This ShakeMap 3.5 Manual is deprecated. Please see the ShakeMap 4 Manual.

1. Introduction

This online ShakeMap Manual (Worden and Wald, 2016), is a significant update of the original (Wald et al., 2005) ShakeMap Manual. The Manual is now dynamic and served online. We employ Python document generator Sphinx, with the source under GitHub version control. These web pages are rendered with the Sphinx RTD theme. A PDF version of this manual is available.

ShakeMap Napa

Figure 1: 2014 M6.0 Napa, CA, earthquake intensity ShakeMap.

ShakeMap®, developed by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), facilitates communication of earthquake information beyond just magnitude and location. By rapidly mapping out earthquake ground motions, ShakeMap portrays the distribution and severity of shaking. This information is critical for gauging the extent of the areas affected, determining which areas are potentially hardest hit, and allowing for rapid estimation of losses. Key to ShakeMap’s success, algorithms were developed that take advantage of any high-quality recorded ground motions—and any available macroseismic intensity data—to provide ground-truth constraints on shaking. Yet ShakeMap also utilizes best practices for both interpolating recordings and—critically—providing event-specific estimates of shaking in areas where observations are sparse or nonexistent. Thus, ShakeMap portrays the best possible description of shaking by employing a combination of recorded and estimated shaking values.

This Manual provides background on technical aspects of ShakeMap including: 1) information on the wide range of products and formats ShakeMap produces, 2) the uses of these products, and 3) guidance for ShakeMap developers and operators. Readers interested in understanding how ShakeMaps works can navigate to the Technical Guide. Those who want to use ShakeMap products and understand their varied forms can jump to the User’s Guide. If your goal is to install and operate ShakeMap, see the Software & Implementation Guide. The Software & Implementation Guide also points users to the ShakeMap software distribution and Software Guide.