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A geodesy- and seismicity-based local earthquake likelihood model for central Los Angeles

Rollins, Chris and Avouac, Jean-Philippe (2019) A geodesy- and seismicity-based local earthquake likelihood model for central Los Angeles. Geophysical Research Letters, 46 (6). pp. 3153-3162. ISSN 0094-8276. doi:10.1029/2018gl080868.

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We estimate time‐independent earthquake likelihoods in central Los Angeles using a model of interseismic strain accumulation and the 1932–2017 seismic catalog. We assume that on the long‐term average, earthquakes and aseismic deformation collectively release seismic moment at a rate balancing interseismic loading, mainshocks obey the Gutenberg‐Richter law (a log linear magnitude‐frequency distribution [MFD]) up to a maximum magnitude and a Poisson process, and aftershock sequences obey the Gutenberg‐Richter and “Båth” laws. We model a comprehensive suite of these long‐term systems, assess how likely each system would be to have produced the MFD of the instrumental catalog, and use these likelihoods to probabilistically estimate the long‐term MFD. We estimate M_(max) = 6.8 + 1.05/−0.4 (every ~300 years) or M_(max) = 7.05 + 0.95/−0.4 assuming a truncated or tapered Gutenberg‐Richter MFD, respectively. Our results imply that, for example, the (median) likelihood of one or more M_w ≥ 6.5 mainshocks is 0.2% in 1 year, 2% in 10 years, and 18–21% in 100 years.

Item Type:Article
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URLURL TypeDescription
Rollins, Chris0000-0002-5291-6956
Avouac, Jean-Philippe0000-0002-3060-8442
Additional Information:© 2019 American Geophysical Union. Received 10 OCT 2018; Accepted 21 FEB 2019; Accepted article online 27 FEB 2019; Published online 21 MAR 2019. C. Rollins was supported by a NASA Earth and Space Science Fellowship for most of this work. The authors are grateful to Tom Parsons and an anonymous reviewer for suggestions that greatly improved the manuscript, as well as numerous colleagues around the community for helpful input and guidance. The authors declare no competing financial interests. The GPS data used to constrain the moment deficit buildup rate in Rollins et al. (2018) and plotted in Figure 1 can be found in Argus et al. (2005, Table 3); the SCEDC seismic catalog is available at
Group:Center for Geomechanics and Mitigation of Geohazards (GMG), Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, Seismological Laboratory
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NASA Earth and Space Science FellowshipUNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:6
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190306-110635099
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Official Citation:Rollins, C., & Avouac, J.‐P. (2019). A geodesy‐ and seismicity‐based local earthquake likelihood model for central Los Angeles. Geophysical Research Letters, 46, 3153–3162.
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:93576
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:06 Mar 2019 19:18
Last Modified:15 Nov 2022 21:38

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