Virtual California: Earthquake Statistics, Surface Deformation Patterns, Surface Gravity Changes and InSAR Interferograms for Arbitrary Fault Geometries

Monday, 15 December 2014: 2:35 PM
Kasey Schultz1, Michael K Sachs1, Eric M Heien1, John B Rundle1, Jose Fernandez2, Donald Turcotte1 and Andrea Donnellan3, (1)University of California Davis, Davis, CA, United States, (2)Complutense University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain, (3)NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA, United States
With the ever increasing number of geodetic monitoring satellites, it is vital to have a variety of geophysical numerical simulators to produce sample/model datasets. Just as hurricane forecasts are derived from the consensus among multiple atmospheric models, earthquake forecasts cannot be derived from a single comprehensive model. Here we present the functionality of Virtual California, a numerical simulator that can generate sample surface deformations, surface gravity changes, and InSAR interferograms in addition to producing earthquake statistics and forecasts.

Virtual California is a boundary element code designed to explore the seismicity of today’s fault systems. For arbitrary input fault geometry, Virtual California can output simulated seismic histories of 50,000 years or more. Using co-seismic slips from the output data, we generate surface deformation maps, surface gravity change maps, and InSAR interferograms as viewed by an orbiting satellite. Furthermore, using the times between successive earthquakes we generate probability distributions and earthquake forecasts.

Virtual California is now supported by the Computational Infrastructure for Geodynamics. The source code is available for download and it comes with a users’ manual. The manual includes instructions on how to generate fault models from scratch, how to deploy the simulator across a parallel computing environment, etc.