Arashiyama, Kyoto.

Kyoto Univ., Japan

Published in
4 min readAug 15, 2017


Jun. 22–23

Zen city

Parachuting into Kyoto was not easy. We had to take a fast train from Kansai airport to Kyoto station, and then we used subways with several transfers to reach our accommodation near Kyoto Univ. (Katsura Campus). We arrived at our place around 8:00 pm (21st of June) and then had some Indian food and a beer. The atmosphere of the area was zen; a calm and relaxed contrast to our intense day of travel.

DISC day

We walked along a forest to get to the Kyoto Univ. from our accommodation. It was such a great walk. We sweated a bit, but it was worth it.

A road ahead to Kyoto Univ. Katsura campus from our accommodation.

It was a small group of participants: most were from Kyoto University, there were also a few people from Kobe University. Doug started the day by asking about participants interests and backgrounds. A small portion of them were familiar with EM geophysics. We had anticipated this, and planned our day to be a bit more experimental than at other locations. We concentrated on integrating the apps into the course material. It worked well Fortunately, Kyoto Univ. provided a good internet connection which allowed participants to run the EM apps on their own laptops.

DISC course at Kyoto Unviv. at Katusra campus.

After the DC resistivity section, we opened up the DC Cylinder app and asked a question: “Can we find a buried tunnel?” This engaged participants and we asked them to apply the concepts that they had just learned about DC resistivity (e.g. currents and charges).

Doug is explaining the DC cylinder app.

In addition, the two coil apps (both time and frequency) were used during the section on EM fundamentals. Interaction occurred between Doug and participants through the apps, and a number of important concepts of EM fundamentals were digested.

Sajjad (Kyoto Univ.) is answering Doug’s question with frequency domain Two coil app.

Around lunch time, Hitoshi joined the course, and made some practical comments connected to geoscience problems in Japan. After finishing the Grounded Source section, we wrapped our first day, and postponed both MT and IP sections to the second day.

Participants of SEG-DISC at Kyoto Univ. Japan.


“The fundamentals and thorough lecture on EM geophysics were greatly helpful for organizing my knowledge on EM for my research. Furthermore, it was a very good opportunity to meet Doug, Seogi, and people at Kyoto Univ.” — Tetsuo Matsuno (Lecturer, Kobe Univ.)

“Using the EM geosci apps helps understand EM theory. They were very important in terms of visualization and the effects of varying parameters” — Tomoaki Tananka(Grad student, Kyoto Univ.)

“I attended the SEG-DISC in order to understand the fundamentals of EM methods and this was a really precious day.” — Hayate Ohtani (Grad student, Kyoto Univ.)

After the course, Hitoshi and Shiori organized a banquet with the participants so we toasted for EM geophysics! Thanks Hitoshi and Shiori.

Cheers for SEG-DISC course at Kyoto Univ.!

DISC lab

Our second day started with the MT section. Although Japan has active volcanoes, most of the promising areas for geothermal energy are used for tourism; that’s likely one of the reasons why Japan does not have many geothermal plants. Following MT, the Induced Polarization (IP) section was presented, including a case history applying IP to a Landfill. Finally, we wrapped up the course with a discussion of the future.

Three participants volunteered to present their research and case histories:

EM non-destructive inspection techniques (link) / Toshiki Nakagawa (Kyoto Univ.)

Toshiki is interested in detecting cracks or corrosion on metal surfaces using EM. He presented a problem of using eddy currents to test if a metal plate has defects.

Marine MT and CSEM (link) / Tesuo Matsuno (Kobe Univ.)

Tesuo presented marine MT data acquired near the Mariana back-arc basin, along with his interpretation of those data.

Simulation and full waveform inversion of CSEM data (link) / Sajjad Amani (Kyoto Univ.)

Sajjad is interested in adapting lessons he learned from seismic inversions to EM inversions.

Most of the students were interested in how SimPEG, which is the engine of the apps, works. We presented the 1D MT simulation and inversion tutorials. After that, we wrapped up our DISC events at Kyoto.


DISC 2017 in Kyoto would not have happened without the support from local participants to help organize logistics and encourage people to attend. In particular, Hitoshi and Shiori.

Seogi, Hitoshi, Doug, and Shiori (from left to right.)