We acquired high-resolution seismic-refraction data on the ground surface in selected areas of the San Fernando Valley (SFV) to help explain the earthquake damage patterns and the variation in ground motion caused by the 17 January 1994 magnitude 6.7 Northridge earthquake. We used these data to determine the compressional- and shear-wave velocities (Vp and Vs) at 20 aftershock recording sites to 30-m depth ( V??s30, and V??p30). Two other sites, located next to boreholes with downhole Vp and Vs data, show that we imaged very similar seismic-vefocity structures in the upper 40 m. Overall, high site response appears to be associated with tow Vs in the near surface, but there can be a wide rangepf site amplifications for a given NEHRP soil type. The data suggest that for the SFV, if the V??s30 is known, we can determine whether the earthquake ground motion will be amplified above a factor of 2 relative to a local rock site.
Additional publication details
Surface-seismic imaging for nehrp soil profile classifications and earthquake hazards in urban areas