Professor, Systems Engineering
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Distinguished Affiliated Professor, Technical University, Munich


Ph.D. Civil Engineering, 1990, The University of Texas at Austin.  Thesis advisor: Priscilla P. Nelson.
M.S. Civil Engineering, 1986, The University of Texas at Austin
B.S. Civil Engineering, 1984, The University of Texas at Austin.
B.A Philosophy, 1975, Clark University, Worcester, MA.
Journeyman Apprentice Training Program, Local 77, International Union of Operating Engineers, 1977; graduate, 4-year program

Research interests: nanoseismicity and acoustic signals from fracture and friction; nano- and mazzo-scale seismology; sensor development; wireless sensor networks for environmental and structural monitoring; mountain hydrology; laboratory experiments for geothermal energy exploitation.


Our paper published in the Nov. 1, 2014, issue of the journal Nature reveals that the more time an earthquake fault has to heal, the faster the shake it will produce when it finally ruptures. Because the rapidity and strength of the shaking are what causes damage to major structures, the new findings could help engineers better assess the vulnerabilities of buildings, bridges and roads.




  Laboratory Earthquakes

Through carefully controlled experiments, fundamental mechanisms of fault rupture initiation are being studied with a level of detail unimaginable in the field.  This is made possible by sensors designed in the Glaser lab.  These devices allow accurate measurement of displacements as small as 200 fm, over a wide frequency band; no other displacement sensor can match this performance.  Current work includes scaling effects of near-fault measurement on perceived source kinematics, localized precursors to rupture, and nano-friction.



  Internet of Water

It is estimated that seasonal snow cover is responsible for 60%  of annual water supplies in California. Stewardship of the state’s valuable water supply requires understanding of the mountain hydrology system from the first snowfall to the water in your tap. We operate 19 networks, each covering 1.5 km2, on the Feather, American, and King's river.  This is believed to be the largest WSN for eco-monitoring in the world, comprising several thousand sensors.  This allows investigation of the effects of local-scale phenomena on large-scale mountain hydrology, something which is unfeasible without the WSN.




  Clean Energy from Hot

  Dry Rock

One solution to mining the earth’s geothermal energy is to engineer our own production fields. Such enhanced geothermal systems entail drilling at least two wells, one to pump down cold water, and others to pump up superheated water. We are starting an experimental journey to examine what are the causes of injection-induced seismicity.  Such seismicity caused the city of Basel, Switzerland, to shut down a brand-new plant.  The experiment utilizes our 300 mm true-triaxial loading machine that is integrated to a high-pressure steam boiler to model true geothermal conditions.

Contact Information

Office: 621A Sutardja Dai Hall (CITRIS bldg.)
Lab: 252 Hearst Memorial Mining Building
Tel: (510) 295-9521



Professor Steven Glaser
Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering
University of California, Berkeley
621 Sutardja Dai Hall
Berkeley, CA 94720-1758


















               CITRIS video, Caples Lake, CA