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Authors: Cao, Zhou
Title: Analysis of earthquake signals by spaceborne gravimetry
Issue Date: 2011 Abschlussarbeit (Master)
Abstract: The Gravity Recovery And Climate Experiment (GRACE) mission was launched on Mar. 17, 2002 and has provided the scientists with the gravity data for nearly ten years. The time variable gravity field provided by the GRACE has improved our knowledge of the earth in many fields such as hydrology, oceanography and glaciology. But compared to those “hot” fields, the publications of GRACE in seismology is considerably less. However, GRACE can provide scientists with an independent observation of the earthquake process. Coincidentally, some of the largest earthquakes are within GRACE’s life span - Sumatra-Andaman Earthquake (Indonesia) 2004, Maule Earthquake (Chile) 2010 and Tohoku Earthquake (Japan) 2011. Furthermore, a smaller earthquake - Sichuan Earthquake (China) 2008 has also been examined to test whether the GRACE can detect earthquakes smaller than Mw = 8.0. Different from the traditional methods of the earthquake researches, the gravity method has its advantages: 1. Massive: global scale; 2. Insight: gravity changes can reveal the underground mass changes which do not cause so much motion on the earth surface; 3. Convenient: superior to the traditional methods, the spaceborne gravimetry can get the data from the ocean and glacier parts. The conditions of the data are different among these four earthquakes. The procedures to eliminate the GRACE observation errors and unwanted geophysical data are necessary. First, the C20 term should be replaced by the Satellite Laser Ranging (SLR) data. Second, the hydrology signal especially in the regions of Chile and Sichuan should be eliminated by the Global Land Data Assimilation System (GLDAS) model. Third, Fan filter or Gauss filter 350 km should be applied. Time series analysis by the two-phase changepoint detection and hypothesis testing are applied for each earthquake which is a point-wise analysis. Least squares adjustment is performed on each point to display the coseismic and postseismic signals. Meanwhile, the surface analysis is done by the Empirical Orthogonal Functions (EOF) as it has a flexible base which can suit the data automatically. Although the observation errors have been removed as much as possible, the limited spatial and time resolutions of the GRACE satellite and to retrieve relatively weak earthquake signal among the strong hydrological signals are still problems in the analysis. GRACE can detect some of the large earthquakes, but it depends on the earthquake type, area and the length of the time-series before and after the earthquake. Both coseismic signal and postseismic signal are detected in Sumatra-Andaman Earthquake. Meanwhile, there is no significant coseismic signal in the time series of Sichuan Earthquake, but the EOF detects suspicious earthquake signal in mode 2 with the magnitude less than 1 µGal. For Maule Earthquake, only the coseismic signal is detected. Due to the limited dataset, the detection of the coseismic signal is successful but the postseismic signal is not long enough to be detected in Tohoku Earthquake. However, the different filters will affect the magnitude of the gravity change, so the real gravity changes of those four areas are still under debate. Last, EOF can be used for the separation of the earthquake signals. Compared to other geodetic technics the gravity method can detect the signals underground and in the ocean areas. The coseismic and postseismic signals detected by GRACE show underground processes of the earthquakes which can help scientists better understand the earthquake mechanism and will contribute to the earthquake prediction in the future.
Appears in Collections:06 Fakultät Luft- und Raumfahrttechnik und Geodäsie

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