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Relationships between moment magnitude and fault parameters: theoretical and semi-empirical relationships

Wang Haiyun (王海云)1,2 and Tao Xiaxin (陶夏新)1,3

  1. Institute of Engineering Mechanics, China Seismological Bureau, Harbin 150080, China

  2. Daqing Petroleum Institute, Daqing 163318, China

  3. Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin 150090, China

Abstract: Fault parameters are important in earthquake hazard analysis. In this paper, theoretical relationships between moment magnitude and fault parameters including subsurface rupture length, downdip rupture width, rupture area, and average slip over the fault surface are deduced based on seismological theory. These theoretical relationships are further simplified by applying similarity conditions and an unique form is established. Then, combining the simplified theoretical relationships between moment magnitude and fault parameters with seismic source data selected in this study, a practical semi-empirical relationship is established. The seismic source data selected is also to used to derive empirical relationships between moment magnitude and fault parameters by the ordinary least square regression method. Comparisons between semi-empirical relationships and empirical relationships show that the former depict distribution trends of data better than the latter. It is also observed that downdip rupture widths of strike slip faults are saturated when moment magnitude is more than 7.0, but downdip rupture widths of dip slip faults are not saturated in the moment magnitude ranges of this study.

Keywords: earthquake hazard analysis; fault parameters; seismic moment; moment magnitude; semi-empirical relation- ships

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Copyright 2009 IEM. Journal of Earthquake Engineering and Engineering Vibration. All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, scanning or otherwise, except as described below, without written permission from the Publisher. Copying of articles is not permitted except for personal and internal use, to the extent permitted by national copyright law, or under the terms of a license issued by the National Reproduction Rights Organization of China.