Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This


UCLA Earthquake Research Pioneer, Leon Knopoff, Dies At 85

via UCLA Newsroom
LAist relies on your reader support, not paywalls.
Freely accessible local news is vital. Please power our reporters and help keep us independent with a donation today.

UCLA researcher Leon Knopoff who "pioneered the use of mathematical modeling for earthquakes, helped develop a way to date ancient pottery and examined how music affects human perception," died on Jan 20 of of respiratory failure at his home in Sherman Oaks, reports the Daily News. He was 85.With colleague Robert Burridge, Knopoff developed a model that helps in earthquake forecasting and discovered that small shakers usually do not predict major temblors along earthquake faults. Knopoff was also the co-inventor of a method of thermoluminescence dating for ancient pottery that used light emitted by trapped radiation to gain insight and information about the time period of the material.

He was a University of California, Los Angeles faculty member for more than six decades, authored upwards of 350 research papers, and co-edited five books.
Notes the UCLA newsroom, " 'Extreme rigor and thorough consideration of alternate interpretations were hallmarks of Leon's research, and he was known for his exceptional clarity in teaching,' said his UCLA colleague, David D. Jackson, a professor of geophysics. 'He was also a wonderful mentor.' "