The coseismic slip and geometry of the March 15, 1979, Homestead Valley, California, earthquake sequence are well constrained by precise horizontal and vertical geodetic observations and by data from a dense local seismic network. These observations indicate 0.52 + or - 0.10 m of right-lateral slip and 0.17 + or - 0.04 m of reverse slip on a buried vertical 6-km-long and 5-km-deep fault and yield a mean static stress drop of 7.2 + or -1.3 MPa. The largest shock had Ms = 5.6. Observations of the ground rupture revealed up to 0.1 m of right-lateral slip on two mapped faults that are subparallel to the modeled seismic slip plane. In the 1.9 years since the earthquakes, geodetic network displacements indicate that an additional 60+ or -10 mm of postseismic creep took place. The rate of postseismic shear strain (0.53 + or - 0.13 mu rad/yr) measured within a 30 X 30-km network centered on the principal events was anomalously high compared to its preearthquake value and the postseismic rate in the adjacent network. This transient cannot be explained by postseismic slip on the seismic fault but rather indicates that broadside release of strain followed the earthquake sequence. -Authors
Additional publication details
The 1979 Homestead Valley earthquake sequence, California: control of aftershocks and postseismic deformation.