Exciting news! We're transitioning to the Statewide California Earthquake Center. Our new website is under construction, but we'll continue using this website for SCEC business in the meantime. We're also archiving the Southern Center site to preserve its rich history. A new and improved platform is coming soon!

3D Basement-Depth Map for the San Gabriel, Chino, and San Bernardino Basins

Valeria Villa, Yida Li, Ritu Ghose, Robert W. Clayton, & Patricia Persaud

Published August 15, 2021, SCEC Contribution #11459, 2021 SCEC Annual Meeting Poster #219

The San Gabriel, Chino, and San Bernardino sedimentary basins in Southern California amplify earthquake ground motions and prolong the duration of shaking due to the basin’s shape and the low seismic velocities of the soft sediments. In the event of a major rupture along the southern segment of the San Andreas fault, the physical proximity and chain connection of the basins can produce a waveguide effect and channel the amplified energy into the Los Angeles area, threatening the megacity of Los Angeles to intensified ground motions. Improving estimates of the shape of the sediment-basement interface is required for more accurate ground-shaking models in this high seismic-hazard zone. From gravity, seismic data, and borehole observations, we obtain a three-dimensional sediment-basement map of the San Gabriel, Chino, and San Bernardino basins.

Using the least-squares method on travel time of the sediment-basement P-to-s conversion, obtained from receiver functions, and Bouguer gravity along the 10 nodal lines, we extend the 2D constraints to a 3D map of basement time, constrained by gravity. We calculate the depth of the basement by taking an average S-wave velocity within the basin and convert the time of basement constrained by gravity to depth. Due to the ambiguity of gravity data interpretation, data from ~14 boreholes are used to corroborate the model. The basement map shows the shape of the San Gabriel, Chino, and San Bernardino basins.

The San Gabriel Basin is deepest in the south-central part and a significant west-northeast gravity signature is associated with our interpretation of the Raymond fault. The Chino Basin deepens towards the south and shallows to the northeast, towards the San Gabriel Mountains. The San Bernardino Basin, bounded by the San Jacinto fault (SJF) and San Andreas fault zone, deepens from the northern to the southern end of the SJF within the basin. In addition, we demonstrate the improvement of using gravity data to aid in the interpretation of the sediment-basement interface in receiver functions profiles.

Key Words
Basin depth, San Gabriel Basin, Chino Basin, San Bernardino Basin

Villa, V., Li, Y., Ghose, R., Clayton, R. W., & Persaud, P. (2021, 08). 3D Basement-Depth Map for the San Gabriel, Chino, and San Bernardino Basins. Poster Presentation at 2021 SCEC Annual Meeting.

Related Projects & Working Groups