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Using GPS to Rapidly Detect and Model Earthquakes and Transient Deformation Events /


The rapid modeling and detection of earthquakes and transient deformation is a problem of extreme societal importance for earthquake early warning and rapid hazard response. To date, GPS data is not used in earthquake early warning or rapid source modeling even in Japan or California where the most extensive geophysical networks exist. This dissertation focuses on creating algorithms for automated modeling of earthquakes and transient slip events using GPS data in the western United States and Japan. First, I focus on the creation and use of high-rate GPS and combined seismogeodetic data for applications in earthquake early warning and rapid slip inversions. Leveraging data from earthquakes in Japan and southern California, I demonstrate that an accurate magnitude estimate can be made within seconds using P wave displacement scaling, and that a heterogeneous static slip model can be generated within 2-3 minutes. The preliminary source characterization is sufficiently robust to independently confirm the extent of fault slip used for rapid assessment of strong ground motions and improved tsunami warning in subduction zone environments. Secondly, I investigate the automated detection of transient slow slip events in Cascadia using daily positional estimates from GPS. Proper geodetic characterization of transient deformation is necessary for studies of regional interseismic, coseismic and postseismic tectonics, and miscalculations can affect our understanding of the regional stress field. I utilize the relative strength index (RSI) from financial forecasting to create a complete record of slow slip from continuous GPS stations in the Cascadia subduction zone between 1996 and 2012. I create a complete history of slow slip across the Cascadia subduction zone, fully characterizing the timing, progression, and magnitude of events. Finally, using a combination of continuous and campaign GPS measurements, I characterize the amount of extension, shear and subsidence in the Salton Trough, one of the most complex zone of active faulting and seismicity in California. I show the implications that faulting in the Salton Trough has for the evolution of the Brawley Seismic Zone, and more importantly, the southern San Andreas fault

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