The Tartu Seismic Station (1987–2003)

In 1987 the Institute of Geochemistry and Geophysics of the Academy of Sciences of Belorussia installed a CM-3 type seismograph in the cellar of the Tartu Observatory to register seismic activity in the area. In connection with the fall of the Soviet Union the Tartu Seismic Station was subordinated to the Institute of Geology of the Estonian Academy of Sciences but in 1993 the research of geophysics was stopped. On 1 January 1994 the station was subordinated to the Estonian Centre of Geology. In 1996 the state of the art seismograph Quanterra Q380 was installed in the cellar of the observatory and the Tartu Seismic Station became a project partner of the project QEOFON (Geoforschungsnetz) the leader of which was the German Research Centre for Geosciences (GeoForschungsZentrum) – GFZ in Potsdam. It was difficult to register weak seismic events in Tartu because the city transport and the big trees growing on the Dome Hill caused a strong microseismic background. In 2003 the Tartu Seismic Station was transferred to Vasula, at the distance of 15 km from the city. In 2006 the network of Estonian seismic stations was established.

The seismograph Quanterra in the cellar of the observatory, 1996 (photo O. Heinloo)