Scale-specific order parameter fluctuations of seismicity before mainshocks: Natural time and Detrended Fluctuation Analysis
Solid State Section and Solid Earth Physics Institute, Physics Department, University of Athens Panepistimiopolis, Zografos 157 84, Athens, Greece, EU
Received: 16 May 2012
Accepted: 10 August 2012
The order parameter fluctuations of seismicity are investigated upon considering a natural time window of fixed length sliding through the consecutive earthquakes that occurred in California. We previously found that when this length corresponds to a time period of the order of a few months, the fluctuations exhibit a global minimum before the strongest mainshock. Here, we show that in California, during the twenty five year period 1979–2003, minima of the fluctuations are identified 1 to 5 months before four out of five mainshocks with magnitude M = 7.0 or larger as well as before the M = 6.9 Northridge earthquake. These minima are accompanied by minima of the exponent α of the Detrended Fluctuation Analysis (DFA) of the earthquake magnitude time series, which since α < 0.5 indicate anticorrelated behavior. These results of DFA alone cannot serve for prediction purposes, but do so when combined with the aforementioned minima in the fluctuations of the order parameter of seismicity identified in natural time analysis.
PACS: 91.30.Ab – Theory and modeling, computational seismology / 89.75.Da – Systems obeying scaling laws / 95.75.Wx – Time series analysis, time variability
© EPLA, 2012