International Federation of Digital Seismograph Networks

Terms of Reference

The International Seismological Community recognizes the new opportunities within its field for improved understanding of the internal structure and dynamical properties of the Earth provided by seismograph network technology.

It also recognizes that rapid access to seismic data networks of modern broad-band digital instruments wherever they might be is now possible.

The developments include greatly improved broad-band seismographic systems that capture the entire seismic wave field with high fidelity, efficient and economical data communications and storage and widely available, powerful computing facilities.

The federation is open to all organisations committed to the deployment of broad-band seismographs and organisations involved in management of data from digital seismograph networks, willing to contribute to the establishment of an optimum global system with open and timely data exchange.

I. Goals

In view of the above and to take advantage of existing and developing global and regional networks the “International Federation of Digital Seismograph Networks (FDSN)” provides a forum for:

  • developing common minimum standards in seismographs (e.g. bandwidth) and recording characteristics (e.g. resolution and dynamic range);
  • developing standards for quality control and procedures for archiving and exchange of data among component networks;
  • coordinating the siting of stations in locations that will provide optimum coverage;
  • pursuing free and open access to data;
  • improving access to data in real-time.

II. Institutional Frame

The Federation is an independent international association and has commission status within the International Association for Seismology and Physics of the Earth’s Interior (IASPEI).

III. Membership and Organization

  • Membership in the FDSN is open to national and international organisations committed to both the development and operation of the broad-band digital networks as well as organisations involved in management of data from digital seismograph networks consistent with the goals of the Federation. It is required that each network member will contribute digital waveform data, preferably in real time, from at least one station to the FDSN Archive for Continuous Data as well as to appropriate FDSN Regional Data Centers.
  • The structure of the FDSN includes a steering committee and an executive committee.
  • The members of the FDSN steering committee will consist of one representative per member organisation who will be appointed or selected from within the organization they represent.
  • The members of the FDSN steering committee elect an FDSN executive committee. The executive committee will coordinate the activities of the Federation between meetings and is responsible for the organization and coordination of the steering committee meetings. Members of the FDSN executive committee are elected for a four-year term.
  • The FDSN executive committee is headed by a chair, who will be assisted by a secretary and the chairs of all FDSN working groups. The chair of the executive committee will preside over the meetings of the steering committee. Members of the executive committee shall be elected from within the steering committee or the member organizations. Elections take place during steering committee meetings.
  • The FDSN steering committee will form all necessary working groups or special technical committees as required to achieve the objectives of the FDSN. Each working group or special technical committee is headed by a chair.
  • The FDSN steering committee will deliberate at least once every two years. Special meetings may be called by the chair as necessary for the progress of the FDSN.
  • Concerning all recommendations made and actions to be taken, each steering committee member of the FDSN will have one vote.  A majority of 2/3 voting members will be required for an affirmative vote. Five members of the FDSN will constitute a quorum for FDSN steering committee meetings.
  • No fees are imposed but voluntary contributions may be requested to cover costs for communications and for organisation of FDSN meetings.
  • Any member may resign six weeks after giving written notice to the chair.

updated 04.07.2011