Abstract

Instrumental ground‐motion recordings from the 2018 Anchorage, Alaska (Mw 7.1), earthquake sequence provide an independent data set allowing us to evaluate the predictive power of ground‐motion models (GMMs) for intraslab earthquakes associated with the Alaska subduction zone. In this study, we evaluate 15 candidate GMMs using instrumental ground‐motion observations of peak ground acceleration and 5% damped pseudospectral acceleration (0.02–10 s) to inform logic‐tree weights for the update of the U.S. Geological Survey seismic hazard model for Alaska. GMMs are evaluated using two methods. The first is a total residual visualization approach that compares the probability density function, mean, and standard deviations σ of the observed and predicted ground motion. The second GMM evaluation method we use is the common total residual probabilistic scoring method (log likelihood [LLH]). The LLH method provides a single score that can be used to weight GMMs in the Alaska seismic hazard model logic trees. To test logic branches in previous seismic hazard models, we evaluate GMM performance as a function of depth and we demonstrate that some GMMs show improved performance for earthquakes with focal depths greater than 50 km. Ten of the initial 15 candidate GMMs fit the observed ground motions and meet established criteria for inclusion in the next update of the Alaska seismic hazard model.

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