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QUEST Project scope and objectives

Storing CO2 in the subsurface to reduce global warming, finding hydrocarbon and other resources and monitoring their extraction, generating energy with Earth’s internal heat, and forecasting natural hazards (earthquake-induced ground motion, volcanic eruptions) requires high-resolution tomographic images of the Earth’s interior. The main goal of QUEST is research and training in the development of strategies for seismic imaging using the increasing power of 3-D simulation technology. While so far the observed information was severely reduced to determine Earth’s structure, the massive increase in available computational resources allows us now to make use of the complete information contained in the observations. With narrowing resources and increasing energy prizes the exploration industry is seeking highly skilled young scientists capable of driving the new computational technologies towards industrial problems. Earth Science graduating students are lacking profound theoretical and practical training in numerical methods and high-performance computing. QUEST intends to fill this gap offering the students excellent prospects in industry and academia as the combination of skills to be trained are highly in demand. We also expect substantial progress in understanding the dynamics of our planet, the quantification of natural hazards such as earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions.

QUEST will link world-leading scientists in methodologies such as computational wave propagation, the theory of inverse problems global tomography with two of the best industrial research laboratories in geophysics and computing world wide. QUEST will have a lasting impact on the practice of seismic tomography, leading to HPC solutions applicable to industrial and academic challenges, and a generation of young researchers capable of producing better Earth images that help us tackle the challenges of future energy-resource management and natural-hazard related research.

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