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Quantifying Various Effects on Uncertainties in Source Parameter Estimates

Kane, D.L., Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093, dlkane@ucsd.edu; Prieto, G.A., Departamento de Física, Universidad de los Andes, Bogota, Colombia, gprieto@uniandes.edu.co; Vernon, F.L., Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093, flvernon@ucsd.edu; Shearer, P.M., Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093, pshearer@ucsd.edu

Seismic source parameter estimates (including seismic moment, corner frequency, and stress drop) rarely consider uncertainties of the estimates, though these uncertainties can be significant and have implications for studies of earthquake source physics. Our study uses data from a small aperture array to determine variations in source parameter estimates at closely spaced stations and to constrain a minimum uncertainty for such estimates. We estimate seismic source parameters in both the time and frequency domains while incorporating empirical Green’s function (EGF) methods to remove path effects. From our resulting estimates, we quantify the uncertainties due to various effects. We analyze how our results vary with using stations from only one part of the array, using P- or S-wave data, our choice of EGF earthquake, and including or removing borehole station data. We attempt to correct for the site effect at each station and test how much our measurements improve after accounting for such small scale spatial variations. Our results suggest that uncertainties in source parameter estimates cannot be ignored in the comparison of estimates from different studies and over a range of earthquake magnitudes.

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Last Modified: 2011 Aug 10

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