The Parkfield 2004 earthquake yielded the most extensive set of strong-motion data in the near-source region of a magnitude 6 earthquake yet obtained. The recordings of acceleration and volumetric strain provide an unprecedented document of the near-source seismic radiation for a moderate earthquake. The spatial density of the measurements alon g the fault zone and in the linear arrays perpendicular to the fault is expected to provide an exceptional opportunity to develop improved models of the rupture process. The closely spaced measurements should help infer the temporal and spatial distribution of the rupture process at much higher resolution than previously possible. Preliminary analyses of the peak a cceleration data presented herein shows that the motions vary significantly along the rupture zone, from 0.13 g to more than 2.5 g, with a map of the values showing that the larger values are concentrated in three areas. Particle motions at the near-fault stations are consistent with bilateral rupture. Fault-normal pulses similar to those observed in recent strike-slip earthquakes are apparent at several of the stations. The attenuation of peak ground acceleration with distance is more rapid than that indicated by some standard relationships but adequately fits others. Evidence for directivity in the peak acceleration data is not strong. Several stations very near, or over, the rupturing fault recorded relatively low accelerations. These recordings may provide a quantitative basis to understand observations of low near-fault shaking damage that has been reported in other large strike-slip earthquak.
Additional publication details
Preliminary analysis of strong-motion recordings from the 28 September 2004 Parkfield, California earthquake