Research Geophysicist with the Geology, Minerals, Energy, and Geophysics Science Center in Menlo Park, California. His work focuses on the application of gravity, magnetic, and other geophysical methods to address a variety of earth science issues including earthquake hazards and mineral resources.


David Ponce is a senior Research Geophysicist with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in Menlo Park, California, with over 30 years of experience. He is a member and past Chief of the Geophysical Unit of Menlo Park (GUMP), a potential-field (gravity and magnetics), paleomagnetic, and electromagnetic methods research group. He received a B.S. and M.S. in Geology/Geophysics from San Jose State University, California. His primary areas of interest are geophysical investigations of the San Francisco Bay Area and the Basin and Range Province of the western U.S. These studies utilize geophysical methods to understand geology and tectonophysics; volcano and earthquake hazards; and water, mineral, and energy resources. He has authored more than 250 abstracts, reports, maps, or articles.

Dave is also a member of the American Geophysical Union, Geological Society of America, and Society of Exploration Geophysicists and is a recipient of the Superior Service Award from the Department of Interior.


Professional Experience:

  • Research Geophysicist, Geophysics Unit of Menlo Park (GUMP), Geology, Minerals, Energy and Geophysics Science Center (GMEG)
  • Project Chief, REE deposits in the southeast Mojave Desert, California
  • Principal Investigator, Geophysical investigations of the Calaveras, Hayward, and Rodgers Creek Faults, California and implications on earthquake hazards.


  • B.S., Geophysics/Geology, San Jose State University, 1976
  • M.S., Geophysics/Geology, San Jose State University, 1981


  • American Geophysical Union
  • Geological Society of America
  • Society of Exploration Geophysicists