USGS NEHRP External Research

Western Basin and Range Community Velocity Model Working Group

Coordinator: John N. Louie,

University of Nevada, Reno
The ModelAssembler Community Modeling Environment
  • Papers contributing to or using the WBRCVM:
    • Pancha, A., S. Pullammanappallil, J. N. Louie, and P. H. Cashman, J. H. Trexler, 2017b in press, Determination of 3D basin shear-wave velocity structure using ambient noise in an urban environment: A case study from Reno, Nevada: Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 107, 19 pp. (7.3 Mb PDF preprint)
    • Pancha, A., S. K. Pullammanappallil, L. T. West, J. N. Louie, and W. K. Hellmer, 2017, Large scale earthquake hazard class mapping by parcel in Las Vegas Valley, Nevada: Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 107, no. 2 (April), 741-749, doi: 10.1785/0120160300. (668 kb PDF journal reprint)
    • Louie, J., G. Schmauder, G. Kent, K. Smith, K. McBean, A. McBean, K. Gray, and K. Hall, 2016, Chapter 45: Simulation of scenario-earthquake shaking in the Lake Tahoe basin - a comparison between ShakeMap and Nevada ShakeZoning: in R. Anderson and H. Ferriz, Eds., Applied Geology in California, Assoc. of Engineering and Environmental Geologists Special Publication 26, Star Publishing Company, Belmont, Calif., 897-925, ISBN 978-0-89863-399-3. (5.8 Mb PDF preprint or 20 Mb PDF preprint with highres figs)
    • Eisses, Amy K., Annie Kell, Graham M. Kent, Neal W. Driscoll, Rob L. Baskin, Ken D. Smith, Robert E. Karlin, John N. Louie, and Satish K. Pullammanappallil, 2015, New constraints on fault architecture, slip rates, and strain partitioning beneath Pyramid Lake, Nevada: Geosphere, 11, no. 3, doi:10.1130/GES00821.1.
    • Flinchum, Brady A., John N. Louie, Kenneth D. Smith, William H. Savran, Satish K. Pullammanappallil, and Aasha Pancha, 2014, Validating Nevada ShakeZoning predictions of Las Vegas basin response against 1992 Little Skull Mtn. earthquake records: Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 104, no. 1 (Feb.), 439-450; first published online January 21; doi: 10.1785/0120130059. (12.4 Mb PDF preprint with color figures)
    • Stephenson, W. J., R. N. Frary, J. N. Louie, and J. K. Odum, 2013, Quaternary extensional growth folding beneath Reno, Nevada, imaged by urban seismic profiling: Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 103, no. 5 (October), doi: 10.1785/0120120311, 2921-2927. (8.9 Mb PDF journal proof)
  • Final report to the USGS on the project ``Gathering Critical Data Toward the Western Basin and Range CVM'' (4.2 Mb PDF)
  • Talk on Reno reflection surveys at 2010 SSA Annual Meeting (or 18 Mb PPTX)
  • Final report to the USGS on the project ``Basin Model Improvements and Verification for Reno Area 3-D Scenario Modeling'' (7.0 Mb PDF)
  • Poster at 2009 SCEC Annual Meeting (1.8 Mb JPEG or 20 Mb PDF)
  • Univ. of Nevada and U.S. Geological Survey Probing Earthquake Faults below Reno and Sparks, June 2009
  • Final report to the USGS on the Workshops (2.0 Mb PDF)
  • WBRCVM NEHRP FY2010 RFP recommended priorities
  • November 2008 Followup Workshop Schedule
  • January 2008 Workshop Schedule (with presentations linked)
  • Objectives
  • Products
  • Other Resources

White paper describing the January workshop: Word or PDF.

Presentations about the WBRCVM:

January Workshop Schedule- with presentation links


The Nevada Seismological Lab convened in 2008 two brief workshops on creating a Western Basin and Range Community Velocity Model (WBRCVM), with generous support from the FY'08 USGS NEHRP-NIW panel. The workshops were both be held in Reno, in January and November.

The objectives of the workshops were two-fold:

  1. To organize a Western Basin and Range community seismic-velocity modeling Working Group, contributing toward the goal of predicting earthquake ground motions in urban areas and other sensitive sites. The community model will address seismic velocities at the crustal, basin, and geotechnical scales; and should contribute directly toward an overall Great Basin Community Velocity Model (to eventually include Utah, Arizona, and other area north and east).

  2. To hear advice from national experts who have constructed CVMs for other areas including Utah, to assess what CVM features most affect predicted ground motions, and thus prioritize our needs for geological and seismic-velocity data. WBRCVM construction efforts have been funded by the NEHRP-NIW program for FY09.
If you are interested in contributing to the WBRCVM, in using it to predict ground motions; or you have experience creating CVMs for such purposes in other regions, we hope you will be able to participate in the WBRCVM Working Group.


Other Resources

This page and some of the materials linked from it were prepared as work sponsored by an agency of the United States Government. Neither the United States Government nor any agency thereof, nor any of their employees, makes any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, apparatus, product, or process disclosed, or represents that its use would not infringe privately owned rights. Reference herein to any specific commercial product, process or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the United States Government or any agency thereof. The views and opinions or authors expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of the United States Government or any agency thereof.

The information included in these documents is intended to improve earthquake preparedness; however, it does not guarantee the safety of an individual structure or facility. The State of Nevada does not assume liability for any injury, death, or property damage that occurs in connection with an earthquake.

J. Louie, Aug. 23, 2009