Huajian YAO


    Address:Earth and Space Sciences School, University of Science and Technology of China,96 Jinzhai Road, Hefei, Anhui Province, P.R. China, 230026
    Office Tel: 0551-63607201

    Huajian YAO, Professor in geophysics. Born in June, 1979 in Guangde, Anhui Province, China. PhD in Geophysics (MIT, 2009).


    I am mainly interested in fundamental and applied research in seismology and geophysics. The current research projects include (1)seismic imaging using earthquake surface waves and ambient seismic noise;(2)shallow surface and lithospheric structure and deformation;(3)earthquake rupture imaging;(4)micro-earthquakes and non-volcanic tremor;(5)array methods and application;(6)geophysical inverse methods and application. I have published 32 research papers in peer-reviewed journals, with more than 660 citations, and over 400 citations for the first author papers(till September2014).


    1. Education

    2004/09-2009/05,Masschusetts Institute of Technology,PhDin geophysics
       PhD Thesis:Ambient noise interferometry and surface-wave array tomography in southeastern Tibet
    2001/09-2004/06,University of Science and Technology of China,M.S. (with honor)
    1996/09-2001/06,University of Science and Technology of China,B.S. (with honor)


    2. Employment

    2012/01-,University of Science and Technology of China,professor
    2010/08-2012/07,Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UCSD,Green Scholar (postdoc)
    2009/06-2010/07,Masschusetts Institute of Technology,postdoc research associate 


    3. Honors and Awards

    Excellence in Refereeing, AGU JGR-Solid Earth (2013)
    NSF of China “Excellent Young Scholar” Funding recipient (2012)
    “Thousand Young Talents” award from Chinese Government(2011)
    Green Scholarship, IGPP/Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UCSD, (2010 – 2012)
    Outstanding Graduate Student Award, Anhui Province, China(2004)
    Graduate with Honor, University of Science and Technology of China(M.S., 2004)
    Graduate with Honor, University of Science and Technology of China(B.S., 2001) 

    4. Professional Societies

    Chinese Geophysical Society, American Geophysical Union, Seismological Society of America


    5. Teaching 
    2014 Spring: Frontiers in Geophysics: Structure and dynamic evolution of Tibetan Plateau (with prof. Wei Leng)
    2013,2014 Fall: Geophysical Inversion (In English; with prof. Haijiang Zhang)
    2013 Spring:Frontiers in Geophysics: Seismic Imaging (In English; with prof. Haijiang Zhang)
    2012 Fall:Advancing Forum in Geosciences: Structure and Dynamic Evolution of the Earth (Lecture in Chinese, reading and discussion in English; with prof. Haijiang Zhang)


    6. Professional Services

    (1) Chief secretary of "the Steering Committee of Teaching in Geophysics", Ministry of Education in China (2013-2017)
    (2) Associate editor, Seismological Research Letter (SRL); Guest editor, Seismological Research Letter (SRL), for the “Lushan Earthquake” special issue
    (3) Editorial board member: Science in China – Earth Science; Earthquake Science
    (4) Session conveners and chairs for CGS, AGU and WPGM meetings; Judge for the outstanding student paper award, AGU Meeting
    (5) Peer reviewer for National Science Foundation of China and US
    (6) Peer reviewer for over 50 papers in more than 10 scientific journals (Nature Geoscience,EPSL,JGR,GRL,GJI,G3,BSSA,Tectonophysics,Geology, Survey in Geophysics, PAGEOPH, Earthquake Sci., Chinese Sci. Bulletin, Science in China) and Society of Exploration Geophysics
    (7) Organizer of “Invited Seminar of Geophysics, USTC” and “Graduate student seminar of geophysics, USTC”
    (8) High-school scientific seminar: Origin and evolution of the Earth 


    7. Social Services

    Vice-Chair, Young Scholar Union at USTC, (2014-)
    President of Chinese Association of Science and Technology, MIT(2007-2009)


    8. Peer-reviewed Publications 




    32. Q. Liu, R. van der Hilst, Y. Li, H. Yao, J.-H. Chen, B. Guo, S. Qi, J. Wang, H. Huang, and S.-C. Li,2014. Eastward expansion of Tibetan plateau by crustal flow and strain partitioning across faults, Nature Geoscience,7(5),361-365

    31. Chen M., Huang H, Yao, H., van der Hilst R.D., Niu F., 2014. Low wavespeed zones in the crust beneath the SE Tibet revealed by ambient noise adjoint tomography, Geophys. Res. Lett., 41(2),334-340

    30. Huang, Y.-C., Yao, H. Liang, W.-Z., et al., 2014. Crustal and upper mantle Vs structures across the Taiwan Strait from ambient seismic noise and earthquake Rayleigh wave analyses. J. Asian Earth Sci. 81, 38-52.

    29. Yao, H, Peng, Z, 2014. Preface to the focus section on the 20 April 2013 magnitude 6.6 Lushan, China, earthquake.Seismo. Res. Lett, 85(1), 6-7.



    28. Yao H.,2013. Compressive sensing of great earthquake rupture process: methodology and research advances. Journal of University of Science and Technology of China,43(11),907-921.

    27.Uchide, T., Yao, H., Shearer, P., 2013. Spatio-temporal distribution of fault slip and high-frequency radiation of the 2010 El Mayor-Cucapah, Mexico earthquake. J. Geophys. Res., DOI: 10.1002/jgrb.50144

    26. Yao, H., Shearer, P., Gerstoft, P., 2013. Compressive sensing of frequency-dependent seismic radiation from subduction zone megathrust ruptures. Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), doi: 10.1073/pnas.1212790110

    25. Cheng, C., Chen, L., Yao, H., Jiang M., Wang B., 2013. Distinct variations of crustal shear wave velocity structure and radial anisotropy beneath the North China Craton constrained from ambient noise analysis, Gondwana Research, doi:10.1016/


    24. Yao, H., 2012. Lithospheric structure and deformation in SE Tibet revealed by ambient noise and earthquake surface wave tomography: Recent advances and perspectives. Earthquake Sciences,25, 371-383, doi:10.1007/s11589-012-0863-1

    23. Gouedard, P., Yao, H., van der Hilst, R. D., Ernst F., 2012. Surface wave eikonal tomography in heterogeneous media using exploration data. Geophys.J. Int., doi: 10.1111/j.1365-246X.2012.05652.x

    22. Yao, H., Shearer, P., Gerstoft, P., 2012. Subevent location and rupture imaging using iterative back-projection for the 2011 Tohoku Mw 9.0 earthquake, Geophys.J. Int., doi:10.1111/j.1365-246X.2012.05541.x


    21.Yao, H., Gerstoft, P., Shearer, P., Mecklenbrauker, C., 2011. Compressive sensing of the Tohoku-Oki Mw 9.0 Earthquake: Frequency-dependent rupture modes, Geophys. Res. Lett., doi:10.1029/2011GL049223

    20.Zhang, J., Gerstoft, P., Shearer, P., Yao, H., Vidale, J., Houston, H., Ghost, A., 2011. Cascadia tremor spectra: low corner frequencies and earthquake-like falloff at high frequencies, Geochem. Geophys. Geosyst., 12(10), Q10007, doi:10.1029/2011GC003759.

    19.Yao, H., Gouedard, P., McGuire, J., Collins, J. and van der Hilst, R.D., 2011. Structure of young East Pacific Rise lithosphere from ambient noise correlation analysis of fundamental- and higher-mode Scholte-Rayleigh waves, Comptes Rendues Geoscience de l'Académie des Sciences, doi:10.1016/j.crte.2011.04.004

    18.Gao, S., Humphreys, E. D., Yao, H., and van der Hilst, R.D., 2011. Crustal and lithosphere structure of the Northwestern U.S. with ambient noise tomography: Terrane accretion and Cascade arc development, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett. , doi:10.1016/j.epsl.2011.01.033

    17.Gouedard, P., Roux, P., Campillo, M., Verdel, A., Yao, H., van der Hilst, R.D., 2011. Source/Receiver depopulation potential and surface wave imaging using correlation methods in a scattering medium, Geophysics, 76(2), P. SA1-SA11, doi:10.1190/1.3535443


    16.Huang, H., Yao, H., van der Hilst, R.D., 2010. Radial anisotropy in the crust of SE Tibet and SW China from ambient noise interferometry, Geophys. Res. Lett., doi:10.1029/2010GL044981

    15. Yao H., van der Hilst, R.D., Montagner, J.-P., 2010. Heterogeneity and anisotropy of the lithosphere of SE Tibet from surface wave array analysis, J. Geophys. Res., doi:10.1029/2009JB007142 

    14. Huang, Y.-C., Yao H, Huang, B.-S., van der Hilst., R.D., Wen, K.-L., Huang, W.-G., and Chen, C.-H., 2010. Phase Velocity Variation at Periods 0.5-3 s in the Taipei Basin of Taiwan from Correlation of Ambient Seismic Noise,B.S.S.A, 100(5A), 2250-2263, doi:10.1785/0120090319

    13.Li, Y., Yao, H., Liu, Q., Chen, J., van der Hilst, R.D., Li, S., Huang, H., Guo, B., Wang, J., and Qi, S, 2010. Phase velocity array tomography of Rayleigh waves in western Sichuan from ambient seismic noise. Chinese J. Geophys., 53(4), 842-852

    12.Yi, G., Yao H., Zhu, J., van der Hilst, R.D., 2010. Lithospheric deformation of continental China from Rayleigh wave azimuthal anisotropy. Chinese J. Geophys., 53(2), 256-268


    11.Yao H., Campman, X., de Hoop, M.V., van der Hilst, R.D., 2009. Estimation of surface-wave Green’s function from correlations of direct waves, coda waves, and ambient noise in SE Tibet, Phys. Earth Planet. Inter., doi:10.1016/j.pepi.2009.07.002

    10. Yao, H. and Van der Hilst, R.D., 2009. Analysis of ambient noise energy distribution and phase velocity bias in ambient noise tomography, with application to SE Tibet, Geophys.J. Int.,10.1111/j.1365-246X.2009.04329.x 

    9.Guo Z., Gao X., Yao, H., Li J., Wang W., 2009. Mid-crustal low velocity layer beneath the central Himalaya and southern Tibet revealed by ambient noise array tomography., Geochem. Geophys. Geosyst., 10(5), Q05007, doi:10.1029/2009GC002458


    8. Burchfiel, B.C., Royden, L.H., Van der Hilst, R.D., Hager, B.H., Chen, Z., King, R.W., Li, C., Lu, Y.,Yao, H., Kirby, E.,2008. A geological and geophysical context for the Wenchuan earthquake of 12 May 2008, Sichuan, People's Republic of China, Geological Society of America Today, vol. 18, no. 7, doi: 10.1130/GSATG18A.1

    7. Yao, H., Beghein, C., and Van der Hilst, R.D., 2008. Surface-wave array tomography in SE Tibet from ambient seismic noise and two-station analysis: II - Crustal and upper mantle structure. Geophys.J. Int., 173 (1), 205-219, doi: 10.1111/j.1365-246X.2007.03696.x. (Cited 100 times, the highest citation in all papers published in GJI in 2008)

    6. Yi G., Yao, H., Zhu J., van der Hilst R.D., 2008. Rayleigh-wave phase velocity distribution in China continent and its adjacent regions, Chinese J. Geophys., 2008, Vol.52, No.2., 402-411.

    2003 - 2007

    5.Xu G., Yao, H.,Zhu L.,Shen Y., 2007. Shear wave velocity structure of the crust and upper mantle in western China and its adjacent area.Chinese J. Geophys., 2007, Vol.50, No.1., 193-208.

    4. Yao, H., van der Hilst R.D., and de Hoop, M.V., 2006. Surface-wave array tomography in SE Tibet from ambient seismic noise and two-station analysis : I - Phase velocity maps. Geophys.J. Int., Vol. 166, 732-744, doi: 10.1111/j.1365-246X.2006.03028.x. (Cited 160 times, the second highest citation in all papers published in GJI in 2006)

    3. Yao, H. , Xu G., Zhu L.,and Xiao X., 2005. Mantle structure from inter-station Rayleigh wave dispersion and its tectonic implication in Western China and neighboring regions.Phys. Earth Planet. Inter., Vol 148, 39-54.

    2. Yao, H., Xu G., and Xiao X., 2004. A quick tracing method based on image analysis technique for the determination of dual stations phase velocities dispersion curve of surface save, Seismological and Geomagnetic Observation and Research , 2004, No.1, 1-8.

    1. Yao, H., Xu G., Xiao X., and Chen M.,2003. Geometrical Features of Subduction Boundaries, Seismology and Geology , Vol. 25, No.2, 220-226.