ABSTRACT

Mapping fault surface rupture in the aftermath of earthquakes quickly and efficiently is critical to both emergency responders and scientific investigations. We applied an optical imagery correlation technique to map, in detail, the location (not magnitude of displacement) of the surface‐rupture trace of the 2019 Ridgecrest earthquake sequence to help provide field responders with information to guide response. Emergency managers need to know the location and amount of deformation that has occurred to effectively allocate resources for critical infrastructure repair as soon as possible after earthquakes. Scientific responders need to know the spatial pattern of deformation to determine where to send field teams to conduct scientific reconnaissance and to found later in‐depth scientific research. Rapid scientific response is important because earthquake surface ruptures are often fragile features that do not persist in the landscape for more than a few weeks or months at locations with high anthropogenic or climatic modification. Remote sensing techniques have proven effective at aiding event response efforts by guiding field teams to locations with deformation and damage. We focus here on the utility and advantages of detailed remote sensing interpretations of the surface‐rupture trace made using an optical image correlation map of relative surface displacement in the weeks after the 2019 Ridgecrest earthquake sequence.

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