Zach Eilon

Associate Professor

Office Hours

Tuesday 10-11 am
Thursday 1-2 pm

Office Location

Webb 2116


Seismology, Tectonophysics, Inverse Theory


Columbia University (Ph.D., 2016;  M.Phil. 2014)
Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
Thesis committee: Geoffrey Abers (advisor), Jim Gaherty, Roger Buck, William Menke

Harvard University (Special Studentship, 2011)

University of Cambridge (B.A. 2009; M.Sci. 2010)
Natural Sciences (Geology and Geophysics)


My research covers several aspects of structural seismology, with a focus on answering fundamental questions about tectonic processes using seismic tools. My research areas include zones of extension (continental rifts, passive margins, and mid-ocean ridges), cratons, and the not-so-boring-after-all interiors of oceanic plates. I have worked on research projects in the central Pacific Ocean, Papua New Guinea, Iceland, Greece, Cascadia, and Ethiopia (the list seems to grow by the year...). My primary areas of expertise are seismic tomography, inverse theory, anisotropy, and attenuation. I've recently been working on models that incorporate a wide range of seismic data types to harness their distinct and complementary constraints on Earth structure.



Eilon, Z., K. M. Fischer, and C. A. Dalton, (2018) “An adaptive Bayesian inversion for upper mantle structure using surface waves and scattered body waves”, Geophysical Journal International, 214, 232-253, doi:10.1093/gji/ggy137

Eilon, Z. and G. A. Abers, (2017) “High seismic attenuation at a mid-ocean ridge reveals the distribution of deep melt”, Science Advances, 3, e1602829, doi:10.1126/sciadv.1602829.

Dannberg, J., Z. Eilon, U. Faul, R. Gaßm ?oller, P. Moulik, R. Myhill∗, (2017) “Investigating the geodynamic and seismological importance of grain size in the Earth”, Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems, doi:10.1002/2017GC006944

Eilon, Z., G. A. Abers, and J. B. Gaherty, (2016) “A Joint Inversion for VS and Anisotropy: The Woodlark Rift, Papua New Guinea”, Geophysical Journal International, doi:10.1093/gji/ggw177

Abers, G. A., Z. Eilon, J. B. Gaherty, G. Jin, YH. Kim, M. Obrebski, and C. Dieck, (2016) “Southeast Papuan crustal tectonics: imaging extension and buoyancy of an active rift”, Journal of Geophysical Research, 125, 951-971, doi:10.1002/2015JB012621      

Eilon, Z., G. A. Abers, J. B. Gaherty, and G. Jin, (2015) “Imaging Continental Breakup using Teleseismic Body Waves: The Woodlark Rift, Papua New Guinea”, Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems, 16, doi:10.1002/2015GC005835
Jin, G., J. B. Gaherty, G. A. Abers, YH Kim, Z. Eilon, and W. R. Buck, (2015) “Crust and upper mantle structure associated with extension in the Woodlark Rift, Papua New Guinea from Rayleigh-wave tomography”, Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems, doi:10.1002/2015GC005840
Menke, W. and Z. Eilon, (2015) “Relationship between data smoothing and the regularization of inverse problems”, Pure and Applied Geophysics, doi:10.1007/s00024-015-1059-0
Eilon, Z., G. A. Abers, G. Jin, and J. B. Gaherty, (2014) “Anisotropy beneath a highly extended continental rift”, Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems , 15 , doi:10.1002/2013GC005092
Janiszewski, H. J., J. B. Gaherty, G. A. Abers, H. Gao, and Z. Eilon, (submitted) “Amphibious surface-wave phase-velocity measurements of the Cascadia subduction zone”, Geophys. J. Int..
Bezada, M., J. Byrnes, and Z. Eilon, (submitted) “Implications of measurement parameters on estimates of seismic attenuation: a case study using the North Korean nuclear test”, Geophys. J. Int..
Russell, J., Z. Eilon, and S. Mosher, (submitted) “A new tool for the precise remote location of ocean bottom seismometers”, Seismological Research Letters.
Eilon, Z., K. M. Fischer, and C. A. Dalton, (in prep.) “The deep structure of North American lithosphere imaged by adaptive Bayesian inversion”.


  • EARTH 2 - Introduction to Physical Geology
  • EARTH 133 - Plate Tectonics and Mantle Dynamics 
  • EARTH 254 - Advanced Seismology Seminar
  • EARTH 256 - Geophysical Inverse Theory
  • EARTH 270 - Seminar in Geophysical Methods