Scientific goals of the Parkfield earthquake prediction experiment

Earthquakes & Volcanoes (USGS)


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Several unique circumstances of the Parkfield experiment provide unprecedented opportunities for significant advances in understanding the mechanics of earthquakes. to our knowledge, there is no other seismic zone anywhere where the time, place, and magnitude of an impending earthquake are specified as precisely. Moreover, the epicentral region is located on continental crust, is readily accessible, and can support a range of dense monitoring networks that are sited either on or very close to the expected rupture surface. As a result, the networks located at Parkfield are several orders of magnitude more sensitive than any previously deployed for monitoring earthquake precursors (a preearthquake change in strain, seismicity, and other geophysical parameters). In this respect the design of the Parkfield experiment resembles the rationale for constructing a new, more powerful nuclear particle accelerator:in both cases increased capabilities will test existing theories, reveal new phenomena, and suggest new research directions. 

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Scientific goals of the Parkfield earthquake prediction experiment
Series title Earthquakes & Volcanoes (USGS)
Volume 20
Issue 2
Year Published 1988
Language English
Publisher U.S Geological Survey
Description 5 p.
First page 78
Last page 82
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
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