Precursory phenomena associated with large avalanches in the long-range connective sandpile (LRCS) model

Ya Ting Lee, Chien chih Chen, Young Fo Chang, Ling Yun Chiao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Reduction in b-values before a large earthquake is a very popular topic for discussion. This study proposes an alternative sandpile model being able to demonstrate reduction in scaling exponents before large events through adaptable long-range connections. The distant connection between two separated cells was introduced in the sandpile model. We found that our modified long-range connective sandpile (LRCS) system repeatedly approaches and retreats from a critical state. When a large avalanche occurs in the LRCS model, accumulated energy dramatically dissipates and the system simultaneously retreats from criticality. The system quickly approaches the critical state accompanied by the increase in the slopes of the power-law frequency-size distributions of events. Afterwards, and most interestingly, the power-law slope declines before the next large event. The precursory b-value reduction before large earthquakes observed from earthquake catalogues closely mimics the evolution in power-law slopes for the frequency-size distributions of events derived in the LRCS models. Our paper, thus, provides a new explanation for declined b-values before large earthquakes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5263-5270
Number of pages8
JournalPhysica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications
Issue number21
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2008


  • Intermittent criticality
  • Long-range connection
  • Long-range interaction
  • Precusory phenomena
  • Sandpile model
  • Seismicity
  • b-value


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