Special Issue "New Perspectives in the Definition/Evaluation of Seismic Hazard through Analysis of the Environmental Effects Induced by Earthquakes"

A special issue of Geosciences (ISSN 2076-3263). This special issue belongs to the section "Natural Hazards".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 July 2019).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Sabina Porfido
Website
Guest Editor
National Research Council (CNR), Institute of Food Sciences (ISA) Via Roma, 64-83100 Avellino, Italy
Interests: natural hazards; active tectonics; historical and recent seismicity; seismic risk; seismic hazard; environment; paleoseismology; floods; historical floods; disasters induced by earthquakes; cultural heritage; resilience
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Dr. Giuliana Alessio
Website
Guest Editor
Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia Sezione di Napoli, Osservatorio Vesuviano Italy Naples, Italy
Interests: seismotectonics; earthquake geology; natural hazard; geoheritage
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Germana Gaudiosi
Website
Guest Editor
Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia Sezione di Napoli, Osservatorio Vesuviano Italy Naples, Italy
Interests: tectonics; structural geology; geology; exploration geophysics; plate tectonics; seismics; quaternary geology; geodynamics; geophysics; applied geophysics; seismology; earthquake
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Rosa Nappi
Website
Guest Editor
Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia Sezione di Napoli, Osservatorio Vesuviano Italy Naples, Italy
Interests: seismotectonics; earthquake geology and paleoseismology; seismic hazard; tectonic geomorphology; active tectonics; historical and recent seismicity; geological mapping; volcanic geomorphology
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The devastating effects caused by the recent catastrophic earthquakes that took place all over the world—from Japan, New Zealand, to Chile, as well as those occurring in the Mediterranean basin—have once again shown that the ground motion, although a serious source of direct damage, is not the only parameter to be considered, most damage being due to coseismic geological effects that are directly connected to the earthquake source or caused by ground shaking. Primary effects such as surface faulting, regional uplift, and subsidence, and secondary effects such as tsunami, liquefaction, ground failure, and landslides (sensu ESI 2007 scale) must be considered for a more correct and complete evaluation of seismic hazard, both at regional and local scales.

This Special Issue aims to collect all contributions that using different methodologies can integrate new data produced with multi-disciplinary and innovative methods. These methodologies are essential for the identification and characterization of seismically active areas, and for the development of new hazard models, obtained using different survey techniques. The contributions related to seismic-induced effects in volcanic areas (currently not well-examined) will also be particularly appreciated, since in such areas even high-energy earthquakes can induce both surface faulting and secondary effects, as recently observed for the volcano-tectonic earthquake of Md = 4 that occurred on August 21, 2017 in the Island of Ischia (Campania, Southern Italy).

Dr. Sabina Porfido
Dr. Giuliana Alessio
Dr. Germana Gaudiosi
Dr. Rosa Nappi
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • seismic hazard assessment
  • ESI 2007 scale
  • environmental effects triggered by earthquakes
  • primary and secondary effects
  • active tectonic
  • historical and recent earthquakes
  • paleoseismology
  • volcano-tectonic earthquakes
  • new hazard model
  • ground effects: resilience and cultural heritage

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Published Papers (19 papers)

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Editorial

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Open AccessEditorial
New Perspectives in the Definition/Evaluation of Seismic Hazard through Analysis of the Environmental Effects Induced by Earthquakes
Geosciences 2020, 10(2), 58; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences10020058 - 04 Feb 2020
Abstract
The application of the Environmental Seismic Intensity (ESI) scale 2007 to moderate and strong earthquakes, in different geological context all over the word, highlights the importance of Earthquake Environmental Effects (EEEs) for the assessment of seismic hazards. This Special Issue “New Perspectives in [...] Read more.
The application of the Environmental Seismic Intensity (ESI) scale 2007 to moderate and strong earthquakes, in different geological context all over the word, highlights the importance of Earthquake Environmental Effects (EEEs) for the assessment of seismic hazards. This Special Issue “New Perspectives in the Definition/Evaluation of Seismic Hazard through Analysis of the Environmental Effects Induced by Earthquakes” presents a collection of scientific contributions that provide a sample of the state-of-the-art in this field. Moreover the collected papers also analyze new data produced with multi-disciplinary and innovative methods essential for development of new seismic hazard models. Full article

Research

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Open AccessArticle
Undrained Cyclic Laboratory Behavior of Sandy Soils
Geosciences 2019, 9(12), 512; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9120512 - 11 Dec 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
The complex cyclic shear stress path experienced by the soil during an earthquake, which could also induce liquefaction phenomena, can be approximated in the laboratory only by using sophisticated testing apparatuses. Cyclic triaxial tests have been widely used, especially for coarse grained soils, [...] Read more.
The complex cyclic shear stress path experienced by the soil during an earthquake, which could also induce liquefaction phenomena, can be approximated in the laboratory only by using sophisticated testing apparatuses. Cyclic triaxial tests have been widely used, especially for coarse grained soils, as in this study. In the framework of the design for the seismic retrofitting of the ‘‘Ritiro viaduct’’ foundations along the A20 motorway connecting Messina with Palermo (Italy), a soil liquefaction study was also carried out. With this aim, a detailed geological and geotechnical characterization of the area was performed by in situ and laboratory tests, including seismic dilatometer Marchetti tests (SDMTs), the combined resonant column (RCT) and cyclic loading torsional shear tests (CLTSTs), and undrained cyclic loading triaxial tests (CLTxTs). In particular, the paper presents the results of cyclic triaxial tests carried out on isotropically consolidated specimens of a sandy soil. The seismic retrofitting works include the reinforcement of the foundation and replacement of the decks with newly designed type and structural schemes, mixed steel, and concrete with continuous girder. During the investigation, data were acquired for the characterization of materials, for the definition of degradation phenomena with the relative identification of possible causes, and for the estimation of the residual performance characteristics of the building. The structural campaign of investigations necessary to determine all of the key parameters useful for a correct definition of the residual performance capabilities of the work was divided into two phases: One in situ and one in the laboratory. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Comparison of Earthquake-Triggered Landslide Inventories: A Case Study of the 2015 Gorkha Earthquake, Nepal
Geosciences 2019, 9(10), 437; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9100437 - 10 Oct 2019
Cited by 3
Abstract
Despite landslide inventories being compiled throughout the world every year at different scales, limited efforts have been made to critically compare them using various techniques or by different investigators. Event-based landslide inventories indicate the location, distribution, and detected boundaries of landslides caused by [...] Read more.
Despite landslide inventories being compiled throughout the world every year at different scales, limited efforts have been made to critically compare them using various techniques or by different investigators. Event-based landslide inventories indicate the location, distribution, and detected boundaries of landslides caused by a single event, such as an earthquake or a rainstorm. Event-based landslide inventories are essential for landslide susceptibility mapping, hazard modeling, and further management of risk mitigation. In Nepal, there were several attempts to map landslides in detail after the Gorkha earthquake. Particularly after the main event on 25 April 2015, researchers around the world mapped the landslides induced by this earthquake. In this research, we compared four of these published inventories qualitatively and quantitatively using different techniques. Two principal methodologies, namely the cartographical degree of matching and frequency area distribution (FAD), were optimized and applied to evaluate inventory maps. We also showed the impact of using satellite imagery with different spatial resolutions on the landslide inventory generation by analyzing matches and mismatches between the inventories. The results of our work give an overview of the impact of methodology selection and outline the limitations and advantages of different remote sensing and mapping techniques for landslide inventorying. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Use of Macroseismic Intensity Data to Validate a Regionally Adjustable Ground Motion Prediction Model
Geosciences 2019, 9(10), 422; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9100422 - 30 Sep 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
In low-to-moderate seismicity (intraplate) regions where locally recorded strong motion data are too scare for conventional regression analysis, stochastic simulations based on seismological modelling have often been used to predict ground motions of future earthquakes. This modelling methodology has been practised in Central [...] Read more.
In low-to-moderate seismicity (intraplate) regions where locally recorded strong motion data are too scare for conventional regression analysis, stochastic simulations based on seismological modelling have often been used to predict ground motions of future earthquakes. This modelling methodology has been practised in Central and Eastern North America (CENA) for decades. It is cautioned that ground motion prediction equations (GMPE) that have been developed for use in CENA might not always be suited for use in another intraplate region because of differences in the crustal structure. This paper introduces a regionally adjustable GMPE, known as the component attenuation model (CAM), by which a diversity of crustal conditions can be covered in one model. Input parameters into CAM have been configured in the same manner as a seismological model, as both types of models are based on decoupling the spectral properties of earthquake ground motions into a generic source factor and a regionally specific path factor (including anelastic and geometric attenuation factors) along with a crustal factor. Unlike seismological modelling, CAM is essentially a GMPE that can be adapted readily for use in different regions (or different areas within a region) without the need of undertaking any stochastic simulations, providing that parameters characterising the crustal structure have been identified. In addressing the challenge of validating a GMPE for use in an area where instrumental data are scarce, modified Mercalli intensity (MMI) data inferred from peak ground velocity values predicted by CAM are compared with records of MMI of past earthquake events, as reported in historical archives. South-Eastern Australia (SEA) and South-Eastern China (SEC) are the two study regions used in this article for demonstrating the viability of CAM as a ground motion prediction tool in an intraplate environment. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
The 1976 Guatemala Earthquake: ESI Scale and Probabilistic/Deterministic Seismic Hazard Analysis Approaches
Geosciences 2019, 9(9), 403; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9090403 - 19 Sep 2019
Cited by 3
Abstract
A hazard assessment of the 1976 Guatemala earthquake (M = 7.5) was conducted to achieve a better definition of the seismic hazard. The assessment was based on the environmental effects that had effectively contributed to the high destructive impact of that event. An [...] Read more.
A hazard assessment of the 1976 Guatemala earthquake (M = 7.5) was conducted to achieve a better definition of the seismic hazard. The assessment was based on the environmental effects that had effectively contributed to the high destructive impact of that event. An interdisciplinary approach was adopted by integrating: (1) historical data; (2) co-seismic geological effects in terms of Environmental Seismic Intensity (ESI) scale intensity values; and (3) ground shaking data estimated by a probabilistic/deterministic approach. A detailed analysis of primary and secondary effects was conducted for a set of 24 localities, to obtain a better evaluation of seismic intensity. The new intensity values were compared with the Modified Mercalli Intensity (MMI) and Peak Ground Acceleration (PGA) distribution estimated using a probabilistic/deterministic hazard analysis approach for the target area. Our results are evidence that the probabilistic/deterministic hazard analysis procedures may result in very different indications on the PGA distributions. Moreover, PGA values often display significant discrepancy from the macroseismic intensity values calculated with the ESI scale. Therefore, the incorporation of the environmental earth effects into the probabilistic/deterministic hazard analysis appears to be mandatory in order to achieve a more accurate seismic estimation. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Landslides Triggered by the 2016 Mw 7.8 Pedernales, Ecuador Earthquake: Correlations with ESI-07 Intensity, Lithology, Slope and PGA-h
Geosciences 2019, 9(9), 371; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9090371 - 26 Aug 2019
Cited by 5
Abstract
We provide a dataset of the landslides induced by the 2016 Pedernales megathrust earthquake, Ecuador (Mw 7.8, focal depth of 20 km) and compare their spatial distribution with mapped bedrock lithology, horizontal peak ground acceleration (PGA-h) and the macroseismic intensity based on earthquake-induced [...] Read more.
We provide a dataset of the landslides induced by the 2016 Pedernales megathrust earthquake, Ecuador (Mw 7.8, focal depth of 20 km) and compare their spatial distribution with mapped bedrock lithology, horizontal peak ground acceleration (PGA-h) and the macroseismic intensity based on earthquake-induced environmental effects (ESI-07). We studied 192 coseismic landslides (classified as coherent, disrupted and lateral spreads) located in the epicentral area, defined by the VII to IXESI-07 isoseismals. Based on our findings, lahar deposits, tuffs and volcanoclastic units are the most susceptible to landslides occurrence. Alluvial plains with fluvial loose fine sand are the most susceptible setting for lateral spreading, with a maximum intensity of IXESI-07. The coherent landslides are frequently found in altered shale and siltstone geological units with moderate slopes (8°–16°), with typical intensity ranging between VII and VIIIESI-07. Our analysis draws a typical framework for slope movements triggered by subduction earthquakes in Ecuador. The most dangerous setting is the coastal region, a relatively highly urbanized area located near the epicenter and where liquefaction can trigger massive lateral spreading events. Coherent and disrupted landslides, dominating the more internal hilly region, can be triggered also in moderate slope settings (i.e., less than 10°). Indeed, the regression analysis between seismic intensity, PGA-h and landslide occurrence shows that most of the events occurred at PGA-h values between 0.4 g and 1.2 g, at a distance of 30 to 50 km from the rupture plane. Our database suggests that lithology and hillslope geometry are the main geological/geomorphological factors controlling coseismic landslides occurrence; while the distance from the rupture plane plays a significant role on determining the landslide size. Finally, we underline that coseismically-triggered landslides are among the most common environmental effects occurring during large subduction events that can be effectively used to properly evaluate the earthquake macroseismic field. The landslide inventory we compiled is suitable for assessing the vulnerability of physical environment from subduction earthquakes in Ecuador, and offers a primary data source for future worldwide analysis. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Suitability Analysis for the Emergency Shelters Allocation after an Earthquake in Japan
Geosciences 2019, 9(8), 336; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9080336 - 30 Jul 2019
Cited by 2
Abstract
Japan is exposed to several natural phenomena; the damages caused by earthquakes were enormous in particular. An emergency shelter is a place for people to temporarily live when they cannot remain in their previous homes, and it is necessary for each community to, [...] Read more.
Japan is exposed to several natural phenomena; the damages caused by earthquakes were enormous in particular. An emergency shelter is a place for people to temporarily live when they cannot remain in their previous homes, and it is necessary for each community to, respectively, allocate such facilities in Japan. There are the districts that are short of such facilities, especially in rural and suburban areas, because emergency shelters mainly concentrate near large-scale stations and city centres in Japan. Against these backdrops, using geographic information systems (GIS), an applied statistical method and public open data related to population and emergency shelters, the present research aims to quantitatively conduct a suitability analysis for the emergency shelters allocation after an earthquake in Japan. Based on the results, the present research grasps the districts that are short of emergency shelters, and visually shows the places where such facilities should be newly established on the digital map of GIS. Additionally, the assessment method is reproducible in the spatial and temporal dimension. It is necessary to create an original data related to emergency shelters to raise the reliability of the results, as the present research has the limitation of data availability. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Machine Learning Methods for Seismic Hazards Forecast
Geosciences 2019, 9(7), 308; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9070308 - 12 Jul 2019
Cited by 2
Abstract
In this paper, we suggest two machine learning methods for seismic hazard forecast. The first method is used for spatial forecasting of maximum possible earthquake magnitudes ( M m a x ), whereas the second is used for spatio-temporal forecasting of strong earthquakes. [...] Read more.
In this paper, we suggest two machine learning methods for seismic hazard forecast. The first method is used for spatial forecasting of maximum possible earthquake magnitudes ( M m a x ), whereas the second is used for spatio-temporal forecasting of strong earthquakes. The first method, the method of approximation of interval expert estimates, is based on a regression approach in which values of M m a x at the points of the training sample are estimated by experts. The method allows one to formalize the knowledge of experts, to find the dependence of M m a x on the properties of the geological environment, and to construct a map of the spatial forecast. The second method, the method of minimum area of alarm, uses retrospective data to identify the alarm area in which the epicenters of strong (target) earthquakes are expected at a certain time interval. This method is the basis of an automatic web-based platform that systematically forecasts target earthquakes. The results of testing the approach to earthquake prediction in the Mediterranean and Californian regions are presented. For the tests, well known parameters of earthquake catalogs were used. The method showed a satisfactory forecast quality. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Earthquake-Induced Landslide Risk Assessment: An Example from Sakhalin Island, Russia
Geosciences 2019, 9(7), 305; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9070305 - 11 Jul 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Damages caused by earthquake-induced ground effects can be of the order or significantly exceed the expected damages from ground shaking. A new probabilistic technique is considered in this study for earthquake-induced landslide risk assessment. A fully probabilistic technique suggests a multi-stage hazard assessment. [...] Read more.
Damages caused by earthquake-induced ground effects can be of the order or significantly exceed the expected damages from ground shaking. A new probabilistic technique is considered in this study for earthquake-induced landslide risk assessment. A fully probabilistic technique suggests a multi-stage hazard assessment. These stages include the determination of seismic hazard curves and landslide probabilistic models, a vulnerability assessment, and geotechnical investigations. At each of the stages, the uncertainties should be carefully analyzed. A logic tree technique, which handles all available models and parameters, was used in the study. The method was applied considering child education facilities located at the foot of a natural slope in the south of Sakhalin Island which is known as an active seismic and land sliding area. The significant differences in the ground motion scenario in terms of the 475-year seismic hazard map and the fully probabilistic approach considered suggests that seismic landslide risk could be underestimated or overestimated when using the 475-year seismic hazard map for risk assessment. The given approach follows the rational risk management idea that handles well all possible ground motion scenarios, slope models, and parameters. The authors suggest that the given approach can improve geotechnical studies of slope stability. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Earthquake Environmental Effects of the 1992 MS7.3 Suusamyr Earthquake, Kyrgyzstan, and Their Implications for Paleo-Earthquake Studies
Geosciences 2019, 9(6), 271; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9060271 - 21 Jun 2019
Cited by 3
Abstract
Large pre-historical earthquakes leave traces in the geological and geomorphological record, such as primary and secondary surface ruptures and mass movements, which are the only means to estimate their magnitudes. These environmental earthquake effects (EEEs) can be calibrated using recent seismic events and [...] Read more.
Large pre-historical earthquakes leave traces in the geological and geomorphological record, such as primary and secondary surface ruptures and mass movements, which are the only means to estimate their magnitudes. These environmental earthquake effects (EEEs) can be calibrated using recent seismic events and the Environmental Seismic Intensity Scale (ESI2007). We apply the ESI2007 scale to the 1992 MS7.3 Suusamyr Earthquake in the Kyrgyz Tien Shan, because similar studies are sparse in that area and geological setting, and because this earthquake was very peculiar in its primary surface rupture pattern. We analyze literature data on primary and secondary earthquake effects and add our own observations from fieldwork. We show that the ESI2007 distribution differs somewhat from traditional intensity assessments (MSK (Medvedev-Sponheuer-Karnik) and MM (Modified Mercalli)), because of the sparse population in the epicentral area and the spatial distribution of primary and secondary EEEs. However, the ESI2007 scale captures a similar overall pattern of the intensity distribution. We then explore how uncertainties in the identification of primary surface ruptures influence the results of the ESI2007 assignment. Our results highlight the applicability of the ESI2007 scale, even in earthquakes with complex and unusual primary surface rupture patterns. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Site Effect Assessment in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia through Inversion Analysis of Microtremor H/V Spectral Ratios
Geosciences 2019, 9(5), 228; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9050228 - 17 May 2019
Cited by 3
Abstract
Due to the population growth and urban sprawl in Ulaanbaatar city (UB), Mongolia, hazard and risk analysis for future earthquakes have become an important issue for disaster mitigation planning. Evaluation of a site effect is one of the essential parts of the earthquake [...] Read more.
Due to the population growth and urban sprawl in Ulaanbaatar city (UB), Mongolia, hazard and risk analysis for future earthquakes have become an important issue for disaster mitigation planning. Evaluation of a site effect is one of the essential parts of the earthquake hazard estimation in this area. The site effect can be evaluated by site amplifications calculated from shear-wave velocity (VS) models including from bedrock to surface layers. However, it is difficult to assess the pattern of the site effects in UB because shallow mostly up to 15 m and a small number of investigated VS models are available in previous studies. In this study, the VS models are estimated using microtremor data at 50 sites and inversion analysis is applied to the observed data in order to evaluate site amplifications in UB. In particular, the joint inversion technique based on a diffuse field approach is applied to estimate the VS structures at three sites using the observed horizontal-to-vertical (H/V) spectral ratios and surface wave phase velocities obtained by Odonbaatar (2011). The rest of the sites are estimated by the single inversion technique using the observed microtremor H/V spectral ratios considering the results of the joint inversions. The seismic microzoning in UB is performed based on the site amplifications computed from the inverted VS models to characterize the pattern of seismic hazard. The result shows the largest site amplification zone is computed along the Tuul river in the southeastern part of UB. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Geological and Structural Control on Localized Ground Effects within the Heunghae Basin during the Pohang Earthquake (MW 5.4, 15th November 2017), South Korea
Geosciences 2019, 9(4), 173; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9040173 - 16 Apr 2019
Cited by 5
Abstract
On 15th November 2017, the Pohang earthquake (Mw 5.4) had strong ground shaking that caused severe liquefaction and lateral spreading across the Heunghae Basin, around Pohang city, South Korea. Such liquefaction is a rare phenomenon during small or moderate earthquakes (MW [...] Read more.
On 15th November 2017, the Pohang earthquake (Mw 5.4) had strong ground shaking that caused severe liquefaction and lateral spreading across the Heunghae Basin, around Pohang city, South Korea. Such liquefaction is a rare phenomenon during small or moderate earthquakes (MW < 5.5). There are only a few examples around the globe, but more so in the Korean Peninsula. In this paper, we present the results of a systematic survey of the secondary ground effects—i.e., soil liquefaction and ground cracks—developed during the earthquake. Most of the liquefaction sites are clustered near the epicenter and close to the Heunghae fault. Based on the geology, tectonic setting, distribution, and clustering of the sand boils along the southern part of the Heunghae Basin, we propose a geological model, suggesting that the Heunghae fault may have acted as a barrier to the propagation of seismic waves. Other factors like the mountain basin effect and/or amplification of seismic waves by a blind thrust fault could play an important role. Liquefaction phenomenon associated with the 2017 Pohang earthquake emphasizes that there is an urgent need of liquefaction potential mapping for the Pohang city and other areas with a similar geological setting. In areas underlain by extensive unconsolidated basin fill sediments—where the records of past earthquakes are exiguous or indistinct and there is poor implementation of building codes—future earthquakes of similar or larger magnitude as the Pohang earthquake are likely to occur again. Therefore, this represents a hazard that may cause significant societal and economic threats in the future. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Bayesian Variable Selection for Pareto Regression Models with Latent Multivariate Log Gamma Process with Applications to Earthquake Magnitudes
Geosciences 2019, 9(4), 169; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9040169 - 12 Apr 2019
Cited by 2
Abstract
Generalized linear models are routinely used in many environment statistics problems such as earthquake magnitudes prediction. Hu et al. proposed Pareto regression with spatial random effects for earthquake magnitudes. In this paper, we propose Bayesian spatial variable selection for Pareto regression based on [...] Read more.
Generalized linear models are routinely used in many environment statistics problems such as earthquake magnitudes prediction. Hu et al. proposed Pareto regression with spatial random effects for earthquake magnitudes. In this paper, we propose Bayesian spatial variable selection for Pareto regression based on Bradley et al. and Hu et al. to tackle variable selection issue in generalized linear regression models with spatial random effects. A Bayesian hierarchical latent multivariate log gamma model framework is applied to account for spatial random effects to capture spatial dependence. We use two Bayesian model assessment criteria for variable selection including Conditional Predictive Ordinate (CPO) and Deviance Information Criterion (DIC). Furthermore, we show that these two Bayesian criteria have analytic connections with conditional AIC under the linear mixed model setting. We examine empirical performance of the proposed method via a simulation study and further demonstrate the applicability of the proposed method in an analysis of the earthquake data obtained from the United States Geological Survey (USGS). Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Dynamics of the Zones of Strong Earthquake Epicenters in the Arctic–Asian Seismic Belt
Geosciences 2019, 9(4), 168; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9040168 - 12 Apr 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Our comprehensive study of the Russian Arctic region aims to clarify the features and types of seismotectonic deformation of the crust in the Arctic–Asian Seismic Belt, specifically in the zones of strong earthquakes in the Laptev Sea Segment, the Kharaulakh Segment, and the [...] Read more.
Our comprehensive study of the Russian Arctic region aims to clarify the features and types of seismotectonic deformation of the crust in the Arctic–Asian Seismic Belt, specifically in the zones of strong earthquakes in the Laptev Sea Segment, the Kharaulakh Segment, and the Chersky Seismotectonic Zone. We have analyzed modern tectonic structures and active fault systems, as well as tectonic stress fields reconstructed by tectonophysical analysis of the Late Cenozoic faults and folds. The investigated neotectonic structures are ranked with respect to the regional classification principles. Changes in the crustal stress–strain state in the lithospheric plate boundaries between the Eurasian, North American, and Okhotsk Sea Plates are analyzed, and regularities of such changes are discovered. A set of models has been constructed for the studied segments of plate boundaries with account of the dynamics of the regional geological structures. The models can give a framework for the assessment of potential seismic risks of seismogenerating structures in the Russian Arctic region. Full article
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Surface-Rupturing Historical Earthquakes in Australia and Their Environmental Effects: New Insights from Re-Analyses of Observational Data
Geosciences 2019, 9(10), 408; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9100408 - 20 Sep 2019
Cited by 4
Abstract
We digitize surface rupture maps and compile observational data from 67 publications on ten of eleven historical, surface-rupturing earthquakes in Australia in order to analyze the prevailing characteristics of surface ruptures and other environmental effects in this crystalline basement-dominated intraplate environment. The studied [...] Read more.
We digitize surface rupture maps and compile observational data from 67 publications on ten of eleven historical, surface-rupturing earthquakes in Australia in order to analyze the prevailing characteristics of surface ruptures and other environmental effects in this crystalline basement-dominated intraplate environment. The studied earthquakes occurred between 1968 and 2018, and range in moment magnitude (Mw) from 4.7 to 6.6. All earthquakes involved co-seismic reverse faulting (with varying amounts of strike-slip) on single or multiple (1–6) discrete faults of ≥ 1 km length that are distinguished by orientation and kinematic criteria. Nine of ten earthquakes have surface-rupturing fault orientations that align with prevailing linear anomalies in geophysical (gravity and magnetic) data and bedrock structure (foliations and/or quartz veins and/or intrusive boundaries and/or pre-existing faults), indicating strong control of inherited crustal structure on contemporary faulting. Rupture kinematics are consistent with horizontal shortening driven by regional trajectories of horizontal compressive stress. The lack of precision in seismological data prohibits the assessment of whether surface ruptures project to hypocentral locations via contiguous, planar principal slip zones or whether rupture segmentation occurs between seismogenic depths and the surface. Rupture centroids of 1–4 km in depth indicate predominantly shallow seismic moment release. No studied earthquakes have unambiguous geological evidence for preceding surface-rupturing earthquakes on the same faults and five earthquakes contain evidence of absence of preceding ruptures since the late Pleistocene, collectively highlighting the challenge of using mapped active faults to predict future seismic hazards. Estimated maximum fault slip rates are 0.2–9.1 m Myr−1 with at least one order of uncertainty. New estimates for rupture length, fault dip, and coseismic net slip can be used to improve future iterations of earthquake magnitude—source size—displacement scaling equations. Observed environmental effects include primary surface rupture, secondary fracture/cracks, fissures, rock falls, ground-water anomalies, vegetation damage, sand-blows/liquefaction, displaced rock fragments, and holes from collapsible soil failure, at maximum estimated epicentral distances ranging from 0 to ~250 km. ESI-07 intensity-scale estimates range by ± 3 classes in each earthquake, depending on the effect considered. Comparing Mw-ESI relationships across geologically diverse environments is a fruitful avenue for future research. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Post Seismic Catalog Incompleteness and Aftershock Forecasting
Geosciences 2019, 9(8), 355; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9080355 - 12 Aug 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
A growing interest appears among public authorities and society in accurate and nearly real time aftershock forecasting to manage and mitigate post-seismic risk. Existing methods for aftershock forecasting are strongly affected by the incompleteness of the instrumental datasets available soon after the main [...] Read more.
A growing interest appears among public authorities and society in accurate and nearly real time aftershock forecasting to manage and mitigate post-seismic risk. Existing methods for aftershock forecasting are strongly affected by the incompleteness of the instrumental datasets available soon after the main shock occurrence. The deficit of observed events, in the first part of aftershock sequences, can be naturally attributed to various mechanisms such as the inefficiency of the seismic network and the overlap of earthquake signals in seismic records. In this review, we show that short-term aftershock incompleteness can be explained only in terms of the second mechanism, whereas it is only weakly affected by the quality of the instrumental coverage. We then illustrate how standard models for earthquake forecasting can be modified to take into account this incompleteness. In particular, we focus on forecasting methods based on the data available in real time, in which many events are missing and the uncertainty in hypocenter location is considerable. We present retrospective tests that demonstrate the usefulness of these novel methods compared with traditional ones, which implement average values of parameters obtained from previous sequences. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Catalogue of the Geological Effects of Earthquakes in Spain Based on the ESI-07 Macroseismic Scale: A New Database for Seismic Hazard Analysis
Geosciences 2019, 9(8), 334; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9080334 - 29 Jul 2019
Cited by 4
Abstract
This paper summarizes the content and scope of the “Catalogue of Earthquake Geological Effects in Spain”. The catalogue has been published by the Geological Survey of Spain (IGME) and constitutes the first official publication (in Spain) on seismic hazard containing geological information. The [...] Read more.
This paper summarizes the content and scope of the “Catalogue of Earthquake Geological Effects in Spain”. The catalogue has been published by the Geological Survey of Spain (IGME) and constitutes the first official publication (in Spain) on seismic hazard containing geological information. The catalogue gathers the 51 stronger earthquakes that have occurred in Spain since the Neolithic period to the present and classifies earthquakes with geological or archaeological seismic records in paleoseismic, ancient, historical and instrumental earthquakes. The catalogue offers a variety of parametric information, quality indexes (Qe, Qi, Qg), and Environmental Seismic Intensity Scale (ESI-07) based description of environmental damage structured in individual “event files”. Sixteen of the 51 catalogued events present full information files (full event files), with individualized analyses of the geological and geoarchaeological data as well as graphic information with hybrid ESI-EMS intensity maps, ShakeMaps (seismic scenarios) and complementary kmz files (Google Earth) for each of the sixteen selected earthquakes; among which is the well-known AD 1755 Lisbon earthquake-tsunami. These selected earthquakes present individual environmental earthquake effects (EEE) or earthquake archaeoseismological effects (EAE) files for each catalogued effect containing specific site geo-information and graphic data (photos, graphs, maps, etc.). The second edition of the catalogue record 1027 EEEs and 187 EAEs, of which 322 effects have individual files. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Paleoliquefaction Studies and the Evaluation of Seismic Hazard
Geosciences 2019, 9(7), 311; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9070311 - 13 Jul 2019
Cited by 6
Abstract
Recent and historical studies of earthquake-induced liquefaction, as well as paleoliquefaction studies, demonstrate the potential usefulness of liquefaction data in the assessment of the earthquake potential of seismic sources. Paleoliquefaction studies, along with other paleoseismology studies, supplement historical and instrumental seismicity and provide [...] Read more.
Recent and historical studies of earthquake-induced liquefaction, as well as paleoliquefaction studies, demonstrate the potential usefulness of liquefaction data in the assessment of the earthquake potential of seismic sources. Paleoliquefaction studies, along with other paleoseismology studies, supplement historical and instrumental seismicity and provide information about the long-term behavior of earthquake sources. Paleoliquefaction studies focus on soft-sediment deformation features, including sand blows and sand dikes, which result from strong ground shaking. Most paleoliquefaction studies have been conducted in intraplate geologic settings, but a few such studies have been carried out in interplate settings. Paleoliquefaction studies provide information about timing, location, magnitude, and recurrence of large paleoearthquakes, particularly those with moment magnitude, M, greater than 6 during the past 50,000 years. This review paper presents background information on earthquake-induced liquefaction and resulting soft-sediment deformation features that may be preserved in the geologic record, best practices used in paleoliquefaction studies, and application of paleoliquefaction data in earthquake source characterization. The paper concludes with two examples of regional paleoliquefaction studies—in the Charleston seismic zone and the New Madrid seismic zone in the southeastern and central United States, respectively—which contributed to seismic source models used in earthquake hazard assessment. Full article
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Open AccessReview
History of the Environmental Seismic Intensity Scale ESI-07
Geosciences 2019, 9(5), 210; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9050210 - 10 May 2019
Cited by 9
Abstract
This brief note aims to describe the history, from its early original idea, of the new macroseismic scale: The Environmental Seismic Intensity Scale 2007 (ESI 2007). It can be used together with other existing scales or alone when needed for measuring the intensity [...] Read more.
This brief note aims to describe the history, from its early original idea, of the new macroseismic scale: The Environmental Seismic Intensity Scale 2007 (ESI 2007). It can be used together with other existing scales or alone when needed for measuring the intensity of an earthquake on the basis of the primary and secondary effects of a seismic event on the natural environment. These effects could be the major sources of earthquake hazards, as recently proved. This note also aims to contribute to the understanding of processes that induced the researcher to develop an idea, to pursue it, and bring it to its end, first through the help of valuable Italian researchers and then through the constructive exchange of ideas with researchers of different cultural backgrounds operating almost everywhere in the world. This note is sponsored and approved by the International Union for Quaternary Research (INQUA), and the Environmental Seismic Intensity scale (ESI-07) was published in 2007 after a revision process of about eight years. Full article
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