Application of an ensemble earthquake rate model in Italy, considering seismic catalogs and fault moment release

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Maura Murru
Giuseppe Falcone
Matteo Taroni
Rodolfo Console


We develop an ensemble earthquake rate model that provides spatially variable time-independent (Poisson) long-term annual occurrence rates of seismic events throughout Italy, for magnitude bin of 0.1 units from Mw ≥ 4.5 in spatial cells of 0.1° × 0.1°. We weighed seismic activity rates of smoothed seismicity and fault-based inputs to build our earthquake rupture forecast model, merging it into a single ensemble model. Both inputs adopt a tapered Gutenberg-Richter relation with a single b-value and a single corner magnitude estimated by earthquakes catalog. The spatial smoothed seismicity was obtained using the classical kernel smoothing method with the inclusion of magnitude dependent completeness periods applied to the Historical (CPTI15) and Instrumental seismic catalogs. For each seismogenic source provided by the Database of the Individual Seismogenic Sources (DISS), we computed the annual rate of the events above Mw 4.5, assuming that the seismic moments of the earthquakes generated by each fault are distributed according to the tapered Gutenberg-Richter relation with the same parameters of the smoothed seismicity models. Comparing seismic annual rates of the catalogs with those of the seismogenic sources, we realized that there is a good agreement between these rates in Central Apennines zones, whereas the seismogenic rates are higher than those of the catalogs in the north east and south of Italy.

We also tested our model against the strong Italian earthquakes (Mw 5.5+), in order to check if the total number (N-test) and the spatial distribution (S-test) of these events was compatible with our model, obtaining good results, i.e. high p-values in the test. The final model will be a branch of the new Italian seismic hazard map.


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How to Cite
Murru, M., Falcone, G., Taroni, M. and Console, R. (2020) “Application of an ensemble earthquake rate model in Italy, considering seismic catalogs and fault moment release”, Annals of Geophysics, 63(6), p. SE674. doi: 10.4401/ag-8441.

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