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Published February 1988 | Published
Journal Article Open

Elastic finite-difference modeling of the 1971 San Fernando, California earthquake


Finite-difference seismograms calculated for the 1971 San Fernando earthquake show strong effects due to lateral variation in sediment thickness in the San Fernando valley and the Los Angeles basin. Using basin structure derived mostly from well logs and teleseismically determined source parameters, two-dimensional SH and P-SV finite-difference calculations reproduce the amplitude and duration of the strong-motion velocities recorded across the Los Angeles and San Fernando basins for the period range of 2 to 10 sec. The edges of basins nearest the seismic source show ground motion amplification up to a factor of 3 over the case without the basin and tend to convert direct shear waves into Love and Rayleigh waves that travel within the basins.

Additional Information

© 1988 Seismological Society of America. Manuscript received 7 September 1986. This work has been supported by the U.S. Geological Survey Contract 14-08-0001-21912, by the Air Force Geophysics Laboratory Contract F19628-83-K-0010, and by the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency Contract F19628-85-K-0017. J. E. V. was supported by an NSF fellowship. Robert W. Clayton and Art Frankel aided in the development of the finite-difference program. The authors appreciate the care taken by an anonymous reviewer, Heidi Beth Houston, and David Boore to make the manuscript lucid.

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