Volume 112, Issue 3
September 2003, pages 313-484
pp 313-314 September 2003
pp 315-329 September 2003
The flexural bulge in central India resulting from India's collision with Tibet has a wavelength of approximately 670 km. It is manifest topographically and in the free-air gravity anomaly and the geoid. Calculations of the stress distribution within a flexed Indian plate reveal spatial variations throughout the depth of the plate and also a function of distance from the Himalaya. The wavelength (and therefore local gradient) of stress variation is a function of the effective elastic thickness of the plate, estimates of which have been proposed to lie in the range 40–120 km. The imposition of this stress field on the northward moving Indian plate appears fundamental to explaining the current distribution of intraplate earthquakes and their mechanisms. The current study highlights an outer trough south of the flexural bulge in central India where surface stresses are double the contiguous compressional stresses to the north and south. The Bhuj, Latur and Koyna earthquakes and numerous other recent reverse faulting events occurred in this compressional setting. The N/S spatial gradient of stress exceeds 2 bars/km near the flexural bulge. The overall flexural stress distribution provides a physical basis for earthquake hazard mapping and suggests that areas of central India where no historic earthquakes are recorded may yet be the locus of future damaging events.
pp 331-345 September 2003
The 26th January 2001 Bhuj earthquake occurred in the Kachchh Rift Basin which has a long history of major earthquakes. Great Triangulation Survey points (GTS) were first installed in the area in 1856–60 and some of these were measured using Global Positioning System (GPS) in the months of February and July 2001. Despite uncertainties associated with repairs and possible reconstruction of points in the past century, the re-measurements reveal pre-seismic, co-seismic and post-seismic deformation related to Bhuj earthquake. More than 25 Μ-strain contraction north of the epicenter appears to have occurred in the past 140 years corresponding to a linear convergence rate of approximately 10 mm/yr across the Rann of Kachchh. Motion of a single point at Jamnagar 150 km south of the epicenter in the 4 years prior to the earthquake, and GTS-GPS displacements in Kathiawar suggests that pre-seismic strain south of the epicenter was small and differs insignificantly from that measured elsewhere in India. Of the 20 points measured within 150 km of the epicenter, 12 were made at existing GTS points which revealed epicentral displacements of up to 1 m, and strain changes exceeding 30 Μ-strain. Observed displacements are consistent with reverse co-seismic slip. Re-measurements in July 2001 of one GTS point (Hathria) and eight new points established in February reveal post-seismic deformation consistent with continued slip on the Bhuj rupture zone.
pp 347-352 September 2003
The occurrence of a severe earthquake is a rare event with its effect localized in a limited region. There are no prior indications of its occurrence too; hence experiencing such an event is just a matter of chance, which the author had by virtue of his posting at Bhuj. This paper presents a detailed account of observations made in the wake of the Bhuj earthquake of January 26th 2001, describing physical and mental reactions during the earthquake, the post-quake scenario, the nature and cause of damage to buildings, the trend of aftershocks, various deformities, including ruptures and fissures on the surface of the earth, etc. which may be useful for a detailed study of the seismological activity in the region.
pp 353-373 September 2003
We compiled available news and internet accounts of damage and other effects from the 26th January, 2001, Bhuj earthquake, and interpreted them to obtain modified Mercalli intensities at over 200 locations throughout the Indian subcontinent. These values are used to map the intensity distribution using a simple mathematical interpolation method. The maps reveal several interesting features. Within the Kachchh region, the most heavily damaged villages are concentrated towards the western edge of the inferred fault, consistent with western directivity. Significant sedimentinduced amplification is also suggested at a number of locations around the Gulf of Kachchh to the south of the epicenter. Away from the Kachchh region intensities were clearly amplified significantly in areas that are along rivers, within deltas, or on coastal alluvium such as mud flats and salt pans. In addition we use fault rupture parameters inferred from teleseismic data to predict shaking intensity at distances of 0–1000 km. We then convert the predicted hard rock ground motion parameters to MMI using a relationship (derived from internet-based intensity surveys) that assigns MMI based on the average effects in a region. The predicted MMIs are typically lower by 1–2 units than those estimated from news accounts. This discrepancy is generally consistent with the expected effect of sediment response, but it could also reflect other factors such as a tendency for media accounts to focus on the most dramatic damage, rather than the average effects. Our modeling results also suggest, however, that the Bhuj earthquake generated more high-frequency shaking than is expected for earthquakes of similar magnitude in California, and may therefore have been especially damaging.
pp 375-383 September 2003
Damage observed during the Kutch earthquake of 26th January 2001 is classified according to the type of structure. This damage pattern has been used to draw the isoseismal map on the basis of the intensity scale given in IS 1893-2002 which covers only traditional one to two storey houses. Having thus estimated intensities, and observed damage to other types of structures, a new criterion was adopted which is included in this paper. Areas that showed maximum damage to structures have been assigned maximum intensity X.
pp 385-390 September 2003
The 26th January 2001 Bhuj earthquake was followed by intense aftershock activity. Aftershock data from United States Geological Survey (USGS) utilized in this study encompasses three months period from 26th January to 26th April 2001. Epicenters of the aftershock are plotted on a map depicting active faults. All the aftershocks of magnitude > 5 and 70% of those ranging between magnitude 3 and 5 are confined to an area resembling a horseshoe pattern with a pointed end towards NE. The other 20% of magnitude 3 to 5 are enclosed within an almost parallel boundary. Only 10% are found to be beyond this limiting boundary. 50% of the recorded after-shocks took place within the first week of the main event and this study reveals that the basic characteristic pattern of aftershock activity can be determined on the basis of the data of only one week.
Four major NW-SE trending active faults are mapped in the Kutch region. They define the western limit of Cambay structure and also mark the western limit of Dharangadhra and Wadhwan basins along the SE continuation in Saurashtra. These faults separate the Kutch region into two geologically different blocks. On the SW side the mapped horseshoe pattern gets characteristically truncated along the western most fault, which is characterized by a strike-slip movement in the south and vertical movement in the north. The present study has revealed that the epicenter of the 26th January earthquake is located in the vicinity of the Bhachau township, close to the intersection with the Kutch mainland fault. Furthermore, it has been noticed that most of the epicenters of the aftershock are confined in the intersectional area of the Kutch mainland fault and the NW-SE faults.
pp 391-395 September 2003
Following a large-sized Bhuj earthquake (Ms = 7.6) of January 26th, 2001, a small aperture 4-station temporary local network was deployed, in the epicentral area, for a period of about three weeks and resulted in the recording of more than 1800 aftershocks (-0.07 ≤ML <5.0). Preliminary locations of epicenters of 297 aftershocks (2.0 ≤ML <5.0) have brought out a dense cluster of aftershock activity, the center of which falls 20 km NW of Bhachau. Epicentral locations of after-shocks encompass a surface area of about 50 × 40 km2 that seems to indicate the surface projection of the rupture area associated with the earthquake. The distribution of aftershock activity above magnitude 3, shows that aftershocks are nonuniformly distributed and are aligned in the north, northwest and northeast directions. The epicenter of the mainshock falls on the southern edge of the delineated zone of aftershock activity and the maximum clustering of activity occurs in close proximity of the mainshock. Well-constrained focal depths of 122 aftershocks show that 89% of the aftershocks occurred at depths ranging between 6 and 25 km and only 7% and 4% aftershocks occur at depths less than 5 and more than 25 km respectively. The Gutenberg-Richter (GR) relationship, logN = 4.52 - 0.89ML, is fitted to the aftershock data (1.0<-ML<5.0) and theb-value of 0.89 has been estimated for the aftershock activity.
pp 397-400 September 2003
An intraplate earthquake of magnitude (Mc) 6.9 (Anon 2001a) struck Bhuj and the adjoining region of Kachchh in Gujarat on January 26th, 2001 at about 0316 hrs (GMT) and was followed by a number of aftershocks. The epicentre of this earthquake was located at 23.4‡N and 70.28‡E close to the Kachchh mainland fault. The intensity observed around the epicenter was X on the MSK scale. A study of 531 aftershocks, in the magnitude range of 3.0–5.7, recorded at Vadodara Seismological Observatory till March 31st, 2001 has been carried out and various statistical parameters calculated. The total energy released during the study period is calculated to be 8.2 × 1014 joule. Sudden occurrence of the main shock without any foreshock in the same tectonic system is a unique feature of this sequence. Theb- value (0.86), value of M0-M1 (1.2), high M1/M0 (0.89) and high value of the decay constanth (0.91), all support the tectonic origin of the present study.
pp 401-412 September 2003
The Geological Survey of India (GSI) established a twelve-station temporary microearthquake (MEQ) network to monitor the aftershocks in the epicenter area of the Bhuj earthquake (Mw7.5) of 26th January 2001. The main shock occurred in the Kutch rift basin with the epicenter to the north of Bhachao village, at an estimated depth of 25 km (IMD). About 3000 aftershocks (Md ≥ 1.0), were recorded by the GSI network over a monitoring period of about two and half months from 29th January 2001 to 15th April 2001. About 800 aftershocks (Md ≥ 2.0) are located in this study. The epicenters are clustered in an area 60 km × 30 km, between 23.3‡N and 23.6‡N and 70‡E and 70.6‡E. The main shock epicenter is also located within this zone.
Two major aftershock trends are observed; one in the NE direction and other in the NW direction. Out of these two trends, the NE trend was more pronounced with depth. The major NE-SW trend is parallel to the Anjar-Rapar lineament. The other trend along NW-SE is parallel to the Bhachao lineament. The aftershocks at a shallower depth (<10km) are aligned only along the NW-SE direction. The depth slice at 10 km to 20 km shows both the NE-SW trend and the NW-SE trend. At greater depth (20 km–38 km) the NE-SW trend becomes more predominant. This observation suggests that the major rupture of the main shock took place at a depth level more than 20 km; it propagated along the NE-SW direction, and a conjugate rupture followed the NW-SE direction.
A N-S depth section of the aftershocks shows that some aftershocks are clustered at shallower depth ≤ 10 km, but intense activity is observed at 15–38 km depth. There is almost an aseismic layer at 10–15 km depth. The activity is sparse below 38 km. The estimated depth of the main shock at 25 km is consistent with the cluster of maximum number of the aftershocks at 20–38 km. A NW-SE depth section of the aftershocks, perpendicular to the major NE-SW trend, indicates a SE dipping plane and a NE-SW depth section across the NW-SE trend shows a SW dipping plane.
The epicentral map of the stronger aftershocksM ≥ 4.0 shows a prominent NE trend. Stronger aftershocks have followed the major rupture trend of the main shock. The depth section of these stronger aftershocks reveals that it occurred in the depth range of 20 to 38 km, and corroborates with a south dipping seismogenic plane.
pp 413-419 September 2003
A 12-station temporary microearthquake network was established by the Geological Survey of India for aftershock monitoring of the January 26th, 2001 Bhuj earthquake (Mw 7.6) in the Kutch district of Gujarat state, western India. The epicentres of the aftershocks show two major trends: one in the NE direction and the other in the NW direction. Fault-plane solutions of the best-located and selected cluster of events that occurred along the NE trend, at a depth of 15–38 km, show reverse faulting with a large left-lateral strike-slip motion, which are comparable with the main-shock solution. The NW trending upper crustal aftershocks at depth <10 km, on the other hand, show reverse faulting with right-lateral strike-slip motion, and the mid crustal and lower crustal aftershocks, at a depth of 15–38 km, show pure reverse faulting as well as reverse faulting with right-lateral and left-lateral strike-slip motions; these solutions are not comparable with the main-shock solution. It is inferred that the intersection of two faults has been the source area for stress concentration to generate the main shock and the aftershocks.
pp 421-429 September 2003
The current designs of supporting structures of elevated water tanks are extremely vulnerable under lateral forces due to an earthquake and the Bhuj earthquake provided another illustration when a great many water tank stagings suffered damage and a few collapsed. The more popular shaft type stagings suffer from poor ductility of thin shell sections besides low redundancy and toughness whereas framed stagings consist of weak members and poor brace-column joints. A strength analysis of a few damaged shaft type stagings clearly shows that all of them either met or exceeded the strength requirements of IS:1893-1984, however, they were all found deficient when compared with requirements of the International Building Code. IS:1893-1984 is unjustifiably low for these systems which do not have the advantage of ductility and redundancy and are currently being underestimated at least by a factor of 3 and need an upward revision of forces immediately.
pp 431-440 September 2003
A variety of masonry structures suffered damage during the recent Bhuj earthquake. Some of the traditional masonry structures had no earthquake resistant features and suffered considerable damage. This paper attempts to evaluate the behaviour of masonry structures based on the type of masonry used in places like Bhuj, Anjar, Bhachau, Morbi, Samakhyali and several other places. Quite a few masonry buildings had used earthquake resistant features like lintel bands and corner reinforcements. The cracking and failure patterns of such buildings have also been examined. The paper concludes with a discussion on the relevance of the current codal provisions for earthquake resistance of masonry structures and the direction of further research in the area.
pp 441-462 September 2003
Site response in and around Delhi is studied using digital seismograms recorded by a thirteen-station VSAT-based 24-bit digital Delhi telemetry network of the India Meteorological Department. Nine local (Ml ≥ 2.3) and nine regional (Ml ≥ 3.9) earthquakes are selected for the estimation of site amplification factor using the classical standard spectral ratio for regional events (Ridge Delhi Observatory being the reference station), normalized standard spectral ratio for local events, horizontal-to-vertical spectral ratio or receiver function and the generalized inversion techniques in the frequency range of 0.5 to 7.5 Hz. Site response curves at all the thirteen stations exhibit station to station variation of the site amplification factor reflecting the changes in geologic/geotectonic/soil conditions. A comparison of the site response values obtained by the generalized inversion with those computed using receiver function technique shows a large scatter even though the pattern of the curves remain more or less similar. However, the site effects computed by generalized inversion and standard spectral ratio exhibit a good 1:1 correspondence. The peaks yielded by all the methods have been observed to occur at the same frequencies. It is evident that the softer fluvial deposits of the newer alluvium of the east Yamuna sector show steeper site amplification gradient at lower frequencies, while the greater Delhi experiences moderate site amplification. The variation of site response corroborates the abrupt changes in intensity from one location to another due to local site condition.
pp 463-469 September 2003
The effects of basin-edge and soil velocity on the ground motion characteristics have been simulated using 2.5D modeling. One of the most significant advantages of the 2.5D simulation is that 3D radiation pattern can be generated in a 2D numerical grid using double-couple shear dislocation source. Further, 2.5D numerical modeling avoids the extensive computational cost of 3D modeling. The responses of basin-edge model using different soil velocities revealed that surface waves were generated near the edge of the basin and propagated normal to the edge, towards the basin. Further, the results depict increase of amplification, duration and surface wave generation with the decrease in soil velocity.
pp 471-477 September 2003
The Bhuj earthquake of January 26th, 2001, induced wide spread liquefaction within the Kachch peninsula. It has been pointed out that inundation due to soil liquefaction was short lived in some parts than in others in the affected region. Several geological, seismological and hydrological factors would have cumulatively contributed to these observed changes.
We simulate in this article, undrained or short-term change in pore pressure in a poroelastic half space, in response to a simplified model of the Bhuj earthquake source. We find that the regions of relatively shorter lived inundation due to soil liquefaction may fall in the region where pore pressure responsible for soil liquefaction attributable to strong ground shaking was counteracted by pore pressure changes due to undrained poroelastic effect and vice versa.
pp 479-484 September 2003
In this paper, numerical simulation of 3-dimensional assemblies of 1000 polydisperse sphere particles using Discrete Element Method (DEM) is used to study the liquefaction behaviour of granular materials. Numerical simulations of cyclic triaxial shear tests under undrained conditions are performed at different confining pressures under constant strain amplitude. Results obtained in these numerical simulations indicate that with increase in confining pressure there is an increase in liquefaction resistance.
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