Relating stick-slip friction experiments to earthquake source parameters



[1] Analytical results for parameters, such as static stress drop, for stick-slip friction experiments, with arbitrary input parameters, can be determined by solving an energy-balance equation. These results can then be related to a given earthquake based on its seismic moment and the maximum slip within its rupture zone, assuming that the rupture process entails the same physics as stick-slip friction. This analysis yields overshoots and ratios of apparent stress to static stress drop of about 0.25. The inferred earthquake source parameters static stress drop, apparent stress, slip rate, and radiated energy are robust inasmuch as they are largely independent of the experimental parameters used in their estimation. Instead, these earthquake parameters depend on C, the ratio of maximum slip to the cube root of the seismic moment. C is controlled by the normal stress applied to the rupture plane and the difference between the static and dynamic coefficients of friction. Estimating yield stress and seismic efficiency using the same procedure is only possible when the actual static and dynamic coefficients of friction are known within the earthquake rupture zone.