Bruce Bolt

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Bruce Bolt (February 15, 1930 – July 21, 2005) was a Professor of Earth and Planetary Science at the University of California, Berkeley. Professor Bolt was a seismologist known as pioneer of engineering seismology. He served for 15 years on the California Seismic Safety Committee leading public debate on earthquake safety in that state, and acted as a consultant on major projects throughout the world. As well, Bolt published a number of popular and technical books on seismology.

Early life and career

Bolt was born in Largs, New South Wales just north of Maitland in 1930. He studied at the University of Sydney obtaining his Bachelors Degree in 1952, Masters Degree in 1955 and a Doctorate in Applied Mathematics in 1959. He also lectured at Sydney University in Mathematics but developed an interest in mathematical modelling of the Earth's interior. He obtained a D. Sc from Sydney University in 1972 while working at Berkeley. After visiting the Lamont Geological Observatory in New York, he visited the Department of Geodesy and Geophysics at Cambridge University where he met Professors Perry Byerly and John Verhoogen of UC Berkeley who invited him there.

Career at Berkeley

Bolt started as Director of the Berkeley Seismological Stations (now the Berkeley Seismological Laboratory) in 1963 and served in that position until 1991. In that position, he was at the forefront of seismology especially as a pioneer of engineering seismology. He identified the impact of near-fault...
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