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Three-dimensional ground-motion simulations of earthquakes for the Hanford area, Washington

January 10, 2014

This report describes the results of ground-motion simulations of earthquakes using three-dimensional (3D) and one-dimensional (1D) crustal models conducted for the probabilistic seismic hazard assessment (PSHA) of the Hanford facility, Washington, under the Senior Seismic Hazard Analysis Committee (SSHAC) guidelines. The first portion of this report demonstrates that the 3D seismic velocity model for the area produces synthetic seismograms with characteristics (spectral response values, duration) that better match those of the observed recordings of local earthquakes, compared to a 1D model with horizontal layers. The second part of the report compares the response spectra of synthetics from 3D and 1D models for moment magnitude (M) 6.6–6.8 earthquakes on three nearby faults and for a dipping plane wave source meant to approximate regional S-waves from a Cascadia great earthquake. The 1D models are specific to each site used for the PSHA. The use of the 3D model produces spectral response accelerations at periods of 0.5–2.0 seconds as much as a factor of 4.5 greater than those from the 1D models for the crustal fault sources. The spectral accelerations of the 3D synthetics for the Cascadia plane-wave source are as much as a factor of 9 greater than those from the 1D models. The differences between the spectral accelerations for the 3D and 1D models are most pronounced for sites with thicker supra-basalt sediments and for stations with earthquakes on the Rattlesnake Hills fault and for the Cascadia plane-wave source.

Publication Year 2014
Title Three-dimensional ground-motion simulations of earthquakes for the Hanford area, Washington
DOI 10.3133/ofr20131289
Authors Arthur Frankel, Paul Thorne, Alan Rohay
Publication Type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Series Title Open-File Report
Series Number 2013-1289
Index ID ofr20131289
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Earthquake Science Center