Quake-DFN: A Software for Simulating Sequences of Induced Earthquakes in a Discrete Fault Network

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We present an earthquake simulator, Quake‐DFN, which allows simulating sequences of earthquakes in a 3D discrete fault network governed by rate and state friction. The simulator is quasi‐dynamic, with inertial effects being approximated by radiation damping and a lumped mass. The lumped mass term allows for accounting for inertial overshoot and, in addition, makes the computation more effective. Quake‐DFN is compared against three publicly available simulation results: (1) the rupture of a planar fault with uniform prestress (SEAS BP5‐QD), (2) the propagation of a rupture across a stepover separating two parallel planar faults (RSQSim and FaultMod), and (3) a branch fault system with a secondary fault splaying from a main fault (FaultMod). Examples of injection‐induced earthquake simulations are shown for three different fault geometries: (1) a planar fault with a wide range of initial stresses, (2) a branching fault system with varying fault angles and principal stress orientations, and (3) a fault network similar to the one that was activated during the 2011 Prague, Oklahoma, earthquake sequence. The simulations produce realistic earthquake sequences. The time and magnitude of the induced earthquakes observed in these simulations depend on the difference between the initial friction and the residual friction
⁠, the value of which quantifies the potential for runaway ruptures (ruptures that can extend beyond the zone of stress perturbation due to the injection). The discrete fault simulations show that our simulator correctly accounts for the effect of fault geometry and regional stress tensor orientation and shape. These examples show that Quake‐DFN can be used to simulate earthquake sequences and, most importantly, magnitudes, possibly induced or triggered by a fluid injection near a known fault system.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBulletin of the Seismological Society of America
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 31 May 2024

Data Access Statement

Data and Resources
All simulation results in this article are generated by Quake-DFN. The simulator and source code are provided on GitHub (https://github.com/limkjae/Quake-DFN) and the GMG center web page (https://gmg.caltech.edu). The supplementary material includes one figure (Figure S1) and one text (Text S1), discussing the influence of α value in equation 3. Simulation results with varied α values are shown in Figure S1 and discussed in Text S1.


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