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Conference Papers Year : 2019

Regional and exhaustive French seismic catalogues

Corentin Gouache
  • Function : Author
François Bonneau
Pierre Tinard
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  • PersonId : 973551


Even if French mainland seismicity is known to be very low to medium, it’s still monitored in order to access to a high level fundamental understanding. This understanding is mainly used to anticipate earthquake related risk in probabilistic seismic risk assessment (PSHA) and has a direct impact on the French prevention based policy regarding this hazard. The development of the monitoring network both in terms of quantity and quality had led to a large amount of data summarised in several seismic catalogues. Nevertheless, these huge database are not exhaustive and capture a lot of uncertainties from various sources. Time, magnitude and location of seismic events are particularly affected by these uncertainties. In this study, we propose to process seismic catalogues in order to estimate their uncertainties and extract consistent subset of data considering specific working hypotheses. Because of sensors sensitivity, French seismic network, as others, is not able to record all the earthquakes. This is particularly true for small events. That’s why seismic hazard assessment often deals with cut-off magnitude and completeness of seismic catalogue. This cut-off magnitude describes the magnitude from which all the happened events are assumed to be recorded. Restricting data to earthquakes with magnitudes greater than the cut-off one can be seen as a loss of information. However, this rejected information is biased whereas each earthquake in the cut-off catalogue is considered as an unbiased information. In most cases, this cut-off magnitude is arbitrary chosen and the period of observation is systemically assumed to be reliable. Nevertheless, one can understand that, due to seismic network improvements, the period of observation may have an important impact on the cut-off magnitude finding strategy. We propose a methodology to find the best pair [cut-off magnitude – period of observation] among a French earthquake catalogue. The study also considers the large heterogeneities on seismic level (from very low to medium) and on spatial distribution of seismic network by using a seismotectonic zoning in order to enhance the stationarity of sub catalogues. Results consistency is discussed regarding the classical scale laws used to characterize seismic activities (Gutenberg and Richter law, inter-event times and correlation dimensions).
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Dates and versions

hal-02186245 , version 1 (17-07-2019)


  • HAL Id : hal-02186245 , version 1


Corentin Gouache, François Bonneau, Pierre Tinard. Regional and exhaustive French seismic catalogues. IAMG 2019, International Association of Mathematical Geosciences, Aug 2019, State College, PA, United States. ⟨hal-02186245⟩
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