Improved detection of earthquake-induced ground motion with spatial filter: case study of the 2012 M = 7.6 Costa Rica earthquake

Haitao Yin, Shimon Wdowinski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


High-rate GPS measurements of earthquake-induced strong crustal movements reveal important information on large amplitude displacements, which cannot be obtained by other seismic monitoring equipment. However, obtaining accurate measurements of these strong movements can be challenging, because large magnitude earthquakes (M > 7) affect a wide area surrounding the epicenter. As a result, the GPS recorded movements are calculated with respect to distant sites (relative positioning), or with satellite parameters estimated from distant sites (precise point positioning). In order to improve the accuracy of the strong motion GPS measurements, we developed a new method, based on a spatial filtering technique. The method calculates the displacement of a high-rate monitoring network with respect to a moving near field site and uses a stacking technique to remove the movements of the reference site from all the time series. We applied the new method to the analysis of 5 Hz data acquired by the Nicoya Peninsula network, which recorded strong crustal movements induced by the 2012, M = 7.6 Costa Rica earthquake. The results were successfully tested with respect to 1 Hz time series calculated with a far field reference site. The spatial filtering method also removes other systematic common noise from the time series, possibly due to atmospheric delay or orbital errors and, hence, produces more accurate solutions that those based on far fields sites, or on near field site experiencing earthquake-induced action.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)563-570
Number of pages8
JournalGPS Solutions
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Earthquake
  • Ground motion
  • High-rate GPS
  • Spatial filter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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