Departmental Papers (MEAM)

Document Type

Conference Paper

Date of this Version

November 2003


© ACM, 2003. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of ACM for your personal use. Not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Proceedings of the ACM/IEEE SC2003 Conference November 15 - 21, 2003, Phoenix, Arizona.
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NOTE: At the time of publication, author George Biros was affiliated with New York University. Currently (March 2005), he is a faculty member in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics at the University of Pennsylvania.


For earthquake simulations to play an important role in the reduction of seismic risk, they must be capable of high resolution and high fidelity. We have developed algorithms and tools for earthquake simulation based on multiresolution hexahedral meshes. We have used this capability to carry out 1 Hz simulations of the 1994 Northridge earthquake in the LA Basin using 100 million grid points. Our wave propagation solver sustains 1.21 teraflop/s for 4 hours on 3000 AlphaServer processors at 80% parallel efficiency. Because of uncertainties in characterizing earthquake source and basin material properties, a critical remaining challenge is to invert for source and material parameter fields for complex 3D basins from records of past earthquakes. Towards this end, we present results for material and source inversion of high-resolution models of basins undergoing antiplane motion using parallel scalable inversion algorithms that overcome many of the difficulties particular to inverse heterogeneous wave propagation problems.


earthquake modeling, earthquake simulations, high resolution, inversion algorithms



Date Posted: 27 July 2004