Engineering Characteristics of Ground Motions Recorded in the 2019 Ridgecrest Earthquake Sequence

Sean K. Ahdi, Silvia Mazzoni, Tadahiro Kishida, Pengfei Wang, Chukwuebuka Nweke, Nicolas M. Kuehn, Victor Contreras, Badie Rowshandel, Jonathan P. Stewart, & Yousef Bozorgnia

Published July 21, 2020, SCEC Contribution #10820

We present a database and analyze ground motions recorded during three events that occurred as part of the July 2019 Ridgecrest earthquake sequence: a moment magnitude (M) 6.5 foreshock on a left‐lateral cross fault in the Salt Wells Valley fault zone, an M 5.5 foreshock in the Paxton Ranch fault zone, and the M 7.1 mainshock, also occurring in the Paxton Ranch fault zone. We collected and uniformly processed 1483 three‐component recordings from an array of 824 sensors spanning 10 seismographic networks. We developed site metadata using available data and multiple models for the time‐averaged shear‐wave velocity in the upper 30 m (⁠VS30⁠) and for basin depth terms. We processed ground motions using Next Generation Attenuation (NGA) procedures and computed intensity measures including spectral acceleration at a number of oscillator periods and inelastic response spectra. We compared elastic and inelastic response spectra to seismic design spectra in building codes to evaluate the damage potential of the ground motions at spatially distributed sites. Residuals of the observed spectral accelerations relative to the NGA‐West2 ground‐motion models (GMMs) show good average agreement between observations and model predictions (event terms between about −0.3 and 0.5 for peak ground acceleration to 5 s). The average attenuation with distance is also well captured by the empirical NGA‐West2 GMMs, although azimuthal variations in attenuation were observed that are not captured by the GMMs. An analysis considering directivity and fault‐slip heterogeneity for the M 7.1 event demonstrates that the dispersion in the near‐source ground‐motion residuals can be reduced.

Ahdi, S. K., Mazzoni, S., Kishida, T., Wang, P., Nweke, C., Kuehn, N. M., Contreras, V., Rowshandel, B., Stewart, J. P., & Bozorgnia, Y. (2020). Engineering Characteristics of Ground Motions Recorded in the 2019 Ridgecrest Earthquake Sequence. Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 110(4), 1474-1494. doi: 10.1785/0120200036.