Computational Software for Fitting Seismic Data to Epidemic-Type Aftershock Sequence Models

Tuesday, 16 December 2014
Annie Chu, Organization Not Listed, Washington, DC, United States; Woodbury University, Mathematics, Burbank California, United States
Modern earthquake catalogs are often analyzed using spatial-temporal point process models such as the epidemic-type aftershock sequence (ETAS) models of Ogata (1998). My work introduces software to implement two of ETAS models described in Ogata (1998). To find the Maximum-Likelihood Estimates (MLEs), my software provides estimates of the homogeneous background rate parameter and the temporal and spatial parameters that govern triggering effects by applying the Expectation-Maximization (EM) algorithm introduced in Veen and Schoenberg (2008). Despite other computer programs exist for similar data modeling purpose, using EM-algorithm has the benefits of stability and robustness (Veen and Schoenberg, 2008). Spatial shapes that are very long and narrow cause difficulties in optimization convergence and problems with flat or multi-modal log-likelihood functions encounter similar issues. My program uses a robust method to preset a parameter to overcome the non-convergence computational issue. In addition to model fitting, the software is equipped with useful tools for examining modeling fitting results, for example, visualization of estimated conditional intensity, and estimation of expected number of triggered aftershocks. A simulation generator is also given with flexible spatial shapes that may be defined by the user. This open-source software has a very simple user interface. The user may execute it on a local computer, and the program also has potential to be hosted online. Java language is used for the software's core computing part and an optional interface to the statistical package R is provided.