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Slip Complexity in Dynamic Models of Earthquake Faults

James S. Langer, Jean M. Carlson, Joyce Carlson, & Bruce E. Shaw

Published April 30, 1996, SCEC Contribution #444

We summarize recent evidence that models of earthquake faults with dynamically unstable friction laws but no externally imposed heterogeneities can exhibit slip complexity. Two models are described here. The first is a one-dimensional model with velocity-weakening stick-slip friction; the second is a two-dimensional elastodynamic model with slip-weakening friction. Both exhibit small-event complexity and chaotic sequences of large characteristic events. The large events in both models are composed of Heaton pulses. We argue that the key ingredients of these models are reasonably accurate representations of the properties of real faults.

Langer, J. S., Carlson, J. M., Carlson, J., & Shaw, B. E. (1996). Slip Complexity in Dynamic Models of Earthquake Faults. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 93(9), 3825-3829.