Shang-Yu Hsieh












































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Scientific profile:
Shang Yu Hsieh is a fully funded PhD student at the Doctoral College, GIScience of the University of Salzburg. He is involved in the project regarding the 3D Structure of major fault zones and its application in engineering geology and geothermics, conducted by Professor Franz Neubauer.
His prior educational background includes a bachelor’s degree in Geoscience, as well as a Master’s degree in Applied Geology. Shang Yu also has 3 years of work experience as a research assistant in the Engineering Geology and Hazard Mitigation Research Laboratory, as well as a few months of experience working as an engineer at the Geotechnical Engineering Research Center of Sinotech Engineering Consultant Inc. in Taiwan. He has contributed to many research projects such as the empirical estimation of the Newmark displacement of the Arias intensity and its critical acceleration, a landslide/debris-flow susceptibility evaluation, the mapping of major landslide zones of watersheds and updating the database for the environmental geology map of Taipei City.
His research topic and interests lie in the field of Geospatial Analysis, Seismic Hazard Analysis, Landslide Hazard Analysis, Geostatistics, Geographic Information Systems, Remote Sensing and Image Interpretation, Structural Geology, Engineering Geology and also the use of GIS techniques in the 3D visualization and modeling of geological structures.

Research Cluster: Representations and Data Models


PhD Thesis Topic: 3D visualization and modeling of the underground, particularly of geological fault zones
The fault-zone architecture reveals information about fault mechanics, structural fractures and geophysical properties of fault zones and also shows evidence of deformation on the Earth´s surface. The aim of this research is 3D visualization and modeling of major fault zones from surface to depth by using the surface expression of strike-slip faults and find rules how these structures can be extrapolated to depth. The work will also integrate geological subsurface data including boreholes, underground excavations and reflection seismic lines and volumes to reveal the 3D fault structure. In the first step, the development of fault architecture interpretations is focused on defining the fault architecture by studying surface structures. Using second order structures or small-scale deformation caused by the last earthquake, the aim is to develop the rules for defining the damage zone of strike-slip faults, not only tracing the fault by spatial scale but also in time. The second step is modeling and extrapolation of key structures of fault zones in various tectonic settings towards the depth, and the development of GIS and 3D-tools to extrapolate surface to a true 3D-structure of fault zones. In the third step, the 3D models are used to model fluid flow across various types of fault zones. The goal is to numerically simulate the spatial and temporal evolution of fault damage zones and to constrain the role of fault-controlled fluid flow on the thermal and chemical structure of the shallow crust. A 3D model of geological fault zones build by this research will have widespread application for studies of earthquake and fault motion behavior, as well as applications relevant to impacts on infrastructure, civil planning, civil engineering and development. Besides assessment of seismic hazard for the engineering geology aspect, results could be also applied to the petroleum geology, deep geothermics and groundwater exploitation.

Main Supervisor: Prof. Franz Neubauer, Department of Geography and Geology, University of Salzburg, Austria

Co-supervisor: Prof. Sierd Cloetingh, Department of Earth Sciences, Utrecht University, The Netherlands

Co-supervisor: Dr. Robert Marschallinger, Department of Geography and Geology, University of Salzburg, Austria

Co-supervisor: Ass.-Prof. Prof. ROBL Jörg, Department of Geography and Geology, University of Salzburg, Austria



Hsieh, S.Y., Lee, C.T., (2011) Empirical estimation of the Newmark displacement from the Arias intensity and critical acceleration, Engineering Geology, 122, 34-42.

Hsieh, S. Y., Neubauer, F., (2012) A classification of surface ruptures of strike-slip faults: comparison with analog models. American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco.

Hsieh, S. Y., Neubauer, F., Genser, J., (2012) Geomorphic expression of strike-slip faults: field observations vs. analog experiments: preliminary results. EGU General Assembly, Vienna.

Hsieh, S. Y., Neubauer, F., (2013) Analysis of surface structures of major strike-slip faults. EGU General Assembly, Vienna.

Hsieh, S. Y., Neubauer, F., Cloetingh, S.A.P.L., Willingshofer, E., Sokoutis, D., (2014) Extrapolating surface structures to depth in transpressional systems: the role of rheology and convergence angle deduced from analogue experiments. EGU General Assembly, Vienna.

Research Areas:


Presentation Hsieh Shang-Yu