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8 An HHT-Based Approach to Quantify Nonlinear Soil Amplification and Damping

Ray Ruichong Zhang

CONTENTS

8.1 Introduction

160

8.2 Symptoms of Soil Nonlinearity

161

8.3 Fourier-Based Approach for Characterizing Nonlinearity

162

8.4 HHT-Based Approach for Characterizing Nonlinearity 166

8.5 Applications to 2001 Nisqually Earthquake Data 172

8.5.1 Detection of Nonlinear Soil Sites 173

8.5.2 HHT-Based Factor of Site Amplification

176

8.5.3 Influences of Window Length of Data

178

8.5.4 Comparison of HHT- and Fourier-Based Factors for Site Amplification 180

184

8.6 Concluding Remarks and Discussion 185

Acknowledgments 187 References 187

8.5.5 HHT-Based Factor for Site Damping

A BSTRACT

This study proposes to use a method of nonlinear, nonstationary data processing and analysis, i.e., the Hilbert-Huang transform (HHT), to quantify influences of soil non- linearity in earthquake recordings. The paper first summarizes symptoms of soil non- linearity shown in earthquake ground motion recordings. It also reviews the Fou- rier-based approach to characterizing the nonlinearity in the recordings and demonstrates the deficiencies. It then offers the justifications of the HHT in addressing the nonlinearity issues. With the use of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake recordings and results of the Fourier-based approach as a reference, this study shows that the

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The Hilbert-Huang Transform in Engineering

HHT-based approach is effective in characterizing soil nonlinearity and quantifying the influences of nonlinearity in seismic site amplification. Primary results are as follows:

The first HHT-based component and the Hilbert amplitude spectra can identify abnormal high-frequency spikes in the recording at sites where strong soil nonlinearity occurs; this can help to detect the nonlinear sites at a glance. The HHT-based factor for site amplification is defined as the ratio of marginal Hilbert amplitude spectra, similar to the Fourier-based one that is the ratio of Fourier amplitude spectra. The HHT-based factor is effective in quantifying soil nonlinearity in terms of frequency downshift in the low-frequency range and amplitude downshift in the intermediate-frequency range. Hilbert and marginal damping spectra are identified in ways similar to Hilbert and marginal amplitude spectra. Consequently, the HHT-based factor for site damping is found as the difference of marginal Hilbert damping spectra, which can be extracted from the HHT-based factor for site amplification and used as an alternative index to measure the influences of soil nonlinearity in seismic ground responses.

8.1

INTRODUCTION

Site amplification is the phenomenon in which the amplitude of seismic waves increases significantly when they pass through soil layers near the earth’s surface. It can be illustrated by considering the seismic energy flux along a tube of seismic rays, which is proportional to the impedance (density × wave speed) and squared shaking velocity. Since the energy should be constant in the absence of damping, any reduction in the impedance is compensated by an increase in the shaking velocity, thus yielding site amplification for seismic waves in soil layers. Site amplification is a key factor in mapping seismic hazard in urban areas (e.g., [1]) and designing geotechnical and structural engineering systems on soils (e.g., [2]). In general, site amplification is not linearly proportional to the intensity of input seismic motion at bedrock because of soil nonlinearity under large-amplitude earth- quakes. The extent of soil nonlinearity can be characterized by the change of two dynamic features of soil layer, i.e., soil resonant frequency and damping, in the frequency-dependent site amplification. Consensus has been building that the site-amplification factors in the current codes overemphasize the extent of soil nonlinearity and thus potentially underestimate the level of site amplification. It has been demonstrated [3] that the recording-based amplification factors are larger than those in codes for a certain range of base acceleration intensity. In addition, some features of site-amplification factors used in codes and guidance for structural design contradict recent findings from the 1994 Northridge ground motion data set [4]. The aforementioned problem might exist partly because seismologists and engi- neers lack sufficient understanding of the underlying causes in nonlinear soil. For example, the influence of soil heterogeneity does not scale linearly, even when the soil is perfectly linear [5]. In other words, a linear elastic medium with random heterogeneity can change ground motion in a way similar to that caused by medium

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An HHT-Based Approach to Quantify Nonlinear Soil Amplification

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nonlinearity. Consequently, it is possible to interpret the motion influenced by ran- dom heterogeneous media as soil nonlinearity (e.g., in the form of damping [6]), which can distort the quantification of site amplification. The problem may also exist partly because there is lack of an effective approach to properly characterize non- linear features of ground motion in recordings and then to quantify them. The objective of this study is to propose the use of a method for nonlinear, nonstationary data processing [7], referred to as the Hilbert-Huang transform (HHT) method, to characterize the soil nonlinearity from earthquake recordings. In partic- ular, this paper first summarizes symptoms of soil nonlinearity shown in earthquake ground motion recordings from previous studies and literature. It will also review Fourier-based approaches to characterizing nonlinearity from earthquake motion and demonstrate their deficiencies. It then proposes to use the HHT method for charac- terizing soil nonlinearity in the motion. For illustration, the study analyzes a hypo- thetical recording to show the HHT-based characterization of nonlinearity. Finally, it examines the mainshock and aftershock of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake record- ings to demonstrate the validity and effectiveness of the proposed approach for characterizing soil nonlinearity and the influences.

8.2 SYMPTOMS OF SOIL NONLINEARITY

In general, the stress–strain relationship of a soil becomes nonlinear and hysteretic for a large-amplitude input excitation. Such nonlinearity and hysteresis correspond to a reduction of soil strength, increased soil damping, and deformed waveform of response in comparison with those of the linear case (e.g., [8–12]). With a reduction of soil strength such as shear modulus ( G ) for nonlinear soil, the shear-wave velocity ( v = ( G / ρ ) ½ , where ρ is the soil density) and thus the fundamental resonant frequency ( f = v /4 h ) of the soil layer with thickness h decrease. Therefore, seismic motion recordings over a nonlinear soil layer could show strong wave response at a lower resonant frequency than for the same layer with linear excitation. Accordingly, increased site amplification at the downshifted soil resonant frequency can be regarded as a signature of soil nonlinearity observable in ground motion records (e.g., [13, 14]). On the other hand, increased damping for nonlinear soil will decrease ground motion, thus moderating the site amplification. Since soil damping is typically frequency dependent, so is the change of damping for nonlinear soil. The increased damping of nonlinear soil is likely lower at higher frequencies [15]. The increased site amplification at the downshifted soil resonant frequency and the fre- quency-dependent increased damping imply that the change in site amplification due to soil nonlinearity should be strongly dependent upon frequency. Soil nonlinearity can also sometimes be inferred from abnormal high-frequency spikes and recorded waveforms that appear only in recordings that are close to the locations where strong nonlinearity occurred (e.g., [16]). The cusped waveforms and high-frequency spikes observed in the 2001 Nisqually earthquake recordings, for example, are symptomatic of a nonlinear response at some soil sites (e.g., [17]).

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8.3 FOURIER-BASED APPROACH FOR CHARACTERIZING NONLINEARITY

In practice, the Fourier series expansion is frequently used for representing and analyzing recorded digital data of earthquake acceleration X(t ), i.e.,

N N

( ) =

X t

j = 1

A e

j

i

j

t

=

j = 1

[

A

sin(

jjj

t

) +

iA

cos(

j

t

)

]] ,

(8.1)

where denotes the real part of the value to be calculated, i = (–1) is an imaginary unit, amplitudes A j are a function of time-independent frequency j that is defined over the window in which the data is analyzed, and the Fourier amplitude spectrum is defined as

F () =

N

j = 1

A j

.

(8.2)

To apply this Fourier spectral analysis to estimate the influences of soil nonlinearity in the seismic wave responses at soil site or simply site amplification, two sets of recordings are typically needed [18], one at a soil site and the other at a referenced site such as bedrock or outcrop. For a frequency, the Fourier-based factor of site amplification (FF) for an earthquake event (either mainshock or aftershock) can then be found by

FF

s

(

) =

2 2 F + F sh , 1 sh , 2 2 2 F +
2
2
F
+ F
sh ,
1
sh , 2
2
2
F
+ F
rh ,
1
rh , 2

,

(8.3)

where subscripts s and r denote respectively the soil and referenced sites, and subscripts h1 and h2 denote the two horizontal components. Note that Equation 8.3 is one of many representatives for site-amplification factor that can be the ratio of characteristics of seismic waves or spectral responses at a site versus referenced site. Since the wave paths and earth structures except the soil layer are almost the same for the soil and referenced sites, the factor for site amplification in Equation 8.3 eliminates approximately the influences of source from the earthquake event and thus provides essentially the dynamic characteristics of the soil. In addition, the recordings at the referenced site are generally believed to be the results of linear wave responses and the recordings at the soil site subject to the large-amplitude mainshock to be the results of nonlinear wave responses. Accordingly, comparing the factors from the mainshock and the aftershock could help us explore and quantify the influences of soil nonlinearity in site amplification. While the Fourier-based approach given here and similar methods are widely used, they have the following deficiencies in characterizing the nonstationarity of

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An HHT-Based Approach to Quantify Nonlinear Soil Amplification

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the earthquake motion that is caused by source, different types of propagating waves, and soil nonlinearity if the earthquake magnitude is large enough. A Fourier-based approach defines harmonic components globally and thus yields average characteristics over the entire duration of the data. However, some charac- teristics of data, such as the downshift of soil resonant frequency at a nonlinear site, may occur only over a short portion of a record. This is particularly true when the intensity of the seismic input to a soil layer is not strong, such that the soil becomes nonlinear over only a portion of the entire duration of motion and in only a certain frequency band. As a result, the averaging characteristic in Fourier spectral analysis makes it insensitive for identifying time-dependent frequency content. While a windowed (or short-time) Fourier-based approach can be used to improve the above analysis to a certain extent, it also reduces frequency resolution as the length of the window shortens. Thus, one is faced with a tradeoff. The shorter the window, the better the temporal localization of the Fourier amplitude spectrum, but the poorer the frequency resolution, which directly influences the measurement of downshift of soil resonance that typically arises in a low to intermediate frequency band. More important, a Fourier-based approach explains data in terms of a linear superposition of harmonic functions. Therefore, it is an appropriate, effective method for characterizing linear phenomena such as waves with time-independent frequency, rather than nonlinear phenomena with time-dependent frequency. An example of time-independent and time-dependent frequency waves is a hypothetical wave record y ( t ) = y 1 ( t ) + y 2 ( t ), where decaying waves y 1 ( t ) = cos[2 π t + ε sin(2 π t )] e 0.2 t have time-dependent frequency of 1 + ε cos(2 π t ) Hz, with ε denoting a constant factor, and noise y 2 ( t ) = 0.05sin(30 t ) has time-independent frequency of 15 Hz. Note that the waves shown in Figure 8.1 with ε = 0.5 are physically related to one type of

1.5 1 0.5 0 − 0.5 − 1 − 1.5 0 1 2 3 4
1.5
1
0.5
0
0.5
1
1.5
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
Amplitude

Time (sec)

FIGURE 8.1 A hypothetical wave recording, consisting of nonlinear waves and noise with frequencies 1 + 0.5cos(2 π t ) Hz and 15 Hz, respectively.

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164 The Hilbert-Huang Transform in Engineering FIGURE 8.2 Fourier and marginal Hilbert amplitude spectra of the

FIGURE 8.2 Fourier and marginal Hilbert amplitude spectra of the recording in Figure 8.1.

water waves that result from a nonlinear dynamic process and are also representative of seismic responses at a nonlinear soil site (to be elaborated). The time-dependent frequency waves can be expanded into and thus interpreted by a series of time-independent frequency waves, as done by the Fourier spectral analysis in which y ( t ), or y 1 ( t ) in particular, can be interpreted as to contain Fourier components at all frequencies (see Equation 8.1, Figure 8.2, and Figure 8.3). Alternatively, the expansion of y 1 ( t ), i.e.,

( )

yt

1

[

≈−

05.

ε

+

cos(2

π

t

)

+

05.

επ

cos(4

te

)]

0 2 t

.

,

f

oor

ε << 1

(8.4)

suggests that the Fourier transform of y 1 ( t ) consists primarily of two harmonic functions centered respectively at 1 Hz and 2 Hz for ε << 1, and the widths of these harmonic functions are proportional to the exponential parameter 0.2, which is related to the damping factor. Note that Figure 8.1 and Figure 8.2 use ε = 0.5, which is not a small number in comparison to unity, and thus they have the third observable harmonic function at 3 Hz in Figure 8.2. Therefore, one can equally well describe y 1 ( t ) by saying that it consists of just two frequency components, each component having a time-varying amplitude that is proportional to e 0.2 t . Indeed, if one were to examine the local behavior of y 1 ( t ) in the neighborhood of a given time instant, say

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An HHT-Based Approach to Quantify Nonlinear Soil Amplification

HHT-Based Approach to Quantify Nonlinear Soil Amplification 165 FIGURE 8.3 Fourier components ( f j ,

165

Approach to Quantify Nonlinear Soil Amplification 165 FIGURE 8.3 Fourier components ( f j , j

FIGURE 8.3 Fourier components ( f j , j = 1, 2, 3, 4, 5) of the recording in Figure 8.1 at selected frequencies (i.e., 10 Hz, 5 Hz, 2 Hz, 1 Hz, and 0.5 Hz).

t 0 , this is precisely what one would observe. The Fourier-based analysis or interpre- tation given here can also be seen in Priestley [19] and Zhang et al. [20], among others. Because the true frequency content of the waves y 1 ( t ) is bounded between 1 – ε and 1 + ε , much less than 2 Hz, analysis of the above example suggests that Fourier spectral analysis typically needs higher-frequency harmonics (at least 2 Hz for the example) to simulate the nonlinear waveform of the data. Stated differently, Fourier spectral analysis distorts the nonlinear data. Consequently, the Fourier-based approach in Equation 8.3 twists the influences of soil nonlinearity in site amplifica- tion. The above assertions are confirmed in Huang et al. [21] and Worden and Tomlinson [22], among others, with the aid of solutions to classic nonlinear systems such as the Duffing equation in general, and in Zhang et al. [23] with the nonlinear site amplification in particular. In theory, Fourier spectral analysis in general and Fourier-based approaches for site amplification in particular can be further used for evaluating damping factor. For example, the resonant amplification method or half-power method uses the amplitude change or width of the peaks at a certain frequency in the Fourier ampli- tude spectrum to find the damping factor of dynamic systems such as a soil layer (e.g., [24]). However, the distorted Fourier amplitude spectrum for nonlinear data

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will mislead the subsequent use for damping evaluation with nonlinear soil. For example, the damping factor evaluated at the first and second peaks in the Fourier amplitude spectrum in Figure 8.2 suggests that the damping is associated with frequency at 1 Hz and 2 Hz. In fact, the damping of the hypothetical record is dependent only on the true frequency content of the waves y 1 ( t ) bounded between 1 – ε and 1 + ε , or 0.5 Hz and 1.5 Hz with ε = 0.5 in Figure 8.1. Accordingly, a Fourier-based approach would misrepresent the influences of damping factor as it relates to soil nonlinearity.

8.4 HHT-BASED APPROACH FOR CHARACTERIZING NONLINEARITY

A method for nonlinear, nonstationary data processing [7] can be used as an alter-

native to the Fourier-based approach for characterizing soil nonlinearity. This method, referred to as the Hilbert-Huang transform, consists of empirical mode decomposition (EMD) and Hilbert spectral analysis (HSA). Any complicated time domain record can be decomposed via EMD into a finite, often small, number of intrinsic mode functions (IMFs) that admit a well-behaved Hilbert transform. The

IMF is defined by the following conditions: (1) over the entire time series, the number

of extrema and the number of zero-crossings must be equal or differ at most by one,

and (2) the mean value of the envelope defined by the local maxima and the envelope defined by the local minima is zero at any point. An IMF represents a simple oscillatory mode similar to a component in the Fourier-based harmonic function, but more general. The EMD explores temporal variation in the characteristic time scale of the data and thus is adaptive to nonlinear, nonstationary data processes. The HSA defines an instantaneous or time-dependent frequency of the data via Hilbert transformation of each IMF component. These two unique features endow the HHT with a possibly enhanced interpretive value, making it a useful alternative to Fourier components and amplitude spectra. The HHT representation of data X ( t ) is

()

X t

=

n

j =

1

a

j

()

t e

i

θ

j

( t )

=

n

=

1

j

[

C

j

()

t

+

iY

j

()

t

]]

,

(8.5)

where C j ( t ) and Y j ( t ) are respectively the j th IMF component of X ( t ) and its Hilbert transform,

( ) =

Yt

j

1

P

C

j

(

t

)

π

t

−′ t

dt ,

where P denotes the Cauchy principal value, and the time-dependent amplitudes

a j ( t ) and phases θ j ( t ) are the polar-coordinate expression of Cartesian-coordinate expression of C j ( t ) and Y j (t), from which the instantaneous frequency is defined as

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An HHT-Based Approach to Quantify Nonlinear Soil Amplification

ω

j

( )

t

=

d

θ ( t )

j

dt

.

167

(8.6)

It should be emphasized here that the instantaneous frequency has physical meaning only through its definition on each IMF component as in Equation 8.5 and Equation 8.6; by contrast, the instantaneous frequency defined through the Hilbert transformation of the original data is generally less directly related to frequency content [7]. Equation 8.5 and Equation 8.6 indicate that the amplitudes a j (t) are associated with ω j (t) at time t, or, in general, functions of ω and t. Similar to the Fourier amplitude spectrum, the Hilbert amplitude spectrum is defined as

H

(ω,) =

t

n

j = 1

() ,

at

j

(8.7)

and its square gives the temporal evolution of the energy distribution. The marginal Hilbert amplitude spectrum, h(ω), defined as

h

(ω) =

T

0

H

(ω,)

t dt ,

(8.8)

provides a measure of the total amplitude or energy contribution from each frequency value, in which T denotes the time duration of the data. In comparison with Equation 8.2, the Hilbert amplitude spectrum H(ω,t) provides an extra dimension by including time t in motion frequency and is thus more general than the Fourier amplitude spectrum F(). While the marginal amplitude spectrum h(ω) provides information similar to the Fourier amplitude spectrum, its frequency term is different. The Fourier-based frequency () is constant over the sinusoidal harmonics persisting through the data window, as seen in Equation 8.1, while the HHT-based frequency ω varies with time based on Equation 8.6. As the Fourier transformation window length reduces to zero, the Fourier-based frequency () approaches the HHT-based frequency (ω). The Fourier-based frequency is locally averaged and not truly instantaneous, for it depends on window length, which is controlled by the uncertainty principle and the sampling rate of data. Recordings that are stationary and linear can typically be decomposed or rep- resented by a series of time-independent frequency waves through the Fourier-based approach in Equation 8.1. If the jth IMF component, i.e., C j (t) in Equation 8.5, corresponds to a Fourier component with a sine function at a time-independent frequency, the Hilbert transform of the sine function, i.e., Y j (t) in Equation 8.5, can be found to equal the cosine function at the same frequency in opposite sign. Because the sign can be changed with adding a constant phase, the above analysis essentially leads to the consistence between Fourier- and HHT-based approaches in general,

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and Fourier and marginal Hilbert amplitude spectra in particular, in characterizing linear phenomena with time-independent frequency. For recordings that are nonstationary and nonlinear, such as large-magnitude earthquakes, many studies have showed [21] that the marginal Hilbert amplitude spectra can truthfully represent the nonlinear data in comparison with Fourier ampli- tude spectra. As a result, an HHT-based approach for characterizing nonlinear site amplification can be proposed that is similar to a Fourier-based approach. The HHT-based factor of site amplification (FH) is defined

FH

s

(

ω

) =

2 2 h + h sh , 1 sh , 2 2 2 h +
2
2
h
+ h
sh ,
1
sh , 2
2
2
h
+ h
rh ,
1
rh , 2

.

(8.9)

While this HHT-based factor could provide an alternative insight in character- izing and quantifying the influences of nonlinear soil in site amplification, the role of damping in nonlinear site responses is not discerned from the general features of soil nonlinearity, which should be implicitly involved in the factor. To single out the damping factor from the HHT-based factor in Equation 8.9, which is associated with amplitude a j (t) in Equation 8.7 and Equation 8.8, the physical meanings of the jth IMF component that forms the amplitude a j (t) in Equation 8.5 is first examined below. Since all the IMF components are extracted from acceleration records that are the result of seismic waves generated by a seismic source and propagating in the earth, they should reflect the wave characteristics inherent to the rupture process and the earth medium properties. Indeed, with the aid of a finite-fault inversion method, Zhang et al. [25] examined signatures of the seismic source of the 1994 Northridge earthquake in the ground acceleration record- ings. That study looks over only the second to fifth IMF components because they are much larger in amplitude than the remaining higher-order, low-frequency IMF components. The first IMF component was not investigated in that study because it contains information that is not simply or easily related to the seismic source (e.g., wave scattering in the heterogeneous media). That study shows that the second IMF component is predominantly wave motion generated near the hypocenter, with high-frequency content that might be related to a large stress drop associated with the initiation of the earthquake. As one progresses from the second to the fifth IMF component, there is a general migration of the source region away from the hypo- center with associated longer-period signals as the rupture propagates. In addition, that study shows that some IMF components (e.g., the fifth IMF) can exhibit motion features reflecting the influences of nonlinear site condition. Because of the significance of IMF components that directly relate amplitudes a j (t), Equation 8.5 can be rewritten as

()

Xt

=

n

j =

1

a

j

()

te

i

θ

j

() t

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=

n

j =

1

Λ

j

()

te

− ϕ

j

() t

+

ii

θ

j ( )

t

(8.10)

An HHT-Based Approach to Quantify Nonlinear Soil Amplification

169

where time-dependent amplitudes Λ j (t) can be interpreted as the source-related intensity, ϕ j (t) are the exponential factors characterizing the time-dependent decay of the waves in the jth IMF component due to damping, and

a

j

()

t

=

Λ

j

()

te

ϕ

j

( )

t

.

(8.11)

Similar to the description of the instantaneous frequency in Equation 8.6, the instantaneous damping factor can be defined as

η

j

( ) =

t

d

ϕ ( t )

j

dt

.

(8.12)

With the aid of Equation 8.11, the Hilbert damping spectrum can be found as

=

n

j = 1

η

j

 

n

a

j

(

t

)

Λ )

j

(

t

=

 
 

+

a

j = 1

(

t

)



a

Λ

j

(

t

)

(

t

)

Λ )

j

(

t

j

j

dt

d

a

a

j

(

t

)

+

Λ

j

(

t

)

=

Dt

ω

(

,)

()

t

The marginal Hilbert damping spectrum is

d

(

ω =

)

T

0

D

(

ω

t dt

,)

=

n

T

∑∫

j = 1

0




.

()ω

+

d

Λ

 

(8.13)

()ω

.

(8.14)

Equation 8.14 indicates that the marginal Hilbert damping spectrum consists of two terms: one is from the time-dependent amplitudes a j (t) that are related to marginal and Hilbert amplitude spectra, and the other is from source-related intensity, i.e., time-dependent amplitudes Λ j (t). It is of interest to note that the definition of instantaneous damping factor in Equation 8.12 and subsequent spectra in Equation 8.13 and Equation 8.14 are different from those in Salvino [26] and Loh et al. [27]. For recordings of impulse-induced or ambient linear vibration responses, some IMF components can be extracted from the data that are related to certain vibration modes [28–30]. Consequently, Λ j (t) are constant and η j (t) are proportional to the damping ratio and damped frequency. The modal damping ratio can then be found. This is essentially the same as those in Salvino [26] and Loh et al. [27], if the latter can judicially relate the IMF components to the vibration/wave modes. For recordings to an earthquake, Λ j are functions of time and unknown, which are dependent upon the seismic source. Their influences in the site amplification, however, can be removed if two recordings at soil and referenced sites are used. Similar to the HHT-based factor of site amplification, the difference of marginal Hilbert damping spectra at soil and referenced sites, or HHT-based factor of site damping, could approximately eliminate the influences of the source that is associated

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c1

c2

c3

c4

c5

170

0.5

0

0.5

0.5

0

0.5

0.02

0

0.02

0.02

0

0.02

10

5

0

The Hilbert-Huang Transform in Engineering

× 10 − 3
× 10 − 3

01234 5

Time (sec)

6

7

8

9

10

FIGURE 8.4 The five IMF components of the recording in Figure 8.1.

with Λ j and thus provide essentially the characterization of the damping in the soil site. The HHT-based factor of site damping can be found as

d

(

ω =

)

[

dd

sh

1

ωω−

rh

1

(

)

(

,,

)]

2

+

[

dd

,

sh

2

(

)

ω−

,

rh

2

( ωω )]

2

 

[

dd

s h 1

(

ωω

r h

1

)

(

,,

a

a

)]

2

a

+ [ dd( ω )

s

,

h 2

a

,

r

hh 2

(ω)]

2

(8.15)

where use has been made in the last approximation of the fact that the source-related damping terms at the soil and referenced sites are approximately equal, i.e., d s Λ (ω) d r Λ (ω). Finally, comparing the HHT-based factors of site damping from the mainshock and the aftershock could help quantify the influences of nonlinear soil damping in site responses. To illustrate the HHT-based characterization of nonlinearity, the hypothetical record in Figure 8.1 is analyzed again. Figure 8.4 shows the five IMF components decomposed from the data by EMD. The first and second components (c 1 and c 2 ) capture the noise and primary waveform, while the other three (c 3 to c 5 ), with negligible amplitudes, represent the numerical error in the EMD process. Comparing Figure 8.3 and Figure 8.4 suggests that some IMF components can be not only more physically meaningful than the Fourier components, they can also be in principle used to explore the damping factor with the use of, e.g., the consecutive peak values

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An HHT-Based Approach to Quantify Nonlinear Soil Amplification

171

Hilbert Spectrum (Hypothetical Water Wave)

20 18 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 012345 Time (sec) 6
20
18
16
14
12
10
8
6
4
2
0 012345
Time (sec)
6
7
8
9
10
Frequency (Hz)

0.9

0.8

0.7

0.6

0.5

0.4

0.3

0.2

0.1

FIGURE 8.5 Hilbert amplitude spectra of the recording in Figure 8.1.

and corresponding time elapse in the second IMF component, if that component is related to a free-vibration response or forced response at a certain mode. The Hilbert amplitude spectrum in Figure 8.5 shows a clear picture of tempo- ral–frequency energy distribution of the data, i.e., primary waves with frequency dependence modulated around 1 Hz and bounded by 0.5 Hz and 1.5 Hz, noise at 15 Hz, and the decaying energy of the primary waves with the color changing from the red/yellow at the beginning to the dark blue at the end of the record. In contrast, the Fourier amplitude spectrum in Figure 8.2 not only loses the information pertain- ing to temporal characteristics of the motion, but, more important, it also distorts the information of the record by introducing higher-order harmonics, notably at 2 Hz and 3 Hz. For comparison, the marginal amplitude spectrum of the recording is also plotted in Figure 8.2, showing truthfully the energy distribution of the motion in frequency. Figure 8.6 shows the marginal Hilbert damping spectrum, calculated without using any smooth function, which was not so done in the calculation of the above marginal Hilbert amplitude spectrum with the use of Hilbert-Huang Transformation Toolbox [31]. While oscillation of the curve in Figure 8.6 is originally due to the

numerical calculation of a j (t) and a j (t)/a j (t) that subsequently influences the compu-

tation of the spectra in Equation 8.13 and Equation 8.14, the estimated mean damping factor at frequency 0.5 to 1 Hz is around the true value of 0.2. Compared with no

·

·

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The Hilbert-Huang Transform in Engineering

Wave Data–Marginal Damping Spectrum

0 10 − 1 10 − 2 10 Marginal Damping Spectrum
0
10
− 1
10
− 2
10
Marginal Damping Spectrum

10

0

Frequency (Hz)

10

1

FIGURE 8.6 Marginal Hilbert damping spectrum of the recording in Figure 8.1.

damping in the record at frequency larger than 1.5 Hz, the very small mean damping factor in Figure 8.6 (about 0.04, lower at a factor of five than the damping factor of waves) due to the aforementioned unavoidable, cumulated numerical error is still acceptable. It is believed that the oscillated curve in Figure 8.6 can be improved by replacing it with the instantaneous mean curve. The mean curve can be found by many methods, one of which is the use of the summation of all the IMF components, excluding the first IMF component, that are extracted from the data of the oscillated curve with one sifting process. The large damping factors at around 1.5 Hz are due to the numerical error caused by the transition of two damping factors from 0.2 to 0.04, although such abrupt damping change is unlikely in practice. The large damp- ing factor below 0.5 Hz is caused by the high-order, low-frequency IMF components (primarily from the third to fifth IMFs). The error in overestimating damping factor at very low frequency can be theoretically minimized if high-order, low-frequency IMF components with very small amplitudes are judicially not used in the damping calculation.

8.5 APPLICATIONS TO 2001 NISQUALLY EARTHQUAKE DATA

In this section, the HHT-based approach is used to analyze the recordings of the M6.8 mainshock and the M L 3.4 aftershock of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake at SDS and LAP. The SDS is a station on artificial fill with nearby liquefaction, and the average shear-wave velocity in the top 30 m for the soft soil is estimated as V s 30 =

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Mainshock Time History Sds1

173

0.3 0.2 0.1 0 − 0.1 − 0.2 Acceleration (g)
0.3
0.2
0.1
0
− 0.1
− 0.2
Acceleration (g)

0 5

10

15

20

25

1st Component Sds1

30

35

40

0.1 0.05 0 − 0.05 − 0.1 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35
0.1
0.05
0
0.05
0.1
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
Acceleration (g)

Time (sec)

FIGURE 8.7 (a, top) NS-acceleration recording and (b, bottom) its first IMF of the Nisqually mainshock at SDS (soft soil).

148 m/s. The LAP is located over a stiff soil with V s 30 = 367 m/s. To examine the soil nonlinearity from recordings at the two stations, recordings at SEW are used as referenced ones, because V s 30 = 433 m/s at SEW is within the range of V s 30 values for typical rock sites in the western United States. Previous Fourier-based studies (e.g., [17]) suggest that SDS experienced strong soil nonlinearity during the mainshock while the LAP did not, with recordings at SEW as a reference.

8.5.1 DETECTION OF NONLINEAR SOIL SITES

Figure 8.7a shows the NS-acceleration recording of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake at SDS. The one-sided cusped waves and high-frequency spikes in the S-coda waves, notably between 20 sec and 25 sec, are similar to the waveform with sharper crests and rounded-off troughs in Figure 8.1, and have been concluded [17] to be symp- tomatic of nonlinear response at the soft soil site. Indeed, the high-frequency spikes are believed to appear only in recordings that are close to the locations where strong nonlinearity occurred (e.g., [16]). Therefore, singling out the spikes will help detect strongly nonlinear sites. Frankel et al. [17] used Fourier-based high-frequency band-pass filtering (10 to 20 Hz) to identify the

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Mainshock Time History Sds2

0.4 0.2 0 − 0.2 − 0.4 Acceleration (g)
0.4
0.2
0
− 0.2
− 0.4
Acceleration (g)

0 5

10

15

20

25

1st Component Sds1

30

35

40

0.06 0.04 0.02 0 − 0.02 − 0.04 − 0.06 0 5 10 15 20
0.06
0.04
0.02
0
− 0.02
− 0.04
− 0.06
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
Acceleration (g)

Time (sec)

FIGURE 8.8 (a, top) EW-acceleration recording and (b, bottom) its first IMF of the Nisqually mainshock at SDS (soft soil).

spikes. It should be noted that there exist other tools to identify the spikes. For example, Hou et al. [32] used a wavelet-based approach to characterize the spikes from nonlinear vibration recordings in the vicinity of a damaged-structure location subject to a severe earthquake. The disadvantages of these approaches, however, reside with the subjective selection of frequency band in a Fourier-based approach and subjective selection of another wavelet in a wavelet-based approach, among others. This study presents the effectiveness of the HHT-based approach in identifying the spikes. Figure 8.7b depicts the first IMF component of the NS-component of motion, clearly showing the two largest spikes between 20 sec and 25 sec. While the spikes in the recording of Figure 8.7a can be visualized without using any tools, the first IMF component in Figure 8.7b is shown simply for validation of the HHT-based approach in identifying the spikes. Indeed, the EW-component of the same recording in Figure 8.8a does not clearly show the spikes between 20 sec and 25 sec. The corresponding first IMF component in Figure 8.8b is, however, able to reveal them explicitly, suggesting that the first IMF component is effective at detect- ing the high-frequency spikes. This study also analyzed the horizontal recordings of the M L 3.4 aftershock at the same location in Figure 8.9 and Figure 8.10, in which one does not observe the spikes in the S-coda waves in the corresponding first IMF

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× 10 3

Aftershock Time History Sds1

175

1 0.5 0 − 0.5 − 1 Acceleration (g)
1
0.5
0
0.5
1
Acceleration (g)

0 5

× 10 4

10

15

20

25

1st Component Sds1

30

35

40

2 1 0 − 1 − 2 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35
2
1
0
− 1
− 2
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
Acceleration (g)

Time (sec)

FIGURE 8.9 (a, top) NS-acceleration recording and (b, bottom) its first IMF of the Nisqually aftershock at SDS (soft soil).

components. These observations partially confirm that the nonlinearity-related spikes can be detected via the first IMF component. It should be pointed out here that the high-frequency spikes before the S-coda waves in the first IMF component (such as those before 20 sec in Figure 8.7b, Figure 8.8b, Figure 8.9b, and Figure 8.10b), which also show up in the Fourier-based high-frequency band-pass (10 to 20 Hz) approach, may not be simply, directly related to the soil nonlinearity. The aforementioned nonlinearity-related spikes can also be identified via Hilbert amplitude spectra. Specifically, the Hilbert amplitude spectra of the mainshock in Figure 8.11 and Figure 8.12 show two beams of high-frequency energy (5 Hz and above) between 20 sec and 25 sec, when the dominant energy of the motion is primarily below 5 Hz. In contrast, those of the aftershock in Figure 8.13 and Figure 8.14 do not show the distinguishing high-frequency energy beams in the same time period. This suggests that the first IMF component and Hilbert amplitude spectra can be used effectively to single out nonlinearity-related high-frequency spikes. Accordingly, the results will help us, at the first glance, to detect strong nonlinear soil sites.

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Aftershock Time History Sds2

1 0.5 0 − 0.5 − 1 Acceleration (g)
1
0.5
0
0.5
1
Acceleration (g)

0 5

× 10 4

10

15

20

25

1st Component Sds2

30

35

40

8 6 4 2 0 − 2 − 4 0 5 10 15 20 25
8
6
4
2
0
− 2
− 4
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
Acceleration (g)

Time (sec)

FIGURE 8.10 (a, top) EW-acceleration recording and (b, bottom) its first IMF of the Nisqually aftershock at SDS (soft soil).

8.5.2 HHT-BASED FACTOR OF SITE AMPLIFICATION

Figure 8.15a shows the HHT-based factors of site amplification of the mainshock and aftershock at SDS. In calculating the factors in Equation 8.9, the correction for 1/R geometrical spreading in the recordings at SDS and SEW is not carried out since the hypocentral distances for the sites under investigation are similar. In addition, the marginal Hilbert amplitude spectra are not smoothed in the calculation, for the nonsmoothed spectra more clearly show the characteristics of the HHT-based approach. Examining Figure 8.15a shows the following:

• The profile of the HHT-based factor in the frequency band up to 2.5 Hz (referred to as the low-frequency range) is generally downshifted in fre- quency from the aftershock to the mainshock, with an average shift of approximately 0.7 Hz. This downshift is exemplified by the peaks of the aftershock at 0.95 Hz and 2.1 Hz downshifted to those of the mainshock at 0.25 Hz and 1.4 Hz, respectively. The degree of soil nonlinearity under the mainshock motion can be quantified by the frequency downshift.

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Nisqually Mainshock – 2-D Hilbert Spectrum - SDSns

1 10 0 10 − 1 10 Frequency (Hz)
1
10
0
10
− 1
10
Frequency (Hz)

0

5

10

15

20

Time (s)

25

30

35

40

0.18

0.16

0.14

0.12

0.1

0.08

0.06

0.04

0.02

FIGURE 8.11 Hilbert amplitude spectra of NS-acceleration recording of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake mainshock at SDS (soft soil).

• The profile of the HHT-based factor in the frequency band 2.5 to 7 Hz (intermediate-frequency range) is generally reduced in amplitude from the aftershock to the mainshock, with an average difference of approxi- mately a factor of 0.43. Note that the measure is carried out in the way that the averaged factor of 7 for the aftershock is reduced to 3 for the mainshock in frequency range 3 to 4 Hz.

• There is no evidence to support a difference in HHT-based factor from about 7 Hz up (high-frequency range) between the mainshock and after- shock.

To facilitate understanding of these observations, this study analyzes the HHT-based factor of the mainshock and aftershock at LAP in Figure 8.16a, which shows the following:

• In the low-frequency range (below 2.5 Hz), Figure 8.16a shows a down- shift profile in both frequency and amplitude from the aftershock to mainshock that is similar to Figure 8.15a in the low to intermediate frequency range, but the former shows a smaller shift (about 0.1 Hz in

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Nisqually Mainshock – 2-D Hilbert Spectrum - SDSnew

1 10 0 10 − 1 10 Frequency (Hz)
1
10
0
10
− 1
10
Frequency (Hz)

0

5

10

15

20

Time (s)

25

30

35

40

0.11

0.1

0.09

0.08

0.07

0.06

0.05

0.04

0.03

0.02

0.01

FIGURE 8.12 Hilbert amplitude spectra of EW-acceleration recording of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake mainshock at SDS (soft soil).

frequency and a factor of 0.2) than the latter (about 0.7 Hz and a factor of 0.43).

• In the intermediate to high frequency range, there is almost no difference in the two factors between the mainshock and the aftershock.

Comparison of the HHT-based factors at SDS and LAP suggests that SDS had severe soil nonlinearity during the mainshock and LAP had slight soil nonlinearity. Site LAP can also be regarded as having no soil nonlinearity under the mainshock if the aforementioned small downshift in both frequency and amplitude in the low-frequency range is the result of variation of data collection and sampling.

8.5.3 INFLUENCES OF WINDOW LENGTH OF DATA

The above results were obtained on the basis of 40-sec record lengths. It can be seen from Figure 8.7 through Figure 8.14 that the characteristics of the motion during the 40 sec change from one time interval to another. The noticeable features in different sections of the 40 sec (see Figure 8.7a and Figure 8.8a) are the dominant P-wave signals with high frequencies and low amplitude from 0 to 10 sec, followed by the dominant S-wave signals with intermediate frequencies and high amplitude from 10 to 20 sec, and finally the surface and coda waves with low frequencies and

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Nisqually Aftershock – 2-D Hilbert Spectrum - SDSns

× 10 4

1 10 0 10 − 1 10 Frequency (Hz)
1
10
0
10
− 1
10
Frequency (Hz)

0

5

10

15

20

Time (s)

25

30

35

40

6

5

4

3

2

1

FIGURE 8.13 Hilbert amplitude spectra of NS-acceleration recording of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake aftershock at SDS (soft soil).

intermediate amplitude from 20 to 40 sec. Accordingly, the HHT-based factor cal- culated over 40 sec is a characteristic averaged in frequency and amplitude, i.e., mixing low to high frequencies and amplitudes. It is also noticed that the soil nonlinearity is likely most prevalent in the strong S-wave motion. To characterize the soil nonlinearity precisely, one should select an appropriate window of motion for analysis in which the soil nonlinearity shows up most strongly. However, the selection of an appropriate window is subjective. Nevertheless, this study next examines the influence of window length on the HHT-based factor by selecting two windows, 0 to 10 sec and 10 to 20 sec. In the first window, 0 to 10 sec, where the P-wave signals are dominant with relatively small amplitudes and high frequencies, the soil is likely linear under both mainshock and aftershock motions, which should lead to the same factor in a broad spectrum of frequency for the mainshock and aftershock. This is verified in Figure 8.17a, except for a large difference in amplitude between 3 Hz and 6 Hz. The difference might be caused by unknown factors such as a lack of recorded frequency content in the referenced site or indeed by a change of physical properties in the soil. Further research is needed along this line. In the second window, 10 to 20 sec, where the S-wave signals are dominant with large amplitudes and intermediate frequencies, the soil is likely strongly nonlinear under

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Nisqually Aftershock – 2-D Hilbert Spectrum - SDSew

× 10 4

1 10 0 10 − 1 10 Frequency (Hz)
1
10
0
10
− 1
10
Frequency (Hz)

0

5

10

15

20

Time (s)

25

30

35

40

5.5

5

4.5

4

3.5

3

2.5

2

1.5

1

0.5

FIGURE 8.14 Hilbert amplitude spectra of EW-acceleration recording of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake aftershock at SDS (soft soil).

the mainshock. The downshift in both amplitude and frequency from the HHT-based factors between mainshock and aftershock is clearly seen in Figure 8.17b.

8.5.4 COMPARISON OF HHT- AND FOURIER-BASED FACTORS FOR SITE AMPLIFICATION

To further illustrate the characteristics of the HHT approach, this study compares the HHT-based factors of site amplification at SDS shown in Figure 8.15a with the Fourier-based ones shown in Figure 8.15b (i.e., Figure 8.7 in Frankel et al. [17]). In the low-frequency range, Figure 8.15b shows a frequency-downshift profile from the aftershock to mainshock that is similar to Figure 8.15a, but the former shows a smaller shift (about 0.2 Hz) than the latter (about 0.7 Hz). Because of the averaging characteristic in Fourier spectral analysis, as indicated in Section 8.3, the frequency downshift measured from the HHT-based factors in Figure 8.15a may give a more truthful indication of the soil nonlinearity than that measured from Fourier-based factors in Figure 8.15b. In addition, the factor in the low-frequency range in Figure 8.15a is generally somewhat larger than the factors in Figure 8.15b. In the intermediate-frequency range, Figure 8.15b shows an amplitude-reduction profile from the aftershock to mainshock that is similar to Figure 8.15a, but the

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Nisqually Earthquake - Marginal Spectral Ratio (SDS/SEW)

1 10 0 10 Aftershock Mainshock − 1 10 Spectral Ratio
1
10
0
10
Aftershock
Mainshock
− 1
10
Spectral Ratio

10 1

10 0

10

1

Frequency (Hz)

Nisqually Earthquake - Fourier Spectral Ratio (SDS/SEW)

1 10 0 10 Aftershock Mainshock − 1 10 Spectral Ratio
1
10
0
10
Aftershock
Mainshock
− 1
10
Spectral Ratio

10 1

10 0

10

1

Frequency (Hz)

FIGURE 8.15 (A) HHT-based factor for site amplification at SDS (soft soil) for mainshock and aftershock of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake. (B) Fourier-based factor for site amplifica- tion at SDS (soft soil) for mainshock and aftershock of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake.

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Nisqually Earthquake - Marginal Spectral Ratio (LAP/SEW)

1 10 0 10 Aftershock Mainshock − 1 10 Spectral Ratio
1
10
0
10
Aftershock
Mainshock
− 1
10
Spectral Ratio

10 1

10 0

10

1

Frequency (Hz)

Nisqually Earthquake - Fourier Spectral Ratio (LAP/SEW)

1 10 0 10 Aftershock Mainshock − 1 10 Spectral Ratio
1
10
0
10
Aftershock
Mainshock
− 1
10
Spectral Ratio

10 1

10 0

10

1

Frequency (Hz)

FIGURE 8.16 (A) HHT-based factor for site amplification at LAP (stiff soil) for mainshock and aftershock of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake. (B) Fourier-ased factor for site amplification at LAP (stiff soil) for mainshock and aftershock of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake.

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Nisqually Earthquake - Marginal Spectral Ratio (SDS/SEW) ==> 0–10s

2 10 1 10 0 10 Aftershock Mainshock Spectral Ratio
2
10
1
10
0
10
Aftershock
Mainshock
Spectral Ratio

10

1

10 0

10

1

Frequency (Hz)

Nisqually Earthquake - Marginal Spectral Ratio (SDS/SEW) ==> 10–20s

2 10 1 10 0 10 Aftershock Mainshock Spectral Ratio
2
10
1
10
0
10
Aftershock
Mainshock
Spectral Ratio

10

1

10 0

10

1

Frequency (Hz)

FIGURE 8.17 (A) HHT-based factor for site amplification with the use of recordings in window 0 to 10 sec at SDS (soft soil) for mainshock and aftershock of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake. (B) HHT-based factor for site amplification with the use of recordings in window 10 to 20 sec at SDS (soft soil) for mainshock and aftershock of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake.

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Nisqually Earthquake - Difference of Damping Factor (SDS-SEW)

Aftershock Mainshock − 1 10 − 2 10 Difference of Damping Factor
Aftershock
Mainshock
− 1
10
− 2
10
Difference of Damping Factor

0

2

4

6

8

10

Frequency (Hz)

12

14

16

18

20

FIGURE 8.18 Difference of marginal Hilbert damping spectra at SDS and SEW for main- shock and aftershock of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake.

former shows a smaller reduction (about a factor of 0.2) than the latter (about a factor of 0.43). In the high-frequency range, Figure 8.15b shows a significant increase in the Fourier-based factor from the aftershock to mainshock, while Figure 8.15a does not. Following the discussion in Section 8.3 and numerical illustration in Figure 8.1 and Figure 8.2, the high-frequency content in the Fourier amplitude spectra may be influenced by higher-order harmonics used to represent a nonlinear waveform, which consequently increases the Fourier-based factor of the mainshock in the high-fre- quency range. This study also compares HHT- and Fourier-based factors at LAP in Figure 8.16a and b. Almost no fundamental difference in the factors is observed in terms of overall profile, amplitude value, frequency downshift, and amplitude reduction between the mainshock and aftershock, indicating that the two approaches are essentially consistent with each other in estimating linear or approximately linear site amplification.

8.5.5 HHT-BASED FACTOR FOR SITE DAMPING

Figure 8.18 shows the HHT-based factors for site damping at SDS calculated by Equation 8.15, an alternative perspective of soil nonlinearity from recordings. It

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185

reveals that the site damping during the mainshock is much larger than that in the aftershock at frequency 0.5 to 5 Hz, suggesting that strong soil nonlinearity occurred during the mainshock in this frequency band. The increased damping will decrease the amplified magnitude of seismic wave responses through the nonlinear soil and thus reduce the site amplification factor. This can be confirmed from Figure 8.15a, which shows that the HHT-based factor for site amplification is observably reduced for the mainshock from the aftershock in the similar frequency band of 0.5 to 7 Hz. Figure 8.18 also shows that the second largest increased site damping for the mainshock is in the frequency band 8 to 16 Hz. However, the HHT-based factors for site amplification in Figure 8.15a do not appear to change between the mainshock and aftershock. This can be explained as follows: On the one hand, the increased site damping for the mainshock over the frequencies 8 to 16 Hz will reduce the seismic wave responses in the same frequency band. Note that the soil nonlinearity typically occurs under large-amplitude seismic waves incident to the soil layer, and that the amplitude of the motion changes with time. This suggests that the soil nonlinearity is likely most prevalent in the strong S-wave motion or following surface or S-coda waves, but not in the P-wave motion during the mainshock. Figure 8.7a and Figure 8.8a reveal that except for the abnormal high-frequency spikes between 20 sec and 25 sec, the mainshock accelerations after the S-wave arrival at about 10 sec contain less high-frequency motion than does the aftershock in general, and in the high-frequency band of about 8 to 16 Hz in particular. This fact is consistent with the increased damping of the nonlinear soil during the mainshock in the high-frequency band of 8 to 16 Hz, which damped out the high-frequency wave responses in the recordings. On the other hand, the soil nonlinearity indeed introduces large-amplitude high-frequency spikes from 20 to 25 sec in the mainshock recordings in Figure 8.7a and Figure 8.8a. Together with the fact that the HHT-based factors in Figure 8.15a show the averaged characteristics of soil linearity and nonlinearity, these observations suggest that the overall high-frequency (around 8 to 16 Hz) content of the mainshock may be equivalent to that of the aftershock. This yields the same factors in Figure 8.15a in the frequency range 8 to 16 Hz. For further clarification, the HHT-based factor for site damping at LAP is examined. Figure 8.19 shows that the profiles of soil damping are essentially no different between the mainshock and aftershock, suggesting that site LAP is linear during the mainshock. This can be further verified from the HHT-based site-ampli- fication factors shown in Figure 8.16a.

8.6 CONCLUDING REMARKS AND DISCUSSION

This study investigates the role of the HHT method in effectively detecting soil nonlinearity and precisely quantifying soil nonlinearity in terms of site amplification and damping. In particular, it reveals that the first IMF component can help identify the high-frequency spikes related to soil nonlinearity, which can also be further confirmed by Hilbert amplitude spectra.

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Nisqually Earthquake - Difference of Damping Factor (LAP-SEW)

Aftershock Mainshock − 1 10 − 2 10 Difference of Damping Factor
Aftershock
Mainshock
− 1
10
− 2
10
Difference of Damping Factor

0

2

4

6

8

10

Frequency (Hz)

12

14

16

18

20

FIGURE 8.19 Difference of marginal Hilbert damping spectra at LAP and SEW for main- shock and aftershock of the 2001 Nisqually earthquake.

The HHT-based factor of site amplification is defined as the ratio of marginal Hilbert amplitude spectra, similar to the Fourier-based factor that is the ratio of Fourier amplitude spectra. The HHT-based factor has the following relationships with Fourier-based one:

• The HHT-based factor is essentially equivalent to the Fourier-based factor in quantifying linear site amplification.

• The HHT-based factor is more effective than the Fourier-based factor in quantifying soil nonlinearity in terms of frequency downshift in the low-frequency range and amplitude reduction in the intermediate-fre- quency range.

• In the low to intermediate frequency range, the HHT-based factor is generally larger than the Fourier-based factor, which is also dependent upon the window length in which the recordings are used.

• For nonlinear site amplification, the Fourier-based factor is increased with respect to the linear one at high frequencies; this phenomenon is not seen in the HHT-based factor. This difference may be due to the introduction of high frequencies in Fourier spectral analysis in the characterization of a nonlinear waveform.

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The HHT-based factor for site damping can be extracted from the HHT-based factor for site amplification and used as an alternative index to measure the influences of soil nonlinearity in seismic wave responses at sites. It should be pointed out that the results from this study rely mainly on the use of advanced signal processing techniques to explore and then quantify the signature of soil nonlinearity from recordings. They must, therefore, be validated by model-based simulation. Recently, significant advances have been made in borehole data collection and simulation techniques. These include data from 17 borehole arrays in Southern California [33] and from the Port Island vertical array for the 1995 Hyogoken Nanbu earthquake, geophysical data including the S-wave velocity profile in the top layer(s) at key strong motion station sites (Rosrine 2002 at http://geoinfo.usc.edu/rosrine, USGS open file reports), and simulated broadband ground motion for scenario earthquakes including nonlinear soil effects [34]. The above information should allow the further validation of the observations and results from this study.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

The author would like to express sincere gratitude to Norden E. Huang at NASA; Stephen Hartzell, Authur Frankel, and Erdal Safak at USGS; Lance VanDemark from Colorado School of Mines; and Yuxian Hu from China Seismological Bureau and Jianwen Liang from Tianjin University of China for providing data, Fourier analysis and calculations, and more important, constructive suggestions. This work was supported by the National Science Foundation with Grant Nos. 0085272 and 0414363, and by the US-PRC Researcher Exchange Program administered by Mul- tidisciplinary Center for Earthquake Engineering Research. The opinions, findings, and conclusions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the sponsors.

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