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ISSN  2096-3955

CN  10-1502/P

Citation: Md Moklesur Rahman, Ling Bai, 2018: Probabilistic seismic hazard assessment of Nepal using multiple seismic source models, Earth and Planetary Physics, 2, 327-341.

2018, 2(4): 327-341. doi: 10.26464/epp2018030


Probabilistic seismic hazard assessment of Nepal using multiple seismic source models


Key Laboratory of Continental Collision and Plateau Uplift, Institute of Tibetan Plateau Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China


Department of Petroleum and Mining Engineering, Jessore University of Science and Technology, Jessore 7408, Bangladesh


Department of Geophysics, Stanford University, Stanford, California 94305-2215, USA

Corresponding author: Ling Bai,

Received Date: 2018-05-08
Web Publishing Date: 2018-07-30

The potential for devastating earthquakes in the Himalayan orogeny has long been recognized. The 2015 MW7.8 Gorkha, Nepal earthquake has heightened the likelihood that major earthquakes will occur along this orogenic belt in the future. Reliable seismic hazard assessment is a critical element in development of policy for seismic hazard mitigation and risk reduction. In this study, we conduct probabilistic seismic hazard assessment using three different seismogenic source models (smoothed gridded, linear, and areal sources) based on the complicated tectonics of the study area. Two sets of ground motion prediction equations are combined in a standard logic tree by taking into account the epistemic uncertainties in hazard estimation. Long-term slip rates and paleoseismic records are also incorporated in the linear source model. Peak ground acceleration and spectral acceleration at 0.2 s and 1.0 s for 2% and 10% probabilities of exceedance in 50 years are estimated. The resulting maps show significant spatial variation in seismic hazard levels. The region of the Lesser Himalaya is found to have high seismic hazard potential. Along the Main Himalayan Thrust from east to west beneath the Main Central Thrust, large earthquakes have occurred regularly in history; hazard values in this region are found to be higher than those shown on existing hazard maps. In essence, the combination of long span earthquake catalogs and multiple seismogenic source models gives improved seismic hazard constraints in Nepal.

Key words: Gorkha earthquake, probabilistic seismic hazard, peak ground acceleration, spectral acceleration, source models, logic tree

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Probabilistic seismic hazard assessment of Nepal using multiple seismic source models

Md Moklesur Rahman, Ling Bai