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Gregory Lyzenga

Photo of Gregory Lyzenga


4800 Oak Grove Drive
M/S 126-347 Pasadena, CA 91109





Member of:

Earth Surface and Interior


Greg Lyzenga is a member of the Solid Earth group in the Earth Sciences Section, and is Professor of Physics and acting department chair at Harvey Mudd College in Claremont, CA. Greg's research focuses on the use forward finite element modeling and inverse methods to investigate active tectonic processes, including earthquake deformation and viscoelastic relaxation. He also works on the application of space geodetic data (including GPS and InSAR) to these problems. His recent research has included the development of modeling codes for high-performance parallel computing resources.


  • BS Physics, Distinction and Departmental Honors, Harvey Mudd College (1975)
  • MS Applied Physics, California Institute of Technology (1977)
  • Ph.D. Applied Physics (Geophysics), California Institute of Technology (1980)

Professional Experience

  • Harvey Mudd College, Claremont (1990-Present)
    • Professor of Physics (2000-present)
    • Associate Professor of Physics (1990-2000)
  • Jet Propulsion Laboratory (1980-Present)
    • Member Technical Staff
  • California Inst. Of Technology (1979-1980)
    • Graduate Research Assistant/Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Research Interests

  • Experimental solid-earth geophysics
  • Measurement of crustal deformation by space geodetic methods
  • Numerical modeling of crustal tectonics and rheology
  • Supercomputer applications of simulation and visualization
  • Characterization of asteroids by occultation and photometric methods

Selected Awards

  • NASA Space Act Award (2003)
  • NASA New Technology Award (1990)
  • NASA Group Achievement Award (1989)
  • NASA New Technology Award (1986)
  • Fannie and John Hertz Fellowship (1975-79)
  • National Science Foundation Honorable Mention (1975)

Selected Publications

  1. Donnellan, A., J. Rundle, G. Fox, D. McLeod, L. Grant, T. Tullis, M. Pierce, J. Parker, G. Lyzenga, R. Granat, M. Glasscoe, QuakeSim and the Solid Earth Research Virtual Observatory, PAGEOPH, 163, 1-17, (2006)
  2. Parker J, Donnellan A, Lyzenga G, Rundle J, Tullis T, Performance modeling codes for the QuakeSim problem solving environment, Computational Sicence - ICCS 2003, Pt III, Proceedings Lecture Notes In Computer Science 2659, 855-862, (2003)
  3. Glasscoe, M.T., Donnellan, A., Kellogg, L.H., and Lyzenga, G.A., 2002, Fault interaction in the Los Angeles Basin and Transverse Ranges, southern California, from elastic half-space and viscoelastic finite element models, ACES Third International Workshop extended abstracts (
  4. Glasscoe, M.T., Donnellan, A., Kellogg, L.H., and Lyzenga, G.A., 2004, Evidence of strain partitioning between the Sierra Madre fault and the Los Angeles Basin, southern California from numerical models, in press, Pure and Applied Geophysics.
  5. Hurst, K. J., D. Argus, A. Donnellan, M. B. Heflin, D. Jefferson, G. A. Lyzenga, J. W. Parker, F. H. Webb, J. F. Zumberge, The Co- and Immediate Post-seismic geodetic signature of the 1999 Hector Mine Earthquake, Geophys. Res. Lett., 27, 2733-2736 (2000).
  6. Lyzenga, G. A., W. R. Panero and A. Donnellan, The Influence of Anelastic Surface Layers on Postseismic Thrust Fault Deformation, J. Geophys. Res., 105, 3151-3157 (2000).
  7. Hager, B. H., G. A. Lyzenga, A. Donnellan, D. Dong, Reconciling Rapid Strain Accumulation with Deep Seismogenic Fault Planes in the Ventura Basin, California, J. Geophys. Res., 104, 25,207-25,219 (1999).
  8. Argus, D. F., M. B. Heflin, A. Donnellan, F. H. Webb, D. Dong, K. J. Hurst, D. C. Jefferson, G. A. Lyzenga, M. M. Watkins, J. F. Zumberge, Shortening and Thickening of Metropolitan Los Angeles Measured and Inferred Using Geodesy, Geology., 27, 703-706 (1999).
  9. Donnellan, A. and G. A. Lyzenga, GPS Observations of Fault Afterslip and Upper Crustal Deformation Following the Northridge Earthquake, J. Geophys. Res., 103, 21,285-21,297 (1998).
  10. Heflin, M., D. Dong, A, Donnellan, K. Hurst, D. Jefferson, M. Watkins, F. Webb, J. Zumberge, D. Dauger, G. Lyzenga, Rate Change Observed at JPLM after the Northridge Earthquake, Geophys. Res. Lett., 25, 93-96 (1998).
  11. Argus, D. F. and G. A. Lyzenga, Site Velocities Before and After the Loma Prieta and Gulf of Alaska Earthquakes from VLBI, Geophys. Res. Lett., 21, 333-336 (1994).
  12. Argus, D. F. and G. A. Lyzenga, Constraints on interseismic deformation at Japan trench from VLBI data, Geophys. Res. Lett., 20, 611-614 (1993).
  13. Lyzenga, G. A., Fields and Waves: An Introduction to Tensors and the Physics of Continuous Media, Harvey Mudd College (Class notes assembled from the lectures of A. E. Stoddard), Claremont, CA, 1993.
  14. Lyzenga, G. A., A. Raefsky, and S. G. Mulligan, Models of Recurrent Strike-Slip Earthquake Cycles and the State of Crustal Stress, J. Geophys. Res., 96, 21623-21640 (1991).
  15. Lyzenga, G. A., A. Raefsky, and B. Nour-Omid, Implementing Finite Element Software on Hypercube Machines, in Proceedings of the Third Conference on Hypercube Concurrent Computers and Applications, Pasadena, CA, January 19-20, 1988.
  16. Fox, G. C., M. A. Johnson, G. A. Lyzenga, S. W. Otto, J. K. Salmon, and D. W. Walker, Solving Problems on Concurrent Processors, Volume I: General Techniques and Regular Problems, Prentice-Hall, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, 1988.
  17. Nour-Omid, A. Raefsky, and G. A. LyzengaProceedings of the Symposium on Parallel Computations and their Impact on Mechanics, Boston, MA, December 13-18, 1987.
  18. Parsons, I. D., J. F. Hall, G. A. Lyzenga, Relationships Between the Average Offset and the Stress Drop for Two- and Three-Dimensional Faults, Bull. Seismol. Soc. Am., 78, 931-945 (1988)
  19. Kroger, P. M., G. A. Lyzenga, K. S. Wallace, and J. M. Davidson, Tectonic Motion in the Western United States Inferred from Very Long Baseline Interferometry Measurements, 1980-1986, J. Geophys. Res., 92, 14151-14163 (1988)
  20. Lyzenga, G. A., A. Raefsky, and B. H. Hager, Solving Finite-Element Problems on a Concurrent Processor, NASA Tech Briefs, 11, 75 (1987)
  21. Ivins, E. R. and G. A. Lyzenga, Stress Patterns in an Interplate Shear Zone: An Effective Anisotropic Model and Implications for the Transverse Ranges, California, Phil. Trans. R. Soc. Lond. A, 318, 285-347 (1986)
  22. Lyzenga, G. A. and M.P. Golombek, North American-Pacific Relative Plate Motion in Southern California from Interferometry, Science, 233, 1181-1183 (1986)
  23. Lyzenga, G. A., K. S. Wallace, A. Raefsky, P. M. Groth, and J. L. Fanselow, Tectonic Motions in California Inferred from Very Long Baseline Interferometry Observations, 1980-1984, J. Geophys. Res., 91, 9473-9487 (1986)
  24. Lyzenga, G. A., A. Raefsky, and B. H. Hager, Finite Elements and the Method of Conjugate Gradients on a Concurrent Processor, in Computers in Engineering 1985, vol. 3, Proceedings of the 1985 ASME International Computers in Engineering Conference and Exhibition, Boston, MA, August 4-8, 1985.
  25. Slade, M.A., G. A. Lyzenga, A. Raefsky, Modeling of the Surface Static Displacements and Fault Plane Slip for the 1979 Imperial Valley Earthquake, Bull. Seismol. Soc. Am., 74, 2413-2433 (1984)
  26. Lyzenga, G.A. and T.J. Ahrens, Shock Temperatures and Equations of State of SiO2 and their Geophysical Implications, J. Geophys. Res., 88, 2431-2444 (1983)
  27. Lyzenga, G. A., and T. J. Ahrens, One-dimensional Isentropic Compression, Shock Waves in Condensed Matter, AIP Conference Proceedings No. 78, 231-235, American Institute of Physics (1982)
  28. Lyzenga, G. A., Optical Pyrometry at High Shock Pressures and its Interpretation, Shock Waves in Condensed Matter, AIP Conference Proceedings No. 78, 268-276, American Institute of Physics (1982)
  29. Ahrens, T.J., G. A. Lyzenga, and A. C. Mitchell, Temperatures Induced by Shock Waves in Minerals: Applications to Geophysics, Advances in Earth and Planetary Sciences, 12, 579-594 (1982)
  30. Lyzenga, G.A., Ahrens, T. J., Nellis, W. J., and Mitchell, A. C., The Temperature of Shock-Compressed Water,J. Chem. Phys., 76(12), 6282 (1982)
  31. Lyzenga, G.A. and T. J. Ahrens, Shock Temperature Measurements in Mg2SiO4 and SiO2 at High Pressures. Geophys. Res. Lett., 7, 144 (1980)
  32. Lyzenga, G.A., Shock Temperatures of Materials: Experiments and Applications to the High Pressure Equation of State, Ph.D. Thesis, California Institute of Technology, Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences (1980)
  33. Lyzenga, G.A. and T.J. Ahrens, A Multi-wavelength Optical Pyrometer for Shock Compression Experiments, Rev. Sci. Instr., 50, 1421 (1980)
  34. Lyzenga, G.A. and T.J. Ahrens, The Relation Between the Shock-induced Free Surface Velocity and the Postshock Specific Volume of Solids, J. Appl. Phys., 49, 201 (1978)
  35. Bell, G.D. and G.A. Lyzenga, Absolute gf-values for Nine Resonance Lines of Neutral Scandium, Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A, 351, 581 (1976)