Performance of NGA-East GMMs and Site Amplification Models Relative to CENA Ground Motions

M. E. Ramos-Sepulveda, G. A. Parker, M. Li, O. Ilhan, Y. M.A. Hashash, E. M. Rathje, J. P. Stewart

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


We investigate bias in ground motions predicted for Central and Eastern North America (CENA) using ground motion models (GMMs) combined with site amplification models developed in the NGA-East project. Bias is anticipated because of de-coupled procedures used in the development of the GMMs and site amplification models. The NGA-East GMMs were mainly calibrated by adjusting CENA data to a reference site condition using a site amplification model appropriate for active tectonic regions. Hence, these GMMs are likely biased relative to the CENA reference site condition (3000 m/sec shear wave velocity). Moreover, the NGA-East site amplification model recommended for hazard applications contains a simulation-based term for amplification between the reference condition and time-averaged shear wave velocity VS30=760 m/sec, which is uncertain and has not been calibrated against data from sites with that reference condition. Using the NGA-East dataset, we apply mixed-effects residual analysis and identify that period-dependent bias in 5% damped response spectral acceleration is present across a wide frequency range, but is strongest (i.e., overestimating by a factor of 2) at short oscillator periods <0.2 sec. Ongoing work to remedy this bias consists of expanding the NGA-East dataset with more recent recordings and enhanced metadata, particularly regarding site conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
StatePublished - 2022
Event12th National Conference on Earthquake Engineering, NCEE 2022 - Salt Lake City, United States
Duration: Jun 27 2022Jul 1 2022


Conference12th National Conference on Earthquake Engineering, NCEE 2022
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySalt Lake City

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Geology
  • Earth-Surface Processes


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