Michael Schmitz

Michael Schmitz
Fundación Venezolana de Investigaciones Sismológicas · Department of Geophysics

Dr. rer. nat, Geologist
Seismic microzonation and studies of the lithosphere with seismic methods

About

236
Publications
88,521
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1,969
Citations
Citations since 2017
53 Research Items
490 Citations
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Introduction
Conduct geophysical studies applied to the knowledge of the structure and physical properties of the subsoil at different scales, to provide the information required for the analysis of the seismic response (seismic hazard), as well as the geodynamic configuration in Venezuela in an interdisciplinary context. The primary focus is the implementation of the results of seismic microzoning studies in different cities in Venezuela into municipal ordinances to provide guidelines for the effective miti
Additional affiliations
November 2016 - present
Escuela Politécnica Nacional
Position
  • Prometeo research grant
July 2009 - June 2016
Fundación Venezolana de Investigaciones Sismológicas
Position
  • Head of Department
April 2004 - present
Simon Bolívar University
Position
  • Professor
Description
  • Lectures in seismology and applied geophysics

Publications

Publications (236)
Article
Full-text available
The crustal structure of the Merida Andes in southwestern Venezuela is crucial to our understanding of both, the complex regional geodynamics of the northern part of South America, as well as the development of the hydrocarbon basins located along its flanks. Symmetric and asymmetric models of the Merida Andes have been proposed based on geological...
Article
Full-text available
RESUMEN En el marco del proyecto de Geociencia Integral de Los Andes de Mérida (GIAME), se realizaron investigaciones geofísicas y geológicas integradas, dentro de las cuales se encuentra la elaboración de modelos corticales de ondas P mediante la adquisición, procesamiento y análisis de datos de sísmica profunda. Se estudiaron tres perfiles denomi...
Article
The 100 km wide Mérida Andes extend from the Colombian/Venezuelan border to the Coastal Cordillera. The mountain chain and its associated major strike-slip fault systems in western Venezuela formed due to oblique convergence of the Caribbean with the South American Plates and the north-eastwards expulsion of the North Andean Block. Due to the limit...
Article
Full-text available
Different reasons can make certain structures need reinforcement to achieve specific levels of safety and performance. The occurrence of events of significant magnitudes, such as earthquakes, are examples of this. Retrofitting vulnerable structures becomes a practice to mitigate the destructive effects of earthquakes, and the RC Jacketing becomes a...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Actualmente se vienen elaborando las ordenanzas para edificaciones sismorresistentes en los municipios Baruta, Chacao, El Hatillo, Sucre y Libertador (ya culminada) del Área Metropolitana de Caracas, con la finalidad de contribuir con la prevención y mitigación del riesgo sísmico. Esta ciudad ha sufrido en su historia varios terremotos destructivos...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
La ciudad de Cariaco se localiza al Oeste del estado Sucre y es conocida por su elevada actividad sísmica. Esta ciudad se encuentra sobre uno de los principales sistemas de fallas de Venezuela, la falla El Pilar, por lo que se tiene una alta amenaza sísmica. Luego del terremoto de 1997 se realizaron estudios geológicos y geofísicos con la finalidad...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
La placa Caribe se encuentra ubicada entre Norteamérica y Suramérica, y posee un movimiento relativo hacia el Este. La interacción al Norte y Sur se caracteriza por fallamientos transcurrentes dextrales (James, 2005), aunado a zonas de compresión y extensión (Dolan et al., 1998; Audemard et al., 2000); mientras que, los limites este y oeste refleja...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
La ciudad de Carúpano es el segundo centro urbano más grande del Estado Sucre. Por su ubicación geográfica en la cercanía del sistema de fallas de El Pilar, Carúpano se encuentra expuesta a una amenaza sísmica muy alta; lo cual obliga a realizar un estudio de Microzonificación Sísmica tanto en la ciudad de como en su periferia. Paolini et al. (2009...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Passive source seismic methods based on line arrays are a common practice for shear wave velocity estimation of the shallow subsurface. Moreover, they gain relevance in urban environments. The present work is focused on two of these methods: interferometric multichannel analysis of surface waves (IMASW) and microtremor refraction (ReMi). Both metho...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
La relación espectral H/V (Nakamura, 1989) proporciona una de las técnicas más comunes para evaluar la respuesta sísmica del subsuelo, a partir de grabaciones de ruido sísmico ambiental; su principal ventaja, es la capacidad para proporcionar una estimación confiable de la frecuencia fundamental de resonancia de las ondas SH de un sitio. Otro métod...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
La ciudad de Caracas se encuentra localizada sobre un valle relleno de sedimentos depositados durante el Cuaternario, la cual sido afectada por terremotos como el de 1967. Posterior a dicho evento, se han realizado numerosas investigaciones en el marco del estudio de Microzonificación Sísmica del Área Metropolitana de Caracas con la finalidad de an...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
La región noroccidental del continente suramericano es una de las principales zonas tectónicas activas del mundo, debido a la convergencia de las placas de Suramérica, Caribe y Nazca. Dicha interacción formó estructuras como las sierras de Santa Marta y de Perijá, Los Andes de Mérida y las cuencas del Lago de Maracaibo y Barinas-Apure (Pérez et al....
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Actualmente se encuentran en discusión los proyectos de ordenanzas para edificaciones sismorresistentes en los municipios Baruta, Chacao, El Hatillo y Sucre del Área Metropolitana de Caracas. Previamente se ha promulgado la respectiva ordenanza en el Municipio Libertador (Alcaldía del Municipio Bolivariano Libertador, 2018). Estas ordenanzas tienen...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
La caracterización geofísica es un eje fundamental del proyecto de microzonificación sísmica de las principales urbes del país (Schmitz et al., 2015). El estudio del parámetro Vs30 permite caracterizar la calidad geotécnica del subsuelo superficial y, por consiguiente, resulta de vital importancia al diseñar criterios sismorresistentes adecuados....
Presentation
Full-text available
El estudio del parámetro Vs30 permite caracterizar la calidad geotécnica del subsuelo superficial y, por consiguiente, resulta de vital importancia para estimar la respuesta sísmica local y al diseñar criterios sismorresistentes adecuados. Utilizando el método IMASW de O'Connell y Turner (2011), que combina los fundamentos de la interferometría sís...
Conference Paper
A pesar de que se han realizado numerosos perfiles de sísmica de gran ángulo en la Cuenca de Falcón con el fin de identificar su geometría, procesos de formación y la relación que guarda con respecto a la placa Caribe aún se desconocen algunas características de su corteza. Por ello, el objetivo de este estudio se centra en compilar, evaluar y esta...
Article
As part of the lithosphere, the crust represents Earth's rigid outer layer. Some of the tools to study the crust and its thickness are wide-angle seismic studies. To date, a series of seismic studies have been carried out in Venezuela to determine in detail the crustal thickness in the southern Caribbean, in the region of the Caribbean Mountain Sys...
Article
The Caribbean and South American tectonic plates bound the north-eastwards expulsion of the North Andean Block in western Venezuela. This complex geodynamic setting resulted in the formation of major strike-slip fault systems and sizeable mountain chains. The 100-km-wide Mérida Andes extend from the Colombian/Venezuelan border to the Caribbean coas...
Article
Full-text available
Se realiza la relocalización de 152 eventos sísmicos ocurridos durante la secuencia sísmica de Lagunillas (estado Mérida, Venezuela) entre el 7 de noviembre de 2015 y el 31 de marzo 2016 con una magnitud de momento mayor o igual a tres. La base de datos utilizada se compone de la información disponible en la Red Sismológica Nacional y de la localiz...
Article
Full-text available
Se realizó la determinación del factor de calidad Q para la zona de Lagunillas, estado Mérida, a través del análisis del decaimiento de la coda para 152 eventos con Mw≥3. Los datos fueron registrados y proporcionados por la Red Sismológica Nacional de FUNVISIS y su procesamiento se realizó con el software SEISAN. Se obtuvieron los valores de Q 0 =3...
Article
Full-text available
Los efectos destructivos de los terremotos pueden incrementarse en las cuencas sedimentarias debido no sólo ala presencia de sedimentos, sinotambién a la geometría propia de la cuenca.En este trabajo se realiza el análisis de los resultados del modelado numérico 2D de la propagación de las ondas sísmicas para estimar la respuesta del suelo en las c...
Article
Full-text available
The northwestern region of the South American continent is one of the main active tectonic zones in the world, due to the convergence of the plates of South America, the Caribbean and Nazca. These displacements and regimes of compressive efforts formed diverse orogenic structures such as of The Santa Marta-Perijá Mountain range, The Mérida Andes an...
Article
Full-text available
2D gravimetric and magnetic models were generated from the northwestern region of Venezuela, to determine the crustal structure of the Mérida Andes and to obtain the depth of the main discontinuities, as well as to estimate the depth of the basement, the thickness of the sediments and the geometry of the geological structures present. The crustal m...
Poster
Full-text available
The southernmost edge of the Caribbean (CAR) plate, a buoyant large igneous province, subducts shallowly beneath northwestern South America (SA) at a trench that lies northwest of Colombia. The CAR-SA subduction is marked by an absence of volcanism and three Laramide-style uplifts – the Santa Marta Massif (SM), the Sierra de Perija (PE) and the Mer...
Article
Full-text available
Northwestern Venezuela is located in the complex deformation zone between the Caribbean and South American plates. Several models regarding the lithospheric structure of the Merida Andes have been proposed. Nevertheless, they lack relevant structural information in order to support the interpretation of deeper structures. Therefore, a 560-km-long r...
Article
Full-text available
The city of Caracas has been struck by earthquakes several times in its history, and the most recent one, the M6.6 1967 event, evidenced strong site effects within the sedimentary valley. Therefore, Caracas has been the object of research related to earthquake hazard and damage since then, and a seismic microzoning project has been formally develop...
Poster
Full-text available
The city of Portoviejo in Ecuador, is located in the western region of the South American continent is one of the main active tectonic zones of the world, due to the convergence of the South-American and Nazca plates. The Jama-Pedernales earthquake (Mw = 7.8) of April 16, 2016, caused great damage, attributed to important site effects within the se...
Poster
Full-text available
After the 2016 Mw7.8 earthquake of Jama-Pedernales caused heavy damage in Portoviejo, the Local Government (GAD) contracted a seismic microzoning study for the Canton Portoviejo. The city is located in the sedimentary basin of the Portoviejo River, characterized by soft quaternary deposits of fluvial-marine origin, surrounded by outcrops of shales....
Article
Full-text available
Con el propósito de definir las condiciones en las que se generan reverberaciones de ondas sísmicas provenientes de voladuras en las cuencas Barinas-Apure y de Maracaibo, se realizó un análisis de múltiples reflexiones de ondas utilizando los datos de sísmica de gran ángulo adquiridos en el proyecto GIAME. Con la rutina de procesamiento Seisplot, s...
Presentation
Full-text available
We studied the surface wave velocity variations at cortical level in Western Venezuela with an Ambient Noise Tomography. Rayleigh and Love waves where considered between 5 s and 43 s to image between 2.5 and 40 km deep with a resolution of 50 km x 50 km. Low velocities were found in the Eastern Venezuela Basin, Serranía del Interior and the zones w...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper presents the preliminary results of the re-interpretation and reprocessing of geophysical data aimed for seismic microzoning carried out in the city of Valle de la Pascua. The study includes the methods of Refraction Microtremor (ReMi) for the characterization of shallow sediments up to 30 m of depth and measurements of seismic noise to...
Poster
Full-text available
Northwestern Venezuela is located in the complex deformation zone between the Caribbean and South American plates. Several models regarding the shallow and deep structure have been proposed. Nevertheless, most of these studies are based on basin-scale information and they lack crustal observations in order to support the interpretation of deeper st...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Northwestern Venezuela is located in the complex deformation zone between the Caribbean and South American plates. Several basin-scale models regarding the shallow and deep structure have been proposed. Nevertheless, they lack crustal observations in order to support the interpretation of deeper structures. As a part of the Integrated Geosciences o...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Western Venezuela is located in a complex deformation zone due to the Caribbean-South American plates interactions. Several models regarding the shallow and deep structure have been proposed, nevertheless, most of these studies are based on basin-scale observations. As a part of the GIAME project, new onland refraction profiles have been acquired a...
Poster
Full-text available
Abstract: The Merida Andes (MA) is an orogeny delimiting the Maracaibo block to the west in response to the subduction of the Caribbean Plate beneath South American continent. 2-D seismic and gravity modeling of the crustal structure of MA was carried out along the profile Central Andes with a length of 380 kilometers from the coast of Falcon, cro...
Poster
Full-text available
Northwestern Venezuela is located in the complex deformation zone between the Caribbean and South American plates. Several basin-scale models regarding the shallow and deep structure have been proposed. Nevertheless, they lack crustal observations in order to support the interpretation of deeper structures. As a part of the Integrated Geosciences o...
Poster
Northwestern Venezuela is located in the complex deformation zone between the Caribbean and South American plates. Several basin-scale models regarding the shallow and deep structure have been proposed. Nevertheless, they lack crustal observations in order to support the interpretation of deeper structures. As a part of the Integrated Geosciences o...
Poster
Full-text available
We investigate shear-wave velocity structure of the Eastern Caribbean lithosphere using con- tinuous seismic records from broadband stations deployed around the area. We construct cross-correlation functions of ambient noise for two time periods, 2003-2005 and 2011-2013, based on data availability. Phase velocities of fundamental-mode Rayleigh wave...
Conference Paper
En el marco del proyecto Geociencia Integral de Los Andes de Mérida (GIAME) se realizaron en los años 2012 a 2015 investigaciones litosféricas de Los Andes de Mérida con la adquisición de tres perfiles sísmicos de gran ángulo, perpendiculares al rumbo del orógeno, y algunos perfiles complementarios a lo largo del eje de la cadena, para una longitud...
Poster
Full-text available
To better understand the subduction geometry of the Caribbean plate, we deployed 65 broadband (BB) stations across northeastern Colombia and northwestern Venezuela in April of 2016. The 65 stations interweave with the 32 existing Colombian and Venezuelan BB stations, forming a 2-D array with a station spacing of ~20-70 km that covers an area of ~60...
Presentation
Full-text available
Western Venezuela is located in the complex deformation between the Caribbean and South American plates. During the last 60 years, several models regarding the shallow and deep structure of northern South America have been proposed. Nevertheless, most of these studies are based on basin scale observations, and they lack crustal observations in orde...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The objective of this research, done in the scope of the GIAME (Integrated Geosciences of the Merida Andes) project, wasto contribute to the determination of the crustal structure of the mountain chain, and its relation to the development of the adjacent sedimentary basins by means of fractal analysis of gravity data. In order to determine theBougu...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Results of wide angle seismic central profile of GIAME Project - Geociencia Integral de Los Andes de Mérida
Poster
Full-text available
This is an e-poster at XI CONVESIS showin thr very firts results of Merida Andes Southwestern wide angle seismic profile
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Este trabajo presenta los resultados de la construcción de un modelo gravimétrico 3D detallado de Los Andes de Mérida. El objetivo principal de esta investigación fue determinar o delinear estructuras corticales hasta 60 km de profundidad, así como estudiar los diferentes modelos estructurales propuestos de la región andina venezolana. Este estudio...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Se presenta el proyecto de Norma para Construcciones Sismorresistentes para sustituir la del año 2001, incorporando adelantos de la ingeniería sísmica en las últimas décadas. Se describe la documentación técnica que debe acompañar el proyecto y la construcción, estableciéndose las responsabilidades de cada profesional. Se aplica junto con las norma...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The geotechnical characteristics of a site for a strong motion station have a substantial bearing on understanding the recorded data and its usefulness. Latin American countries, with very limited budgets for strong motion monitoring, have reluctantly restricted their site evaluations to simple visual inspections and, in general, to noninvasive tec...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
RESUMEN Durante el año 2009 se registraron 3 eventos sísmicos de importancia cercanos a la ciudad de Caracas, abril (Mw 4.3), mayo (Mw 5.4) y Septiembre (Mw 6.4), estos eventos se registraron en 3 sitios de la ciudad (INPARQUES, Escuela de Enfermería UCV y Colegio Don Simón) los cuales se encuentran instrumentados con equipos acelerográficos de poz...
Article
Full-text available
By applying receiver functions technique we studied the crustal thic- kness and mechanical properties of the Lesser Antilles Arc. We gathered teleseismic data recorded from broadband stations deployed along the arc by different networks. The analysis of P-to-S conversion and crustal reverberations allowed us to estimate the Moho depth and the avera...
Article
Full-text available
In June 2001, during the project "Estudio Cortical de Caracas" (ECCAR) a total of 8 seismic wide angle profiles were measured in the Caracas metropolitan region, extending between the towns of Caraballeda (a the coast) and Ocumare del Tuy (50 km south). The main subject of the ECCAR project was to determine the sediment thickness and derive the sei...
Poster
Full-text available
Due to the lack of regional deep structural information in western Venezuela, within GIAME Project (Integrated Geosciences of Merida Andes) lithospheric research is done in the west of the country, to generate a geotectonic model underneath Merida Andes. In 2014, seismic data were acquired along a 565 km profile in northern Andes, which extends fro...
Poster
Full-text available
We study the upper crust of the Falcón Basin (Northwestern Venezuela) with correlation of ambient noise data. In this study, we use 7 seis- mographs deployed in a linear pattern erpendic- ular to the direction of the main structures in the region. The Green functions were obtained from phase matched cross-correlations and stacking all the available...
Poster
Full-text available
In recent years, dense seismological arrays have proven to be the best way to image the Earth’s interior. Experiments like the USArray (in the United States) and the NECESSArray (in China) have provided in- formation that helped seismologist to better understand the structure from the Earth’s core to its crust. One of the key characteristics of the...
Poster
Full-text available
This study presents shear – wave velocity maps beneath northern South America from ambient noise tomography. Several profiles are extracted in the study area from the tomographic model obtained after the inversion of group and phase velocity dispersion curves. The ambient noise data used were recorded at 72 broadband seismic stations in northern So...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Falcon basin and Merida Andes in western Venezuela are related to a complex geological zone, due to the interactions between the Caribbean and South American plates. During last 60 years several models regarding the shallow and deep structure from this region, have been proposed. Nevertheless, most of these studies are based on minor-scale observat...
Book
Full-text available
Los estudios y razonamientos sobre los sismos de 1812 en Venezuela se inician casi al mismo tiempo que sus efectos destructores. Hubo quienes ni siquiera esperaron a que el polvo de las ruinas se calmara frente a sus ojos para comenzar a especular y explicar las causas de aquella ruina estremecedora. Envueltos en un contexto de pugnacidad y desgast...
Article
Full-text available
The Vargas state is considered a region with an elevated seismic hazard, which was evidenced by the damage caused by the 1967 Caracas earthquake. Additionally, in December 1999, many landslides and mudflows occurred due to intensive and persisting rainfall. In order to investigate the subsoil characteristics and the internal structure of the sedime...
Article
Full-text available
Between 1998 and 2002, ambient noise measurements, geotechnical evaluations, seismic refraction and gravity measurements were carried out in Barquisimeto -Lara State, in order to obtain information about soil conditions in the city. The predominant periods derived from H/V analyses vary between 0.3 and 1.2 s, with values ranging between 0.3 and 0.6...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Los Andes de Mérida son un rasgo en el rel ieve de Venezuela con un origen tectónico complejo a part ir del cual diversos modelos de evolución han sido propuestos, algunos consideran modelo simétr icos, mientras que otros proponen modelos asimétr icos. El desarrol lo de esta cadena ha jugado un papel importante en el desarrol lo de las cuencas de h...
Article
Full-text available
El área metropolitana de la zona norte del Estado Anzoátegui (Municipios Bolívar, Sotillo, Urbaneja y Guanta) se encuentra asentada sobre una gran acumulación de sedimentos blandos provenientes de procesos eólicos, marinos y fluviales. Adicionalmente, su cercanía a la Falla del Pilar, uno de los principales sistemas de fallas del país, la convierte...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Los Andes de Mérida, representan una región de gran amenaza sísmica, afectada por el Sistema de la Falla de Boconó. Por esta razón, en los últimos años se han llevado a cabo estudios de microzonificación sísmica en la cordillera empleando diversas técnicas (ruido, gravimetría y ReMi), a partir de las cuales se puede obtener información del subsuelo...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Las ciudades Valera, Boconó y Trujillo, ubicadas en Los Andes de Mérida, se encuentran asentadas en acumulaciones de sedimentos de tipo terraza, los cuales han generado múltiples problemas de inestabilidad. La mayoría de las poblaciones en Los Andes están bajo influencia de la Falla de Boconó, lo cual deriva en una importante amenaza sísmica. Por e...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Los Andes de Mérida son el cinturón orogénico más importante de Venezuela y representan la culminaciónnororiental de Los Andes de Suramérica. Durante más de 60 años se han propuestos diversos modelos que explican la estructuración somera y profunda de esta región; sin embargo, la gran mayoría se basan en estudios hechos en ventanas de observación m...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
En el marco del proyecto " Investigación Aplicada a la Gestión Integral del Riesgo en Espacios Urbanos " desarrollado por FUNVISIS en colaboración con las universidades locales, se han realizado estudios geológicos y geofísicos con el objetivo de caracterizar la amenaza sísmica en las cuencas urbanas de las ciudades de Barcelona – Puerto La Cruz, M...