MCS and SZ4D Join Forces

by Eric Dunham (Stanford University), Leif Karlstrom, (University of Oregon), Alice Gabriel (LMU Munich and University of California, San Diego), Thorsten Becker (University of Texas, Austin), Mark Behn (Boston College)

May 31, 2022

The MCS RCN has officially joined the SZ4D RCNs under the SZ4D umbrella and will soon become one of the SZ4D core facilities

The Modeling Collaboratory for Subduction (MCS) is a community- and model- building effort to advance subduction zone science. The MCS was envisioned as a core component of the Subduction Zones in Four Dimensions (SZ4D) initiative in the Boise Subduction Zone Observatories report (McGuire et al., 2017). Given the novelty and ambitious scope of the MCS and SZ4D, their planning efforts were each subsequently funded as a separate Research Coordination Network (RCN). In April 2022, the MCS and SZ4D RCNs officially joined under the overarching SZ4D umbrella and this fall will become one of the core facilities of SZ4D. The goal of the merger is to allow better integration of modeling efforts into the science objectives of SZ4D and the planning of future SZ4D instrumentation. As part of this merger, MCS is now represented on both the SZ4D Executive and Steering Committees.


To date, the MCS has held a series of community workshops and town hall events to identify priority areas for model and open-source community code development and complementary activities that are needed to answer the motivating science questions (see the MCS workshop reports). The outcomes of these meetings highlighted the need for model verification and validation through community benchmark exercises as well as training through hackathons and tutorials. MCS will be developing the next generation of models and software using modern computational infrastructure advancing both computational and solid Earth geoscience while complementing and helping to guide and interpret SZ4D instrumental efforts. The MCS is envisioned as supporting both sustained PI-driven model development and community building through thematic working groups or community models. Next to capacity building and access to leading-edge computing, modeling specifically provides opportunity for inclusive and equitable community building for subduction zone science.