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Testing the validity of simulated strong ground motion from the dynamic rupture of a finite fault, by using empirical equations

Aochi, H. and Douglas, J. (2006) Testing the validity of simulated strong ground motion from the dynamic rupture of a finite fault, by using empirical equations. Bulletin of Earthquake Engineering, 4 (3). pp. 211-229. ISSN 1573-1456

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Abstract

This paper is concerned with testing the validity of the ground motions estimated by combining a boundary integral equation method to simulate dynamic rupture along finite faults with a finite difference method to compute the subsequent wave propagation. The validation exercise is conducted by comparing the calculated ground motions at about 100 hypothetical stations surrounding the pure strike-slip and pure reverse faults with those estimated by recent ground motion estimation equations derived by regression analysis of observed strong-motion data. The validity of the ground motions with respect to their amplitude, frequency content and duration is examined. It is found that the numerical simulation method adopted leads to ground motions that are mainly compatible with the magnitude and distance dependence modelled by empirical equations but that the choice of a low stress drop leads to ground motions that are smaller than generally observed. In addition, the scatter in the simulated ground motions, for which a laterally homogeneous crust and standard rock site were used, is of the same order as the scatter in observed motions therefore, close to the fault, variations in source propagation likely contribute a significant proportion of the scatter in observed motions in comparison with travel-path and site effects. © Springer 2006.