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Nonlinear Highlights


Paul Johnson

Geophysicist & Artist

Primary Research

  • Nonlinear and Disordered Systems
  • Seismic Strong Ground Motion
  • General Acoustics
  • Rock Physics
  • Acoustical Nondestructive Testing of Materials
  • Earthquake Source Mechanics
  • Time Reverse Acoustics in Solids



  • 505-667-8936 - Phone
  • 505-667-8487 - FAX


Honors & Activities

  • Fellow - American Physical Society (2016)
  • Fellow - Société Internationale de Méchanique Nonlinéaire de Matériaux (2016)
  • Fellow - American Geophysical Union (2011)
  • Médaille Étrangère [Foreigner's Medal] - French Acoustical Society (2010)
  • Fellow - Los Alamos National Laboratory (2008)
  • Fellow - Acoustical Society of America (2005)
  • Senior Fulbright Fellow (1999)
  • Fellow - American Geophysical Union
  • Los Alamos National Laboratory Scientific Achievement Award
  • Organizer (16X) - International Conference on Nonlinear Elasticity in Materials (ICNEM)
  • Steering Committee Member - International Symposia on Nonlinear Acoustics (ISNA)
  • Fulbright Scholar to France (1999-2000)
  • Associate Editor of Comptes-Rendus Mecanique of the French Academy of Sciences



Sample Chapter from Nonlinear Mescopic Elasticity by Robert A. Guyer and Paul A. Johnson.

Below is a limited list of recent publications, many available as PDFs, that illustrate my primary interests. A full list of publications by our group can be found on our topical publications page.

  • Riviere, J., L. Pimienta, M. Scuderi, T. Candela, P. Shokouhi, J. Fortin, A. Schubnel, C. Marone, and P. A. Johnson, “Frequency Dependence of Nonlinear Elasticity in Berea Sandstone,” Geophys. Res. Lett. 43, 3226-3236 (2016). (PDF File 1.7 MB / doi: 10.1002/2016GL068061)
  • Guéguen, P, P. Johnson and P. Roux, “Nonlinear dynamics induced in a structure by seismic and atmospheric loading,” J. Acoust.Soc. Am. 582-590 140 (2016). (PDF File 1.8 MB / doi: 10.1121/1.4958990)
  • Wu, C., A. Delorey, F. Brengieur, C. Hadziioannou, E. Daub and P. Johnson, “Constraining depth range of S-wave velocity decrease after large earthquakes near Parkfield, California,” Geophysical Research Letters 43, 6129-6136, (2016). (PDF File 12.6 MB / doi:10.1002/2016GL069145)
  • Van der Elst, N., A. Delorey, D. Shelly and P. Johnson “Fortnightly modulation of San Andreas tremor and low-frequency earthquakes“, PNAS, 2016. (PDF File 3.4 MB / doi: 10.1073/pnas.1524316113)
  • Johnson, P. A., J. Carmeliet, H. M. Savage, M. Scuderi, B. M. Carpenter, R. A. Guyer, E. G. Daub, and C. Marone “Dynamically triggered slip leading to sustained fault gouge weakening under laboratory shear conditions,” Geophysical Research Letters 43, 1559-1565 (2016). (PDF File - 1.5 MB / doi:10.1002/2015GL067056)
  • Ohara, Y., B. Anderson, T. J. Ulrich, P.-Y. Le Bas, P. Johnson, and S. Haupert “Localization of Closed Cracks Using Multi-Mode Nonlinear Resonant Ultrasound Spectroscopy,” Journal of JSNDI (The Japanese Society for Non-Destructive Inspection [Hihaki Kensa]) 64 (12), 571-578 (2015). (PDF File - 1.8 MB)
  • Ferdowsi, B., M. Griffa, R. Guyer, P. Johnson, C. Marone and J. Carmeliet, “Acoustically-induced slip in sheared granular layers: application to dynamic earthquake triggering,” Geophysical Research Letters, 42 (2015). (PDF File - 1.4 MB / doi:10.1002/2015GL066096)
  • Scuderi, M., B. Carpenter, P. Johnson, and C. Marone, “Poromechanics of stick-slip frictional sliding and strength recovery on tectonic faults“, Journal of Geophysical Research 120, (2015) doi/10.1002/2015JB011983. (PDF File - 5.1 MB)
  • Delorey, A. A. K. Chao, K. Obara, P. A. Johnson, “Cascading elastic perturbation in Japan due to the 2012 Mw 8.6 Indian Ocean earthquake”, Sci. Adv. 1, e1500468. (2015) (PDF File - 1.6 MB) / doi: 10.1126/sciadv.1500468
  • Daub, E., D. Trugman, and P. Johnson, “Statistical tests on clustered global earthquake catalogs”, Jour. Geophys. Res., (2015) (2.7 MB PDF File / doi: 10.1002/2014JB011777)
  • Wu, C., R. Guyer, D. Shelly, W. Frank, J. Gomberg, and P. Johnson, “Spatial-temporal variation of low-frequency earthquake bursts near Parkfield, CA”, Geophys. J. Int., 202 (2): 914-919 (August 2015) (doi: 10.1093/gji/ggv194)
  • Olson Reichhardt, C., L.M. Lopatina, X. Jia, and P. Johnson, “Softening of stressed granular packings with resonant sound waves”, Physical Review E Vol.92, No.2 (2015) (doi:10.1103/PhysRevE.92.022203)
  • Trugman, Daniel T., Chunquan Wu, Robert A. Guyer, Paul A.Johnson, “Synchronous low frequency earthquakes and implications for deep San Andreas Fault slip,” Earth and Planetary Science Letters 424 (2015) 132-139. (PDF File - 1.9 MB / doi:10.1016/j.epsl.2015.05.029)
  • Riviére, J., P. Shokouhi, R. A. Guyer, and P. A. Johnson, “A set of measures for the systematic classification of the nonlinear elastic behavior of disparate rocks,” J. Geophys. Res. Solid Earth 120 (2015). (PDF File - 2.2 MB / doi:10.1002/2014JB011718)
  • Haupert, S., Riviére, J., Anderson, B.E., Ohara, Y., Ulrich, T.J., and Johnson, P.A., “Optimized dynamic acousto-elasticity applied to fatigue damage and stress corrosion cracking,” J. Nondest. Eval. 33(2), 226-238 (2014). (http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10921-014-0231-2)
  • Riviére, J., Remillieux, M.C., Ohara, Y., Anderson, B.E., Haupert, S., Ulrich, T.J., and Johnson, P.A., “Dynamic acousto-elasticity in a fatigue-cracked sample,” J. Nondest. Eval. 33(2), 216-225 (2014). (http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10921-014-0225-0)
  • Renaud, G., J. Riviére, C. Larmat, J. T. Rutledge, R. C. Lee, R. A. Guyer, K. Stokoe, and P. A. Johnson, “In situ characterization of shallow elastic nonlinear parameters with Dynamic Acoustoelastic Testing,” J. Geophys. Res. Solid Earth, 119 (2014). (PDF File - 7.2 MB / doi:10.1002/2013JB010625 )
  • Ferdowsi, B., M. Griffa. R. A. Guyer, P. A. Johnson, C. Marone and J. Carmeliet, “3D Discrete Element Modeling of triggered slip in sheared granular media,” Physical Review E, 89(4), pp. 042204(1-12), (2014). (PDF File - 1.7 MB / doi:10.1007/s00707-014-1136-y)
  • Ferdowsi, B., M. Griffa, R. A. Guyer, P. A. Johnson, and J. Carmeliet “Effect of boundary vibration on the frictional behavior of a dense sheared granular layer” Acta Mechanica,, (2014). (PDF File - 2.0 MB/ doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00707-014-1136-y)
  • Riviére, J., M. C. Remillieux, Y. Ohara, B. E. Anderson, S. Haupert, T. J. Ulrich, P. A. Johnson, “Dynamic Acousto-Elasticity in a Fatigue-Cracked Sample.” Journal of Nondestructive Evaluation (Jan 2014). (PDF File - 804 KB / doi:10.1007/s10921-014-0225-0)
  • Haupert, S., J. Riviére, B.E. Anderson, Y. Ohara, T.J. Ulrich, P.A. Johnson, “Optimized dynamic acousto-elasticity applied to fatigue damage and stress corrosion cracking.” Journal of Nondestructive Evaluation, (2014). (PDF File - 3.3 MB / doi 10.1007/s10921-014-0231-2)
  • Trugman, D. T., E. G. Daub, R. A. Guyer, and P. A. Johnson, “Modeling dynamic triggering of tectonic tremor using a brittle-ductile friction model,” Geophys. Res. Lett., 40, 5075-5079 (2013). (PDF File - 356 KB/ doi:10.1002/grl.50981)
  • Johnson, P. A., B. Ferdowsi, B. M. Kaproth, M. Scuderi, M. Griffa, J. Carmeliet, R. A. Guyer, P.-Y. Le Bas, D. T. Trugman, and C. Marone, “Acoustic emission and microslip precursors to stick-slip failure in sheared granular material,” Geophysical Research Letters, 40, (2013). (PDF File - 1.5 MB / doi:10.1002/2013GL057848 )
  • Riviére, J, G. Renaud, R. A. Guyer, and P. A. Johnson, “ Pump and probe waves in dynamic acousto-elasticity: Comprehensive description and comparison with nonlinear elastic theories,” Journal of Applied Physics, (Vol.114, Issue 5) 6 August 2013. (PDF File - 5.33 MB / doi: 10.1063/1.4816395)
  • Ferdowsi, B, M. Griffa, R. Guyer, E. Daub, C. Marone, P. Johnson and J. Carmeliet,“Microslips as precursors of large slip events in the stick-slip dynamics of sheared granular layers: A discrete element model analysis,” Geophysical Research Letters, (2013) . (PDF File - 2.8 MB / doi: 10.1002/grl.50813)
  • Ben Naim, E., E. Daub, and P. Johnson, “Recurrence statistics of great earthquakes,” Geophysical Research Letters, 40, 3021-3025 doi:10.1002/grl.50605 (2013). (PDF File - 301 KB)
  • Wu, C., D. R. Shelly, J. Gomberg, Z. Peng and P. Johnson, “Long-term changes of inter-event times for regular and low-frequency earthquakes in central California,” Earth and Planetary Research Letters, 368, 144-150, (2013.) (doi.org/10.1016/j.epsl.2013.03.007)
  • Renaud, G., J. Rivière, P.-Y. Le Bas, and P. A. Johnson, Hysteretic nonlinear elasticity of Berea sandstone at low-vibrational strain revealed by dynamic acousto-elastic testing,” Geophys. Res. Lett., 40, 715-719, (2013). (PDF File - 376 KB / doi:10.1002/grl.50150)
  • Griffa, M., B. Ferdowsi, R. Guyer, E. Daub, C. Marone, P. Johnson and J. Carmeliet,“ Influence of vibration amplitude on dynamic triggering of slip in sheared granular layers,” Phys. Rev. E, 87, 012205, (2013). (PDF File - 653 KB / doi:10.1103/PhysRevE.87.012205)
  • Daub, E. Ben-Naim, E., R. Guyer and P. Johnson (2012) Are mega-quakes clustered? Geophys. Res. Lett. 39 L06308-L06314, DOI:10.1029/2012GL051465.
  • Haupert, S., G. G. Renaud, J. Riviere, M. Talmant, P. Johnson and P. Laugier (2011) High-accuracy acoustic detection of non-classical component of material nonlinearity., J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 130, 2654-2661 DOI:10.1121/1.3641405. (PDF File - 810 KB)
  • Le Bas, P. Y., T. J. Ulrich, B. E. Anderson, R. A. Guyer, and P. A. Johnson (2011) Probing the interior of a solid volume with time reversal and nonlinear elastic wave spectroscopy, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. Volume 130, Issue 4, pp. EL258-EL263, DOI:10.1121/1.3638926. (PDF File - 808 KB)
  • Griffa., M., E. Daub, R. Guyer, P. Johnson, C. Marone, and J. Carmeliet (2011) Vibration-induced unjamming of sheared granular layers and the micromechanics of dynamic earthquake triggering, European Physics Letters, 96, 14001. (PDF File - 641 KB)
  • Daub, E., D. R. Shelly, R. Guyer, and P. Johnson (2011) Brittle and ductile friction and the physics of tectonic tremor, Geophysical Research Letters 38, L10301, DOI:10.1029/2011GL046866. (PDF File - 399 KB)
  • Larmat, C., R. Guyer and P. Johnson (2010), Time reversal in Seismology, Physics Today 63 31-35. (PDF File - 615 KB)
  • Johnson, P. A., P. Bodin, J. Gomberg, F. Pearce, Z. Lawrence, and F. Menq (2009), Inducing in situ, nonlinear soil response applying an active source, J. Geophys. Res., 114, B05304, doi:10.1029/2008JB005832. (PDF File - 3.1 MB)
  • Anderson, B., R. A. Guyer, T.J. Ulrich and P. A. Johnson (2009), Time reversal of continuous-wave, monochromatic signals in elastic media, Applied Physics Letters, 94 111908-1-4. (PDF File - 376 KB)
  • Brunet, T., X. Jia and P. Johnson (2008), Transitional, elastic-nonlinear behaviour in dense granular media, Geophys. Res. Lett. 35, L19308-L19311 doi:10.1029/2008GL035264. (PDF File - 488 KB)
  • Johnson, P., H. Savage, M. Knuth, J. Gomberg and C. Marone (3 January 2008), The effect of acoustic waves on stick-slip behavior in sheared granular media: implications for earthquake recurrence and triggering, Nature, 451, 57-60 doi:10.1038/nature06440. (Contact Paul Johnson for reprint.)
  • Ulrich, TJ, Sutin, A. M., Guyer, R. A. and Johnson, P. A. (2008), Time reversal and nonlinear elastic wave spectroscopy TR NEWS techniques, Int. J. Nonlinear Mech., 43, 209-216. (PDF File - 1.1 MB)
  • Muller, M., T.J. Ulrich, M. Talmant, P. Laugier, and P. A. Johnson (2008), Assessment of damage in cortical bone using nonlinear acoustic techniques, in Biomedical applications of vibration and acoustics for imaging, characterization and diagnostics, ASME Press. Ed. Ahmed Al-Jumaily (invited). (PDF File - 488 KB)
  • Muller. M., D. Mitton, M. Talmant, P. Laugier, and P. Johnson (2008), Nonlinear ultrasound can detect accumulated damage in human bone, J. Biomechanics, 41, 1062-1068. (Link)
  • Anderson, B. E., M. Griffa, C. Larmat, TJ Ulrich, and P. A. Johnson (2008), Time Reversal, Acoust. Today, 4 5-16. (PDF File - 1.2 MB
  • Pasqualini, D., K. Heitmann, J. A. TenCate, S. Habib, D. Higdon, and P. A. Johnson (2007), Nonequilibrium and nonlinear dynamics in Berea and Fontainebleau sandstones: Low-strain regime, J. Geophys. Res., 112, B01204, doi:10.1029/2006JB004264. (PDF File - 684 KB)
  • Gomberg, J. and P. A. Johnson (2005), Dynamic triggering of earthquakes, Nature 473 830. (PDF File - 392 KB)



  • Ph.D., Physical Acoustics (with highest honors), La Sorbonne, Université Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris 6)
  • M.S., Geophysics, University of Arizona
  • B.S., Geology, University of New Mexico





  • 1990 - present: Project Lead, Nonlinear Elasticity Team
  • 1984 - present: Senior Technical Staff Member, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Geophysics Group (EES- 11)
  • 1990 - 1998: Project Leader, Nonlinear Elasticity Group
  • 1982 - 1984: Graduate Research, University of Arizona
  • 1981: Research Assistant, Los Alamos National Laboratory, ESS -2
  • 1979 - 1980: Research Assistant, Los Alamos National Laboratory, ESS-2
  • 1978: Field Geologist, Wyoming and Colorado, Freeport Exploration Company
  • 1977: Field Geologist, southeast Alaska, Exxon
  • 1976: Research Assistant, Los Alamos National Laboratory
  • 1975: Research Assistant, University of New Mexico
  • 1973 - 1978: Musician, New Mexico Symphony Orchestra



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