Coseismic deformation revealed by inversion of strong motion and GPS data: The 2003 Chengkung earthquake in eastern Taiwan

Jyr Ching Hu*, Li Wei Cheng, Horng Yue Chen, Yih Min Wu, Jian Cheng Lee, Yue Gau Chen, Kuan Chuan Lin, Ruey Juin Rau, Hao Kuochen, Hui Hsuan Chen, Shui Bei Yu, Jacques Angelier

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


A moderate earthquake of Mw = 6.8 occurred on 2003 December 10. It ruptured the Chihshang Fault in eastern Taiwan which is the most active segment of the Longitudinal fault as a plate suture fault between the Luzon arc of the Philippine Sea plate and the Eurasian plate. The largest coseismic displacements were 13 cm (horizontal) and 26 cm (vertical). We analyse 40 strong motion and 91 GPS data to model the fault geometry and coseismic dislocations. The most realistic shape of the Chihshang fault surface is listric in type. The dipping angle of the seismic zone is steep (about 60°-70°) at depths shallower than 10 km and then gradually decreases to 40°-50° at depths of 20-30 km. Thus the polygonal elements in Poly3D are well suited for modelling complex surfaces with curving boundaries. Using the strong motion data, the displacement reaches 1.2 m dip-slip on the Chihshang Fault and decreases to 0.1 m near surface. The slip averages 0.34 m, releasing a scalar moment of 1.6E26 dyne-cm. For GPS data, our model reveals that the maximal dislocation is 1.8 m dip-slip. The dislocations decrease to 0.1 m near the surface. The average slip is 0.48 m, giving a scalar moment of 2.2E26 dyne-cm. Regarding post-seismic deformation, a displacements of 0.5 m were observed near the Chihshang Fault, indicating the strain had not been totally released, as a probable result of near-surface locking of the fault zone.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)667-674
Number of pages8
JournalGeophysical Journal International
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2007 May
Externally publishedYes


  • Chengkung earthquake
  • Chihshang fault
  • Coseimic deformation
  • Taiwan

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Geochemistry and Petrology


Dive into the research topics of 'Coseismic deformation revealed by inversion of strong motion and GPS data: The 2003 Chengkung earthquake in eastern Taiwan'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this