Phillip Dawson

Phillip Dawson is a geophysicist with the U.S. Geological Survey’s Volcano Science Center, focusing on theoretical and experimental investigations of active volcanism and volcanic processes.


Phillip Dawson hails from a small town located on the flank of one of the world's largest stratovolcanoes - Mount Shasta, California.  Who wouldn't want to pursue a career studying volcanoes at the USGS given that background?

He currently works as a geophysicist on the Seismology of Magmatic Injection project at the California Volcano Observatory, Moffett Field, California.  This project is dedicated to understanding the underlying physics driving volcanic seismicity and processes through the use of detailed field experiments and the application, modification, and extension of existing seismic methods and theories.  Objectives include: quantification of volcanic velocity structure using tomography and surface-wave dispersion inversions; inversion of broadband waveform data to quantify magma transport processes; determining the effect of tilt on modern broadband seismic sensors, and correcting for this effect using waveform inversions; quantification of the effects of 3D topography and structure on seismic wave propagation; using dense small-aperture arrays to identify source, path, and site effects in tremor wavefields; quantification of the source parameters of long-period (LP) and very-long-period (VLP) volcanic seismicity; and developing techniques to enable the accurate identification of volcanic seismicity. 

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