Location and Magnitude of the 1855 Ansei Edo Earthquake
American Geophysical Union, Fall Meeting 2005, abstract #S21A-0197
Japan Meteorological Agency intensity assignments from a set of recent calibration earthquakes were used to derive two intensity attenuation models suitable for estimating the location and magnitude M for historical earthquakes in Japan (Bakun, JGR, 2005). The "Honshu model" is appropriate for shallow crustal earthquakes. The "subducting-plate model" is appropriate for Pacific plate and Philippine Sea plate interplate and intraslab earthquakes. Intensities decrease more rapidly with distance from the source in the Honshu model than in the subducting-plate model, consistent with many studies showing that the colder, high-velocity, high-Q subducting Pacific and Philippine plates act as efficient waveguides for propagating strong shaking from earthquakes. M estimated from a set of intensity assignments is significantly larger for a Honshu-model source than for a subducting-plate model source. It is clear from the pattern of damage that the destructive 11 November 1855 Ansei Edo earthquake occurred near Tokyo, but the focal depth and causative seismogenic structure are controversial. M estimated using intensity assignments range from 7.2 and 7.4 for a subducting-plate-model source at 30 km and 70 km depth, respectively, to 7.7 for a shallow (5 km depth) Honshu-model source. The focal depth and causative seismogenic structure cannot be resolved from the pattern of intensity assignments. Historical accounts suggest that the 1855 Ansei Edo earthquake was preceded by alterations in groundwater and springs. In addition, 78 aftershocks were felt in Tokyo in the month immediately following the earthquake. These observations argue against a deep subducting-plate source. Surface faulting was not reported in 1855 and an order of magnitude more aftershocks were felt after the shallow crustal 1994 M7.3 Kobe earthquake -observations that suggest a somewhat deeper source for the 1855 Ansei Edo event. More felt aftershocks were reported in 1855 than after the 1987 off-Chiba M6.7 Philippine Sea plate intraslab earthquake (47 km focal depth). The 1855 aftershock activity and other historical accounts are apparently consistent with an M7.2 subducting-plate model source at about 30 km depth.http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2005AGUFM.S21A0197B
Insights on the 1855 Ansei-Edo earthquake depth derived from attenuation tomography and comparison with the 23 July 2005 M=6 shock
American Geophysical Union, Fall Meeting 2005, abstract #S21A-0198
The 3-D attenuation structure, Q, beneath the Kanto plain (Nakamura et al, 2003), Japan, has been obtained using short-period strong ground motion records from Kanto and Tohoku. Low Q is consistent with the Vp/Vs structure, and is associated with the active volcanic front (Nakajima et al, 2001). In addition, there is an unexpected low-Q zone oriented E-W beneath the Kanto plain. This low-Q band is coincident with high Poisson ratios, which have been interpreted as a serpentinized zone (Kamiya and Kobayashi, 2000). The heterogeneous attenuation structure must affect seismic ground motions for large events such as the damaging 1855 Ansei-Edo earthquake. First, we compare the distribution of seismic intensity between recent earthquakes and the Ansei-Edo shock. Despite the large and high quality intensity dataset for the 1855 shock, there are many difficulties in estimating its hypocenter. It is possible, for example, that different hypocenters produce the same seismic intensity distribution because of the complex attenuation structure. Considering these difficulties, we examine the ground motion of the Ansei-Edo and M=6 23 July 2005 earthquakes, and find out that the two intensity distributions are very similar. Second, we calculate the predicted ground motions using our 3-D Q structure for several trial 1855 hypocenters, principally in an attempt to infer whether the 1855 source was deep or shallow. Because of the observed high intensities characteristic of Kisarazu and the eastern Kanagawa prefecture shared by the Ansei-Edo and 23 July 2005 shocks, and the good match of these observations to the prediction using the 3-D Q structure, we infer a similar characteristic intensity distribution. We thus conclude that the 1855 Ansei-Edo earthquake may have occurred at the north end of Tokyo bay at a depth of about 70-80 km.