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Sample records for plate tectonics earthquakes

  1. Plate tectonics

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Chaubey, A.K.

    's continental drift theory was later disproved, it was one of the first times that the idea of crustal movement had been introduced to the scientific community; and it has laid the groundwork for the development of modern plate tectonics. In the early... of the structure of the atom was to physical sciences and the theory of evolution was to the life sciences. Tectonics is the study of the forces within the Earth that give rise to continents, ocean basins, mountain ranges, earthquake belts and other large-scale...

  2. The tectonic plates are moving!

    CERN Document Server

    Livermore, Roy

    2018-01-01

    Written in a witty and informal style, this book explains modern plate tectonics in a non-technical manner, showing not only how it accounts for phenomena such as great earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions, but also how it controls conditions at the Earth’s surface, including global geography and climate, making it suitable for life. The book presents the advances that have been made since the establishment of plate tectonics in the 1960s, highlighting, on the fiftieth anniversary of the theory, the contributions of a small number of scientists who have never been widely recognized for their discoveries. Beginning with the publication of a short article in Nature by Vine and Matthews, the book traces the development of plate tectonics through two generations of the theory. First-generation plate tectonics covers the exciting scientific revolution of the 1960s, its heroes, and its villains. The second generation includes the rapid expansions in sonar, satellite, and seismic technologies during the 1...

  3. It's "Your" Fault!: An Investigation into Earthquakes, Plate Tectonics, and Geologic Time

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clary, Renee; Wandersee, James

    2011-01-01

    Earthquakes "have" been in the news of late--from the disastrous 2010 Haitian temblor that killed more than 300,000 people to the March 2011 earthquake and devastating tsunami in Honshu, Japan, to the unexpected August 2011 earthquake in Mineral, Virginia, felt from Alabama to Maine and as far west as Illinois. As expected, these events…

  4. Reducing risk where tectonic plates collide

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomberg, Joan S.; Ludwig, Kristin A.

    2017-06-19

    Most of the world’s earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, and volcanic eruptions are caused by the continuous motions of the many tectonic plates that make up the Earth’s outer shell. The most powerful of these natural hazards occur in subduction zones, where two plates collide and one is thrust beneath another. The U.S. Geological Survey’s (USGS) “Reducing Risk Where Tectonic Plates Collide—A USGS Plan to Advance Subduction Zone Science” is a blueprint for building the crucial scientific foundation needed to inform the policies and practices that can make our Nation more resilient to subduction zone-related hazards.

  5. Tectonic feedback and the earthquake cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lomnitz, Cinna

    1985-09-01

    The occurrence of cyclical instabilities along plate boundaries at regular intervals suggests that the process of earthquake causation differs in some respects from the model of elastic rebound in its simplest forms. The model of tectonic feedback modifies the concept of this original model in that it provides a physical interaction between the loading rate and the state of strain on the fault. Two examples are developed: (a) Central Chile, and (b) Mexico. The predictions of earthquake hazards for both types of models are compared.

  6. Soft Plate and Impact Tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tikoff, Basil

    In the field of tectonics, most of our ideas are published in journals. This is not true of other fields, such as history, in which ideas are primarily published in books. Within my own field of structural geology, I can recall only one book, Strain Fades by E. Hansen (Springer-Verlag, 1971), which presents a new idea in book form. However, even this book is more useful for its philosophical approach and particular methodology of determining directions of folding, than for its overarching idea.Enter Soft Plate and Impact Tectonics, a new book with an interesting hypothesis that has been informally discussed in the geoscience community: A fundamental tenet of plate tectonics is incorrect—namely, that the plates are rigid. This assertion is evident when looking at any mountain range, and is perhaps most clearly stated in Molnar [1988].

  7. Scaling and spatial complementarity of tectonic earthquake swarms

    KAUST Repository

    Passarelli, Luigi

    2017-11-10

    Tectonic earthquake swarms (TES) often coincide with aseismic slip and sometimes precede damaging earthquakes. In spite of recent progress in understanding the significance and properties of TES at plate boundaries, their mechanics and scaling are still largely uncertain. Here we evaluate several TES that occurred during the past 20 years on a transform plate boundary in North Iceland. We show that the swarms complement each other spatially with later swarms discouraged from fault segments activated by earlier swarms, which suggests efficient strain release and aseismic slip. The fault area illuminated by earthquakes during swarms may be more representative of the total moment release than the cumulative moment of the swarm earthquakes. We use these findings and other published results from a variety of tectonic settings to discuss general scaling properties for TES. The results indicate that the importance of TES in releasing tectonic strain at plate boundaries may have been underestimated.

  8. Mapping Tectonic Stress Using Earthquakes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arnold, Richard; Townend, John; Vignaux, Tony

    2005-01-01

    An earthquakes occurs when the forces acting on a fault overcome its intrinsic strength and cause it to slip abruptly. Understanding more specifically why earthquakes occur at particular locations and times is complicated because in many cases we do not know what these forces actually are, or indeed what processes ultimately trigger slip. The goal of this study is to develop, test, and implement a Bayesian method of reliably determining tectonic stresses using the most abundant stress gauges available - earthquakes themselves.Existing algorithms produce reasonable estimates of the principal stress directions, but yield unreliable error bounds as a consequence of the generally weak constraint on stress imposed by any single earthquake, observational errors, and an unavoidable ambiguity between the fault normal and the slip vector.A statistical treatment of the problem can take into account observational errors, combine data from multiple earthquakes in a consistent manner, and provide realistic error bounds on the estimated principal stress directions.We have developed a realistic physical framework for modelling multiple earthquakes and show how the strong physical and geometrical constraints present in this problem allow inference to be made about the orientation of the principal axes of stress in the earth's crust

  9. From Plate Tectonic to Continental Dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molnar, P. H.

    2017-12-01

    By the early 1970s, the basics of plate tectonics were known. Although much understanding remained to be gained, as a topic of research, plate tectonics no longer defined the forefront of earth science. Not only had it become a foundation on which to build, but also the methods used to reveal it became tools to take in new directions. For me as a seismologist studying earthquakes and active processes, the deformation of continents offered an obvious topic to pursue. Obviously examining the deformation of continents and ignoring the widespread geologic evidence of both ongoing and finite deformation of crust would be stupid. I was blessed with the opportunity to learn from and collaborate with two of the best, Paul Tapponnier and Clark Burchfiel. Continental deformation differed from plate tectonics both because deformation was widespread but more importantly because crust shortens (extends) horizontally and thickens (thins), processes that can be ignored where plate tectonics - the relative motion of rigid plates - occurs. Where a plate boundary passes into a continent, not only must the forces that move plates do work against friction or other dissipative processes, but where high terrain is created, they must also do work against gravity, to create gravitational potential energy in high terrain. Peter Bird and Kenneth Piper and Philip England and Dan McKenzie showed that a two-dimensional thin viscous sheet with vertically averaged properties enabled both sources of resistance to be included without introducing excessive complexity and to be scaled by one dimensionless number, what the latter pair called the Argand number. Increasingly over the past thirty years, emphasis has shifted toward the role played by the mantle lithosphere, because of both its likely strength and its negative buoyancy, which makes it gravitationally unstable. Despite progress since realizing that rigid plates (the essence of plate tectonics) provides a poor description of continental

  10. Indonesian Landforms and Plate Tectonics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Herman Th. Verstappen

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available DOI: 10.17014/ijog.v5i3.103The horizontal configuration and vertical dimension of the landforms occurring in the tectonically unstable parts of Indonesia were resulted in the first place from plate tectonics. Most of them date from the Quaternary and endogenous forces are ongoing. Three major plates – the northward moving Indo-Australian Plate, the south-eastward moving SE-Asian Plate and the westward moving Pacific Plate - meet at a plate triple-junction situated in the south of New Guinea’s Bird’s Head. The narrow North-Moluccan plate is interposed between the Asia and Pacific. It tapers out northward in the Philippine Mobile Belt and is gradually disappearing. The greatest relief amplitudes occur near the plate boundaries: deep ocean trenches are associated with subduction zones and mountain ranges with collision belts. The landforms of the more stable areas of the plates date back to a more remote past and, where emerged, have a more subdued relief that is in the first place related to the resistance of the rocks to humid tropical weathering Rising mountain ranges and emerging island arcs are subjected to rapid humid-tropical river erosions and mass movements. The erosion products accumulate in adjacent sedimentary basins where their increasing weight causes subsidence by gravity and isostatic compensations. Living and raised coral reefs, volcanoes, and fault scarps are important geomorphic indicators of active plate tectonics. Compartmental faults may strongly affect island arcs stretching perpendicular to the plate movement. This is the case on Java. Transcurrent faults and related pull-apart basins are a leading factor where plates meet at an angle, such as on Sumatra. The most complicated situation exists near the triple-junction and in the Moluccas. Modern research methods, such as GPS measurements of plate movements and absolute dating of volcanic outbursts and raised coral reefs are important tools. The mega-landforms resulting

  11. Plate tectonics, habitability and life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spohn, Tilman; Breuer, Doris

    2016-04-01

    The role of plate tectonics in defining habitability of terrestrial planets is being increasingly discussed (e.g., Elkins-Tanton, 2015). Plate tectonics is a significantly evolved concept with a large variety of aspects. In the present context, cycling of material between near surface and mantle reservoirs is most important. But increased heat transport through mixing of cold lithosphere with the deep interior and formation of continental crust may also matter. An alternative mechanism of material cycling between these reservoirs is hot-spot volcanism combined with crust delamination. Hot-spot volcanism will transport volatiles to the atmosphere while delamination will mix crust, possibly altered by sedimentation and chemical reactions, with the mantle. The mechanism works as long as the stagnant lithosphere plate has not grown thicker than the crust and as long as volcanic material is added onto the crust. Thermal evolution studies suggest that the mechanism could work for the first 1-2 Ga of planetary evolution. The efficiency of the mechanism is limited by the ratio of extrusive to intrusive volcanism, which is thought to be less than 0.25. Plate tectonics would certainly have an advantage by working even for more evolved planets. A simple, most-used concept of habitability requires the thermodynamic stability of liquid water on the surface of a planet. Cycling of CO2between the atmosphere, oceans and interior through subduction and surface volcanism is an important element of the carbonate-silicate cycle, a thermostat feedback cycle that will keep the atmosphere from entering into a runaway greenhouse. Calculations for a model Earth lacking plate tectonics but degassing CO2, N, and H2O to form a surface ocean and a secondary atmosphere (Tosi et al, 2016) suggest that liquid water can be maintained on the surface for 4.5Ga. The model planet would then qualify as habitable. It is conceivable that the CO2 buffering capability of its ocean together with silicate

  12. Subduction Drive of Plate Tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, W. B.

    2003-12-01

    Don Anderson emphasizes that plate tectonics is self-organizing and is driven by subduction, which rights the density inversion generated as oceanic lithosphere forms by cooling of asthenosphere from the top. The following synthesis owes much to many discussions with him. Hinge rollback is the key to kinematics, and, like the rest of actual plate behavior, is incompatible with bottom-up convection drive. Subduction hinges (which are under, not in front of, thin leading parts of arcs and overriding plates) roll back into subducting plates. The Pacific shrinks because bounding hinges roll back into it. Colliding arcs, increasing arc curvatures, back-arc spreading, and advance of small arcs into large plates also require rollback. Forearcs of overriding plates commonly bear basins which preclude shortening of thin plate fronts throughout periods recorded by basin strata (100 Ma for Cretaceous and Paleogene California). This requires subequal rates of advance and rollback, and control of both by subduction. Convergence rate is equal to rates of rollback and advance in many systems but is greater in others. Plate-related circulation probably is closed above 650 km. Despite the popularity of concepts of plumes from, and subduction into, lower mantle, there is no convincing evidence for, and much evidence against, penetration of the 650 in either direction. That barrier not only has a crossing-inhibiting negative Clapeyron slope but also is a compositional boundary between fractionated (not "primitive"), sluggish lower mantle and fertile, mobile upper mantle. Slabs sink more steeply than they dip. Slabs older than about 60 Ma when their subduction began sink to, and lie down on and depress, the 650-km discontinuity, and are overpassed, whereas younger slabs become neutrally buoyant in mid-upper mantle, into which they are mixed as they too are overpassed. Broadside-sinking old slabs push all upper mantle, from base of oceanic lithosphere down to the 650, back under

  13. Earth's Decelerating Tectonic Plates

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Forte, A M; Moucha, R; Rowley, D B; Quere, S; Mitrovica, J X; Simmons, N A; Grand, S P

    2008-08-22

    Space geodetic and oceanic magnetic anomaly constraints on tectonic plate motions are employed to determine a new global map of present-day rates of change of plate velocities. This map shows that Earth's largest plate, the Pacific, is presently decelerating along with several other plates in the Pacific and Indo-Atlantic hemispheres. These plate decelerations contribute to an overall, globally averaged slowdown in tectonic plate speeds. The map of plate decelerations provides new and unique constraints on the dynamics of time-dependent convection in Earth's mantle. We employ a recently developed convection model constrained by seismic, geodynamic and mineral physics data to show that time-dependent changes in mantle buoyancy forces can explain the deceleration of the major plates in the Pacific and Indo-Atlantic hemispheres.

  14. Earthquakes and Tectonics Expert Judgment Elicitation Project

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coppersmith, K.J.; Perman, R.C.; Youngs, R.R.

    1993-02-01

    This report summarizes the results of the Earthquakes and Tectonics Expert Judgement Excitation Project sponsored by the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). The objectives of this study were two-fold: (1) to demonstrate methods for the excitation of expert judgement, and (2) to quantify the uncertainties associated with earthquake and tectonics issues for use in the EPRI-HLW performance assessment. Specifically, the technical issue considered is the probability of differential fault displacement through the proposed repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. For this study, a strategy for quantifying uncertainties was developed that relies on the judgements of multiple experts. A panel of seven geologists and seismologists was assembled to quantify the uncertainties associated with earthquake and tectonics issues for the performance assessment model. A series of technical workshops focusing on these issues were conducted. Finally, each expert was individually interviewed in order to elicit his judgement regarding the technical issues and to provide the technical basis for his assessment. This report summarizes the methodologies used to elicit the judgements of the earthquakes and tectonics experts (termed ''specialists''), and summarizes the technical assessments made by the expert panel

  15. Spreading continents kick-started plate tectonics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rey, Patrice F; Coltice, Nicolas; Flament, Nicolas

    2014-09-18

    Stresses acting on cold, thick and negatively buoyant oceanic lithosphere are thought to be crucial to the initiation of subduction and the operation of plate tectonics, which characterizes the present-day geodynamics of the Earth. Because the Earth's interior was hotter in the Archaean eon, the oceanic crust may have been thicker, thereby making the oceanic lithosphere more buoyant than at present, and whether subduction and plate tectonics occurred during this time is ambiguous, both in the geological record and in geodynamic models. Here we show that because the oceanic crust was thick and buoyant, early continents may have produced intra-lithospheric gravitational stresses large enough to drive their gravitational spreading, to initiate subduction at their margins and to trigger episodes of subduction. Our model predicts the co-occurrence of deep to progressively shallower mafic volcanics and arc magmatism within continents in a self-consistent geodynamic framework, explaining the enigmatic multimodal volcanism and tectonic record of Archaean cratons. Moreover, our model predicts a petrological stratification and tectonic structure of the sub-continental lithospheric mantle, two predictions that are consistent with xenolith and seismic studies, respectively, and consistent with the existence of a mid-lithospheric seismic discontinuity. The slow gravitational collapse of early continents could have kick-started transient episodes of plate tectonics until, as the Earth's interior cooled and oceanic lithosphere became heavier, plate tectonics became self-sustaining.

  16. Active tectonics and earthquake potential of the Myanmar region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yu; Sieh, Kerry; Tun, Soe Thura; Lai, Kuang-Yin; Myint, Than

    2014-04-01

    This paper describes geomorphologic evidence for the principal neotectonic features of Myanmar and its immediate surroundings. We combine this evidence with published structural, geodetic, and seismic data to present an overview of the active tectonic architecture of the region and its seismic potential. Three tectonic systems accommodate oblique collision of the Indian plate with Southeast Asia and extrusion of Asian territory around the eastern syntaxis of the Himalayan mountain range. Subduction and collision associated with the Sunda megathrust beneath and within the Indoburman range and Naga Hills accommodate most of the shortening across the transpressional plate boundary. The Sagaing fault system is the predominant locus of dextral motion associated with the northward translation of India. Left-lateral faults of the northern Shan Plateau, northern Laos, Thailand, and southern China facilitate extrusion of rocks around the eastern syntaxis of the Himalaya. All of these systems have produced major earthquakes within recorded history and continue to present major seismic hazards in the region.

  17. Seismic gaps and plate tectonics: seismic potential for major boundaries

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McCann, W R; Nishenko, S P; Sykes, L R; Krause, J

    1979-01-01

    The theory of plate tectonics provides a basic framework for evaluating the potential for future great earthquakes to occur along major plate boundaries. Along most of the transform and convergent plate boundaries considered in this paper, the majority of seismic slip occurs during large earthquakes, i.e., those of magnitude 7 or greater. The concepts that rupture zones, as delineated by aftershocks, tend to abut rather than overlap, and large events occur in regions with histories of both long-and short-term seismic quiescence are used in this paper to delineate major seismic gaps. The term seismic gap is taken to refer to any region along an active plate boundary that has not experienced a large thrust or strike-slip earthquake for more than 30 years. A region of high seismic potential is a seismic gap that, for historic or tectonic reasons, is considered likely to produce a large shock during the next few decades. The seismic gap technique provides estimates of the location, size of future events and origin time to within a few tens of years at best. The accompanying map summarizes six categories of seismic potential for major plate boundaries in and around the margins of the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean, South Sandwich and Sunda (Indonesia) regions for the next few decades. These six categories are meant to be interpreted as forecasts of the location and size of future large shocks and should not be considered to be predictions in which a precise estimate of the time of occurrence is specified. The categories of potential assigned here provide a rationale for assigning priorities for instrumentation, for future studies aimed at predicting large earthquakes and for making estimates of tsunami potential.

  18. LOWLID FORMATION AND PLATE TECTONICS ON EXOPLANETS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stamenkovic, V.; Noack, L.; Breuer, D.

    2009-12-01

    The last years of astronomical observation have opened the doors to a universe filled with extrasolar planets. Detection techniques still only offer the possibility to detect mainly Super-Earths above five Earth masses. But detection techniques do steadily improve and are offering the possibility to detect even smaller planets. The observations show that planets seem to exist in many possible sizes just as the planets and moons of our own solar system do. It is only a natural question to ask if planetary mass has an influence on some key habitability factors such as on plate tectonics, allowing us to test which exoplanets might be more likely habitable than others, and allowing us to understand if plate tectonics on Earth is a stable or a critical, instable process that could easily be perturbed. Here we present results derived from 1D parameterized thermal evolution and 2D/3D computer models, showing how planetary mass influences the propensity of plate tectonics for planets with masses ranging from 0.1 to 10 Earth masses. Lately [2, 3] studied the effect of planetary mass on the ability to break plates and hence initiate plate tectonics - but both derived results contradictory to the other. We think that one of the reasons why both studies [2, 3] are not acceptable in their current form is partly due to an oversimplification. Both treated viscosity only temperature-dependent but neglected the effect pressure has on enlarging the viscosity in the deep mantle. More massive planets have therefore a stronger pressure-viscosity-coupling making convection at high pressures sluggish or even impossible. For planets larger than two Earth masses we observe that a conductive lid (termed low-lid) forms above the core-mantle boundary and thus reduces the effective convective part of the mantle when including a pressure-dependent term into the viscosity laws as shown in [1]. Moreover [2, 3] use time independent steady state models neglecting the fact that plate tectonics is a

  19. Crustal thickness controlled by plate tectonics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Artemieva, Irina M.; Meissner, Rolf

    2012-01-01

    /gabbro–eclogite phase transition in crustal evolution and the links between lithosphere recycling, mafic magmatism, and crustal underplating. We advocate that plate tectonics processes, togetherwith basalt/gabbro–eclogite transition, limit crustal thickness worldwide by providing effective mechanisms of crustal...

  20. Plate tectonics in the late Paleozoic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathew Domeier

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available As the chronicle of plate motions through time, paleogeography is fundamental to our understanding of plate tectonics and its role in shaping the geology of the present-day. To properly appreciate the history of tectonics—and its influence on the deep Earth and climate—it is imperative to seek an accurate and global model of paleogeography. However, owing to the incessant loss of oceanic lithosphere through subduction, the paleogeographic reconstruction of ‘full-plates’ (including oceanic lithosphere becomes increasingly challenging with age. Prior to 150 Ma ∼60% of the lithosphere is missing and reconstructions are developed without explicit regard for oceanic lithosphere or plate tectonic principles; in effect, reflecting the earlier mobilistic paradigm of continental drift. Although these ‘continental’ reconstructions have been immensely useful, the next-generation of mantle models requires global plate kinematic descriptions with full-plate reconstructions. Moreover, in disregarding (or only loosely applying plate tectonic rules, continental reconstructions fail to take advantage of a wealth of additional information in the form of practical constraints. Following a series of new developments, both in geodynamic theory and analytical tools, it is now feasible to construct full-plate models that lend themselves to testing by the wider Earth-science community. Such a model is presented here for the late Paleozoic (410–250 Ma together with a review of the underlying data. Although we expect this model to be particularly useful for numerical mantle modeling, we hope that it will also serve as a general framework for understanding late Paleozoic tectonics, one on which future improvements can be built and further tested.

  1. History and Evolution of Precambrian plate tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischer, Ria; Gerya, Taras

    2014-05-01

    Plate tectonics is a global self-organising process driven by negative buoyancy at thermal boundary layers. Phanerozoic plate tectonics with its typical subduction and orogeny is relatively well understood and can be traced back in the geological records of the continents. Interpretations of geological, petrological and geochemical observations from Proterozoic and Archean orogenic belts however (e.g., Brown, 2006), suggest a different tectonic regime in the Precambrian. Due to higher radioactive heat production the Precambrian lithosphere shows lower internal strength and is strongly weakened by percolating melts. The fundamental difference between Precambrian and Phanerozoic tectonics is therefore the upper-mantle temperature, which determines the strength of the upper mantle (Brun, 2002) and the further tectonic history. 3D petrological-thermomechanical numerical modelling experiments of oceanic subduction at an active plate at different upper-mantle temperatures show these different subduction regimes. For upper-mantle temperatures 250 K above the present day value no subduction occurs any more. The whole lithosphere is delaminating and due to strong volcanism and formation of a thicker crust subduction is inhibited. This stage of 200-250 K higher upper mantle temperature which corresponds roughly to the early Archean (Abbott, 1994) is marked by strong volcanism due to sublithospheric decompression melting which leads to an equal thickness for both oceanic and continental plates. As a consequence subduction is inhibited, but a compressional setup instead will lead to orogeny between a continental or felsic terrain and an oceanic or mafic terrain as well as internal crustal convection. Small-scale convection with plume shaped cold downwellings also in the upper mantle is of increased importance compared to the large-scale subduction cycle observed for present temperature conditions. It is also observed that lithospheric downwellings may initiate subduction by

  2. The San Andreas fault experiment. [gross tectonic plates relative velocity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, D. E.; Vonbun, F. O.

    1973-01-01

    A plan was developed during 1971 to determine gross tectonic plate motions along the San Andreas Fault System in California. Knowledge of the gross motion along the total fault system is an essential component in the construction of realistic deformation models of fault regions. Such mathematical models will be used in the future for studies which will eventually lead to prediction of major earthquakes. The main purpose of the experiment described is the determination of the relative velocity of the North American and the Pacific Plates. This motion being so extremely small, cannot be measured directly but can be deduced from distance measurements between points on opposite sites of the plate boundary taken over a number of years.

  3. Is Active Tectonics on Madagascar Consistent with Somalian Plate Kinematics?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stamps, D. S.; Kreemer, C.; Rajaonarison, T. A.

    2017-12-01

    The East African Rift System (EARS) actively breaks apart the Nubian and Somalian tectonic plates. Madagascar finds itself at the easternmost boundary of the EARS, between the Rovuma block, Lwandle plate, and the Somalian plate. Earthquake focal mechanisms and N-S oriented fault structures on the continental island suggest that Madagascar is experiencing east-west oriented extension. However, some previous plate kinematic studies indicate minor compressional strains across Madagascar. This inconsistency may be due to uncertainties in Somalian plate rotation. Past estimates of the rotation of the Somalian plate suffered from a poor coverage of GPS stations, but some important new stations are now available for a re-evaluation. In this work, we revise the kinematics of the Somalian plate. We first calculate a new GPS velocity solution and perform block kinematic modeling to evaluate the Somalian plate rotation. We then estimate new Somalia-Rovuma and Somalia-Lwandle relative motions across Madagascar and evaluate whether they are consistent with GPS measurements made on the island itself, as well as with other kinematic indicators.

  4. Learning Plate Tectonics Using a Pre-Analogy Step

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glesener, G. B.; Sandoval, W. A.

    2011-12-01

    Previous research has shown that children tend to demonstrate lower performance on analogical reasoning tasks at a causal relations level compared to most adults (Gentner & Toupin, 1986). This tendency is an obstacle that geoscience educators must overcome because of the high frequency of analogies used in geoscience pedagogy. In particular, analog models are used to convey complex systems of non-everyday/non-observable events found in nature, such as plate tectonics. Key factors in successful analogical reasoning that have been suggested by researchers include knowledge of the causal relations in the base analog (Brown & Kane, 1988; Gentner, 1988; Gentner & Toupin, 1986), and development of learning strategies and metaconceptual competence(Brown & Kane, 1988). External factors, such as guiding cues and hints have been useful cognitive supports that help students reason through analogical problems (Gick & Holyoak, 1980). Cognitive supports have been seen by researchers to decrease processing demands on retrieval and working memory (Richland, Zur, & Holyoak, 2007). We observed third and fourth graders learning about plate tectonics beginning with a pre-analogy step-a cognitive support activity a student can do before working with an analogy to understand the target. This activity was designed to aid students in developing their understanding of object attributes and relations within an analog model so that more focus can be placed on mapping the corresponding higher-order relations between the base and target. Students learned targeted concepts of plate tectonics, as measured by pre to post gains on items adapted from the Geosciences Concept Inventory. Analyses of classroom interaction showed that students used the object attributes and higher-order relations highlighted in the pre-analogy activity as resources to reason about plate boundaries and plate movement during earthquakes.

  5. Spatial distribution of the earthquakes in the Vrancea zone and tectonic correlations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bala, Andrei; Diaconescu, Mihai; Biter, Mircea

    2001-01-01

    The tectonic plate evolution of the whole Carpathian Arc and Pannonian back-arc Basin indicates that at least three tectonic units have been in contact and at the same time in relative motion: the East European Plate, the Moesian plate and the Intra-Alpine plate. There were plotted graphically all the earthquake hypocentres from the period 1982-2000 situated in an area which includes Vrancea zone. Because of the great number of events plotted, they were found to describe well the limits of the tectonic plate (plate fragment?) which is supposed to be subducted in this region down to 200 km depth. The hypothesis of a plate fragment delaminated from an older subduction can not be overruled. These limits were put in direct relations with the known geology and tectonics of the area. Available fault plane solutions for the crustal earthquakes are analyzed in correlation with the main faults of the area. A graphic plot of the sunspot number is correlated with the occurrence of the earthquakes with magnitudes greater than 5. (authors)

  6. Is plate tectonics needed to evolve technological species on exoplanets?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert J. Stern

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available As we continue searching for exoplanets, we wonder if life and technological species capable of communicating with us exists on any of them. As geoscientists, we can also wonder how important is the presence or absence of plate tectonics for the evolution of technological species. This essay considers this question, focusing on tectonically active rocky (silicate planets, like Earth, Venus, and Mars. The development of technological species on Earth provides key insights for understanding evolution on exoplanets, including the likely role that plate tectonics may play. An Earth-sized silicate planet is likely to experience several tectonic styles over its lifetime, as it cools and its lithosphere thickens, strengthens, and becomes denser. These include magma ocean, various styles of stagnant lid, and perhaps plate tectonics. Abundant liquid water favors both life and plate tectonics. Ocean is required for early evolution of diverse single-celled organisms, then colonies of cells which specialized further to form guts, appendages, and sensory organisms up to the complexity of fish (central nervous system, appendages, eyes. Large expanses of dry land also begin in the ocean, today produced above subduction zones in juvenile arcs and by their coalescence to form continents, although it is not clear that plate tectonics was required to create continental crust on Earth. Dry land of continents is required for further evolution of technological species, where modification of appendages for grasping and manipulating, and improvement of eyes and central nervous system could be perfected. These bioassets allowed intelligent creatures to examine the night sky and wonder, the beginning of abstract thinking, including religion and science. Technology arises from the exigencies of daily living such as tool-making, agriculture, clothing, and weapons, but the pace of innovation accelerates once it is allied with science. Finally, the importance of plate

  7. Plate tectonics and planetary habitability: current status and future challenges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korenaga, Jun

    2012-07-01

    Plate tectonics is one of the major factors affecting the potential habitability of a terrestrial planet. The physics of plate tectonics is, however, still far from being complete, leading to considerable uncertainty when discussing planetary habitability. Here, I summarize recent developments on the evolution of plate tectonics on Earth, which suggest a radically new view on Earth dynamics: convection in the mantle has been speeding up despite its secular cooling, and the operation of plate tectonics has been facilitated throughout Earth's history by the gradual subduction of water into an initially dry mantle. The role of plate tectonics in planetary habitability through its influence on atmospheric evolution is still difficult to quantify, and, to this end, it will be vital to better understand a coupled core-mantle-atmosphere system in the context of solar system evolution. © 2012 New York Academy of Sciences.

  8. Tectonics earthquake distribution pattern analysis based focal mechanisms (Case study Sulawesi Island, 1993–2012)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ismullah M, Muh. Fawzy; Lantu,; Aswad, Sabrianto; Massinai, Muh. Altin

    2015-01-01

    Indonesia is the meeting zone between three world main plates: Eurasian Plate, Pacific Plate, and Indo – Australia Plate. Therefore, Indonesia has a high seismicity degree. Sulawesi is one of whose high seismicity level. The earthquake centre lies in fault zone so the earthquake data gives tectonic visualization in a certain place. This research purpose is to identify Sulawesi tectonic model by using earthquake data from 1993 to 2012. Data used in this research is the earthquake data which consist of: the origin time, the epicenter coordinate, the depth, the magnitude and the fault parameter (strike, dip and slip). The result of research shows that there are a lot of active structures as a reason of the earthquake in Sulawesi. The active structures are Walannae Fault, Lawanopo Fault, Matano Fault, Palu – Koro Fault, Batui Fault and Moluccas Sea Double Subduction. The focal mechanism also shows that Walannae Fault, Batui Fault and Moluccas Sea Double Subduction are kind of reverse fault. While Lawanopo Fault, Matano Fault and Palu – Koro Fault are kind of strike slip fault

  9. Tectonics earthquake distribution pattern analysis based focal mechanisms (Case study Sulawesi Island, 1993–2012)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ismullah M, Muh. Fawzy, E-mail: mallaniung@gmail.com [Master Program Geophysical Engineering, Faculty of Mining and Petroleum Engineering (FTTM), Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB), Jl. Ganesha no. 10, Bandung, 40116, Jawa Barat (Indonesia); Lantu,; Aswad, Sabrianto; Massinai, Muh. Altin [Geophysics Program Study, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Hasanuddin University (UNHAS), Jl. PerintisKemerdekaan Km. 10, Makassar, 90245, Sulawesi Selatan (Indonesia)

    2015-04-24

    Indonesia is the meeting zone between three world main plates: Eurasian Plate, Pacific Plate, and Indo – Australia Plate. Therefore, Indonesia has a high seismicity degree. Sulawesi is one of whose high seismicity level. The earthquake centre lies in fault zone so the earthquake data gives tectonic visualization in a certain place. This research purpose is to identify Sulawesi tectonic model by using earthquake data from 1993 to 2012. Data used in this research is the earthquake data which consist of: the origin time, the epicenter coordinate, the depth, the magnitude and the fault parameter (strike, dip and slip). The result of research shows that there are a lot of active structures as a reason of the earthquake in Sulawesi. The active structures are Walannae Fault, Lawanopo Fault, Matano Fault, Palu – Koro Fault, Batui Fault and Moluccas Sea Double Subduction. The focal mechanism also shows that Walannae Fault, Batui Fault and Moluccas Sea Double Subduction are kind of reverse fault. While Lawanopo Fault, Matano Fault and Palu – Koro Fault are kind of strike slip fault.

  10. Oil prospection using the tectonic plate model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pointu, Agnès

    2015-04-01

    Tectonic plate models are an intellectual setting to understand why oil deposits are so uncommon and unequally distributed and how models can be used in actual oil and gas prospection. In this case, we use the example of the Ghawar deposit (Saudi Arabia), one of the largest producing well in the world. In the first step, physical properties of rocks composing the oil accumulation are studied by laboratory experiments. Students estimate the porosity of limestone and clay by comparing their mass before and after water impregnation. Results are compared to microscopic observations. Thus, students come to the conclusion that oil accumulations are characterized by superposition of rocks with very different properties: a rich organic source rock (clays of the Hanifa formation), a porous reservoir rock to store the petroleum in (limestones of the Arab formation) and above an impermeable rock with very low porosity (evaporites of the Tithonien). In previous lessons, students have seen that organic matter is usually mineralized by bacteria and that this preservation requires particular conditions. The aim is to explain why biomass production has been so important during the deposit of the clays of the Hanifa formation. Tectonic plate models make it possible to estimate the location of the Arabian Peninsula during Jurassic times (age of Hanifa formation). In order to understand why the paleo-location of the Arabian Peninsula is important to preserve organic matter, students have different documents showing: - That primary production of biomass by phytoplankton is favored by climatic conditions, - That the position of continents determinate the ocean currents and the positions of upwelling zones and zones where organic matter will be able to be preserved, - That north of the peninsula there was a passive margin during Jurassic times. An actual seismic line is studied in order to highlight that this extensive area allowed thick sedimentary deposits to accumulate and that fast

  11. Looking for Plate Tectonics in all the wrong fluids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davaille, Anne

    2017-04-01

    Ever since the theory of Plate Tectonics in the 1960's, the dream of the geomodeler has been to generate plate tectonics self-consistently from thermal convection in the laboratory. By selfconsistenly, I mean that the configuration of the plate boundaries is in no way specified a priori, so that the plates develop and are wholly consumed without intervention from the modeler. The reciepe is simple : put a well-chosen fluid in a fishtank heated from below and cooled from above, wait and see. But the « well-chosen » is the difficult part... and the interesting one. Plate tectonics is occuring on Earth because of the characteristics of the lithosphere rheology. The latter are complex to estimate as they depend on temperature, pressure, phase, water content, chemistry, strain rate, memory and scale. As a result, the ingredients necessary for plate tectonics are still debated, and it would be useful to find an analog fluid who could reproduce plate tectonics in the laboratory. I have therefore spent the last 25 years to try out fluids, and I shall present a number of failures to generate plate tectonics using polymers, colloids, ketchup, milk, chocolate, sugar, oils. To understand why they failed is important to narrow down the « well-chosen » fluid.

  12. Temporal Variation of Tectonic Tremor Activity Associated with Nearby Earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chao, K.; Van der Lee, S.; Hsu, Y. J.; Pu, H. C.

    2017-12-01

    Tectonic tremor and slow slip events, located downdip from the seismogenic zone, hold the key to recurring patterns of typical earthquakes. Several findings of slow aseismic slip during the prenucletion processes of nearby earthquakes have provided new insight into the study of stress transform of slow earthquakes in fault zones prior to megathrust earthquakes. However, how tectonic tremor is associated with the occurrence of nearby earthquakes remains unclear. To enhance our understanding of the stress interaction between tremor and earthquakes, we developed an algorithm for the automatic detection and location of tectonic tremor in the collisional tectonic environment in Taiwan. Our analysis of a three-year data set indicates a short-term increase in the tremor rate starting at 19 days before the 2010 ML6.4 Jiashian main shock (Chao et al., JGR, 2017). Around the time when the tremor rate began to rise, one GPS station recorded a flip in its direction of motion. We hypothesize that tremor is driven by a slow-slip event that preceded the occurrence of the shallower nearby main shock, even though the inferred slip is too small to be observed by all GPS stations. To better quantify what the necessary condition for tremor to response to nearby earthquakes is, we obtained a 13-year ambient tremor catalog from 2004 to 2016 in the same region. We examine the spatiotemporal relationship between tremor and 37 ML>=5.0 (seven events with ML>=6.0) nearby earthquakes located within 0.5 degrees to the active tremor sources. The findings from this study can enhance our understanding of the interaction among tremor, slow slip, and nearby earthquakes in the high seismic hazard regions.

  13. Earthquake recurrence and magnitude and seismic deformation of the northwestern Okhotsk plate, northeast Russia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hindle, D.; Mackey, K.

    2011-02-01

    Recorded seismicity from the northwestern Okhotsk plate, northeast Asia, is currently insufficient to account for the predicted slip rates along its boundaries due to plate tectonics. However, the magnitude-frequency relationship for earthquakes from the region suggests that larger earthquakes are possible in the future and that events of ˜Mw 7.5 which should occur every ˜100-350 years would account for almost all the slip of the plate along its boundaries due to Eurasia-North America convergence. We use models for seismic slip distribution along the bounding faults of Okhotsk to conclude that relatively little aseismic strain release is occurring and that larger future earthquakes are likely in the region. Our models broadly support the idea of a single Okhotsk plate, with the large majority of tectonic strain released along its boundaries.

  14. Earthquakes as Expressions of Tectonic Activity

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Sources, Types and Examples. Kusala Rajendran ... Science, Bangalore. Her research interests are mostly ... ogy, and some highlights on Indian earthquakes studies, and ..... jects, I did Applied Geophysics from the University of Roorkee.

  15. Stress drops of induced and tectonic earthquakes in the central United States are indistinguishable.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yihe; Ellsworth, William L; Beroza, Gregory C

    2017-08-01

    Induced earthquakes currently pose a significant hazard in the central United States, but there is considerable uncertainty about the severity of their ground motions. We measure stress drops of 39 moderate-magnitude induced and tectonic earthquakes in the central United States and eastern North America. Induced earthquakes, more than half of which are shallower than 5 km, show a comparable median stress drop to tectonic earthquakes in the central United States that are dominantly strike-slip but a lower median stress drop than that of tectonic earthquakes in the eastern North America that are dominantly reverse-faulting. This suggests that ground motion prediction equations developed for tectonic earthquakes can be applied to induced earthquakes if the effects of depth and faulting style are properly considered. Our observation leads to the notion that, similar to tectonic earthquakes, induced earthquakes are driven by tectonic stresses.

  16. Petroleum and natural gas geology and plate tectonics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Koebel, B.

    1984-01-01

    Several processes of oil and gas geology are studied in connection with plate-tectonical processes. Thus it becomes clear, that there is a distinct difference between the Paleozoic development of the European plate and the Mesozoic development. One can state, that the Paleozoic development is essentially influenced by the positions of the mobile belts and the cratonized parts of the plates. The development during Meso-Caenozoic is mainly characterized by crustal processes in the result of the disintegration of Pangaea.

  17. Active tectonics and earthquake potential of the Myanmar region

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Yu; Sieh, Kerry; Tun, Soe Thura; Lai, Kuang-Yin; Myint, Than

    2014-01-01

    This paper describes geomorphologic evidence for the principal neotectonic features of Myanmar and its immediate surroundings. We combine this evidence with published structural, geodetic, and seismic data to present an overview of the active tectonic architecture of the region and its seismic potential. Three tectonic systems accommodate oblique collision of the Indian plate with Southeast Asia and extrusion of Asian territory around the eastern syntaxis of the Himalayan mountain range. Subd...

  18. Improve earthquake hypocenter using adaptive simulated annealing inversion in regional tectonic, volcano tectonic, and geothermal observation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ry, Rexha Verdhora, E-mail: rexha.vry@gmail.com [Master Program of Geophysical Engineering, Faculty of Mining and Petroleum Engineering, Institut Teknologi Bandung, Jalan Ganesha No.10, Bandung 40132 (Indonesia); Nugraha, Andri Dian, E-mail: nugraha@gf.itb.ac.id [Global Geophysical Research Group, Faculty of Mining and Petroleum Engineering, Institut Teknologi Bandung, Jalan Ganesha No.10, Bandung 40132 (Indonesia)

    2015-04-24

    Observation of earthquakes is routinely used widely in tectonic activity observation, and also in local scale such as volcano tectonic and geothermal activity observation. It is necessary for determining the location of precise hypocenter which the process involves finding a hypocenter location that has minimum error between the observed and the calculated travel times. When solving this nonlinear inverse problem, simulated annealing inversion method can be applied to such global optimization problems, which the convergence of its solution is independent of the initial model. In this study, we developed own program codeby applying adaptive simulated annealing inversion in Matlab environment. We applied this method to determine earthquake hypocenter using several data cases which are regional tectonic, volcano tectonic, and geothermal field. The travel times were calculated using ray tracing shooting method. We then compared its results with the results using Geiger’s method to analyze its reliability. Our results show hypocenter location has smaller RMS error compared to the Geiger’s result that can be statistically associated with better solution. The hypocenter of earthquakes also well correlated with geological structure in the study area. Werecommend using adaptive simulated annealing inversion to relocate hypocenter location in purpose to get precise and accurate earthquake location.

  19. Barrel organ of plate tectonics - a new tool for outreach and education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broz, Petr; Machek, Matěj; Šorm, Zdar

    2016-04-01

    Plate tectonics is the major geological concept to explain dynamics and structure of Earth's outer shell, the lithosphere. In the plate tectonic theory processes in the Earth lithosphere and its dynamics is driven by the relative motion and interaction of lithospheric plates. Geologically most active regions on Earth often correlate with the lithospheric plate boundaries. Thus for explaining the earth surface evolution, mountain building, volcanism and earthquake origin it is important to understand processes at the plate boundaries. However these processes associated with plate tectonics usually require significant period of time to take effects, therefore, their entire cycles cannot be directly observed in the nature by humans. This makes a challenge for scientists studying these processes, but also for teachers and popularizers trying to explain them to students and to the general public. Therefore, to overcome this problem, we developed a mechanical model of plate tectonics enabling demonstration of most important processes associated with plate tectonics in real time. The mechanical model is a wooden box, more specifically a special type of barrel organ, with hand painted backdrops in the front side. These backdrops are divided into several components representing geodynamic processes associated with plate tectonics, specifically convective currents occurring in the mantle, sea-floor spreading, a subduction of the oceanic crust under the continental crust, partial melting and volcanism associated with subduction, a formation of magmatic stripes, an ascent of mantle plume throughout the mantle, a volcanic activity associated with hot spots, and a formation and degradation of volcanic islands on moving lithospheric plate. All components are set in motion by a handle controlled by a human operator, and the scene is illuminated with colored lights controlled automatically by an electric device embedded in the box. Operation of the model may be seen on www

  20. Feeling and Understanding Plate Tectonics - How can We attract Museum Visitors Attention?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, Gilla; Apel, Michael

    2017-04-01

    Earthquakes, volcano eruptions and other natural hazards are commonly paid attention to, if news about disastrous events reach us. The mission of an Earth Science or Natural History Museum, however, goes beyond explaining the causes of natural disasters, but should also present science history and cutting edge research. Since dealing with a subject, especially with one, which seems to be in the abstract, is more effective, we realised two new projects where our visitors can feel and understand plate tectonics in a more exciting way. In 2015 we installed an earthquake simulator in our permanent exhibition to allow our visitors the physical experience of an earthquake. Because of static restrictions the simulator is housed in a container outside the building where it can be visited as a booked program upon prior reservation or by joining public tours on Sundays and special occasions. The simulation of six real earthquakes in two spatial directions is accompanied by a movie presenting facts about the earthquake itself (e.g. location, magnitude, damage and victims), but also general information about plate tectonics. This standard program takes about 20 minutes. During an educational program, however, not only the simulator is visited, but also the permanent exhibition, where the guide can focus on different aspects and then might choose specific earthquakes and information blocs in the simulator. In addition workshops with experiments are offered for school classes and other groups. This allows us to offer an individual program fitting to the visitor group. In 2016 we converted an old movie room to a state of the art media room. In cooperation with Media Informatics students we developed a quiz for three different levels and various themes like earthquakes, volcanoes, history and plate tectonics in general. Starting the quiz, a virtual earthquake destroys a building which will be reconstructed if the participants answer multiple choice questions correctly. Though, the

  1. Earthquakes, Cities, and Lifelines: lessons integrating tectonics, society, and engineering in middle school Earth Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toke, N.; Johnson, A.; Nelson, K.

    2010-12-01

    Earthquakes are one of the most widely covered geologic processes by the media. As a result students, even at the middle school level, arrive in the classroom with preconceptions about the importance and hazards posed by earthquakes. Therefore earthquakes represent not only an attractive topic to engage students when introducing tectonics, but also a means to help students understand the relationships between geologic processes, society, and engineering solutions. Facilitating understanding of the fundamental connections between science and society is important for the preparation of future scientists and engineers as well as informed citizens. Here, we present a week-long lesson designed to be implemented in five one hour sessions with classes of ~30 students. It consists of two inquiry-based mapping investigations, motivational presentations, and short readings that describe fundamental models of plate tectonics, faults, and earthquakes. The readings also provide examples of engineering solutions such as the Alaskan oil pipeline which withstood multi-meter surface offset in the 2002 Denali Earthquake. The first inquiry-based investigation is a lesson on tectonic plates. Working in small groups, each group receives a different world map plotting both topography and one of the following data sets: GPS plate motion vectors, the locations and types of volcanoes, the location of types of earthquakes. Using these maps and an accompanying explanation of the data each group’s task is to map plate boundary locations. Each group then presents a ~10 minute summary of the type of data they used and their interpretation of the tectonic plates with a poster and their mapping results. Finally, the instructor will facilitate a class discussion about how the data types could be combined to understand more about plate boundaries. Using student interpretations of real data allows student misconceptions to become apparent. Throughout the exercise we record student preconceptions

  2. Tectonic setting of the Wooded Island earthquake swarm, eastern Washington

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blakely, Richard J.; Sherrod, Brian L.; Weaver, Craig S.; Rohay, Alan C.; Wells, Ray E.

    2012-01-01

    Magnetic anomalies provide insights into the tectonic implications of a swarm of ~1500 shallow (~1 km deep) earthquakes that occurred in 2009 on the Hanford site,Washington. Epicenters were concentrated in a 2 km2 area nearWooded Island in the Columbia River. The largest earthquake (M 3.0) had first motions consistent with slip on a northwest-striking reverse fault. The swarm was accompanied by 35 mm of vertical surface deformation, seen in satellite interferometry (InSAR), interpreted to be caused by ~50 mm of slip on a northwest-striking reverse fault and associated bedding-plane fault in the underlying Columbia River Basalt Group (CRBG). A magnetic anomaly over exposed CRBG at Yakima Ridge 40 km northwest of Wooded Island extends southeastward beyond the ridge to the Columbia River, suggesting that the Yakima Ridge anticline and its associated thrust fault extend southeastward in the subsurface. In map view, the concealed anticline passes through the earthquake swarm and lies parallel to reverse faults determined from first motions and InSAR data. A forward model of the magnetic anomaly near Wooded Island is consistent with uplift of concealed CRBG, with the top surface swarm and the thrust and bedding-plane faults modeled from interferometry all fall within the northeastern limb of the faulted anticline. Although fluids may be responsible for triggering the Wooded Island earthquake swarm, the seismic and aseismic deformation are consistent with regional-scale tectonic compression across the concealed Yakima Ridge anticline.

  3. Subducting plate geology in three great earthquake ruptures of the western Alaska margin, Kodiak to Unimak

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Huene, Roland E.; Miller, John J.; Weinrebe, Wilhelm

    2012-01-01

    Three destructive earthquakes along the Alaska subduction zone sourced transoceanic tsunamis during the past 70 years. Since it is reasoned that past rupture areas might again source tsunamis in the future, we studied potential asperities and barriers in the subduction zone by examining Quaternary Gulf of Alaska plate history, geophysical data, and morphology. We relate the aftershock areas to subducting lower plate relief and dissimilar materials in the seismogenic zone in the 1964 Kodiak and adjacent 1938 Semidi Islands earthquake segments. In the 1946 Unimak earthquake segment, the exposed lower plate seafloor lacks major relief that might organize great earthquake rupture. However, the upper plate contains a deep transverse-trending basin and basement ridges associated with the Eocene continental Alaska convergent margin transition to the Aleutian island arc. These upper plate features are sufficiently large to have affected rupture propagation. In addition, massive slope failure in the Unimak area may explain the local 42-m-high 1946 tsunami runup. Although Quaternary geologic and tectonic processes included accretion to form a frontal prism, the study of seismic images, samples, and continental slope physiography shows a previous history of tectonic erosion. Implied asperities and barriers in the seismogenic zone could organize future great earthquake rupture.

  4. Generalized statistical mechanics approaches to earthquakes and tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papadakis, Giorgos; Michas, Georgios

    2016-01-01

    Despite the extreme complexity that characterizes the mechanism of the earthquake generation process, simple empirical scaling relations apply to the collective properties of earthquakes and faults in a variety of tectonic environments and scales. The physical characterization of those properties and the scaling relations that describe them attract a wide scientific interest and are incorporated in the probabilistic forecasting of seismicity in local, regional and planetary scales. Considerable progress has been made in the analysis of the statistical mechanics of earthquakes, which, based on the principle of entropy, can provide a physical rationale to the macroscopic properties frequently observed. The scale-invariant properties, the (multi) fractal structures and the long-range interactions that have been found to characterize fault and earthquake populations have recently led to the consideration of non-extensive statistical mechanics (NESM) as a consistent statistical mechanics framework for the description of seismicity. The consistency between NESM and observations has been demonstrated in a series of publications on seismicity, faulting, rock physics and other fields of geosciences. The aim of this review is to present in a concise manner the fundamental macroscopic properties of earthquakes and faulting and how these can be derived by using the notions of statistical mechanics and NESM, providing further insights into earthquake physics and fault growth processes. PMID:28119548

  5. Radon soil increases before volcano-tectonic earthquakes in Colombia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Garzon, G.; Serna, D.; Diago, J.; Moran, C.

    2003-01-01

    Continuous studies of radon concentration changes in soils for the purpose of earthquake monitoring have been carried out in three colombian districts and in the edifices of Galeras and nevado del Ruiz volcanoes since 1995. In zones of active faulting have been measured radon soil emissions between 1000 and 2500 pCi/L. In an intersection of two active geological faults have been measured levels of 25 000 pCi/L. In the present work appears a compilation of examples of the registered anomalous radon emissions in several stations before earthquakes of tectonic character. Examples of registered radon increases before: (1) events of magnitudes between 2 and 4; (2) the occurrence of seismic swarms; and (3) the Quindio (Colombia) earthquake (M w = 6, 2) of January 1999, are described. A model of transport mechanism for the studied isotopes is presented. (orig.)

  6. Global Dynamic Numerical Simulations of Plate Tectonic Reorganizations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morra, G.; Quevedo, L.; Butterworth, N.; Matthews, K. J.; Müller, D.

    2010-12-01

    We use a new numerical approach for global geodynamics to investigate the origin of present global plate motion and to identify the causes of the last two global tectonic reorganizations occurred about 50 and 100 million years ago (Ma) [1]. While the 50 Ma event is the most well-known global plate-mantle event, expressed by the bend in the Hawaiian-Emperor volcanic chain, a prominent plate reorganization at about 100 Ma, although presently little studied, is clearly indicated by a major bend in the fracture zones in the Indian Ocean and by a change in Pacific plate motion [2]. Our workflow involves turning plate reconstructions into surface meshes that are subsequently employed as initial conditions for global Boundary Element numerical models. The tectonic setting that anticipates the reorganizations is processed with the software GPlates, combining the 3D mesh of the paleo-plate morphology and the reconstruction of paleo-subducted slabs, elaborated from tectonic history [3]. All our models involve the entire planetary system, are fully dynamic, have free surface, are characterized by a spectacular computational speed due to the simultaneous use of the multi-pole algorithm and the Boundary Element formulation and are limited only by the use of sharp material property variations [4]. We employ this new tool to unravel the causes of plate tectonic reorganizations, producing and comparing global plate motion with the reconstructed ones. References: [1] Torsvik, T., Müller, R.D., Van der Voo, R., Steinberger, B., and Gaina, C., 2008, Global Plate Motion Frames: Toward a unified model: Reviews in Geophysics, VOL. 46, RG3004, 44 PP., 2008 [2] Wessel, P. and Kroenke, L.W. Pacific absolute plate motion since 145 Ma: An assessment of the fixed hot spot hypothesis. Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol 113, B06101, 2008 [3] L. Quevedo, G. Morra, R. D. Mueller. Parallel Fast Multipole Boundary Element Method for Crustal Dynamics, Proceeding 9th World Congress and 4th Asian

  7. Relocation of earthquakes at southwestern Indian Ocean Ridge and its tectonic significance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, W.; Zhao, M.; Haridhi, H.; Lee, C. S.; Qiu, X.; Zhang, J.

    2015-12-01

    The southwest Indian Ridge (SWIR) is a typical ultra-slow spreading ridge (Dick et al., 2003) and further plate boundary where the earthquakes often occurred. Due to the lack of the seismic stations in SWIR, positioning of earthquakes and micro-earthquakes is not accurate. The Ocean Bottom Seismometers (OBS) seismic experiment was carried out for the first time in the SWIR 49 ° 39 'E from Jan. to March, 2010 (Zhao et al., 2013). These deployed OBS also recorded the earthquakes' waveforms during the experiment. Two earthquakes occurred respectively in Feb. 7 and Feb. 9, 2010 with the same magnitude of 4.4 mb. These two earthquakes were relocated using the software HYPOSAT based on the spectrum analysis and band-pass (3-5 Hz) filtering and picking up the travel-times of Pn and Sn. Results of hypocentral determinations show that there location error is decreased significantly by joined OBS's recording data. This study do not only provide the experiences for the next step deploying long-term wide-band OBSs, but also deepen understanding of the structure of SWIR and clarify the nature of plate tectonic motivation. This research was granted by the Natural Science Foundation of China (41176053, 91028002, 91428204). Keywords: southwest Indian Ridge (SWIR), relocation of earthquakes, Ocean Bottom Seismometers (OBS), HYPOSAT References:[1] Dick, H. J. B., Lin J., Schouten H. 2003. An ultraslow-spreading class of ocean ridge. Nature, 426(6965): 405-412. [2] Zhao M. H., et al. 2013. Three-dimensional seismic structure of the Dragon Flag oceanic core complex at the ultraslow spreading Southwest Indian Ridge (49°39' E). Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems, 14(10): 4544-4563.

  8. The magma ocean as an impediment to lunar plate tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warren, Paul H.

    1993-01-01

    The primary impediment to plate tectonics on the moon was probably the great thickness of its crust and particularly its high crust/lithosphere thickness ratio. This in turn can be attributed to the preponderance of low-density feldspar over all other Al-compatible phases in the lunar interior. During the magma ocean epoch, the moon's crust/lithosphere thickness ratio was at the maximum theoretical value, approximately 1, and it remained high for a long time afterwards. A few large regions of thin crust were produced by basin-scale cratering approximately contemporaneous with the demise of the magma ocean. However, these regions probably also tend to have uncommonly thin lithosphere, since they were directly heated and indirectly enriched in K, Th, and U by the same cratering process. Thus, plate tectonics on the moon in the form of systematic lithosphere subduction was impeded by the magma ocean.

  9. Coulomb stress transfer and tectonic loading preceding the 2002 Denali fault earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bufe, Charles G.

    2006-01-01

    Pre-2002 tectonic loading and Coulomb stress transfer are modeled along the rupture zone of the M 7.9 Denali fault earthquake (DFE) and on adjacent segments of the right-lateral Denali–Totschunda fault system in central Alaska, using a three-dimensional boundary-element program. The segments modeled closely follow, for about 95°, the arc of a circle of radius 375 km centered on an inferred asperity near the northeastern end of the intersection of the Patton Bay fault with the Alaskan megathrust under Prince William Sound. The loading model includes slip of 6 mm/yr below 12 km along the fault system, consistent with rotation of the Wrangell block about the asperity at a rate of about 1°/m.y. as well as slip of the Pacific plate at 5 cm/yr at depth along the Fairweather–Queen Charlotte transform fault system and on the Alaska megathrust. The model is consistent with most available pre-2002 Global Positioning System (GPS) displacement rate data. Coulomb stresses induced on the Denali–Totschunda fault system (locked above 12 km) by slip at depth and by transfer from the M 9.2 Prince William Sound earthquake of 1964 dominated the changing Coulomb stress distribution along the fault. The combination of loading (∼70–85%) and coseismic stress transfer from the great 1964 earthquake (∼15–30%) were the principal post-1900 stress factors building toward strike-slip failure of the northern Denali and Totschunda segments in the M 7.9 earthquake of November 2002. Postseismic stresses transferred from the 1964 earthquake may also have been a significant factor. The M 7.2–7.4 Delta River earthquake of 1912 (Carver et al., 2004) may have delayed or advanced the timing of the DFE, depending on the details and location of its rupture. The initial subevent of the 2002 DFE earthquake was on the 40-km Susitna Glacier thrust fault at the western end of the Denali fault rupture. The Coulomb stress transferred from the 1964 earthquake moved the Susitna Glacier thrust

  10. The ultra low frequency electromagnetic radiation observed in the topside ionosphere above boundaries of tectonic plates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael A. Athanasiou

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we present results of a comparison between ultra low frequency (ULF electromagnetic (EM radiation, recorded by an electric field instrument onboard the satellite detection of electromagnetic emissions transmitted from earthquake regions in the topside ionosphere, and the seismicity of regions with high and low seismic activity. In particular, we evaluated the energy variations of the ULF Ezelectric field component during a period of four years (2006-2009, in order to examine the possible relation of ULF EM radiation with seismogenic regions located in Central America, Indonesia, the Eastern Mediterranean Basin and Greece. As a tool for evaluating the ULF Ez energy variations we used singular spectrum analysis techniques. The results of our analysis clearly show a significant increase of the ULF EM energy emitted from regions of highest seismic activity at the boundaries tectonic plates. Furthermore, we found that higher electromagnetic radiation was detected in a region above the northern- western Greek Arc (R1 than above the adjacent region including Athens and its urban area. We interpret these results of the present study as suggesting that: i the seismogenic regions at the boundary of tectonic plates radiate ULF EM emissions observed by satellites in the topside ionosphere; and ii that this EM radiation is not only related with the occurrence time of great (M≥5 earthquakes, but it is often present in intermediate times and it appears as a quasi-permanent phenomenon.

  11. Ore-lead isotopes and Grenville plate tectonics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Farquhar, R.M.; Fletcher, I.R.

    1980-01-01

    Recent advances in the 'whole earth' modelling of evolutionary processes of Pb isotopes shed light upon the origin of the metals found in various types of ore deposits. On the bases of these models and several recently published data sets, we believe that the ore deposits formed in various plate tectonic environments may carry 'isotopic fingerprints' which, when used with other characteristics such as mineral assemblages, may identify the depositional environments of many ore bodies. In the present study Pb-isotopic measurements have been made of a number of Precambrain mineralization types and localities throughout the Central Metasedimentary Belt of the Grenville Province. The data for individual deposits are at best ambiguous, but fall into two groups sufficiently distinctive to allow some degree of 'fingerprint' identification. Comparisons with data from other areas suggest that the major periods of sedimentation within the Central Metasedimentary Belt accompanied plate rifting and/or island arc tectonic activity, with most of the mineralized lead being derived from mantle sources. Detailed comparisons between the Grenville and other regions are uncertain, mainly because there are few detailed high-accuracy data sets from younger, tectonically unambiguous mineral occurrences. We suggest that once these data sets are availble, isotopic fingerprinting may become diagnostic for deposits ranging well back into the Precambrain

  12. The Biggest Plates on Earth. Submarine Ring of Fire--Grades 5-6. Plate Tectonics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (DOC), Rockville, MD.

    This activity is designed to teach how tectonic plates move, what some consequences of this motion are, and how magnetic anomalies document the motion at spreading centers do. The activity provides learning objectives, a list of needed materials, key vocabulary words, background information, day-to-day procedures, internet connections, career…

  13. Subduction and Plate Edge Tectonics in the Southern Caribbean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levander, A.; Schmitz, M.; Niu, F.; Bezada, M. J.; Miller, M. S.; Masy, J.; Ave Lallemant, H. G.; Pindell, J. L.; Bolivar Working Group

    2013-05-01

    The southern Caribbean plate boundary consists of a subduction zone at at either end of a complex strike-slip fault system: In the east at the Lesser Antilles subduction zone, the Atlantic part of the South American plate subducts beneath the Caribbean. In the north and west in the Colombia basin, the Caribbean subducts under South America. In a manner of speaking, the two plates subduct beneath each other. Finite-frequency teleseismic P-wave tomography confirms this, imaging the Atlantic and the Caribbean plates subducting steeply in opposite directions to transition zone depths under northern South America (Bezada et al, 2010). The two subduction zones are connected by the El Pilar-San Sebastian strike-slip fault system, a San Andreas scale system that has been cut off at the Bocono fault, the southeastern boundary fault of the Maracaibo block. A variety of seismic probes identify subduction features at either end of the system (Niu et al, 2007; Clark et al., 2008; Miller et al. 2009; Growdon et al., 2009; Huang et al., 2010; Masy et al, 2011). The El Pilar system forms at the southeastern corner of the Antilles subduction zone with the Atlantic plate tearing from South America. The deforming plate edges control mountain building and basin formation at the eastern end of the strike-slip system. Tearing the Atlantic plate from the rest of South America appears to cause further lithospheric instability continentward. In northwestern South America the Caribbean plate very likely also tears, as its southernmost element subducts at shallow angles under northernmost Colombia but then rapidly descends to the transition zone under Lake Maracaibo (Bezada et al., 2010). We believe that the flat slab controls the tectonics of the Neogene Merida Andes, Perija, and Santa Marta ranges. The nonsubducting part of the Caribbean plate also underthrusts northern Venezuela to about the width of the coastal mountains (Miller et al., 2009). We infer that the edge of the underthrust

  14. Seismic potential of weak, near-surface faults revealed at plate tectonic slip rates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ikari, Matt J; Kopf, Achim J

    2017-11-01

    The near-surface areas of major faults commonly contain weak, phyllosilicate minerals, which, based on laboratory friction measurements, are assumed to creep stably. However, it is now known that shallow faults can experience tens of meters of earthquake slip and also host slow and transient slip events. Laboratory experiments are generally performed at least two orders of magnitude faster than plate tectonic speeds, which are the natural driving conditions for major faults; the absence of experimental data for natural driving rates represents a critical knowledge gap. We use laboratory friction experiments on natural fault zone samples at driving rates of centimeters per year to demonstrate that there is abundant evidence of unstable slip behavior that was not previously predicted. Specifically, weak clay-rich fault samples generate slow slip events (SSEs) and have frictional properties favorable for earthquake rupture. Our work explains growing field observations of shallow SSE and surface-breaking earthquake slip, and predicts that such phenomena should be more widely expected.

  15. Plate tectonic reconstruction of the Carpathian-Pannonian region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Csontos, L.; Vörös, A.

    2003-04-01

    Plate tectonics of the Carpathian area is controlled by microcontinents between the European and African margins and the relative movements of these margins. Beside the generally accepted Apulian (Austroalpine, West Carpathian, Dinaric) microcontinents two others: the Bihor-Getic (Tisza) and Drina-Ivanjica are introduced. The first was attached to the European margin, the second to the Apulian microcontinent. During Permian a major ocean was obliquely subducted south of the Apulian microcontinents. Drina-Ivanjica rifted off the Apulian microcontinent in the Late Permian-Middle Triassic, as a consequence of back-arc rifting. Short-lived oceans subducted by the end of Jurassic, causing Drina-Ivanjica to collide with the internal Dinaric-West Carpathian and Bihor-Getic margins. An external Penninic-Váhic ocean tract began opening in the Early Jurassic, separating the East Alpine-West Carpathian microcontinent (and its fauna) from the European shelf. Further south, the Severin-Ceahlau-Magura also began opening in the Early Jurassic, but final separation of the Bihor-Getic (and its fauna) from the European shelf did not take place until the Middle-Late Jurassic. Two oroclinal bends: the Alcapa on the Dinaric margin and the Tisza-Dacia on the South Carpathian-Getic margin are essential elements of these reconstructions. Their bending (Aptian and Albian-Maastrichtian, respectively) are suggested by paleomagnetic and tectonic transport data. The two oroclinal bends are finally opposed and pushed into the Carpathian embayment by the Paleogene. In Miocene a back-arc basin develops on older tectonic elements. Differential rotations affect the wealded microcontinents.

  16. Tectonic Movement in Korean Peninsula and Relation between Fault and Earthquake

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bae, Dae Seok; Koh, Yong Kwon; Kim, Kyung Su

    2009-08-01

    The objectives of the research are to study geological faults and related geological processes such as tectonic processes and earthquake to select a safe site for the high level radioactive waste disposal consequently. The results from this study show the significance of faults evaluation and develop methods to analyze geological data related to faults such as tectonic processes and earthquake, which are important data for the site selection

  17. Scaling of Convection and Plate Tectonics in Super-Earths

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valencia, D. C.; O'Connell, R. J.; Sasselov, D. D.

    2006-12-01

    The discovery of three Super-Earths around different stars, possible only in the last year, prompts us to study the characteristics of our planet within a general context. The Earth, being the most massive terrestrial object in the solar system is the only planet that exhibits plate tectonics. We think this might not be a coincidence and explore the role that mass plays in determining the mode of convection. We use the scaling of convective vigor with Rayleigh number commonly used in parameterized convection. We study how the parameters controlling convection: Rayleigh number (Ra), boundary layer thickness (δ), internal temperature (T_i) and convective velocities (u) scale with mass. This is possible from the scaling of heat flux, mantle density, size and gravity with mass which we reported in Valencia, et. al 2006. The extrapolation to massive rocky planets is done from our knowledge of the Earth. Even though uncertainties arise from extrapolation and assumptions are needed we consider this simple scaling to be a first adequate step. As the mass of a planet increases, Ra increases, yielding a decrease in δ and an increase in u, while T_i increases very slightly. This is true for an isoviscous case and is more accentuated in a temperature dependent viscosity scenario. In a planet with vigorous convection (high u), a thin lithosphere (low δ) is easier to subduct and hence, initiate plate tectonics. The lithosphere also has to be dense enough (cold and thick) to have the bouyancy necessary for subduction. We calculate that a convective cycle for an isoviscous planet is τ ~ M^{-0.3} considering whole mantle convection. Meaning that if these planets have continents, the timescale for continental rearrangement is shorter (about half the Earth's for a 5 earth-mass planet). Additionally, we explore the negative feedback cycle between convection and temperature dependent viscosity and estimate a timescale for this effect.

  18. Global Ocean Sedimentation Patterns: Plate Tectonic History Versus Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goswami, A.; Reynolds, E.; Olson, P.; Hinnov, L. A.; Gnanadesikan, A.

    2014-12-01

    Global sediment data (Whittaker et al., 2013) and carbonate content data (Archer, 1996) allows examination of ocean sedimentation evolution with respect to age of the underlying ocean crust (Müller et al., 2008). From these data, we construct time series of ocean sediment thickness and carbonate deposition rate for the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian ocean basins for the past 120 Ma. These time series are unique to each basin and reflect an integrated response to plate tectonics and climate change. The goal is to parameterize ocean sedimentation tied to crustal age for paleoclimate studies. For each basin, total sediment thickness and carbonate deposition rate from 0.1 x 0.1 degree cells are binned according to basement crustal age; area-corrected moments (mean, variance, etc.) are calculated for each bin. Segmented linear fits identify trends in present-day carbonate deposition rates and changes in ocean sedimentation from 0 to 120 Ma. In the North and South Atlantic and Indian oceans, mean sediment thickness versus crustal age is well represented by three linear segments, with the slope of each segment increasing with increasing crustal age. However, the transition age between linear segments varies among the three basins. In contrast, mean sediment thickness in the North and South Pacific oceans are numerically smaller and well represented by two linear segments with slopes that decrease with increasing crustal age. These opposing trends are more consistent with the plate tectonic history of each basin being the controlling factor in sedimentation rates, rather than climate change. Unlike total sediment thickness, carbonate deposition rates decrease smoothly with crustal age in all basins, with the primary controls being ocean chemistry and water column depth.References: Archer, D., 1996, Global Biogeochem. Cycles 10, 159-174.Müller, R.D., et al., 2008, Science, 319, 1357-1362.Whittaker, J., et al., 2013, Geochem., Geophys., Geosyst. DOI: 10.1002/ggge.20181

  19. Subduction zone and crustal dynamics of western Washington; a tectonic model for earthquake hazards evaluation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanley, Dal; Villaseñor, Antonio; Benz, Harley

    1999-01-01

    The Cascadia subduction zone is extremely complex in the western Washington region, involving local deformation of the subducting Juan de Fuca plate and complicated block structures in the crust. It has been postulated that the Cascadia subduction zone could be the source for a large thrust earthquake, possibly as large as M9.0. Large intraplate earthquakes from within the subducting Juan de Fuca plate beneath the Puget Sound region have accounted for most of the energy release in this century and future such large earthquakes are expected. Added to these possible hazards is clear evidence for strong crustal deformation events in the Puget Sound region near faults such as the Seattle fault, which passes through the southern Seattle metropolitan area. In order to understand the nature of these individual earthquake sources and their possible interrelationship, we have conducted an extensive seismotectonic study of the region. We have employed P-wave velocity models developed using local earthquake tomography as a key tool in this research. Other information utilized includes geological, paleoseismic, gravity, magnetic, magnetotelluric, deformation, seismicity, focal mechanism and geodetic data. Neotectonic concepts were tested and augmented through use of anelastic (creep) deformation models based on thin-plate, finite-element techniques developed by Peter Bird, UCLA. These programs model anelastic strain rate, stress, and velocity fields for given rheological parameters, variable crust and lithosphere thicknesses, heat flow, and elevation. Known faults in western Washington and the main Cascadia subduction thrust were incorporated in the modeling process. Significant results from the velocity models include delineation of a previously studied arch in the subducting Juan de Fuca plate. The axis of the arch is oriented in the direction of current subduction and asymmetrically deformed due to the effects of a northern buttress mapped in the velocity models. This

  20. On the relative significance of lithospheric weakening mechanisms for sustained plate tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araceli Sanchez-Maes, Sophia

    2018-01-01

    Plate tectonics requires the bending of strong plates at subduction zones, which is difficult to achieve without a secondary weakening mechanism. Two classes of weakening mechanisms have been proposed for the generation of ongoing plate tectonics, distinguished by whether or not they require water. Here we show that the energy budget of global subduction zones offers a simple yet decisive test on their relative significance. Theoretical studies of mantle convection suggest bending dissipation to occupy only 10-20 % of total dissipation in the mantle, and our results indicate that the hydrous mechanism in the shallow part of plates is essential to satisfy the requirement. Thus, surface oceans are required for the long-term operation of plate tectonics on terrestrial worlds. Establishing this necessary and observable condition for sustained plate tectonics carries important implications for planetary habitability at large.

  1. Seismo-tectonic model regarding the genesis and occurrence of Vrancea (Romania) earthquakes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Enescu, D.; Enescu, B.D.

    1998-01-01

    The first part of this paper contains a very short description of some previous attempts in seismo-tectonic modeling of Vrancea zone. The seismo-tectonic model developed by the authors of this work is presented in the second part of the paper. This model is based on the spatial distribution of hypo-centers and focal mechanism characteristics. Lithosphere structure and tectonics of the directly implied zones represent very important characteristics of the seismo-tectonic model. Some two-dimensional and three-dimensional sketches of the model, which satisfy all the above mentioned characteristics and give realistic explanations regarding the genesis and occurrence of Vrancea earthquakes are presented. (authors)

  2. Plate tectonic regulation of global marine animal diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaffos, Andrew; Finnegan, Seth; Peters, Shanan E.

    2017-05-01

    Valentine and Moores [Valentine JW, Moores EM (1970) Nature 228:657-659] hypothesized that plate tectonics regulates global biodiversity by changing the geographic arrangement of continental crust, but the data required to fully test the hypothesis were not available. Here, we use a global database of marine animal fossil occurrences and a paleogeographic reconstruction model to test the hypothesis that temporal patterns of continental fragmentation have impacted global Phanerozoic biodiversity. We find a positive correlation between global marine invertebrate genus richness and an independently derived quantitative index describing the fragmentation of continental crust during supercontinental coalescence-breakup cycles. The observed positive correlation between global biodiversity and continental fragmentation is not readily attributable to commonly cited vagaries of the fossil record, including changing quantities of marine rock or time-variable sampling effort. Because many different environmental and biotic factors may covary with changes in the geographic arrangement of continental crust, it is difficult to identify a specific causal mechanism. However, cross-correlation indicates that the state of continental fragmentation at a given time is positively correlated with the state of global biodiversity for tens of millions of years afterward. There is also evidence to suggest that continental fragmentation promotes increasing marine richness, but that coalescence alone has only a small negative or stabilizing effect. Together, these results suggest that continental fragmentation, particularly during the Mesozoic breakup of the supercontinent Pangaea, has exerted a first-order control on the long-term trajectory of Phanerozoic marine animal diversity.

  3. Major earthquakes occur regularly on an isolated plate boundary fault.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berryman, Kelvin R; Cochran, Ursula A; Clark, Kate J; Biasi, Glenn P; Langridge, Robert M; Villamor, Pilar

    2012-06-29

    The scarcity of long geological records of major earthquakes, on different types of faults, makes testing hypotheses of regular versus random or clustered earthquake recurrence behavior difficult. We provide a fault-proximal major earthquake record spanning 8000 years on the strike-slip Alpine Fault in New Zealand. Cyclic stratigraphy at Hokuri Creek suggests that the fault ruptured to the surface 24 times, and event ages yield a 0.33 coefficient of variation in recurrence interval. We associate this near-regular earthquake recurrence with a geometrically simple strike-slip fault, with high slip rate, accommodating a high proportion of plate boundary motion that works in isolation from other faults. We propose that it is valid to apply time-dependent earthquake recurrence models for seismic hazard estimation to similar faults worldwide.

  4. A Plate Tectonic Model for the Neoproterozoic with Evolving Plate Boundaries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merdith, Andrew; Collins, Alan; Williams, Simon; Pisarevsky, Sergei; Müller, Dietmar

    2017-04-01

    The Neoproterozoic was dominated by the formation of the supercontinent Rodinia, its break-up and the subsequent amalgamation of Gondwana, during which, the planet experienced large climatic variations and the emergence of complex life. Here we present a topological plate model of the Neoproterozoic based on a synthesis of available geological and palaeomagnetic data. Subduction zones, which are well preserved in the geological record, are used as a proxy for convergent margins; evidence for mid-ocean ridges and transform motion is less clearly preserved, though passive margins are used as a proxy for spreading centres, and evidence for strike-slip motions are used to model transform boundaries. We find that the model presented here only predicts 70% of the total length of subduction active today, though it models similar lengths of both transform and divergent boundaries, suggesting that we have produced a conservative model and are probably underestimating the amount of subduction. Where evidence for convergent, divergent or transform motion is not preserved, we interpret the locations of plate boundaries based on the relative motions of cratonic crust as suggested through either palaeomagnetic data or the geological record. Using GPlates, we tie these boundaries together to generate a plate model that depicts the motion of tectonic plates through the Neoproterozoic. We omit India and South China from Rodinia completely, due to long-lived subduction preserved on margins of India and conflicting palaeomagnetic data for the Cryogenian, but tie them together due to similar Tonian aged accretionary patterns along their respective (present-day) north-western and northern margins, such that these two cratons act as a "lonely wanderer" for much of the Neoproterozoic, and form their own tectonic plate. We also introduce a Tonian-Cryogenian aged rotation of the Congo-São Francisco Craton relative to Rodinia to better fit palaeomagnetic data and account for thick passive

  5. The Earth's Mantle Is Solid: Teachers' Misconceptions About the Earth and Plate Tectonics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Chris

    2000-01-01

    Discusses the misconceptions revealed by the teachers' answers and outlines more accurate answers and explanations based on established evidence and uses these to provide a more complete understanding of plate tectonic process and the structure of Earth. (Author/YDS)

  6. Gondwana Tales: an inquiry approach to plate tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domènech Casal, Jordi

    2014-05-01

    Plate tectonics and its effects on the constitution of seas and continents are key models in science education. Fossil evidences are usually taught in demostrative key when Wegener's discoverings about Pangea are introduced. In order to introduce inquiry-based science education (IBSE) approaches to this topic, we propose "Gondwana Tales", an activity where students are asked to use fossil data to reconstruct the geologic history of an imaginary planet. Grouped in independent teams, each team is furnished with stratigraphic columns from several sites containing faunistic successions of real organisms existing in the past in Earth. Students are told to reconstruct a model of the evolution of the continents, by making calculations of relative ages of the fossils, and relating each fossil to a geologic era. The different teams have incomplete and complementary information. After a first step where they have to propose a partial model based on incomplete data, each team receives a "visitor scientist" from another team, this implying an informal scientific communication event. This process is performed several times, engaging a discussion in each team and getting a final consensus model created by the whole class. Correct answer is not given to the students, even at the end of the activity, to keep the activity under the parameters of real scientific experience, where there is not a "correct answer" to compare. Instead of this, and following the IBSE standards, a reflection on the process is proposed to students. The lack of complete information and the need to collaborate are part of classroom dynamics focused to the understanding of the process of creation of the scientific knowledge. This activity is part of the C3 Project on Creation of Scientific Knowledge that is being applied in the school.

  7. Flexure of the Indian plate and intraplate earthquakes

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    The imposition of this stress field on the northward moving Indian plate appears fundamental to explaining the current distribution of intraplate earthquakes and their mechanisms. The current study highlights an outer trough south of the flexural bulge in central India where surface stresses are double the contiguous ...

  8. Links Between Earthquake Characteristics and Subducting Plate Heterogeneity in the 2016 Pedernales Ecuador Earthquake Rupture Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bai, L.; Mori, J. J.

    2016-12-01

    The collision between the Indian and Eurasian plates formed the Himalayas, the largest orogenic belt on the Earth. The entire region accommodates shallow earthquakes, while intermediate-depth earthquakes are concentrated at the eastern and western Himalayan syntaxis. Here we investigate the focal depths, fault plane solutions, and source rupture process for three earthquake sequences, which are located at the western, central and eastern regions of the Himalayan orogenic belt. The Pamir-Hindu Kush region is located at the western Himalayan syntaxis and is characterized by extreme shortening of the upper crust and strong interaction of various layers of the lithosphere. Many shallow earthquakes occur on the Main Pamir Thrust at focal depths shallower than 20 km, while intermediate-deep earthquakes are mostly located below 75 km. Large intermediate-depth earthquakes occur frequently at the western Himalayan syntaxis about every 10 years on average. The 2015 Nepal earthquake is located in the central Himalayas. It is a typical megathrust earthquake that occurred on the shallow portion of the Main Himalayan Thrust (MHT). Many of the aftershocks are located above the MHT and illuminate faulting structures in the hanging wall with dip angles that are steeper than the MHT. These observations provide new constraints on the collision and uplift processes for the Himalaya orogenic belt. The Indo-Burma region is located south of the eastern Himalayan syntaxis, where the strike of the plate boundary suddenly changes from nearly east-west at the Himalayas to nearly north-south at the Burma Arc. The Burma arc subduction zone is a typical oblique plate convergence zone. The eastern boundary is the north-south striking dextral Sagaing fault, which hosts many shallow earthquakes with focal depth less than 25 km. In contrast, intermediate-depth earthquakes along the subduction zone reflect east-west trending reverse faulting.

  9. Plate tectonics, mantle convection and D'' seismic structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wen, Lianxing

    This thesis adopts multidisciplinary (geodynamical and seismological) approaches toward understanding dynamics of the Earth's mantle. My geodynamical approach is directed at understanding the relationship between large-scale surface observables (geoid, topography, plate motions) and mantle rheology and convection of the present-day Earth. In chapter 2, I remove shallow mantle structure of various tectonic features to generate "residual tomography." In chapter 3, I show that the pattern, spectrum and amplitude of the "residual topography" are consistent with shallow origin of the "Earth surface dynamic topography;" the long wavelength geoid and topography (l = 2-3) are successfully explained by density models inferred from the "residual tomography," assuming layered mantle convection stratified at the "920 km seismic discontinuity." In chapter 4, I develop a new method to calculate mantle flow with lateral variation of viscosity. The viscosity contrast between continental and oceanic regions is identified to have dominating effects on both the observed poloidal/toroidal ratio and pattern of toroidal motions at long wavelengths. My seismological approach is focused on exploring fine structures near the core-mantle boundary (CMB) and developing new seismic techniques. I discuss the method development and strategies to explore fine structures in the following chapters. In chapter 5, I develop a hybrid method, a combination of analytical and numerical methods, with numerical methods applied in heterogeneous regions only. In chapter 6, I constrain the general structures of the ultra low velocity zones (ULVZ) near the CMB under the south-east Pacific and Iceland. The SKS-SPdKS data are explained by ULVZ with P-velocity reduction of 10%, horizontal length-scales of about 250 km and height of about 40 km. S-velocity reduction of 30% is consistent with the data. In chapter 7, I constrain the detailed structures of the ULVZ near the CMB from observed broadband PKP precursors

  10. Ball-and-socket tectonic rotation during the 2013 Mw7.7 Balochistan earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnhart, William D.; Hayes, Gavin P.; Briggs, Richard W.; Gold, Ryan D.; Bilham, R.

    2014-01-01

    The September 2013 Mw7.7 Balochistan earthquake ruptured a ∼200-km-long segment of the curved Hoshab fault in southern Pakistan with 10±0.2 m of peak sinistral and ∼1.7±0.8 m of dip slip. This rupture is unusual because the fault dips 60±15° towards the focus of a small circle centered in northwest Pakistan, and, despite a 30° increase in obliquity along strike, the ratios of strike and dip slip remain relatively uniform. Surface displacements and geodetic and teleseismic source inversions quantify a bilateral rupture that propagated rapidly at shallow depths from a transtensional jog near the northern end of the rupture. Static friction prior to rupture was unusually weak (μstructural unit in southeast Makran that rotates – akin to a 2-D ball-and-socket joint – counter-clockwise in response to India's penetration into the Eurasian plate. This rotation accounts for complexity in the Chaman fault system and, in principle, reduces seismic potential near Karachi; nonetheless, these findings highlight deficiencies in strong ground motion equations and tectonic models that invoke Anderson–Byerlee faulting predictions.

  11. Possible deep fault slip preceding the 2004 Parkfield earthquake, inferred from detailed observations of tectonic tremor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shelly, David R.

    2009-01-01

    Earthquake predictability depends, in part, on the degree to which sudden slip is preceded by slow aseismic slip. Recently, observations of deep tremor have enabled inferences of deep slow slip even when detection by other means is not possible, but these data are limited to certain areas and mostly the last decade. The region near Parkfield, California, provides a unique convergence of several years of high-quality tremor data bracketing a moderate earthquake, the 2004 magnitude 6.0 event. Here, I present detailed observations of tectonic tremor from mid-2001 through 2008 that indicate deep fault slip both before and after the Parkfield earthquake that cannot be detected with surface geodetic instruments. While there is no obvious short-term precursor, I find unidirectional tremor migration accompanied by elevated tremor rates in the 3 months prior to the earthquake, which suggests accelerated creep on the fault ∼16 km beneath the eventual earthquake hypocenter.

  12. Structure of the subducted Cocos Plate from locations of intermediate-depth earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lomnitz, C.; Rodríguez-Padilla, L. D.; Castaños, H.

    2013-05-01

    Locations of 3,000 earthquakes of 40 to 300 km depth are used to define the 3-D structure of the subducted Cocos Plate under central and southern Mexico. Discrepancies between deep-seated lineaments and surface tectonics are described. Features of particular interest include: (1) a belt of moderate activity at 40 to 80 km depth that parallels the southern boundary of the Mexican Volcanic Plateau; (2) an offset of 150 km across the Isthmus of Tehuantepec where all seismic activity is displaced toward the northeast; (3) three nests of frequent, deep-seated events (80 to 300 km depth) under southern Veracruz, Chiapas and the coast of Mexico-Guatemala. The active subduction process is sharply delimited along a NW-SE lineament from the Yucatan Peninsula, of insignificant earthquake activity. The focal distribution of intermediate-depth earthquakes in south-central Mexico provides evidence of stepwise deepening of the subduction angle along the Trench, starting at 15 degrees under Michoacan-Guerrero to 45 degrees under NW Guatemala. Historical evidence suggests that the hazard to Mexico City from large intermediate-depth earthquakes may have been underestimated.

  13. Introduction to Plate Boundaries and Natural Hazards

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Duarte, João C.; Schellart, Wouter P.

    2016-01-01

    A great variety of natural hazards occur on Earth, including earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis, landslides, floods, fires, tornadoes, hurricanes, and avalanches. The most destructive of these hazards, earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions, are mostly associated with tectonic plate

  14. Scaling and spatial complementarity of tectonic earthquake swarms

    KAUST Repository

    Passarelli, Luigi; Rivalta, Eleonora; Jonsson, Sigurjon; Hensch, Martin; Metzger, Sabrina; Jakobsdó ttir, Steinunn S.; Maccaferri, Francesco; Corbi, Fabio; Dahm, Torsten

    2017-01-01

    are still largely uncertain. Here we evaluate several TES that occurred during the past 20 years on a transform plate boundary in North Iceland. We show that the swarms complement each other spatially with later swarms discouraged from fault segments

  15. Recent earthquake activity in Trichonis region and its tectonic significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. DELIBASIS

    1977-06-01

    Full Text Available SUMMARY. - The aftershock activity associated with the central Greece
    (Trichonis Lake earthquake of |une-Dec. 1975, has been studied, with emphasis
    on the time and magnitude distribution. It has been found that the value of b,
    in Gutenberg - R i c h t e r ' s relationship was near the same for the primary as
    well as the secondary or second order aftershocks of the sequences, but depends
    upon the focal depth.
    A correlation between the calculated focal mechanisms and the associated
    stress components to the distribution pattern of meizoseismic effects as well
    as to the geological structure of the seismic region was found.
    The seismic region lies at the top of an anticline which was found moving
    downwards, apparently due to compressional stresses.
    Within the series of three earthquakes the progress of the destruction of
    the buildings was observed and reported. The interest is concentrated to modern
    buildings out of reinforced concrete and infill brick walls. The relatively unexpected
    rather bad performance of the later case of buildings was compared to that
    of the traditional small houses out of brick or stone masonry, the behaviour of
    which may be considered as better from what it was expected.

  16. Plate dynamical mechanisms as constraints on the likelihood of earthquake precursors in the ionosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osmaston, Miles

    2013-04-01

    In my oral(?) contribution to this session [1] I use my studies of the fundamental physics of gravitation to derive a reason for expecting the vertical gradient of electron density (= radial electric field) in the ionosphere to be closely affected by another field, directly associated with the ordinary gravitational potential (g) present at the Earth's surface. I have called that other field the Gravity-Electric (G-E) field. A calibration of this linkage relationship could be provided by noting corresponding co-seismic changes in (g) and in the ionosphere when, for example, a major normal-fault slippage occurs. But we are here concerned with precursory changes. This means we are looking for mechanisms which, on suitably short timescales, would generate pre-quake elastic deformation that changes the local (g). This poster supplements my talk by noting, for more relaxed discussion, what I see as potentially relevant plate dynamical mechanisms. Timescale constraints. If monitoring for ionospheric precursors is on only short timescales, their detectability is limited to correspondingly tectonically active regions. But as our monitoring becomes more precise and over longer terms, this constraint will relax. Most areas of the Earth are undergoing very slow heating or cooling and corresponding volume or epeirogenic change; major earthquakes can result but we won't have detected any accumulating ionospheric precursor. Transcurrent faulting. In principle, slip on a straight fault, even in a stick-slip manner, should produce little vertical deformation, but a kink, such as has caused the Transverse Ranges on the San Andreas Fault, would seem worth monitoring for precursory build-up in the ionosphere. Plate closure - subducting plate downbend. The traditionally presumed elastic flexure downbend mechanism is incorrect. 'Seismic coupling' has long been recognized by seismologists, invoking the repeated occurrence of 'asperities' to temporarily lock subduction and allow stress

  17. Coupling intensity and isostatic competition between subducting slab and overriding plate control trench motions and tectonics of the overriding plate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, G.; Moresi, L. N.

    2017-12-01

    Trench motions not only reflect tectonic regimes on the overriding plate but also shed light on the competition between subducting slab and overriding plate, however, major controls over trench advance or retreat and their consequences are still illusive. We use 2D thermo-mechanical experiments to study the problem. We find that the coupling intensity particularly in the uppermost 200 km and the isostatic competition between subducting slab and overriding plate largely determine trench motion and tectonics of in the overriding plate. Coupling intensity is the result of many contributing factors, including frictional coefficient of brittle part of the subducting interface and the viscosity of the ductile part, thermal regime and rheology of the overriding plate, and water contents and magmatic activity in the subducting slab and overriding plate. In this study, we are not concerned with the dynamic evolution of individual controlling parameter but simply use effective media. For instance, we impose simple model parameters such as frictional coefficient and vary the temperature and strain-rate dependent viscosity of the weak layer between the subducting slab and overriding plate. In the coupled end-member case, strong coupling leads to strong corner flow, depth-dependent compression/extension, and mantle return flow on the overriding plate side. It results in fast trench retreat, broad overriding plate extension, and even slab breakoff. In the decoupled end-member case, weak coupling causes much weaker response on the overriding plate side compared with the coupled end-member case, and the subducting slab can be largely viewed as a conveyer belt. We find that the isostatic competition between the subducting slab and overriding plate also has a major control over trench motion, and may better be viewed in 3D models. This is consistent with the findings in previous 3D studies that trench motion is most pronounced close to the slab edge. Here we propose that the

  18. Tectonic styles of future earthquakes in Italy as input data for seismic hazard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pondrelli, S.; Meletti, C.; Rovida, A.; Visini, F.; D'Amico, V.; Pace, B.

    2017-12-01

    In a recent elaboration of a new seismogenic zonation and hazard model for Italy, we tried to understand how many indications we have on the tectonic style of future earthquake/rupture. Using all available or recomputed seismic moment tensors for relevant seismic events (Mw starting from 4.5) of the last 100 yrs, first arrival focal mechanisms for less recent earthquakes and also geological data on past activated faults, we collected a database gathering a thousands of data all over the Italian peninsula and regions around it. After several summations of seismic moment tensors, over regular grids of different dimensions and different thicknesses of the seismogenic layer, we applied the same procedure to each of the 50 area sources that were designed in the seismogenic zonation. The results for several seismic zones are very stable, e.g. along the southern Apennines we expect future earthquakes to be mostly extensional, although in the outer part of the chain strike-slip events are possible. In the Northern part of the Apennines we also expect different, opposite tectonic styles for different hypocentral depths. In several zones, characterized by a low seismic moment release, defined for the study region using 1000 yrs of catalog, the next possible tectonic style of future earthquakes is less clear. It is worth to note that for some zones the possible greatest earthquake could be not represented in the available observations. We also add to our analysis the computation of the seismic release rate, computed using a distributed completeness, identified for single great events of the historical seismic catalog for Italy. All these information layers, overlapped and compared, may be used to characterize each new seismogenic zone.

  19. Using a Web GIS Plate Tectonics Simulation to Promote Geospatial Thinking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bodzin, Alec M.; Anastasio, David; Sharif, Rajhida; Rutzmoser, Scott

    2016-01-01

    Learning with Web-based geographic information system (Web GIS) can promote geospatial thinking and analysis of georeferenced data. Web GIS can enable learners to analyze rich data sets to understand spatial relationships that are managed in georeferenced data visualizations. We developed a Web GIS plate tectonics simulation as a capstone learning…

  20. Source to Sink Tectonic Fate of Large Oceanic Turbidite Systems and the Rupturing of Great and Giant Megathrust Earthquakes (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scholl, D. W.; Kirby, S. H.; von Huene, R.

    2010-12-01

    OF THE TECTONIC SINK: Most great (Mw8.0 and larger) and giant (Mw8.5 and larger) megathrust earthquakes rupture along subduction zones fronted by thick sediment-filled (1 km and thicker) trench axes. For example, 75 percent of giant earthquakes broke at these trenches, and all earthquakes exceeding Mw9.0 ruptured adjacent to thickly sedimented trenches (2 km and thicker). Ruff (1989) first suggested that subduction of a thick section of sediment forms a relatively homogenous layer between the upper and lower plates that laterally smoothes the roughness of subducting sea-floor relief and rupture-arresting asperities. This condition favors long trench-parallel rupturing (more than 250 km), the hallmark of all great and giant megathrust earthquakes. In positive feedback, these huge strain-releasing shocks produce strong seafloor motions that trigger the flushing of sediment-charged turbidity currents to the trench axis and adjacent overflow fans. Subduction of these deposits recharges the subduction channel, sustaining conditions favorable to future great and giant megathrust ruptures. [Ruff, L., 1989, Do trench sediments affect great earthquakes occurrence in subduction zones, Pure and Applied Geophysics, v. 129, Nos. 1/2, p. 263-282].

  1. Tectonic implications of the 2017 Ayvacık (Çanakkale) earthquakes, Biga Peninsula, NW Turkey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Özden, Süha; Över, Semir; Poyraz, Selda Altuncu; Güneş, Yavuz; Pınar, Ali

    2018-04-01

    The west to southwestward motion of the Anatolian block results from the relative motions between the Eurasian, Arabian and African plates along the right-lateral North Anatolian Fault Zone in the north and left-lateral East Anatolian Fault Zone in the east. The Biga Peninsula is tectonically influenced by the Anatolian motion originating along the North Anatolian Fault Zone which splits into two main (northern and southern) branches in the east of Marmara region: the southern branch extends towards the Biga Peninsula which is characterized by strike-slip to oblique normal faulting stress regime in the central to northern part. The southernmost part of peninsula is characterized by a normal to oblique faulting stress regime. The analysis of both seismological and structural field data confirms the change of stress regime from strike-slip character in the center and north to normal faulting character in the south of peninsula where the earthquake swarm recently occurred. The earthquakes began on 14 January 2017 (Mw: 4.4) on Tuzla Fault and migrated southward along the Kocaköy and Babakale's stepped-normal faults of over three months. The inversion of focal mechanisms yields a normal faulting stress regime with an approximately N-S (N4°E) σ3 axis. The inversion of earthquakes occurring in central and northern Biga Peninsula and the north Aegean region gives a strike-slip stress regime with approximately WNW-ESE (N85°W) σ1 and NNE-SSW (N17°E) σ3 axis. The strike-slip stress regime is attributed to westward Anatolian motion, while the normal faulting stress regime is attributed to both the extrusion of Anatolian block and the slab-pull force of the subducting African plate along the Hellenic arc.

  2. The Rapid Drift of the Indian Tectonic Plate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, P.; Yuan, X.; Kumar, R.; Kind, R.; Li, X.; Chadha, R.

    2007-12-01

    The breakup of the supercontinent Gondwanaland into Africa, Antarctica, Australia and India about 140 million years ago and consequently the opening of the Indian Ocean was caused by heating of the lithosphere from below by a large plume whose relicts are the Marion, Kerguelen and Reunion plumes. Plate reconstructions based on paleomagnetic data suggest that the Indian plate attained a very high speed (18-20 cm/yr during late Cretaceous) subsequent to its breakup from the Gondwanaland and slowed down to ~5 cm/yr since the continental collision with Asia during the last ~50 Ma. The Australian and African plates moved comparatively lesser distances and at much lesser speed of 2-4 cm/yr. Antarctica remained almost stationary. This super mobility makes India unique compared to the other fragments of Gondwanaland. We propose that when the parts of Gondwanaland were separated by the plume, the penetration of their lithospheric roots into the asthenosphere played an important role in determining their speed. We estimated the thickness of the lithospheric plates of the different parts of Gondwanaland around the Indian Ocean using the S-receiver function technique. We found that the part of Gondwanaland with clearly the thinnest lithosphere has travelled with the highest speed - India. The lithospheric root in South Africa, Australia and Antarctica is between 180 and 300 km deep. The Indian lithosphere is in contrast only about 100 km thick. Our interpretation is that the plume that partitioned Gondwanaland has also melted the lower half of the Indian lithosphere thus permitting faster motion due to the ridge push or slab pull.

  3. Plate Tectonics as a Far-From-Equilibrium Self-Organized Dissipative System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, D. L.

    2001-12-01

    A fluid above the critical Rayleigh number is far from equilibrium and spontaneously organizes itself into patterns involving the collective motion of large numbers of molecules which are resisted by the viscosity of the fluid. No external template is involved in forming the pattern. In 1928 Pearson showed that Bénard's experiments were driven by variations in surface tension at the top of the fluid and the surface motions drove convection in the fluid. In this case, the surface organized itself AND the underlying fluid. Both internal buoyancy driven flow and flow driven by surface forces can be far-from-equilibrium self-organized open systems that receive energy and matter from the environment. In the Earth, the cold thermal boundary layer at the surface drives plate tectonics and introduces temperature, shear and pressure gradients into the mantle that drive mantle convection. The mantle provides energy and material but may not provide the template. Plate tectonics is therefore a candidate for a far-from-equilibrium dissipative self-organizing system. Alternatively, one could view mantle convection as the self-organized system and the plates as simply the surface manifestation. Lithospheric architecture also imposes lateral temperature gradients onto the mantle which can drive and organize flow. Far-from-equilibrium self-organization requires; an open system, interacting parts, nonlinearities or feedbacks, an outside steady source of energy or matter, multiple possible states and a source of dissipation. In uniform fluids viscosity is the source of dissipation. Sources of dissipation in the plate system include bending, breaking, folding, shearing, tearing, collision and basal drag. These can change rapidly, in contrast to plate driving forces, and introduce the sort of fluctuations that can reorganize far-from-equilibrium systems. Global plate reorganizations can alternatively be thought of as convective overturns of the mantle, or thermal weakening of plates

  4. Repeating Deep Very Low Frequency Earthquakes: An Evidence of Transition Zone between Brittle and Ductile Zone along Plate Boundary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishihara, Y.; Yamamoto, Y.; Arai, R.

    2017-12-01

    Recently slow or low frequency seismic and geodetic events are focused under recognition of important role in tectonic process. The most western region of Ryukyu trench, Yaeyama Islands, is very active area of these type events. It has semiannual-like slow slip (Heki et.al., 2008; Nishimura et.al.,2014) and very frequent shallow very low frequency earthquakes near trench zone (Ando et.al.,2012; Nakamura et.al.,2014). Arai et.al.(2016) identified clear reverse phase discontinuity along plate boundary by air-gun survey, suggesting existence of low velocity layer including fluid. The subducting fluid layer is considered to control slip characteristics. On the other hand, deep low frequency earthquake and tremor observed at south-western Honshu and Shikoku of Japan are not identified well due to lack of high-quality seismic network. A broadband seismic station(ISG/PS) of Pacific21 network is operating in last 20 years that locates on occurrence potential area of low frequency earthquake. We tried to review continuous broadband record, searching low frequency earthquakes. In pilot survey, we found three very low frequency seismic events which are dominant in less than 0.1Hz component and are not listed in earthquake catalogue. Source locates about 50km depth and at transition area between slow slip event and active area of general earthquake along plate boundary. To detect small and/or hidden very low frequency earthquake, we applied matched filter analysis to continuous three components waveform data using pre-reviewed seismogram as template signal. 12 events with high correlation are picked up in last 10 years. Most events have very similar waveform, which means characteristics of repeating deep very low frequency earthquake. The event history of very low frequency earthquake is not related with one of slow slip event in this region. In Yaeyama region, low frequency earthquake, general earthquake and slow slip event occur dividing in space and have apparent

  5. A combined rigid/deformable plate tectonic model for the evolution of the Indian Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watson, J. G.; Glover, C. T.; Adriasola Munoz, A. C.; Harris, J. P.; Goodrich, M.

    2012-04-01

    Plate tectonic reconstructions are essential for placing geological information in its correct spatial context, understanding depositional environments, defining basin dimensions and evolution, and serve as a basis for palaeogeographic mapping and for palaeo-climate modelling. Traditional 'rigid' plate reconstructions often result in misfits (overlaps and underfits) in the geometries of juxtaposed plate margins when restored to their pre-rift positions. This has been attributed to internal deformation pre- and/or syn- continental break-up. Poorly defined continent-ocean boundaries add to these problems. To date, few studies have integrated continental extension within a global model. Recent plate tectonic reconstructions based on the relative motions of Africa, Madagascar, India and Antarctica during the break-up of eastern Gondwana have not taken into account the effects of deformation; particularly between India and Madagascar, and India and the Seychelles. A deformable plate model is in development that builds on the current rigid plate model to describe the complex multiphase break-up history between Africa, Madagascar, Seychelles and India, the associated magmatic activity and subsequent India/Eurasia collision. The break-up of eastern Gondwana occurred in the mid Jurassic by rifting between Africa and the India-Madagascar-Australian-Antarctica plates, followed by the Late Jurassic drift of India away from Australia and the Cretaceous break-up of Australia and Antarctica. The northwards drift of the Seychelles-India block in the Tertiary was accommodated by the opening of the Laxmi Basin. This was followed by the eruption of the extensive Deccan flood basalts and the separation of India and the Seychelles. Crustal domains on volcanic margins can be very difficult to define due to the accretion of magmatic material. On these margins, there is much speculation on the position of the continent-ocean boundary and the timing of rifting and sea-floor spreading. The

  6. A new plate tectonic concept for the eastern-most Mediterranean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huebscher, C.; McGrandle, A.; Scaife, G.; Spoors, R.; Stieglitz, T.

    2012-04-01

    Owing to the seismogenic faults bordering the Levant-Sinai realm and the discovery of giant gas reservoirs in the marine Levant Basin the scientific interest in this tectonically complex setting increased in recent years. Here we provide a new model for the Levant Basin architecture and adjacent plate boundaries emphasizing the importance of industrial seismic data for frontier research in earth science. PSDM seismics, residual gravity and depth to basement maps give a clear line of evidence that the Levant Basin, formerly considered as a single tectonic entity, is divided into two different domains. Highly stretched continental crust in the southern domain is separated from deeper and presumably Tethyan oceanic crust in the north. A transform continuing from southwest Cyprus to the Carmel Fault in northern Israel is considered as the boundary. If this interpretation holds, the Carmel-Cyprus Transform represents a yet unknown continent-ocean boundary in the eastern Mediterranean, thus adding new constrains for the Mediterranean plate tectonic puzzle. The Eratosthenes Seamount, considered as the spearhead of incipient continental collision in the eastern Mediterranean, is interpreted as a carbonate platform that developed above a volcanic basement. NW-SE trending strike-slip faults are abundant in the entire Levant region. Since this trend also shapes the topography of the Levant hinterland including Quaternary deposits their recent tectonic activity is quite likely. Thus, our study supports previous studies which attributed the evolution of submarine canyons and Holocene triggering of mass failures not only to salt tectonics or depositional processes, but also to active plate-tectonics.

  7. MODEL OF TECTONIC EARTHQUAKE PREPARATION AND OCCURRENCE AND ITS PRECURSORS IN CONDITIONS OF CRUSTAL STRETCHING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. M. Semenov

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available In connection with changes in the stress-strain state of the Earth's crust, various physical and mechanical processes, including destruction, take place in the rocks and are accompanied by tectonic earthquakes. Different models have been proposed to describe earthquake preparation and occurrence, depending on the mechanisms and the rates of geodynamic processes. One of the models considers crustal stretching that is characteristic of formation of rift structures. The model uses the data on rock samples that are stretched until destruction in a special laboratory installation. Based on the laboratory modeling, it is established that the samples are destroyed in stages that are interpreted as stages of preparation and occurrence of an earthquake source. The preparation stage of underground tremors is generally manifested by a variety of temporal (long-, medium- and short-term precursors. The main shortcoming of micro-modeling is that, considering small sizes of the investigated samples, it is impossible to reveal a link between the plastic extension of rocks (taking place in the earthquake hypocenter and the rock rupture. Plasticity is the ability of certain rocks to change shape and size irreversibly, while the rock continuity is maintained, in response to applied external forces. In order to take into account the effect of plastic deformation of rocks on earthquake preparation and occurrence, we propose not to refer to the diagrams showing stretching of the rock samples, but use a typical diagram of metal stretching, which can be obtained when testing a metal rod for breakage (Fig. 1. The diagram of metal stretching as a function of the relative elongation (to some degree of approximation and taking into account the coefficient of plasticity can be considered as a model of preparation and occurrence of an earthquake source in case of rifting. The energy released in the period immediately preceding the earthquake contributes to the emergence of

  8. Petroleum formation by Fischer-Tropsch synthesis in plate tectonics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Szatmari, P. (Petrobras Research Center, Rio de Janeiro (Brazil))

    1989-08-01

    A somewhat speculative hypothesis of petroleum genesis in the upper lithosphere is proposed, based on Fischer-Tropsch synthesis. This hypothesis is distinct from both the organic (biogenic) model and the inorganic model of hydrocarbon degassing from the Earth's interior. The hypothesis presented in this paper proposes that petroleum liquids form by Fischer-Tropsch synthesis on magnetite and hematite catalysts when carbon dioxide (derived by massive metamorphic or igneous decarbonation of subducted sedimentary carbonates) reacts with hydrogen generated by the serpentinization (in the absence of air) of shallow-mantle lithosphere and ophiolite thrust sheets. Oblique plate movements may favor hydrocarbon formation by creating deep faults that aid fluid flow and serpentinization. The world's richest oil provinces, including those of the Middle East, may be tentatively interpreted to have formed by this mechanism. 8 figs., 1 tab.

  9. The January 2006 Volcanic-Tectonic Earthquake Swarm at Mount Martin, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dixon, James P.; Power, John A.

    2009-01-01

    On January 8, 2006, a swarm of volcanic-tectonic earthquakes began beneath Mount Martin at the southern end of the Katmai volcanic cluster. This was the first recorded swarm at Mount Martin since continuous seismic monitoring began in 1996. The number of located earthquakes increased during the next four days, reaching a peak on January 11. For the next two days, the seismic activity decreased, and on January 14, the number of events increased to twice the previous day's total. Following this increase in activity, seismicity declined, returning to background levels by the end of the month. The Alaska Volcano Observatory located 860 earthquakes near Mount Martin during January 2006. No additional signs of volcanic unrest were noted in association with this earthquake swarm. The earthquakes in the Mount Martin swarm, relocated using the double difference technique, formed an elongated cluster dipping to the southwest. Focal mechanisms beneath Mount Martin show a mix of normal, thrust, and strike-slip solutions, with normal focal mechanisms dominating. For earthquakes more than 1 km from Mount Martin, all focal mechanisms showed normal faulting. The calculated b-value for the Mount Martin swarm is 0.98 and showed no significant change before, during, or after the swarm. The triggering mechanism for the Mount Martin swarm is unknown. The time-history of earthquake occurrence is indicative of a volcanic cause; however, there were no low-frequency events or observations, such as increased steaming associated with the swarm. During the swarm, there was no change in the b-value, and the distribution and type of focal mechanisms were similar to those in the period before the anomalous activity. The short duration of the swarm, the similarity in observed focal mechanisms, and the lack of additional signs of unrest suggest this swarm did not result from a large influx of magma within the shallow crust beneath Mount Martin.

  10. Intra-Arc extension in Central America: Links between plate motions, tectonics, volcanism, and geochemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phipps Morgan, Jason; Ranero, Cesar; Vannucchi, Paola

    2010-05-01

    This study revisits the kinematics and tectonics of Central America subduction, synthesizing observations of marine bathymetry, high-resolution land topography, current plate motions, and the recent seismotectonic and magmatic history in this region. The inferred tectonic history implies that the Guatemala-El Salvador and Nicaraguan segments of this volcanic arc have been a region of significant arc tectonic extension; extension arising from the interplay between subduction roll-back of the Cocos Plate and the ~10-15 mm/yr slower westward drift of the Caribbean plate relative to the North American Plate. The ages of belts of magmatic rocks paralleling both sides of the current Nicaraguan arc are consistent with long-term arc-normal extension in Nicaragua at the rate of ~5-10 mm/yr, in agreement with rates predicted by plate kinematics. Significant arc-normal extension can ‘hide' a very large intrusive arc-magma flux; we suggest that Nicaragua is, in fact, the most magmatically robust section of the Central American arc, and that the volume of intrusive volcanism here has been previously greatly underestimated. Yet, this flux is hidden by the persistent extension and sediment infill of the rifting basin in which the current arc sits. Observed geochemical differences between the Nicaraguan arc and its neighbors which suggest that Nicaragua has a higher rate of arc-magmatism are consistent with this interpretation. Smaller-amplitude, but similar systematic geochemical correlations between arc-chemistry and arc-extension in Guatemala show the same pattern as the even larger variations between the Nicaragua arc and its neighbors. We are also exploring the potential implications of intra-arc extension for deformation processes along the subducting plate boundary and within the forearc ‘microplate'.

  11. Plate tectonic model for the oligo-miocene evolution of the western Mediterranean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Curtis R.

    1980-10-01

    This paper outlines a plate tectonic model for the Oligo-Miocene evolution of the western Mediterranean which incorporates recent data from several tectonic domains (Corsica, Sardinia, the Kabylies, Balearic promontory, Iberia, Algero-Provençal Basin and Tunisian Atlas). Following late Mesozoic anticlockwise rotation of the Iberian peninsula (including the Balearic promontory and Sardinia), late Eocene collision occurred between the Kabylies and Balearic promontory forming a NE-trending suture with NW-tectonic polarity. As a result of continued convergence between the African and European plates, a polarity flip occurred and a southward-facing trench formed south of the Kabylie—Balearic promontory suture. During late Oligocene time an E-W-trending arc and marginal basin developed behind the southward-facing trench in the area of the present-day Gulf of Lion. Opening of this basin moved the Corsica—Sardinia—Calabria—Petit Kabylie—Menorca plate southward, relative to the African plate. Early Miocene back-arc spreading in the area between the Balearic promontory and Grand Kabylie emplaced the latter in northern Algeria and formed the South Balearic Basin. Coeval with early Miocene back-arc basin development, the N-S-extension in the Gulf of Lion marginal basin changed to a more NW-SE direction causing short-lived extension in the area of the present-day Valencia trough and a 30° anticlockwise rotation of the Corsica-Sardinia-Calabria—Petit Kabylie plate away from the European plate. Early—middle Miocene deformation along the western Italian and northeastern African continental margins resulted from this rotation. During the early late Miocene (Tortonian), spreading within a sphenochasm to the southwest of Sardinia resulted in the emplacement of Petit Kabylie in northeastern Algeria.

  12. Transoceanic Dispersal and Plate Tectonics Shaped Global Cockroach Distributions: Evidence from Mitochondrial Phylogenomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourguignon, Thomas; Tang, Qian; Ho, Simon Y W; Juna, Frantisek; Wang, Zongqing; Arab, Daej A; Cameron, Stephen L; Walker, James; Rentz, David; Evans, Theodore A; Lo, Nathan

    2017-04-01

    Following the acceptance of plate tectonics theory in the latter half of the 20th century, vicariance became the dominant explanation for the distributions of many plant and animal groups. In recent years, however, molecular-clock analyses have challenged a number of well-accepted hypotheses of vicariance. As a widespread group of insects with a fossil record dating back 300 My, cockroaches provide an ideal model for testing hypotheses of vicariance through plate tectonics versus transoceanic dispersal. However, their evolutionary history remains poorly understood, in part due to unresolved relationships among the nine recognized families. Here, we present a phylogenetic estimate of all extant cockroach families, as well as a timescale for their evolution, based on the complete mitochondrial genomes of 119 cockroach species. Divergence dating analyses indicated that the last common ancestor of all extant cockroaches appeared ∼235 Ma, ∼95 My prior to the appearance of fossils that can be assigned to extant families, and before the breakup of Pangaea began. We reconstructed the geographic ranges of ancestral cockroaches and found tentative support for vicariance through plate tectonics within and between several major lineages. We also found evidence of transoceanic dispersal in lineages found across the Australian, Indo-Malayan, African, and Madagascan regions. Our analyses provide evidence that both vicariance and dispersal have played important roles in shaping the distribution and diversity of these insects.

  13. A Bootstrap-Based Probabilistic Optimization Method to Explore and Efficiently Converge in Solution Spaces of Earthquake Source Parameter Estimation Problems: Application to Volcanic and Tectonic Earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dahm, T.; Heimann, S.; Isken, M.; Vasyura-Bathke, H.; Kühn, D.; Sudhaus, H.; Kriegerowski, M.; Daout, S.; Steinberg, A.; Cesca, S.

    2017-12-01

    Seismic source and moment tensor waveform inversion is often ill-posed or non-unique if station coverage is poor or signals are weak. Therefore, the interpretation of moment tensors can become difficult, if not the full model space is explored, including all its trade-offs and uncertainties. This is especially true for non-double couple components of weak or shallow earthquakes, as for instance found in volcanic, geothermal or mining environments.We developed a bootstrap-based probabilistic optimization scheme (Grond), which is based on pre-calculated Greens function full waveform databases (e.g. fomosto tool, doi.org/10.5880/GFZ.2.1.2017.001). Grond is able to efficiently explore the full model space, the trade-offs and the uncertainties of source parameters. The program is highly flexible with respect to the adaption to specific problems, the design of objective functions, and the diversity of empirical datasets.It uses an integrated, robust waveform data processing based on a newly developed Python toolbox for seismology (Pyrocko, see Heimann et al., 2017, http://doi.org/10.5880/GFZ.2.1.2017.001), and allows for visual inspection of many aspects of the optimization problem. Grond has been applied to the CMT moment tensor inversion using W-phases, to nuclear explosions in Korea, to meteorite atmospheric explosions, to volcano-tectonic events during caldera collapse and to intra-plate volcanic and tectonic crustal events.Grond can be used to optimize simultaneously seismological waveforms, amplitude spectra and static displacements of geodetic data as InSAR and GPS (e.g. KITE, Isken et al., 2017, http://doi.org/10.5880/GFZ.2.1.2017.002). We present examples of Grond optimizations to demonstrate the advantage of a full exploration of source parameter uncertainties for interpretation.

  14. Commentary: The Feasibility of Subduction and Implications for Plate Tectonics on Jupiter's Moon Europa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kattenhorn, Simon A.

    2018-03-01

    A new modeling-based study by Johnson et al. (2017, https://doi.org/10.1002/2017JE005370) lends support to the hypothesis that portions of Europa's surface may have been removed by the process of subduction, as suggested by Kattenhorn and Prockter (2014, https://doi.org/10.1038/NGEO2245). Using a simple 1-D model that tracks the thermal and density structure of a descending ice plate, Johnson et al. show that ice plates with 10% porosity and overall salt contents of 5%, which differ in salt content by 2.5% from the surrounding reference ice shell, are nonbuoyant and thus likely to sink through the underlying, convecting portion of the ice shell. The feasibility of subduction in an ice shell is critical to the existence of icy plate tectonics, which is hypothesized to exist at least locally on Europa, potentially making it the only other Solar System body other than Earth with a surface modified by plate tectonics.

  15. Tectonic Divisions Based on Gravity Data and Earthquake Distribution Characteristics in the North South Seismic Belt, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tian, T.; Zhang, J.; Jiang, W.

    2017-12-01

    The North South Seismic Belt is located in the middle of China, and this seismic belt can be divided into 12 tectonic zones, including the South West Yunnan (I), the Sichuan Yunnan (II), the Qiang Tang (III), the Bayan Har (IV), the East Kunlun Qaidam (V), the Qi Lian Mountain (VI), the Tarim(VII), the East Alashan (VIII), the East Sichuan (IX), the Ordos(X), the Middle Yangtze River (XI) and the Edge of Qinghai Tibet Block (XII) zone. Based on the Bouguer Gravity data calculated from the EGM2008 model, the Euler deconvolution was used to obtain the edge of tectonic zone to amend the traditional tectonic divisions. In every tectonic zone and the whole research area, the logarithm of the total energy of seismic was calculated. The Time Series Analysis (TSA) for all tectonic zones and the whole area were progressed in R, and 12 equal divisions were made (A1-3, B1-3, C1-3, D1-3) by latitude and longitude as a control group. A simple linear trend fitting of time was used, and the QQ figure was used to show the residual distribution features. Among the zones according to Gravity anomalies, I, II and XII show similar statistical characteristic, with no earthquake free year (on which year there was no earthquake in the zone), and it shows that the more seismic activity area is more similar in statistical characteristic as the large area, no matter how large the zone is or how many earthquakes are in the zone. Zone IV, V, IX, III, VII and VIII show one or several seismic free year during 1970s (IV, V and IX) and 1980s (III, VII and VIII), which may implicate the earthquake activity were low decades ago or the earthquake catalogue were not complete in these zones, or both. Zone VI, X and XI show many earthquake free years even in this decade, which means in these zones the earthquake activity were very low even if the catalogue were not complete. In the control group, the earthquake free year zone appeared random and independent of the seismic density, and in all equal

  16. Plate tectonics hiati as the cause of global glaciations: 2. The late Proterozoic 'Snowball Earth'

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osmaston, M. F.

    2003-04-01

    A fundamental reappraisal of the mechanisms that drive plate tectonics has yielded the remarkable conclusion that, for at least the past 130 Ma, the principal agent has not been ridge-push or slab-pull but a CW-directed torque (probably of electromagnetic origin at the CMB) reaching the deep (>600 km, e.g.[1]) tectospheric keel of the Antarctica craton. Major changes in spreading direction marked both ends of the 122--85 Ma Cretaceous Superchron and started by forming the Ontong Java Plateau. Action of MORs as gearlike linkages has driven Africa and India CCW since Gondwana breakup and continues to drive the Pacific plate CCW. In the Arctic there is now no cratonic keel to pick up any corresponding polar torque, so northern hemisphere plate tectonics is far less active. The thesis of this contribution is that in the Neoproterozoic the lack of cratons at high latitudes would have deprived plate tectonics of this motivation, causing MORs to die (see below) and a major fall in sea-level, leading to global glaciation as outlined in Part 1 for the Huronian events. Like that seen during that first hiatus, dyke-swarm volcanism could have arisen from thermal shrinkage of the global lithosphere, providing CO2 and ash-covering that interrrupted glacial episodes. In oceanic settings this volcanism would have lowered pH and supplied Fe2+ for shallow bio-oxygenic action to deposit as BIF. My multifacet studies of the subduction process convince me that the rapid development of "flat-slab" interface profiles involves the physical removal of hanging-wall material in front of the downbend by basal subduction tectonic erosion (STE). Historically this, and its inferred ubiquity in the Archaean as the precursor to PSM (Part 1), suggests that the required subducting-plate buoyancy is thermal. Accordingly, a redesign [2] of the MOR process has incorporated the heat-containing LVZ as an integral part of the plate and luckily provides a lot more ridge-push to ensure the subduction of

  17. A probabilistic approach towards understanding how planet composition affects plate tectonics - through time and space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stamenkovic, V.

    2017-12-01

    We focus on the connections between plate tectonics and planet composition — by studying how plate yielding is affected by surface and mantle water, and by variable amounts of Fe, SiC, or radiogenic heat sources within the planet interior. We especially explore whether we can make any robust conclusions if we account for variable initial conditions, current uncertainties in model parameters and the pressure dependence of the viscosity, as well as uncertainties on how a variable composition affects mantle rheology, melting temperatures, and thermal conductivities. We use a 1D thermal evolution model to explore with more than 200,000 simulations the robustness of our results and use our previous results from 3D calculations to help determine the most likely scenario within the uncertainties we still face today. The results that are robust in spite of all uncertainties are that iron-rich mantle rock seems to reduce the efficiency of plate yielding occurring on silicate planets like the Earth if those planets formed along or above mantle solidus and that carbon planets do not seem to be ideal candidates for plate tectonics because of slower creep rates and generally higher thermal conductivities for SiC. All other conclusions depend on not yet sufficiently constrained parameters. For the most likely case based on our current understanding, we find that, within our range of varied planet conditions (1-10 Earth masses), planets with the greatest efficiency of plate yielding are silicate rocky planets of 1 Earth mass with large metallic cores (average density 5500-7000 kg m-3) with minimal mantle concentrations of iron (as little as 0% is preferred) and radiogenic isotopes at formation (up to 10 times less than Earth's initial abundance; less heat sources do not mean no heat sources). Based on current planet formation scenarios and observations of stellar abundances across the Galaxy as well as models of the evolution of the interstellar medium, such planets are

  18. Paleoarchean bedrock lithologies across the Makhonjwa Mountains of South Africa and Swaziland linked to geochemical, magnetic and tectonic data reveal early plate tectonic genes flanking subduction margins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maarten de Wit

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available The Makhonjwa Mountains, traditionally referred to as the Barberton Greenstone Belt, retain an iconic Paleoarchean archive against which numerical models of early earth geodynamics can be tested. We present new geologic and structural maps, geochemical plots, geo- and thermo-chronology, and geophysical data from seven silicic, mafic to ultramafic complexes separated by major shear systems across the southern Makhonjwa Mountains. All reveal signs of modern oceanic back-arc crust and subduction-related processes. We compare the rates of processes determined from this data and balance these against plate tectonic and plume related models. Robust rates of both horizontal and vertical tectonic processes derived from the Makhonjwa Mountain complexes are similar, well within an order of magnitude, to those encountered across modern oceanic and orogenic terrains flanking Western Pacific-like subduction zones. We conclude that plate tectonics and linked plate-boundary processes were well established by 3.2–3.6 Ga. Our work provides new constraints for modellers with rates of a ‘basket’ of processes against which to test Paleoarchean geodynamic models over a time period close to the length of the Phanerozoic. Keywords: Paleoarchean, Barberton Greenstone Belt, Onverwacht Suite, Geologic bedrock and structural maps, Geochemistry and geophysics, Plate tectonics

  19. Tectonics and Non-isostatic Topography of the Mariana Trench and Adjacent Plates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hongyu, L.; Lin, J.; Zhou, Z.; Zhang, F.

    2017-12-01

    Multi-types of geophysical data including multibeam bathymetry, sediment thickness, gravity anomaly, and crustal magnetic age were analyzed to investigate tectonic processes of the Mariana Trench and the surrounding plates. We calculated non-Airy-isostatic topography by removing from the observed bathymetry the effects of sediment loading, thermal subsidence, and Airy local isostatically-compensated topography. The Mariana Trench was found to be associated with a clearly defined zone of negative non-isostatic topography, which was caused by flexural bending of the subducting Pacific plate and with the maximum depth anomaly and flexural bending near the Challenger Deep. In contrast, the Caroline Ridge and Caroline Islands Chain have much more subdued non-isostatic topography, indicating their higher topography is largely compensated by thicker crust. Along the Mariana Trough, the northern and central segments appear to be associated with relatively low magma supply as indicated by the relatively low topography and thin crust. In contrast, the southern Mariana Trough is associated with relatively high magma supply as indicated by the relatively high and smoother topography, an axial high spreading center, and relatively thick crust. The southern end of the Mariana Trough was also found to be associated with positive non-isostatic topographic anomaly, which might be caused by the complex tectonic deformation of the overriding Mariana and Philippine Sea plates and their interaction with the subducting Pacific plate. Analysis further revealed that the southern Mariana Arc, located between the Mariana Trench and Mariana Trough, is associated with positive non-isostatic topographic anomalies, which may be explained by the late stage magmatic loading on the older and thus stronger lithospheric plate of the Mariana volcanic arc.

  20. Frustration and disorder in granular media and tectonic blocks: implications for earthquake complexity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Sornette

    1994-01-01

    Full Text Available We present exploratory analogies and speculations on the mechanisms underlying the organization of faulting and earthquake in the earth crust. The mechanical properties of the brittle lithosphere at scales of the order or larger than a few kilometers are proposed to be analogous to those of non-cohesive granular media, since both systems present stress amplitudes controlled by gravity, and shear band (faulting localization is determined by a type of friction Mohr-Coulomb rupture criterion. here, we explore the implications of this correspondence with respect to the origin of tectonic and earthquake complexity, on the basis of the existing experimental data on granular media available in the mechanical literature. An important observation is that motions and deformations of non-cohesive granular media are characterized by important fluctuations both in time (sudden breaks, avalanches, which are analogous to earthquakes and space (strain localizations, yield surfaces forming sometimes complex patterns. This is in apparent contradiction with the conventional wisdom in mechanics, based on the standard tendency to homogenize, which has led to dismiss fluctuations as experimental noise. On the basis of a second analogy with spinglasses and neural networks, based on the existence of block and grain packing disorder and block rotation "frustration", we suggest that these fluctuations observed both at large scales and at the block scale constitute an intrinsic signature of the mechanics of granular media. The space-time complexity observed in faulting and earthquake phenomenology is thus proposed to result form the special properties of the mechanics of granular media, dominated by the "frustration" of the kinematic deformations of its constitutive blocks.

  1. Marine and land active-source seismic investigation of geothermal potential, tectonic structure, and earthquake hazards in Pyramid Lake, Nevada

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Eisses, A.; Kell, A.; Kent, G. [UNR; Driscoll, N. [UCSD; Karlin, R.; Baskin, R. [USGS; Louie, J. [UNR; Pullammanappallil, S. [Optim

    2016-08-01

    Amy Eisses, Annie M. Kell, Graham Kent, Neal W. Driscoll, Robert E. Karlin, Robert L. Baskin, John N. Louie, Kenneth D. Smith, Sathish Pullammanappallil, 2011, Marine and land active-source seismic investigation of geothermal potential, tectonic structure, and earthquake hazards in Pyramid Lake, Nevada: presented at American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, Dec. 5-9, abstract NS14A-08.

  2. Evidence of a plate-wide tectonic pressure pulse provided by extensometric monitoring in the Balkan Mountains (Bulgaria

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    Briestenský Miloš

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The EU-TecNet monitoring network uses customized three-dimensional extensometers to record transient deformations across individual faults. This paper presents the first results from two newly established monitoring points in the Balkan Mountains in Bulgaria. The data from Saeva Dupka, recorded across an EEN-WWS striking fault, show sinistral strike-slip along the fault and subsidence of the southern block. Much of the subsidence occurred around the time of the distal MW = 5.6 Pernik Earthquake. An important transient deformation event, which began in autumn 2012, was reflected by significant compression and following extension, across the monitored fault. The data from Bacho Kiro, recorded across a NE–SW striking fault, show sinistral strike-slip along the fault and subsidence of the north-western block. The same important deformation event was reflected by changes in the strike-slip, dip-slip, and horizontal opening/closing trends. These results have been compared to data from other monitoring points in the Western Carpathians, External Dinarides, and Tian Shan. Many of the sites show evidence of simultaneous displacement anomalies and this observation is interpreted as a reflection of the plate-wide propagation of a tectonic pressure pulse towards the end of 2012.

  3. Stagnant lids and mantle overturns: Implications for Archaean tectonics, magmagenesis, crustal growth, mantle evolution, and the start of plate tectonics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean H. Bédard

    2018-01-01

    probability that oceanic crustal segments could founder in an organized way, producing a gradual evolution of pre-subduction convergent margins into modern-style active subduction systems around 2.5 Ga. Plate tectonics today is constituted of: (1 a continental drift system that started in the Early Archaean, driven by deep mantle currents pressing against the Archaean-age sub-continental lithospheric mantle keels that underlie Archaean cratons; (2 a subduction-driven system that started near the end of the Archaean.

  4. Preliminary analysis on the tectonic stress level in the source region of Tangshan earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jian-Tao, Zhao; Cui, Xiao-Feng; Xie, Fu-Ren

    2002-05-01

    The abundant data of focal mechanism solutions in Tangshan region, China, are inverted for the tectonic stress field. Combined with tectonophysical consideration, the magnitude of the three principal stresses, as well as their vertical variation under the average crustal rock property, in the source region of the 1976 Tangshan earthquake is estimated. The relationship between crustal stress and friction μ c, pore pressure P 0 and stress shape factor Φ is studied. The paper draws the conclusion that the vertical increasing rate of the maximum principal stress σ is directly proportional to friction, and inversely to pore pressure P 0 and stress shape factor Φ; while the vertical increasing rate of the minimum principal tress σ is directly proportional to pore pressure P 0, inversely to friction μ c and stress shape factor Φ. This study is a try to invert the data of focal mechanism solutions for the complete stress tensor.

  5. Plasmas in the atmosphere, tectonics and earthquake: a possible link for the crustal diagnosis?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Straser, V.

    2017-12-01

    An important aspect in the crustal surmise is the potential link between luminous phenomena and the earthquake . The study want to added data to this new geophysics concepts. The method is based on the comparison approach and consist in the data connection on a field in the area of Po Plain (Italy) with professional equipment: cameras, video cameras, spectroscopes, ELF / VLF receivers, Geiger counters and EM fields detectors. The Luminous phenomena sighting is compared 24/7 online with INGV and USGS database. The results show the formation of 2 types of plasma near the soil: Spheroidal shape, yellow-orange, constant brightness, sudden appearances, elevation from the ground between 10 ° -20 °, no noise, no wake emitted, estimated size about 2m, and duration of few seconds. Spheroidal shape, intense red fuzzy coloration, constant brightness, sudden appearances and fast movements in a linear fashion or slow movements, elevation from the ground between 2° to 7 °, no noise, no waves emitted, estimated dimensions over 2m, with a duration from a few seconds to a few minutes. We suppose that the formation of gas, also radioactive such as radon, and the electric charges necessary to trigger plasma, are related to the crustal stress. The rocks are exposed to important tectonics efforts and the outcome is the air ionizations near the soil that produce plasma if there are gas. The appearance of plasma forerun the earthquake that will happen some days later. The Anomalous Luminous phenomena may be related to tectonic activity, and the area of investigation can become a "lab" for research in Physics and Geology for the crustal diagnosis of pre-seismic phase.

  6. Driving Forces of Plate Tectonics and Evolution of the Oceanic Lithosphere and Asthenosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forsyth, D. W.

    2017-12-01

    As plate tectonics became established as an excellent kinematic description of the relative motions of different blocks of the Earth's lithosphere, many investigators also began exploring the forces involved in driving the plate motions. Because the plates move at nearly constant velocities over long periods of time and inertial terms are unimportant, driving forces must always be balanced by resisting forces in a way that regulates the velocities. Forsyth and Uyeda (1975) incorporated the balancing of torques on the individual plates to help constrain the relative importance of the driving and resisting forces, as parameterized in a way based on prior model investigations of individual parts of the convecting system. We found that the primary driving force was sinking of subducting lithosphere at trenches, balanced largely by viscous resisting forces in the sub-asthenospheric mantle; that viscous drag beneath the oceanic plates was negligible; and that mid-ocean ridges provided a relatively small push. One of the early questions was whether there was buoyant upwelling on a large scale beneath mid-ocean ridges as part of a whole mantle convection system with subduction of the plates representing the downwelling limb. If so, then it would be likely that the plates were just riding on top of large convection cells. Seismic tomography has demonstrated that, on average, there are no deep roots beneath mid-ocean ridges, so that active, buoyant upwelling from the deep mantle does not exist beneath spreading centers. However, more recent tomographic studies have found asymmetry of the shear velocity structure beneath ridges in some areas, pointing to a smaller scale of active convection in the shallow mantle perhaps induced by melt retention buoyancy or the local effects of ridge/hotspot interaction.

  7. Structural and Tectonic Map Along the Pacific-North America Plate Boundary in Northern Gulf of California, Sonora Desert and Valle de Mexicali, Mexico, from Seismic Reflection Evidence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzalez-Escobar, M.; Suarez-Vidal, F.; Mendoza-Borunda, R.; Martin Barajas, A.; Pacheco-Romero, M.; Arregui-Estrada, S.; Gallardo-Mata, C.; Sanchez-Garcia, C.; Chanes-Martinez, J.

    2012-12-01

    Between 1978 and 1983, Petróleos Mexicanos (PEMEX) carried on an intense exploration program in the northern Gulf of California, the Sonora Desert and the southern part of the Mexicali Valley. This program was supported by a seismic reflection field operation. The collected seismic data was 2D, with travel time of 6 s recording, in 48 channels, and the source energy was: dynamite, vibroseis and air guns. Since 2007 to present time, the existing seismic data has been re-processing and ire-interpreting as part of a collaboration project between the PEMEX's Subdirección de Exploración (PEMEX) and CICESE. The study area is located along a large portion of the Pacific-North America plate boundary in the northern Gulf of California and the Southern part of the Salton Trough tectonic province (Mexicali Valley). We present the result of the processes reflection seismic lines. Many of the previous reported known faults were identify along with the first time described located within the study region. We identified regions with different degree of tectonic activity. In structural map it can see the location of many of these known active faults and their associated seismic activity, as well as other structures with no associated seismicity. Where some faults are mist placed they were deleted or relocated based on new information. We included historical seismicity for the region. We present six reflection lines that cross the aftershocks zone of the El Mayor-Cucapah earthquake of April 4, 2010 (Mw7.2). The epicenter of this earthquake and most of the aftershocks are located in a region where pervious to this earthquake no major earthquakes are been reported. A major result of this study is to demonstrate that there are many buried faults that increase the seismic hazard.

  8. Shallow very-low-frequency earthquakes accompanied with slow slip event along the plate boundary of the Nankai trough

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakano, M.; Hori, T.; Araki, E.; Kodaira, S.; Ide, S.

    2017-12-01

    Recent improvements of seismic and geodetic observations have revealed the existence of a new family of slow earthquakes occurring along or close to the plate boundary worldwide. In the viewpoint of the characteristic time scales, the slow earthquakes can be classified into several groups as low-frequency tremor or tectonic tremor (LFT) dominated in several hertz, very-low-frequency earthquake (VLFE) dominated in 10 to 100 s, and short- and long-term slow-slip event (SSE) with durations of days to years. In many cases, these slow earthquakes are accompanied with other types of slow events. However, the events occurring offshore, especially beneath the toe of accretionary prism, are poorly understood because of the difficulty to detect signals. Utilizing the data captured from oceanfloor observation networks which many efforts have recently been taken to develop is necessary to improve our understandings for these events. Here, we investigated CMT analysis of shallow VLFEs using data obtained from DONET oceanfloor observation networks along the Nankai trough, southwest of Japan. We found that shallow VLFEs have almost identical history of moment release with that of synchronous SSE which occurred at the same region recently found by Araki et al. (2017). VLFE sources show updip migrations during the activity, coincident with the migration of SSE source. From these findings we conclude that these slow events share the same fault slip, and VLFE represent high-frequency fluctuations of slip during SSE. This result imply that shallow SSE along the plate interface would have occurred in the background during the shallow VLFE activities repeatedly observed along the Nankai trough, but the SSE was not reported because of difficult detections.

  9. Plate tectonic influences on Earth's baseline climate: a 2 billion-year record

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKenzie, R.; Evans, D. A.; Eglington, B. M.; Planavsky, N.

    2017-12-01

    Plate tectonic processes present strong influences on the long-term carbon cycle, and thus global climate. Here we utilize multiple aspects of the geologic record to assess the role plate tectonics has played in driving major icehouse­-greenhouse transitions for the past 2 billion years. Refined paleogeographic reconstructions allow us to quantitatively assess the area of continents in various latitudinal belts throughout this interval. From these data we are able to test the hypothesis that concentrating continental masses in low-latitudes will drive cooler climates due to increased silicate weathering. We further superimpose records of events that are believed to increase the `weatherability' of the crust, such as large igneous province emplacement, island-arc accretion, and continental collisional belts. Climatic records are then compared with global detrital zircon U-Pb age data as a proxy for continental magmatism. Our results show a consistent relationship between zircon-generating magmatism and icehouse-greenhouse transitions for > 2 billion years, whereas paleogeographic records show no clear consistent relationship between continental configurations and prominent climate transitions. Volcanic outgassing appears to exert a first-order control on major baseline climatic shifts; however, paleogeography likely plays an important role in the magnitude of this change. Notably, climatic extremes, such as the Cryogenian icehouse, occur during a combination of reduce volcanism and end-member concentrations of low-latitudinal continents.

  10. Interaction between central volcanoes and regional tectonics along divergent plate boundaries: Askja, Iceland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trippanera, Daniele; Ruch, Joël; Acocella, Valerio; Thordarson, Thor; Urbani, Stefano

    2018-01-01

    Activity within magmatic divergent plate boundaries (MDPB) focuses along both regional fissure swarms and central volcanoes. An ideal place to investigate their mutual relationship is the Askja central volcano in Iceland. Askja consists of three nested calderas (namely Kollur, Askja and Öskjuvatn) located within a hyaloclastite massif along the NNE-SSW trending Icelandic MDPB. We performed an extensive field-based structural analysis supported by a remote sensing study of tectonic and volcanic features of Askja's calderas and of the eastern flank of the hyaloclastite massif. In the massif, volcano-tectonic structures trend N 10° E to N 40° E, but they vary around the Askja caldera being both parallel to the caldera rim and cross-cutting on the Western side. Structural trends around the Öskjuvatn caldera are typically rim parallel. Volcanic vents and dikes are preferentially distributed along the caldera ring faults; however, they follow the NNE-SSW regional structures when located outside the calderas. Our results highlight that the Askja volcano displays a balanced amount of regional (fissure-swarm related) and local (shallow-magma-chamber related) tectonic structures along with a mutual interaction among these. This is different from Krafla volcano (to the north of Askja) dominated by regional structures and Grímsvötn (to the South) dominated by local structures. Therefore, Askja represents an intermediate tectono-magmatic setting for volcanoes located in a slow divergent plate boundary. This is also likely in accordance with a northward increase in the spreading rate along the Icelandic MDPB.

  11. Interaction between central volcanoes and regional tectonics along divergent plate boundaries: Askja, Iceland

    KAUST Repository

    Trippanera, Daniele

    2017-12-04

    Activity within magmatic divergent plate boundaries (MDPB) focuses along both regional fissure swarms and central volcanoes. An ideal place to investigate their mutual relationship is the Askja central volcano in Iceland. Askja consists of three nested calderas (namely Kollur, Askja and Öskjuvatn) located within a hyaloclastite massif along the NNE-SSW trending Icelandic MDPB. We performed an extensive field-based structural analysis supported by a remote sensing study of tectonic and volcanic features of Askja’s calderas and of the eastern flank of the hyaloclastite massif. In the massif, volcano-tectonic structures trend N 10° E to N 40° E, but they vary around the Askja caldera being both parallel to the caldera rim and cross-cutting on the Western side. Structural trends around the Öskjuvatn caldera are typically rim parallel. Volcanic vents and dikes are preferentially distributed along the caldera ring faults; however, they follow the NNE-SSW regional structures when located outside the calderas. Our results highlight that the Askja volcano displays a balanced amount of regional (fissure-swarm related) and local (shallow-magma-chamber related) tectonic structures along with a mutual interaction among these. This is different from Krafla volcano (to the north of Askja) dominated by regional structures and Grímsvötn (to the South) dominated by local structures. Therefore, Askja represents an intermediate tectono-magmatic setting for volcanoes located in a slow divergent plate boundary. This is also likely in accordance with a northward increase in the spreading rate along the Icelandic MDPB.

  12. The April 2007 earthquake swarm near Lake Trichonis and implications for active tectonics in western Greece

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiratzi, A.; Sokos, E.; Ganas, A.; Tselentis, A.; Benetatos, C.; Roumelioti, Z.; Serpetsidaki, A.; Andriopoulos, G.; Galanis, O.; Petrou, P.

    2008-06-01

    We investigate the properties of the April 2007 earthquake swarm (Mw 5.2) which occurred at the vicinity of Lake Trichonis (western Greece). First we relocated the earthquakes, using P- and S-wave arrivals to the stations of the Hellenic Unified Seismic Network (HUSN), and then we applied moment tensor inversion to regional broad-band waveforms to obtain the focal mechanisms of the strongest events of the 2007 swarm. The relocated epicentres, cluster along the eastern banks of the lake, and follow a distinct NNW-ESE trend. The previous strong sequence close to Lake Trichonis occurred in June-December 1975. We applied teleseismic body waveform inversion, to obtain the focal mechanism solution of the strongest earthquake of this sequence, i.e. the 31 December 1975 (Mw 6.0) event. Our results indicate that: a) the 31 December 1975 Mw 6.0 event was produced by a NW-SE normal fault, dipping to the NE, with considerable sinistral strike-slip component; we relocated its epicentre: i) using phase data reported to ISC and its coordinates are 38.486°N, 21.661°E; ii) using the available macroseismic data, and the coordinates of the macroseismic epicentre are 38.49°N, 21.63°E, close to the strongly affected village of Kato Makrinou; b) the earthquakes of the 2007 swarm indicate a NNW-SSE strike for the activated main structure, parallel to the eastern banks of Lake Trichonis, dipping to the NE and characterized by mainly normal faulting, occasionally combined with sinistral strike-slip component. The 2007 earthquake swarm did not rupture the well documented E-W striking Trichonis normal fault that bounds the southern flank of the lake, but on the contrary it is due to rupture of a NW-SE normal fault that strikes at a ˜ 45° angle to the Trichonis fault. The left-lateral component of faulting is mapped for the first time to the north of the Gulf of Patras which was previously regarded as the boundary for strike-slip motions in western Greece. This result signifies the

  13. Space Geodetic Observations and Modeling of 2016 Mw 5.9 Menyuan Earthquake: Implications on Seismogenic Tectonic Motion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yongsheng Li

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Determining the relationship between crustal movement and faulting in thrust belts is essential for understanding the growth of geological structures and addressing the proposed models of a potential earthquake hazard. A Mw 5.9 earthquake occurred on 21 January 2016 in Menyuan, NE Qinghai Tibetan plateau. We combined satellite interferometry from Sentinel-1A Terrain Observation with Progressive Scans (TOPS images, historical earthquake records, aftershock relocations and geological data to determine fault seismogenic structural geometry and its relationship with the Lenglongling faults. The results indicate that the reverse slip of the 2016 earthquake is distributed on a southwest dipping shovel-shaped fault segment. The main shock rupture was initiated at the deeper part of the fault plane. The focal mechanism of the 2016 earthquake is quite different from that of a previous Ms 6.5 earthquake which occurred in 1986. Both earthquakes occurred at the two ends of a secondary fault. Joint analysis of the 1986 and 2016 earthquakes and aftershocks distribution of the 2016 event reveals an intense connection with the tectonic deformation of the Lenglongling faults. Both earthquakes resulted from the left-lateral strike-slip of the Lenglongling fault zone and showed distinct focal mechanism characteristics. Under the shearing influence, the normal component is formed at the releasing bend of the western end of the secondary fault for the left-order alignment of the fault zone, while the thrust component is formed at the restraining bend of the east end for the right-order alignment of the fault zone. Seismic activity of this region suggests that the left-lateral strike-slip of the Lenglongling fault zone plays a significant role in adjustment of the tectonic deformation in the NE Tibetan plateau.

  14. Active tectonic deformation of the western Indian plate boundary: A case study from the Chaman Fault System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crupa, Wanda E.; Khan, Shuhab D.; Huang, Jingqiu; Khan, Abdul S.; Kasi, Aimal

    2017-10-01

    Collision of the Eurasian and Indian plates has resulted in two spatially offset subduction zones, the Makran subduction zone to the south and the Himalayan convergent margin to the north. These zones are linked by a system of left-lateral strike-slip faults known as the Chaman Fault System, ∼1200 km, which spans along western Pakistan. Although this is one of the greatest strike-slip faults, yet temporal and spatial variation in displacement has not been adequately defined along this fault system. This study conducted geomorphic and geodetic investigations along the Chaman Fault in a search for evidence of spatial variations in motion. Four study areas were selected over the span of the Chaman Fault: (1) Tarnak-Rud area over the Tarnak-Rud valley, (2) Spinatizha area over the Spinatizha Mountain Range, (3) Nushki area over the Nushki basin, and (4) Kharan area over the northern tip of the Central Makran Mountains. Remote sensing data allowed for in depth mapping of different components and faults within the Kohjak group. Wind and water gap pairs along with offset rivers were identified using high-resolution imagery and digital-elevation models to show displacement for the four study areas. The mountain-front-sinuosity ratio, valley height-to-width-ratio, and the stream-length-gradient index were calculated and used to determine the relative tectonic activity of each area. These geomorphic indices suggest that the Kharan area is the most active and the Tarnak-Rud area is the least active. GPS data were processed into a stable Indian plate reference frame and analyzed. Fault parallel velocity versus fault normal distance yielded a ∼8-10 mm/yr displacement rate along the Chaman Fault just north of the Spinatizha area. InSAR data were also integrated to assess displacement rates along the fault system. Geodetic data support that ultra-slow earthquakes similar to those that strike along other major strike-slip faults, such as the San Andreas Fault System, are

  15. Gradual unlocking of plate boundary controlled initiation of the 2014 Iquique earthquake.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schurr, Bernd; Asch, Günter; Hainzl, Sebastian; Bedford, Jonathan; Hoechner, Andreas; Palo, Mauro; Wang, Rongjiang; Moreno, Marcos; Bartsch, Mitja; Zhang, Yong; Oncken, Onno; Tilmann, Frederik; Dahm, Torsten; Victor, Pia; Barrientos, Sergio; Vilotte, Jean-Pierre

    2014-08-21

    On 1 April 2014, Northern Chile was struck by a magnitude 8.1 earthquake following a protracted series of foreshocks. The Integrated Plate Boundary Observatory Chile monitored the entire sequence of events, providing unprecedented resolution of the build-up to the main event and its rupture evolution. Here we show that the Iquique earthquake broke a central fraction of the so-called northern Chile seismic gap, the last major segment of the South American plate boundary that had not ruptured in the past century. Since July 2013 three seismic clusters, each lasting a few weeks, hit this part of the plate boundary with earthquakes of increasing peak magnitudes. Starting with the second cluster, geodetic observations show surface displacements that can be associated with slip on the plate interface. These seismic clusters and their slip transients occupied a part of the plate interface that was transitional between a fully locked and a creeping portion. Leading up to this earthquake, the b value of the foreshocks gradually decreased during the years before the earthquake, reversing its trend a few days before the Iquique earthquake. The mainshock finally nucleated at the northern end of the foreshock area, which skirted a locked patch, and ruptured mainly downdip towards higher locking. Peak slip was attained immediately downdip of the foreshock region and at the margin of the locked patch. We conclude that gradual weakening of the central part of the seismic gap accentuated by the foreshock activity in a zone of intermediate seismic coupling was instrumental in causing final failure, distinguishing the Iquique earthquake from most great earthquakes. Finally, only one-third of the gap was broken and the remaining locked segments now pose a significant, increased seismic hazard with the potential to host an earthquake with a magnitude of >8.5.

  16. Transpressional Tectonics across the N. American-Caribbean Plate Boundary: Preliminary Results of a Multichannel Seismic Survey of Lake Azuei, Haiti.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hearn, C. K.; Cormier, M. H.; Sloan, H.; Wattrus, N. J.; Boisson, D.; Brown, B.; Guerrier, K.; King, J. W.; Knotts, P.; Momplaisir, R.; Sorlien, C. C.; Stempel, R.; Symithe, S. J.; Ulysse, S. M. J.

    2017-12-01

    On January 12, 2010, a Mw 7.0 earthquake struck Haiti, killing over 200,000 people and devastating the Capital city of Port-au-Prince and the surrounding regions. It ruptured a previously unknown blind-thrust fault that abuts the Enriquillo Plantain Garden Fault (EPGF), one of two transform faults that define the North American-Caribbean plate boundary. That earthquake highlighted how transpression across this complex boundary is accommodated by slip partitioning into strike-slip and compressional structures. Because the seismic hazard is higher for a rupture on a reverse or oblique-slip fault than on a vertical strike-slip fault, the need to characterize the geometry of that fault system is clear. Lake Azuei overlies this plate boundary 60 km east of the 2010 epicenter. The lake's 23 km long axis trends NW-SE, parallel to the Haitian fold-and-thrust belt and oblique to the EPGF. This tectonic context makes it an ideal target for investigating the partitioning of plate motion between strike-slip and compressional structures. In January 2017, we acquired 222 km of multichannel seismic (MCS) profiles in the lake, largely concurrent with subbottom seismic (CHIRP) profiles. The MCS data were acquired using a high-frequency BubbleGun source and a 75 m-long, 24-channel streamer, achieving a 24 seismic fold with a penetration of 200 m below lakebed. With the goal of resolving tectonic structures in 3-D, survey lines were laid out in a grid with profiles spaced 1.2 km apart. Additional profiles were acquired at the SE end of the lake where most of the tectonic activity is presumably occurring. The co-located CHIRP and MCS profiles document the continuity of tectonic deformation between the surficial sediments and the deeper strata. Preliminary processing suggests that a SW-dipping blind thrust fault, expressed updip as a large monocline fold, may control the western edge of the lake. Gentle, young folds that protrude from the flat lakebed are also imaged with the CHIRP

  17. Volcano-tectonic earthquakes: A new tool for estimating intrusive volumes and forecasting eruptions

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Randall A.; McCausland, Wendy

    2016-01-01

    We present data on 136 high-frequency earthquakes and swarms, termed volcano-tectonic (VT) seismicity, which preceded 111 eruptions at 83 volcanoes, plus data on VT swarms that preceded intrusions at 21 other volcanoes. We find that VT seismicity is usually the earliest reported seismic precursor for eruptions at volcanoes that have been dormant for decades or more, and precedes eruptions of all magma types from basaltic to rhyolitic and all explosivities from VEI 0 to ultraplinian VEI 6 at such previously long-dormant volcanoes. Because large eruptions occur most commonly during resumption of activity at long-dormant volcanoes, VT seismicity is an important precursor for the Earth's most dangerous eruptions. VT seismicity precedes all explosive eruptions of VEI ≥ 5 and most if not all VEI 4 eruptions in our data set. Surprisingly we find that the VT seismicity originates at distal locations on tectonic fault structures at distances of one or two to tens of kilometers laterally from the site of the eventual eruption, and rarely if ever starts beneath the eruption site itself. The distal VT swarms generally occur at depths almost equal to the horizontal distance of the swarm from the summit out to about 15 km distance, beyond which hypocenter depths level out. We summarize several important characteristics of this distal VT seismicity including: swarm-like nature, onset days to years prior to the beginning of magmatic eruptions, peaking of activity at the time of the initial eruption whether phreatic or magmatic, and large non-double couple component to focal mechanisms. Most importantly we show that the intruded magma volume can be simply estimated from the cumulative seismic moment of the VT seismicity from:

  18. A Seismo-Tectonic Signal From Offshore Sedimentation: The 2010 Haiti Earthquake and Prior Events

    Science.gov (United States)

    McHugh, C. M.; Seeber, L.; Cormier, M.; Hornbach, M.; Momplaisir, R.; Waldhauser, F.; Sorlien, C. C.; Steckler, M. S.; Gulick, S.

    2011-12-01

    The Mw 7.0 January 2010 earthquake in Haiti was one of the deadliest in history. It involved multiple faults along or near the main Enriquillo-Plantain Garden Fault (EPGF). This left-lateral transform is a branch of the northern Caribbean plate boundary across southern Hispaniola. The main rupture was strike-slip but almost all aftershocks had thrust mechanisms, and surface deformation may have been concentrated on anticline forelimbs driven by blind thrust faults. Earthquake generated mass-wasting and turbidity currents were sampled from the Canal du Sud slope (~1000 m water depth), a basin at 1500 m, and the deepest part of the strait at 1700 m. The turbidites were strongly correlated by 234Th with a half-life of 24 days. In the deepest area, a turbidite-homogenite unit (T-H) extends over 50 km2 and is composed of basal sand beds 5 cm thick and 50 cm of mud above. The sedimentary structures in the sand were linked to oscillatory motions by internal seiches. The T-H units recovered from the slope and deep basin are similar in composition. The Leogane Delta, upslope from the sampling sites, is rich in this lithology that has been linked to oceanic basement rocks exposed on the southern Haitian peninsula. In contrast, the T-H unit recovered from the basin at 1500 m is perched behind a thrust anticline and has a greater concentration of Ca derived from Ca rich sources such as the Tapion Ridge on the southern peninsula. The Tapion Ridge is a compressional structure associated with a restraining bend along the EPGF. The T-H unit beneath the 2010 deposit has a 14C age of 2400 cal yrs BP, and interpreted as an earthquake triggered deposit. It is nearly identical in thickness, composition and fine structures to the 2010 T-H. Notably absent from the record are younger turbidites that could have been linked to the historic 1770 AD and other similar earthquakes expected from GPS rates across the EPGF. Two hypotheses are being considered for this long gap in T-H sedimentation

  19. Cenozoic intraplate tectonics in Central Patagonia: Record of main Andean phases in a weak upper plate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gianni, G. M.; Echaurren, A.; Folguera, A.; Likerman, J.; Encinas, A.; García, H. P. A.; Dal Molin, C.; Valencia, V. A.

    2017-11-01

    Contraction in intraplate areas is still poorly understood relative to similar deformation at plate margins. In order to contribute to its comprehension, we study the Patagonian broken foreland (PBF) in South America whose evolution remains controversial. Time constraints of tectonic events and structural characterization of this belt are limited. Also, major causes of strain location in this orogen far from the plate margin are enigmatic. To unravel tectonic events, we studied the Cenozoic sedimentary record of the central sector of the Patagonian broken foreland (San Bernardo fold and thrust belt, 44°30‧S-46°S) and the Andes (Meseta de Chalia, 46°S) following an approach involving growth-strata detection, U-Pb geochronology and structural modeling. Additionally, we elaborate a high resolution analysis of the effective elastic thickness (Te) to examine the relation between intraplate contraction location and variations in lithospheric strength. The occurrence of Eocene growth-strata ( 44-40 Ma) suggests that contraction in the Andes and the Patagonian broken foreland was linked to the Incaic phase. Detection of synextensional deposits suggests that the broken foreland collapsed partially during Oligocene to early Miocene. During middle Miocene times, the Quechua contractional phase produced folding of Neogene volcanic rocks and olistostrome deposition at 17 Ma. Finally, the presented Te map shows that intraplate contraction related to Andean phases localized preferentially along weak lithospheric zones (Te < 15 km). Hence, the observed strain distribution in the PBF appears to be controlled by lateral variations in the lithospheric strength. Variations in this parameter could be related to thermo-mechanical weakening produced by intraplate rifting in Paleozoic-Mesozoic times.

  20. Tectonic Implication of the 5th March 2005, Doublet Earthquake in Ilan, Taiwan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    En-Chao Yeh

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The 5th March 2005 earthquake doublet focal mechanism was determined as strike-slip faulting from Harvard and BATS moment tensor inversion. However, based on first motion polarities, the first shock has a normal focal mechanism (Wu et al. 2008a. This discrepancy has caused a debate over the focal mechanism solution because different focal mechanisms have different tectonic implications. Based on the dislocation determination from Global Position System (GPS measurements, we find this event includes both tensile and strike-slip components. This finding illustrates the reason for the differences in the determined focal mechanisms using two different types of seismic data and analyzing methods. Field mapping and microstructure examination results indicate that the ductile deformation around the study area was characterized by the evolution from transpression to transtension with a predominant strike-slip component, but present-day active structures may be dominated by normal faulting. Thus, the active tensile slip result determined from dislocation modeling strongly suggests that the back arc extension of the Okinawa trough influences the stress state in this region, and changes the major transtension from strike-slip faulting to normal faulting.

  1. Playing jigsaw with Large Igneous Provinces—A plate tectonic reconstruction of Ontong Java Nui, West Pacific

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hochmuth, Katharina; Gohl, Karsten; Uenzelmann-Neben, Gabriele

    2015-11-01

    The three largest Large Igneous Provinces (LIP) of the western Pacific—Ontong Java, Manihiki, and Hikurangi Plateaus—were emplaced during the Cretaceous Normal Superchron and show strong similarities in their geochemistry and petrology. The plate tectonic relationship between those LIPs, herein referred to as Ontong Java Nui, is uncertain, but a joined emplacement was proposed by Taylor (2006). Since this hypothesis is still highly debated and struggles to explain features such as the strong differences in crustal thickness between the different plateaus, we revisited the joined emplacement of Ontong Java Nui in light of new data from the Manihiki Plateau. By evaluating seismic refraction/wide-angle reflection data along with seismic reflection records of the margins of the proposed "Super"-LIP, a detailed scenario for the emplacement and the initial phase of breakup has been developed. The LIP is a result of an interaction of the arriving plume head with the Phoenix-Pacific spreading ridge in the Early Cretaceous. The breakup of the LIP shows a complicated interplay between multiple microplates and tectonic forces such as rifting, shearing, and rotation. Our plate kinematic model of the western Pacific incorporates new evidence from the breakup margins of the LIPs, the tectonic fabric of the seafloor, as well as previously published tectonic concepts such as the rotation of the LIPs. The updated rotation poles of the western Pacific allow a detailed plate tectonic reconstruction of the region during the Cretaceous Normal Superchron and highlight the important role of LIPs in the plate tectonic framework.

  2. 3-D Simulation of Tectonic Evolution in Mariana with a Coupled Model of Plate Subduction and Back-Arc Spreading

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hashima, A.; Matsu'Ura, M.

    2006-12-01

    We obtained the expressions for internal deformation fields due to a moment tensor in an elastic-viscoelastic layered holf-space. This unified formulation of internal deformation fields for shear faulting and crack opening enabled us to deal with the problem of tectonic deformation at a composite type of plate boundary zones. The tectonic deformation can be ascribed to mechanical interaction at plate boundaries, which make a closed circuit with the mode of relative plate motion changing from divergence to convergence through transcurrent motion. One of the rational ways to represent mechanical interaction at plate boundaries is specifying the increase rates of normal or tangential displacement discontinuity across plate interfaces. On the basis of such a basic idea we developed a 3-D simulation model for the nonlinear, coupled system of plate subduction and back-arc spreading in Mariana. Through numerical simulations we revealed the evolution process of back-arc spreading. At the first stage, steady plate subduction (shear faulting at a plate interface) gradually forms tensile stress fields in the back-arc region of the overriding plate. When the accumulated tensile stress reaches a critical level, back-arc spreading (crack opening) starts at a structurally weak portion of the overriding plate. The horizontal motion of the frontal part of the overriding plate due to back-arc spreading pushes out the plate boundary toward the oceanic plate. In steady-state plate subduction the shear stress acting on a plate interface must balance with the maximum frictional resistance (shear strength) of the plate interface. Therefore, the increase of shear stress at the plate interface leads to the increase of slip rate at the plate interface. The local increase of slip rate at the plate interface produces the additional tensile stress in the back-arc region. The increased tensile stress must be canceled out by the additional crack opening. Such a feedback mechanism between plate

  3. A great earthquake in the Antarctic plate on 25 March 1998

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yoko Tono

    1998-07-01

    Full Text Available A great earthquake occurred in the Antarctic Plate at 03h 12m 24.7s (UT on 25 March 1998. The location and magnitude of the earthquake determined by United States Geological Survey are as follows : 62.876°S, 149.712°E, 10km depth m_b 6.8,M_s 8.0. In response to a request for earthquake information from Syowa Station (69°00′S, 39°35′E to Dumont d'Urville Station of France (66°40′S, 140°01′E, the station leader reported that all wintering members in the station felt a quake and something on the shelf in the building fell down. The intensity at the station was estimated to be III∿IV by the intensity scale of Japanese Meteorological Agency. This earthquake is the first great earthquake of magnitude 8 recorded in the Antarctic Plate since IGY of 1957 and the first earthquake felt in Antarctica except for volcanic earthquakes.

  4. State of the art of earthquake engineering in nuclear power plant design

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schildknecht, P.O.

    1976-12-01

    A brief outline of definitions based on the USNRC, Seismic and Geologic Siting Criteria for Nuclear Power Plants, and on the plate tectonics and earthquake terminology is given. An introduction into plate tectonics and the associated earthquake phenomena is then presented. Ground motion characteristics are described in connection with the selection of design earthquakes. Mathematical methods of dynamic structural analyses are discussed for linear and nonlinear systems. Response analysis techniques for nuclear power plants are explained considering soil-structure interaction effects. (Auth.)

  5. Geodynamics of kimberlites on a cooling Earth: Clues to plate tectonic evolution and deep volatile cycles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tappe, Sebastian; Smart, Katie; Torsvik, Trond; Massuyeau, Malcolm; de Wit, Mike

    2018-02-01

    Kimberlite magmatism has occurred in cratonic regions on every continent. The global age distribution suggests that this form of mantle melting has been more prominent after 1.2 Ga, and notably between 250-50 Ma, than during early Earth history before 2 Ga (i.e., the Paleoproterozoic and Archean). Although preservation bias has been discussed as a possible reason for the skewed kimberlite age distribution, new treatment of an updated global database suggests that the apparent secular evolution of kimberlite and related CO2-rich ultramafic magmatism is genuine and probably coupled to lowering temperatures of Earth's upper mantle through time. Incipient melting near the CO2- and H2O-bearing peridotite solidus at >200 km depth (1100-1400 °C) is the petrologically most feasible process that can produce high-MgO carbonated silicate melts with enriched trace element concentrations akin to kimberlites. These conditions occur within the convecting asthenospheric mantle directly beneath thick continental lithosphere. In this transient upper mantle source region, variable CHO volatile mixtures control melting of peridotite in the absence of heat anomalies so that low-degree carbonated silicate melts may be permanently present at ambient mantle temperatures below 1400 °C. However, extraction of low-volume melts to Earth's surface requires tectonic triggers. Abrupt changes in the speed and direction of plate motions, such as typified by the dynamics of supercontinent cycles, can be effective in the creation of lithospheric pathways aiding kimberlite magma ascent. Provided that CO2- and H2O-fluxed deep cratonic keels, which formed parts of larger drifting tectonic plates, existed by 3 Ga or even before, kimberlite volcanism could have been frequent during the Archean. However, we argue that frequent kimberlite magmatism had to await establishment of an incipient melting regime beneath the maturing continents, which only became significant after secular mantle cooling to below

  6. Comparison of earthquake source parameters and interseismic plate coupling variations in global subduction zones (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bilek, S. L.; Moyer, P. A.; Stankova-Pursley, J.

    2010-12-01

    Geodetically determined interseismic coupling variations have been found in subduction zones worldwide. These coupling variations have been linked to heterogeneities in interplate fault frictional conditions. These connections to fault friction imply that observed coupling variations are also important in influencing details in earthquake rupture behavior. Because of the wealth of newly available geodetic models along many subduction zones, it is now possible to examine detailed variations in coupling and compare to seismicity characteristics. Here we use a large catalog of earthquake source time functions and slip models for moderate to large magnitude earthquakes to explore these connections, comparing earthquake source parameters with available models of geodetic coupling along segments of the Japan, Kurile, Kamchatka, Peru, Chile, and Alaska subduction zones. In addition, we use published geodetic results along the Costa Rica margin to compare with source parameters of small magnitude earthquakes recorded with an onshore-offshore network of seismometers. For the moderate to large magnitude earthquakes, preliminary results suggest a complex relationship between earthquake parameters and estimates of strongly and weakly coupled segments of the plate interface. For example, along the Kamchatka subduction zone, these earthquakes occur primarily along the transition between strong and weak coupling, with significant heterogeneity in the pattern of moment scaled duration with respect to the coupling estimates. The longest scaled duration event in this catalog occurred in a region of strong coupling. Earthquakes along the transition between strong and weakly coupled exhibited the most complexity in the source time functions. Use of small magnitude (0.5 earthquake spectra, with higher corner frequencies and higher mean apparent stress for earthquakes that occur in along the Osa Peninsula relative to the Nicoya Peninsula, mimicking the along-strike variations in

  7. Miocene uplift of the NE Greenland margin linked to plate tectonics: Seismic evidence from the Greenland Fracture Zone, NE Atlantic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Døssing Andreasen, Arne; Japsen, Peter; Watts, Anthony B.

    2016-01-01

    Tectonic models predict that, following breakup, rift margins undergo only decaying thermal subsidence during their post-rift evolution. However, post-breakup stratigraphy beneath the NE Atlantic shelves shows evidence of regional-scale unconformities, commonly cited as outer margin responses to ...... by plate tectonic forces, induced perhaps by a change in the Iceland plume (a hot pulse) and/or by changes in intra-plate stresses related to global tectonics.......Tectonic models predict that, following breakup, rift margins undergo only decaying thermal subsidence during their post-rift evolution. However, post-breakup stratigraphy beneath the NE Atlantic shelves shows evidence of regional-scale unconformities, commonly cited as outer margin responses...... backstripping. We explain the thermo-mechanical coupling and the deposition of contourites by the formation of a continuous plate boundary along the Mohns and Knipovich ridges, leading to an accelerated widening of the Fram Strait. We demonstrate that the IMU event is linked to onset of uplift and massive shelf...

  8. The 2012 Emilia earthquake in northern Italy: coseismic geological effects within a compressive tectonic framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montone, P.; Alessio, G.; Alfonsi, L.; Brunori, C.; Burrato, P.; Casula, G.; Cinti, F. R.; Civico, R.; Colini, L.; Cucci, L.; De Martini, P. M.; Falcucci, E.; Galadini, F.; Gaudiosi, G.; Gori, S.; Mariucci, M.; Moro, M.; Nappi, R.; Nardi, A.; Nave, R.; Pantosti, D.; Patera, A.; Pesci, A.; Pignone, M.; Pinzi, S.; Pucci, S.; Vannoli, P.; Venuti, A.; Villani, F.

    2012-12-01

    On May 20 2012 a Ml 5.9 seismic event hit the Emilia Po Plain area (northern Italy) triggering an intense earthquake activity along a broad area of the Plain. Nine days later, on May 29 a Ml 5.8 event occurred roughly 10 km to the SW of the first main shock; these events caused 26 victims and several injured and damages. The aftershock area extended for more than 50 km, in WNW-ESE direction, including five major aftershocks with 5.1≤Ml≤5.3 and more than two thousands of minor events. In general, the seismic sequence was confined in the upper 10 km of depth (ISIDe, http://iside.rm.ingv.it/). The focal mechanisms calculated for the main events and also for several M>4.5 aftershocks are almost all consistent with a compression (P-axes) N-S oriented due to thrust fault mechanisms. The two nodal planes, both E-W oriented, show a 40° southward and 60-70° northward dipping plane (QRCMT, Quick Regional Moment Tensors, http://autorcmt.bo.ingv.it/quicks.html), connected with the compressional regime of the area. From a tectonic point of view, the active Apennine thrust fronts, buried under the Po Plain Plio-Quaternary sediments, locally consist of three N-verging arcs. The most external structures, the active Ferrara and Mirandola thrusts and folds are responsible for the Emilia Romagna 2012 earthquake sequence. Just after the 20th May seismic event, the EMERGEO Working Group was active in surveying the epicentral area searching for coseismic geological effects. The survey lasted one month, involving about thirty researchers and technicians of the INGV in field and aerial investigations. Simultaneously, a laboratory-working group gathered, organized and interpreted the observations, processing them in the EMERGEO Information System (siE), on a GIS environment. The most common coseismic effects are: 1) liquefactions related to overpressure of aquifers hosted in buried and confined sand layers, occurring both as single cones or through several aligned vents forming

  9. Spectral damping scaling factors for shallow crustal earthquakes in active tectonic regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rezaeian, Sanaz; Bozorgnia, Yousef; Idriss, I.M.; Campbell, Kenneth; Abrahamson, Norman; Silva, Walter

    2012-01-01

    Ground motion prediction equations (GMPEs) for elastic response spectra, including the Next Generation Attenuation (NGA) models, are typically developed at a 5% viscous damping ratio. In reality, however, structural and non-structural systems can have damping ratios other than 5%, depending on various factors such as structural types, construction materials, level of ground motion excitations, among others. This report provides the findings of a comprehensive study to develop a new model for a Damping Scaling Factor (DSF) that can be used to adjust the 5% damped spectral ordinates predicted by a GMPE to spectral ordinates with damping ratios between 0.5 to 30%. Using the updated, 2011 version of the NGA database of ground motions recorded in worldwide shallow crustal earthquakes in active tectonic regions (i.e., the NGA-West2 database), dependencies of the DSF on variables including damping ratio, spectral period, moment magnitude, source-to-site distance, duration, and local site conditions are examined. The strong influence of duration is captured by inclusion of both magnitude and distance in the DSF model. Site conditions are found to have less significant influence on DSF and are not included in the model. The proposed model for DSF provides functional forms for the median value and the logarithmic standard deviation of DSF. This model is heteroscedastic, where the variance is a function of the damping ratio. Damping Scaling Factor models are developed for the “average” horizontal ground motion components, i.e., RotD50 and GMRotI50, as well as the vertical component of ground motion.

  10. GIS BASED SYSTEM FOR POST-EARTHQUAKE CRISIS MANAGMENT USING CELLULAR NETWORK

    OpenAIRE

    Raeesi, M.; Sadeghi-Niaraki, A.

    2013-01-01

    Earthquakes are among the most destructive natural disasters. Earthquakes happen mainly near the edges of tectonic plates, but they may happen just about anywhere. Earthquakes cannot be predicted. Quick response after disasters, like earthquake, decreases loss of life and costs. Massive earthquakes often cause structures to collapse, trapping victims under dense rubble for long periods of time. After the earthquake and destroyed some areas, several teams are sent to find the location of the d...

  11. Comparisons of Source Characteristics between Recent Inland Crustal Earthquake Sequences inside and outside of Niigata-Kobe Tectonic Zone, Japan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Somei, K.; Asano, K.; Iwata, T.; Miyakoshi, K.

    2012-12-01

    After the 1995 Kobe earthquake, many M7-class inland earthquakes occurred in Japan. Some of those events (e.g., the 2004 Chuetsu earthquake) occurred in a tectonic zone which is characterized as a high strain rate zone by the GPS observation (Sagiya et al., 2000) or dense distribution of active faults. That belt-like zone along the coast in Japan Sea side of Tohoku and Chubu districts, and north of Kinki district, is called as the Niigata-Kobe tectonic zone (NKTZ, Sagiya et al, 2000). We investigate seismic scaling relationship for recent inland crustal earthquake sequences in Japan and compare source characteristics between events occurring inside and outside of NKTZ. We used S-wave coda part for estimating source spectra. Source spectral ratio is obtained by S-wave coda spectral ratio between the records of large and small events occurring close to each other from nation-wide strong motion network (K-NET and KiK-net) and broad-band seismic network (F-net) to remove propagation-path and site effects. We carefully examined the commonality of the decay of coda envelopes between event-pair records and modeled the observed spectral ratio by the source spectral ratio function with assuming omega-square source model for large and small events. We estimated the corner frequencies and seismic moment (ratio) from those modeled spectral ratio function. We determined Brune's stress drops of 356 events (Mw: 3.1-6.9) in ten earthquake sequences occurring in NKTZ and six sequences occurring outside of NKTZ. Most of source spectra obey omega-square source spectra. There is no obvious systematic difference between stress drops of events in NKTZ zone and others. We may conclude that the systematic tendency of seismic source scaling of the events occurred inside and outside of NKTZ does not exist and the average source scaling relationship can be effective for inland crustal earthquakes. Acknowledgements: Waveform data were provided from K-NET, KiK-net and F-net operated by

  12. From Dearth to El Dorado: Andean Nature, Plate Tectonics, and the Ontologies of Ecuadorian Resource Wealth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Kneas

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Since the early 1990s, the Ecuadorian government has pledged to convert the nation into a “mining country” of global standing. Contemporary claims of mineral wealth, however, stand in stark contrast to previous assessments. Indeed, through much of the 20th century, geologists described Ecuador as a country of mineral dearth. Exploring the process through which Ecuador seemingly transitioned from a nation of resource scarcity to one of mineral plenty, I demonstrate how assessments of Ecuador’s resource potential relate to ideas of Andean nature. Promoters of resource abundance have emphasized Andean uniformity and equivalence—the notion that Ecuador’s mineral wealth is inevitable by virtue of the resource richness of its Andean neighbors. Geologists who have questioned Ecuador’s mineral content, on the other hand, have emphasized Andean heterogeneity. In the recent promotion of Ecuador’s resource potential, notions of Andean uniformity have been bolstered by models of subsoil copper that emerged in the in 1970s in the context of plate-tectonic theory. In highlighting the linkage between ideas of Andean nature and appraisals of Ecuadorian resource potential since the late 19th century, I outline the dialectics between nature and natural resources that underpin processes of resource becoming.

  13. Regional tectonic setting for the Trinidad earthquake swarms (2000-2012) from gravity and magnetic data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finn, Carol A.; Kass, Mason A.; Smith, Bruce D.

    2015-01-01

    Earthquakes in the Raton basin near Trinidad, Colorado, (Figure 1) are located (Rubenstein et. al., 2014) near a major gravity and magnetic boundary. These earthquakes also occur in an area of hydrocarbon production that includes several high-capacity produced water injection wells. This presentation gives a very basic outline of the relation between the earthquakes, the potential field data, and possible basement structure.

  14. The 2011 Tohoku-oki Earthquake related to a large velocity gradient within the Pacific plate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsubara, Makoto; Obara, Kazushige

    2015-04-01

    We conduct seismic tomography using arrival time data picked by the high sensitivity seismograph network (Hi-net) operated by National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention (NIED). We used earthquakes off the coast outside the seismic network around the source region of the 2011 Tohoku-oki Earthquake with the centroid depth estimated from moment tensor inversion by NIED F-net (broadband seismograph network) as well as earthquakes within the seismic network determined by Hi-net. The target region, 20-48N and 120-148E, covers the Japanese Islands from Hokkaido to Okinawa. A total of manually picked 4,622,346 P-wave and 3,062,846 S-wave arrival times for 100,733 earthquakes recorded at 1,212 stations from October 2000 to August 2009 is available for use in the tomographic method. In the final iteration, we estimate the P-wave slowness at 458,234 nodes and the S-wave slowness at 347,037 nodes. The inversion reduces the root mean square of the P-wave traveltime residual from 0.455 s to 0.187 s and that of the S-wave data from 0.692 s to 0.228 s after eight iterations (Matsubara and Obara, 2011). Centroid depths are determined using a Green's function approach (Okada et al., 2004) such as in NIED F-net. For the events distant from the seismic network, the centroid depth is more reliable than that determined by NIED Hi-net, since there are no stations above the hypocenter. We determine the upper boundary of the Pacific plate based on the velocity structure and earthquake hypocentral distribution. The upper boundary of the low-velocity (low-V) oceanic crust corresponds to the plate boundary where thrust earthquakes are expected to occur. Where we do not observe low-V oceanic crust, we determine the upper boundary of the upper layer of the double seismic zone within high-V Pacific plate. We assume the depth at the Japan Trench as 7 km. We can investigate the velocity structure within the Pacific plate such as 10 km beneath the plate boundary since the

  15. Simulation of tectonic evolution of the Kanto basin of Japan since 1 Ma due to subduction of the Pacific and Philippine sea plates and collision of the Izu-Bonin arc

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hashima, Akinori; Sato, Toshinori; Sato, Hiroshi; Asao, Kazumi; Furuya, Hiroshi; Yamamoto, Shuji; Kameo, Koji; Miyauchi, Takahiro; Ito, Tanio; Tsumura, Noriko; Kaneda, Heitaro

    2015-04-01

    The Kanto basin, the largest lowland in Japan, developed by flexure as a result of (1) the subduction of the Philippine Sea (PHS) and the Pacific (PAC) plates and (2) the collision of the Izu-Bonin arc with the Japanese island arc. Geomorphological, geological, and thermochronological data on long-term vertical movements over the last 1 My suggest that subsidence initially affected the entire Kanto basin after which the area of subsidence gradually narrowed until, finally, the basin began to experience uplift. In this study, we modelled the tectonic evolution of the Kanto basin following the method of Matsu'ura and Sato (1989) for a kinematic subduction model with dislocations, in order to quantitatively assess the effects of PHS and PAC subduction. We include the steady slip-rate deficit (permanent locking rate at the plate interface) in our model to account for collision process. We explore how the arc-arc collision process has been affected by a westerly shift in the PHS plate motion vector with respect to the Eurasian plate, thought to have occurred between 1.0-0.5 Ma, using long-term vertical deformation data to constrain extent of the locked zone on the plate interface. We evaluated the change in vertical deformation rate for two scenarios: (1) a synchronous shift in the orientation of the locked zone as PHS plate motion shifts and (2) a delayed shift in the orientation of the locked zone following a change in plate motion. Observed changes in the subsidence/uplift pattern are better explained by scenario (2), suggesting that recent (<1 My) deformation in the Kanto basin shows a lag in crustal response to the shift in plate motion. We also calculated recent stress accumulation rates and found a good match with observed earthquake mechanisms, which shows that intraplate earthquakes serve to release stress accumulated through long-term plate interactions.

  16. Simulation of tectonic evolution of the Kanto Basin of Japan since 1 Ma due to subduction of the Pacific and Philippine Sea plates and the collision of the Izu-Bonin arc

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hashima, Akinori; Sato, Toshinori; Sato, Hiroshi; Asao, Kazumi; Furuya, Hiroshi; Yamamoto, Shuji; Kameo, Koji; Miyauchi, Takahiro; Ito, Tanio; Tsumura, Noriko; Kaneda, Heitaro

    2016-06-01

    The Kanto Basin, the largest lowland in Japan, developed by flexure as a result of (1) the subduction of the Philippine Sea (PHS) and the Pacific (PAC) plates and (2) the repeated collision of the Izu-Bonin arc fragments with the Japanese island arc. Geomorphological, geological, and thermochronological data on vertical movements over the last 1 My suggest that subsidence initially affected the entire basin after which the area of subsidence gradually narrowed until, finally, the basin began to experience uplift. In this study, we modeled the tectonic evolution of the Kanto Basin following the method of Matsu'ura and Sato (1989) for a kinematic subduction model with dislocations, in order to quantitatively assess the effects of PHS and PAC subduction. We include the steady slip-rate deficit (permanent locking rate at the plate interface) in our model to account for collision process. We explore how the latest collision of the Izu Peninsula block has been affected by a westerly shift in the PHS plate motion vector with respect to the Eurasian plate, thought to have occurred between 1.0-0.5 Ma, using long-term vertical deformation data to constrain extent of the locked zone on the plate interface. We evaluated the change in vertical deformation rate for two scenarios: (1) a synchronous shift in the orientation of the locked zone as PHS plate motion shifts and (2) a delayed shift in the orientation of the locked zone following the shift in plate motion. Observed changes in the uplift/subsidence pattern are better explained by scenario (2), suggesting that recent (< 1 My) deformation in the Kanto Basin shows a lag in crustal response to the plate motion shift. We also calculated stress accumulation rates and found a good match with observed earthquake mechanisms, which shows that intraplate earthquakes serve to release stress accumulated through long-term plate interactions.

  17. Emergence of silicic continents as the lower crust peels off on a hot plate-tectonic Earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chowdhury, Priyadarshi; Gerya, Taras; Chakraborty, Sumit

    2017-09-01

    The rock record and geochemical evidence indicate that continental recycling has been occurring since the early history of the Earth. The stabilization of felsic continents in place of Earth's early mafic crust about 3.0 to 2.0 billion years ago, perhaps due to the initiation of plate tectonics, implies widespread destruction of mafic crust during this time interval. However, the physical mechanisms of such intense recycling on a hotter, (late) Archaean and presumably plate-tectonic Earth remain largely unknown. Here we use thermomechanical modelling to show that extensive recycling via lower crustal peeling-off (delamination but not eclogitic dripping) during continent-continent convergence was near ubiquitous during the late Archaean to early Proterozoic. We propose that such destruction of the early mafic crust, together with felsic magmatism, may have caused both the emergence of silicic continents and their subsequent isostatic rise, possibly above the sea level. Such changes in the continental character have been proposed to influence the Great Oxidation Event and, therefore, peeling-off plate tectonics could be the geodynamic trigger for this event. A transition to the slab break-off controlled syn-orogenic recycling occurred as the Earth aged and cooled, leading to reduced recycling and enhanced preservation of the continental crust of present-day composition.

  18. A planet in transition: The onset of plate tectonics on Earth between 3 and 2 Ga?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kent C. Condie

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Many geological and geochemical changes are recorded on Earth between 3 and 2 Ga. Among the more important of these are the following: (1 increasing proportion of basalts with “arc-like” mantle sources; (2 an increasing abundance of basalts derived from enriched (EM and depleted (DM mantle sources; (3 onset of a Great Thermal Divergence in the mantle; (4 a decrease in degree of melting of the mantle; (5 beginning of large lateral plate motions; (6 appearance of eclogite inclusions in diamonds; (7 appearance and rapid increase in frequency of collisional orogens; (8 rapid increase in the production rate of continental crust as recorded by zircon age peaks; (9 appearance of ophiolites in the geologic record, and (10 appearance of global LIP (large igneous province events some of which correlate with global zircon age peaks. All of these changes may be tied directly or indirectly to cooling of Earth's mantle and corresponding changes in convective style and the strength of the lithosphere, and they may record the gradual onset and propagation of plate tectonics around the planet. To further understand the changes that occurred between 3 and 2 Ga, it is necessary to compare rocks, rock associations, tectonics and geochemistry during and between zircon age peaks. Geochemistry of peak and inter-peak basalts and TTGs needs to be evaluated in terms of geodynamic models that predict the existence of an episodic thermal regime between stagnant-lid and plate tectonic regimes in early planetary evolution.

  19. Tectonic Storytelling with Open Source and Digital Object Identifiers - a case study about Plate Tectonics and the Geopark Bergstraße-Odenwald

    Science.gov (United States)

    Löwe, Peter; Barmuta, Jan; Klump, Jens; Neumann, Janna; Plank, Margret

    2014-05-01

    The communication of advances in research to the common public for both education and decision making is an important aspect of scientific work. An even more crucial task is to gain recognition within the scientific community, which is judged by impact factor and citation counts. Recently, the latter concepts have been extended from textual publications to include data and software publications. This paper presents a case study for science communication and data citation. For this, tectonic models, Free and Open Source Software (FOSS), best practices for data citation and a multimedia online-portal for scientific content are combined. This approach creates mutual benefits for the stakeholders: Target audiences receive information on the latest research results, while the use of Digital Object Identifiers (DOI) increases the recognition and citation of underlying scientific data. This creates favourable conditions for every researcher as DOI names ensure citeability and long term availability of scientific research. In the developed application, the FOSS tool for tectonic modelling GPlates is used to visualise and manipulate plate-tectonic reconstructions and associated data through geological time. These capabilities are augmented by the Science on a Halfsphere project (SoaH) with a robust and intuitive visualisation hardware environment. The tectonic models used for science communication are provided by the AGH University of Science and Technology. They focus on the Silurian to Early Carboniferous evolution of Central Europe (Bohemian Massif) and were interpreted for the area of the Geopark Bergstraße Odenwald based on the GPlates/SoaH hardware- and software stack. As scientific story-telling is volatile by nature, recordings are a natural means of preservation for further use, reference and analysis. For this, the upcoming portal for audiovisual media of the German National Library of Science and Technology TIB is expected to become a critical service

  20. Structural factors controlling inter-plate coupling and earthquake rupture process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kodaira, S.

    2007-05-01

    Recent availability of a large number of ocean bottom seismographs (OBSs), a large volume of air-gun array and a long streamer cable for academics provide several new findings of lithospheric scale structures in subduction seismogenic zones. JAMSTEC has acquired long-offset seismic data using a super-densely deploy OBS (i.e. 1 - 5 km spacing OBSs along 100 - 500 km long profiles) in the Nankai seismogeinc zone, SW. Japan, since 1999. Long-offset multichannel seismic (MCS) data by a two-ship experiment, as well as conventional 2D MCS data, have been also acquired at a part of the profiles. Some of those profiles have been designed as combined onshore - offshore profiles for imaging a land-ocean transition zone. One of the most striking findings is an image of several scales of subducted seamounts/ridges in the Nankai trough seismogenic zone. We detected the subducted seamount/ridges, which are 50 - 100 km wide, distributing from near trough axis to ~ 40 km deep beneath the Japanese island. From a point of seismogenic process, an important aspect is that those structures are strongly correlated with slip zones of magnitude 8-class earthquakes, i.e.; subducted seamounts/ridge control the rupture propagations. Moreover, the most recent seismic study crossing the segmentation boundary between M=8 class earthquakes detected a high seismic velocity body forming a strongly coupled patch at the segmentation boundary. The numerical simulation incorporating all those structures explained the historic rupture patterns, and shows the occurrence of a giant earthquake along the entire Nankai trough, a distance of over 600 km long (Mw=8.7). The growth processes of a rupture revealed from the simulation are; 1) prior to the giant earthquake, a small slow event (or earthquake) occurs near the segmentation boundary, 2) this accelerates a very slow slip (slower than the plate convergent rate), at the strong patch, which reduces a degree of coupling, 3) then a rupture easily propagates

  1. Volcano-tectonic earthquakes: A new tool for estimating intrusive volumes and forecasting eruptions

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Randall; McCausland, Wendy

    2016-01-01

    We present data on 136 high-frequency earthquakes and swarms, termed volcano-tectonic (VT) seismicity, which preceded 111 eruptions at 83 volcanoes, plus data on VT swarms that preceded intrusions at 21 other volcanoes. We find that VT seismicity is usually the earliest reported seismic precursor for eruptions at volcanoes that have been dormant for decades or more, and precedes eruptions of all magma types from basaltic to rhyolitic and all explosivities from VEI 0 to ultraplinian VEI 6 at such previously long-dormant volcanoes. Because large eruptions occur most commonly during resumption of activity at long-dormant volcanoes, VT seismicity is an important precursor for the Earth's most dangerous eruptions. VT seismicity precedes all explosive eruptions of VEI ≥ 5 and most if not all VEI 4 eruptions in our data set. Surprisingly we find that the VT seismicity originates at distal locations on tectonic fault structures at distances of one or two to tens of kilometers laterally from the site of the eventual eruption, and rarely if ever starts beneath the eruption site itself. The distal VT swarms generally occur at depths almost equal to the horizontal distance of the swarm from the summit out to about 15 km distance, beyond which hypocenter depths level out. We summarize several important characteristics of this distal VT seismicity including: swarm-like nature, onset days to years prior to the beginning of magmatic eruptions, peaking of activity at the time of the initial eruption whether phreatic or magmatic, and large non-double couple component to focal mechanisms. Most importantly we show that the intruded magma volume can be simply estimated from the cumulative seismic moment of the VT seismicity from: Log10 V = 0.77 Log ΣMoment - 5.32, with volume, V, in cubic meters and seismic moment in Newton meters. Because the cumulative seismic moment can be approximated from the size of just the few largest events, and is quite insensitive to precise locations

  2. Confirmation of the extraterrestrial forces decisive effect on earthquake triggering and lithospheric plates movement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ostrihansky, L.; Kalenda, P.

    2012-04-01

    In contrast to unsuccessful searching for biweekly tides earthquakes triggering the Earth's rotation variations give the unambiguous answer that the extreme positions of the Earth's acceleration and deceleration trigger earthquakes. In addition to it, an important repetition of earthquakes with 19 years period of the Meton's cycle and nutation has been found. Further, it has been found that the continental heating by the Sun and formation of the thermoelastic wave is an important factor of affecting of the Earth's surface and the plate movement. For this the special static vertical pendulum serves with the optimum length of several tens of meters, which after its refinement will be an important instrument for confirmation of stated claims. This problem is so far important that the scientific community advocates an opinion that earthquakes are caused by fluently acting forces in the Earth's interior, i.e. by forces causing absolutely unpredictable disturbances of the Earth' crust. This work is in outstanding interest of the European Union because the volcanic eruptions in Iceland, till now unpredictable, disturb the air-traffic in Europe in spite that just earthquakes in the Mid-Atlantic Ridge show unequivocal earthquake triggering in rhythm of the Earth's rotation variations.

  3. Seismic tomographic constraints on plate-tectonic reconstructions of Nazca subduction under South America since late Cretaceous (˜80 Ma)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Y. W.; Wu, J.; Suppe, J.

    2017-12-01

    Global seismic tomography has provided new and increasingly higher resolution constraints on subducted lithospheric remnants in terms of their position, depth, and volumes. In this study we aim to link tomographic slab anomalies in the mantle under South America to Andean geology using methods to unfold (i.e. structurally restore) slabs back to earth surface and input them to globally consistent plate reconstructions (Wu et al., 2016). The Andean margin of South America has long been interpreted as a classic example of a continuous subduction system since early Jurassic or later. However, significant gaps in Andean plate tectonic reconstructions exist due to missing or incomplete geology from extensive Nazca-South America plate convergence (i.e. >5000 km since 80 Ma). We mapped and unfolded the Nazca slab from global seismic tomography to produce a quantitative plate reconstruction of the Andes back to the late Cretaceous 80 Ma. Our plate model predicts the latest phase of Nazca subduction began in the late Cretaceous subduction after a 100 to 80 Ma plate reorganization, which is supported by Andean geology that indicates a margin-wide compressional event at the mid-late Cretaceous (Tunik et al., 2010). Our Andean plate tectonic reconstructions predict the Andean margin experienced periods of strike-slip/transtensional and even divergent plate tectonics between 80 to 55 Ma. This prediction is roughly consistent with the arc magmatism from northern Chile between 20 to 36°S that resumed at 80 Ma after a magmatic gap. Our model indicates the Andean margin only became fully convergent after 55 Ma. We provide additional constraints on pre-subduction Nazca plate paleogeography by extracting P-wave velocity perturbations within our mapped slab surfaces following Wu et al. (2016). We identified localized slow anomalies within our mapped Nazca slab that apparently show the size and position of the subducted Nazca ridge, Carnegie ridge and the hypothesized Inca plateau

  4. SECULAR CHANGES IN RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN PLATE-TECTONIC AND MANTLE-PLUME ENGENDERED PROCESSES DURING PRECAMBRIAN TIME

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. V. Mints

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Paradoxically, the lists of “proxies” of both plate- and plume-related settings are devoid of even a mention of the high-grade metamorphic rocks (granulite, amphibolite and high-temperature eclogite facies. However, the granulite-gneiss belts and areas which contain these rocks, have a regional distribution in both the Precambrian and the Phanerozoic records. The origin and evolution of the granulite-gneiss belts correspond to the activity of plumes expressed in vigorous heating of the continental crust; intraplate magmatism; formation of rift depressions filled with sediments, juvenile lavas, and pyroclastic flow deposits; and metamorphism of lower and middle crustal complexes under conditions of granulite and high-temperature amphibolite facies that spreads over the fill of rift depressions also. Granulite-gneiss complexes of the East European Craton form one of the main components of the large oval intracontinental tectonic terranes of regional or continental rank. Inclusion of the granulite-gneiss complexes from Eastern Europe, North and South America, Africa, India, China and Australia in discussion of the problem indicated in the title to this paper, suggests consideration of a significant change in existing views on the relations between the plate- and plume-tectonic processes in geological history, as well as in supercontinent assembly and decay. The East European and North American cratons are fragments of the long-lived supercontinent Lauroscandia. After its appearance at ~2.8 Ga, the crust of this supercontinent evolved under the influence of the sequence of powerful mantle plumes (superplumes up to ~0.85 Ga. During this time Lauroscandia was subjected to rifting, partial breakup and the following reconstruction of the continent. The processes of plate-tectonic type (rifting with the transition to spreading and closing of the short-lived ocean with subduction within Lauroscandia were controlled by the superplumes. Revision of the

  5. A harbinger of plate tectonics: a commentary on Bullard, Everett and Smith (1965) ?The fit of the continents around the Atlantic?

    OpenAIRE

    Dewey, John F.

    2015-01-01

    In the 1960s, geology was transformed by the paradigm of plate tectonics. The 1965 paper of Bullard, Everett and Smith was a linking transition between the theories of continental drift and plate tectonics. They showed, conclusively, that the continents around the Atlantic were once contiguous and that the Atlantic Ocean had grown at rates of a few centimetres per year since the Early Jurassic, about 160?Ma. They achieved fits of the continental margins at the 500 fathom line (approx. 900?m),...

  6. Investigation of tectonics and statistical analysis of earthquake hazard in Tange Sorkh dam

    OpenAIRE

    ZOLFAGHARI, Sayyed Yaghoub; RAFIEE, A.; HADI, S. M.R.; TAHERMANESH, R.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract. Today, most understood the importance of the risk of earthquakes with the intensification of the country's development, the rise in urbanization, the concentration of population and material and intellectual capital and increased vulnerability of the capital in the Iran seismic zone. Iran, as one of the most seismic countries in the world, in recent years has witnessed the devastating earthquake, for example can be pointed to earthquakes of Rudbar - Manjil, Bojnoord, Zir Kouh Ghaena...

  7. Origin of Starting Earthquakes under Complete Coupling of the Lithosphere Plates and a Base

    Science.gov (United States)

    Babeshko, V. A.; Evdokimova, O. V.; Babeshko, O. M.; Zaretskaya, M. V.; Gorshkova, E. M.; Mukhin, A. S.; Gladskoi, I. B.

    2018-02-01

    The boundary problem of rigid coupling of lithospheric plates modeled by Kirchhoff plates with a base represented by a three-dimensional deformable layered medium is considered. The possibility of occurrence of a starting earthquake in such a block structure is investigated. For this purpose, two states of this medium in the static mode are considered. In the first case, the semi-infinite lithospheric plates in the form of half-planes are at a distance so that the distance between the end faces is different from zero. In the second case, the lithospheric plates come together to zero spacing between them. Calculations have shown that in this case more complex movements of the Earth's surface are possible. Among such movements are the cases described in our previous publications [1, 2].

  8. Global crustal movement and tectonic plate boundary deformation constrained by the ITRF2008

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhu Ze

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available On the basis of the newly released International Terrestrial Reference Frame(ITRF2008 by the International Earth Rotation Service (IERS, a new global plate model ITRF2008 plate for the major plates is established. This ITRF2008-derived model is analyzed in comparison with NNR-NUVEL1A model, which is mainly based on geological and geophysical data. The Eurasia and Pacific plates display obvious differences in terms of the velocity fields derived from the two plate motion models. Plate acceleration is also introduced to characterize the differences of the two velocity fields which obtained from ITRF2008 -plate and NNR-NUVEL1A models for major individual plates. The results show that the Africa, South America and Eurasia plates are undergoing acceleration, while the North America and Australia plates are in the state of deceleration motion.

  9. Tectonic stress regime in the 2003-2004 and 2012-2015 earthquake swarms in the Ubaye Valley, French Alps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fojtíková, Lucia; Vavryčuk, Václav

    2018-02-01

    We study two earthquake swarms that occurred in the Ubaye Valley, French Alps within the past decade: the 2003-2004 earthquake swarm with the strongest shock of magnitude ML = 2.7, and the 2012-2015 earthquake swarm with the strongest shock of magnitude ML = 4.8. The 2003-2004 seismic activity clustered along a 9-km-long rupture zone at depth between 3 and 8 km. The 2012-2015 activity occurred a few kilometres to the northwest from the previous one. We applied the iterative joint inversion for stress and fault orientations developed by Vavryčuk (2014) to focal mechanisms of 74 events of the 2003-2004 swarm and of 13 strongest events of the 2012-2015 swarm. The retrieved stress regime is consistent for both seismic activities. The σ 3 principal axis is nearly horizontal with azimuth of 103°. The σ 1 and σ 2 principal axes are inclined and their stress magnitudes are similar. The active faults are optimally oriented for shear faulting with respect to tectonic stress and differ from major fault systems known from geological mapping in the region. The estimated low value of friction coefficient at the faults 0.2-0.3 supports an idea of seismic activity triggered or strongly affected by presence of fluids.

  10. Archean greenstone-tonalite duality: Thermochemical mantle convection models or plate tectonics in the early Earth global dynamics?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerrich, Robert; Polat, Ali

    2006-03-01

    Mantle convection and plate tectonics are one system, because oceanic plates are cold upper thermal boundary layers of the convection cells. As a corollary, Phanerozoic-style of plate tectonics or more likely a different version of it (i.e. a larger number of slowly moving plates, or similar number of faster plates) is expected to have operated in the hotter, vigorously convecting early Earth. Despite the recent advances in understanding the origin of Archean greenstone-granitoid terranes, the question regarding the operation of plate tectonics in the early Earth remains still controversial. Numerical model outputs for the Archean Earth range from predominantly shallow to flat subduction between 4.0 and 2.5 Ga and well-established steep subduction since 2.5 Ga [Abbott, D., Drury, R., Smith, W.H.F., 1994. Flat to steep transition in subduction style. Geology 22, 937-940], to no plate tectonics but rather foundering of 1000 km sectors of basaltic crust, then "resurfaced" by upper asthenospheric mantle basaltic melts that generate the observed duality of basalts and tonalities [van Thienen, P., van den Berg, A.P., Vlaar, N.J., 2004a. Production and recycling of oceanic crust in the early earth. Tectonophysics 386, 41-65; van Thienen, P., Van den Berg, A.P., Vlaar, N.J., 2004b. On the formation of continental silicic melts in thermochemical mantle convection models: implications for early Earth. Tectonophysics 394, 111-124]. These model outputs can be tested against the geological record. Greenstone belt volcanics are composites of komatiite-basalt plateau sequences erupted from deep mantle plumes and bimodal basalt-dacite sequences having the geochemical signatures of convergent margins; i.e. horizontally imbricated plateau and island arc crust. Greenstone belts from 3.8 to 2.5 Ga include volcanic types reported from Cenozoic convergent margins including: boninites; arc picrites; and the association of adakites-Mg andesites- and Nb-enriched basalts. Archean cratons

  11. Hydrothermal response to a volcano-tectonic earthquake swarm, Lassen, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ingebritsen, Steven E.; Shelly, David R.; Hsieh, Paul A.; Clor, Laura; P.H. Seward,; Evans, William C.

    2015-01-01

    The increasing capability of seismic, geodetic, and hydrothermal observation networks allows recognition of volcanic unrest that could previously have gone undetected, creating an imperative to diagnose and interpret unrest episodes. A November 2014 earthquake swarm near Lassen Volcanic National Park, California, which included the largest earthquake in the area in more than 60 years, was accompanied by a rarely observed outburst of hydrothermal fluids. Although the earthquake swarm likely reflects upward migration of endogenous H2O-CO2 fluids in the source region, there is no evidence that such fluids emerged at the surface. Instead, shaking from the modest sized (moment magnitude 3.85) but proximal earthquake caused near-vent permeability increases that triggered increased outflow of hydrothermal fluids already present and equilibrated in a local hydrothermal aquifer. Long-term, multiparametric monitoring at Lassen and other well-instrumented volcanoes enhances interpretation of unrest and can provide a basis for detailed physical modeling.

  12. Evidence of a plate-wide tectonic pressure pulse provided by extensometric monitoring in the Balkan Mountains (Bulgaria)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Briestenský, Miloš; Rowberry, Matthew David; Stemberk, Josef; Stefanov, P.; Vozár, J.; Šebela, S.; Petro, L.; Bella, P.; Gaal, L.; Ormukov, Ch.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 66, č. 5 (2015), s. 427-438 ISSN 1335-0552 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LM2010008; GA MŠk OC 625.10; GA ČR GA205/05/2770; GA ČR GA205/06/1828; GA ČR GA205/09/2024 Institutional support: RVO:67985891 Keywords : Eurasian Plate * Balkan Peninsula * active tectonics research * aseismic transient deformations * slow-slip phenomena Subject RIV: DC - Siesmology, Volcanology, Earth Structure Impact factor: 1.523, year: 2015 http://www.geologicacarpathica.com/browse-journal/volumes/66-5/article-780

  13. Lithospheric flexure under the Hawaiian volcanic load: Internal stresses and a broken plate revealed by earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Fred W.

    2016-01-01

    Several lines of earthquake evidence indicate that the lithospheric plate is broken under the load of the island of Hawai`i, where the geometry of the lithosphere is circular with a central depression. The plate bends concave downward surrounding a stress-free hole, rather than bending concave upward as with past assumptions. Earthquake focal mechanisms show that the center of load stress and the weak hole is between the summits of Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea where the load is greatest. The earthquake gap at 21 km depth coincides with the predicted neutral plane of flexure where horizontal stress changes sign. Focal mechanism P axes below the neutral plane display a striking radial pattern pointing to the stress center. Earthquakes above the neutral plane in the north part of the island have opposite stress patterns; T axes tend to be radial. The M6.2 Honomu and M6.7 Kiholo main shocks (both at 39 km depth) are below the neutral plane and show radial compression, and the M6.0 Kiholo aftershock above the neutral plane has tangential compression. Earthquakes deeper than 20 km define a donut of seismicity around the stress center where flexural bending is a maximum. The hole is interpreted as the soft center where the lithospheric plate is broken. Kilauea's deep conduit is seismically active because it is in the ring of maximum bending. A simplified two-dimensional stress model for a bending slab with a load at one end yields stress orientations that agree with earthquake stress axes and radial P axes below the neutral plane. A previous inversion of deep Hawaiian focal mechanisms found a circular solution around the stress center that agrees with the model. For horizontal faults, the shear stress within the bending slab matches the slip in the deep Kilauea seismic zone and enhances outward slip of active flanks.

  14. Lithospheric Structure of the Incoming Nazca Plate Adjacent to the 2014 Iquique Earthquake Rupture Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myers, E. K.; Trehu, A. M.; Davenport, K. K.; Roland, E. C.

    2017-12-01

    The 2014 Iquique Mw 8.1 earthquake occurred within a 500-km long segment of the Peru-Chile subduction zone that had not experienced a significant earthquake since 1877. This event did not fill the entire seismic gap and details of the deformation, along with local gravity anomalies, point to a geologic control on slip behavior. To better constrain along-strike changes in geologic or morphologic features and the correlation with earthquake rupture, the 2016 PICTURES (Pisagua-Iquique Crustal Tomography to Understand the Region of the Earthquake Source) experiment collected multichannel seismic (MCS) and ocean bottom seismometer (OBS) data from across the deformation front and incoming Nazca plate within the area of the 2014 earthquake. Here, we provide a first look at MCS reflection data from this experiment that images the Nazca plate along an uninterrupted 170 km line perpendicular to the region of greatest slip, acquired using the R/V Langseth's 12.5 km streamer and 6600 cc gun array. We summarize structural features of the incoming oceanic lithosphere and present a preliminary 2D velocity model that spans the Nazca outer rise to the trench along the Iquique Ridge (IR). The IR represents a broad, high oceanic feature (HOF) that roughly spans the entire seismic gap. The source of buoyancy and reduced seismic velocities of the IR swell are thought to be produced by isostatically compensated, overthickened crust or anomalously low density mantle due to heating or serpentinization, and we explore these two hypotheses using our preliminary velocity model. Past outer rise deformation modeling suggests a significant bending moment and vertical force at the trench axis, a source for broad, homogenous coupling as the HOF converges the margin. However, decreased incoming sediment and rough topography associated with numerous large seamounts may also lead to a thin subduction channel, influencing heterogeneous rupture behavior. Seaward of the Iquique 2014 event, our initial

  15. Structure and composition of the plate-boundary slip zone for the 2011 Tohoku-Oki earthquake.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chester, Frederick M; Rowe, Christie; Ujiie, Kohtaro; Kirkpatrick, James; Regalla, Christine; Remitti, Francesca; Moore, J Casey; Toy, Virginia; Wolfson-Schwehr, Monica; Bose, Santanu; Kameda, Jun; Mori, James J; Brodsky, Emily E; Eguchi, Nobuhisa; Toczko, Sean

    2013-12-06

    The mechanics of great subduction earthquakes are influenced by the frictional properties, structure, and composition of the plate-boundary fault. We present observations of the structure and composition of the shallow source fault of the 2011 Tohoku-Oki earthquake and tsunami from boreholes drilled by the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Expedition 343 and 343T. Logging-while-drilling and core-sample observations show a single major plate-boundary fault accommodated the large slip of the Tohoku-Oki earthquake rupture, as well as nearly all the cumulative interplate motion at the drill site. The localization of deformation onto a limited thickness (less than 5 meters) of pelagic clay is the defining characteristic of the shallow earthquake fault, suggesting that the pelagic clay may be a regionally important control on tsunamigenic earthquakes.

  16. The 2005 volcano-tectonic earthquake swarm in the Andaman Sea: Triggered by the 2004 great Sumatra-Andaman earthquake

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Kundu, B.; Legrand, D.; Gahalaut, K.; Gahalaut, V.K.; Mahesh, P.; KameshRaju, K.A.; Catherine, J.K.; Ambikapthy, A.; Chadha, R.K.

    Raju3, J.K. Catherine1, A. Ambikapthy1, R.K.Chadha1 1. National Geophysical Research Institute (CSIR), Hyderabad-500007, India 2. UNAM, Instituto de Geofísica, Av. Universidad 3000, Ciudad Universitaria, Del. Coyoacán, C.P. 04510. México D....F. México. 3. National Institute of Oceanography (CSIR), Dona Paula, Goa-403004, India *Corresponding Author (Email: rilbhaskar@gmail.com) Abstract: A 6-days duration earthquakes swarm occurred in the Andaman Sea, 31 days after the giant 2004...

  17. Seismogenic Tectonic Environment of 1976 Great Tangshan Earthquake: Results from Dense Seismic Array Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    LIU, Qiyuan; WANG, Jun; CHEN, Jiuhui; LI, Shuncheng; GUO, Biao

    On July 28, 1976, the great Tangshan earthquake that shook the whole world took place in the Tangshan area of the Hebei Province, China. A big incomprehensible question is why such a tremendous earthquake took place in the Paleo-craton area in North China? It would be worth considering whether a similar event will reoccur in the Tangshan region. In this study, using the receiver function inversion technique and teleseismic P waveform data recorded at the Capital Circle Seismic network and our movable seismic array, we investigated the 3-D S-wave velocity structure of the crust and upper mantle down to 60 km beneath Tangshan area. Our results manifest that (1) the media beneath the Tangshan block cut by active faults are very different from the adjacent area, and all of the active faults surrounding the Tangshan block was through the whole crust; (2) in the upper and middle crust, there exist obvious heterogeneous low-velocity media beneath the Tangshan earthquake region; the crust-mantle boundary has an obvious block uplift and, in comparison with both sides, the top anomalous uplift of the upper mantle beneath the Tangshan block reaches to 10 km, and the upper mantle beneath has an anomalous heterogeneous structure; (4) beneath the Tangshan earthquake region, there are probably massive intrusions derived from the upper mantle, which form the low-velocity body in the upper and middle crust. Because of our results having much higher resolution than previous results, some new features of the crust and upper mantle velocity structure could be shown in this study; (5) the locations of destructive earthquakes are not random and are related closely to their deep structure of the crust and upper mantle. This provides a possibility of correctly estimating the location of destructive earthquakes. On the basis of our results, we discuss the dynamic genesis of the Tangshan earthquake. We consider that the main dynamic source for the Tangshan earthquake is the vertical

  18. Fault kinematics and active tectonics of the Sabah margin: Insights from the 2015, Mw 6.0, Mt. Kinabalu earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Y.; Wei, S.; Tapponnier, P.; WANG, X.; Lindsey, E.; Sieh, K.

    2016-12-01

    A gravity-driven "Mega-Landslide" model has been evoked to explain the shortening seen offshore Sabah and Brunei in oil-company seismic data. Although this model is considered to account simultaneously for recent folding at the edge of the submarine NW Sabah trough and normal faulting on the Sabah shelf, such a gravity-driven model is not consistent with geodetic data or critical examination of extant structural restorations. The rupture that produced the 2015 Mw6.0 Mt. Kinabalu earthquake is also inconsistent with the gravity-driven model. Our teleseismic analysis shows that the centroid depth of that earthquake's mainshock was 13 to 14 km, and its favored fault-plane solution is a 60° NW-dipping normal fault. Our finite-rupture model exhibits major fault slip between 5 and 15 km depth, in keeping with our InSAR analysis, which shows no appreciable surface deformation. Both the hypocentral depth and the depth of principal slip are far too deep to be explained by gravity-driven failure, as such a model would predict a listric normal fault connecting at a much shallower depth with a very gentle detachment. Our regional mapping of tectonic landforms also suggests the recent rupture is part of a 200-km long system of narrowly distributed active extension in northern Sabah. Taken together, the nature of the 2015 rupture, the belt of active normal faults, and structural consideration indicate that active tectonic shortening plays the leading role in controlling the overall deformation of northern Sabah and that deep-seated, onland normal faulting likely results from an abrupt change in the dip-angle of the collision interface beneath the Sabah accretionary prism.

  19. Segmentation of the eastern North Greenland oblique-shear margin – regional plate tectonic implications

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andreasen, Arne Døssing; Stemmerik, Lars; Dahl-Jensen, T.

    2010-01-01

    a highly complex, Paleozoic–early Cenozoic pre-opening setting. However, due to extreme ice conditions, very little is known about the offshore areas seawards of – and between – the peninsulas. Consequently, prevailing structural-tectonic models of the margin tend to be significantly oversimplified...... anticipated. In particular, we interpret strong margin segmentation along N/NE-striking fault structures. The structures are likely to have formed by Late Mesozoic–early Cenozoic strike-slip tectonics and have continued to be active during the late Cenozoic. A more than 8 km deep sedimentary basin...

  20. Tectonic environment and cause of earthquakes in the Three Gorges reservoir area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Qiang

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Seismotectonics in the Three Gorges reservoir area is investigated by using the P-wave tomography with earthquakes that occurred before the impoundment of the reservoir. The result indicates that most of these events occurred in or around the velocity-gradient belts between high-velocity and low-velocity anomalies. These belts have similar characteristics to bured-fault zones. Stresses generated by movement of partially molten upper-mantle materials and thermal stress may have jointly contributed to the seismic activities along the faults and such buried faults, and possibly activated new earthquake ruptures.

  1. Mechanism of the 1996-97 non-eruptive volcano-tectonic earthquake swarm at Iliamna Volcano, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roman, D.C.; Power, J.A.

    2011-01-01

    A significant number of volcano-tectonic(VT) earthquake swarms, some of which are accompanied by ground deformation and/or volcanic gas emissions, do not culminate in an eruption.These swarms are often thought to represent stalled intrusions of magma into the mid- or shallow-level crust.Real-time assessment of the likelihood that a VTswarm will culminate in an eruption is one of the key challenges of volcano monitoring, and retrospective analysis of non-eruptive swarms provides an important framework for future assessments. Here we explore models for a non-eruptive VT earthquake swarm located beneath Iliamna Volcano, Alaska, in May 1996-June 1997 through calculation and inversion of fault-plane solutions for swarm and background periods, and through Coulomb stress modeling of faulting types and hypocenter locations observed during the swarm. Through a comparison of models of deep and shallow intrusions to swarm observations,we aim to test the hypothesis that the 1996-97 swarm represented a shallow intrusion, or "failed" eruption.Observations of the 1996-97 swarm are found to be consistent with several scenarios including both shallow and deep intrusion, most likely involving a relatively small volume of intruded magma and/or a low degree of magma pressurization corresponding to a relatively low likelihood of eruption. ?? 2011 Springer-Verlag.

  2. 3-D thermo-mechanical laboratory modeling of plate-tectonics: modeling scheme, technique and first experiments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Boutelier

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available We present an experimental apparatus for 3-D thermo-mechanical analogue modeling of plate tectonic processes such as oceanic and continental subductions, arc-continent or continental collisions. The model lithosphere, made of temperature-sensitive elasto-plastic analogue materials with strain softening, is submitted to a constant temperature gradient causing a strength reduction with depth in each layer. The surface temperature is imposed using infrared emitters, which allows maintaining an unobstructed view of the model surface and the use of a high resolution optical strain monitoring technique (Particle Imaging Velocimetry. Subduction experiments illustrate how the stress conditions on the interplate zone can be estimated using a force sensor attached to the back of the upper plate and adjusted via the density and strength of the subducting lithosphere or the lubrication of the plate boundary. The first experimental results reveal the potential of the experimental set-up to investigate the three-dimensional solid-mechanics interactions of lithospheric plates in multiple natural situations.

  3. The 11 May 2011 earthquake at Lorca (SE Spain) viewed in a structural-tectonic context

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vissers, R.L.M.; Meijninger, B.M.L.

    2011-01-01

    The Lorca earthquake of 11 May 2011 in the Betic Cordillera of SE Spain occurred almost exactly on the Alhama de Murcia fault, a marked fault that forms part of a NE-SW trending belt of faults and thrusts. The fault belt is reminiscent of a strike-slip corridor, but recent structural studies have

  4. Earthquake clustering in the tectonic pattern and volcanism of the Andaman Sea region

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Špičák, Aleš; Vaněk, Jiří

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 608, November (2013), s. 728-736 ISSN 0040-1951 R&D Projects: GA MŠk ME09011 Institutional support: RVO:67985530 Keywords : earthquake swarm * Andaman Sea region * global seismological data * submarine volcanism * magma intrusion Subject RIV: DC - Siesmology, Volcanology, Earth Structure Impact factor: 2.866, year: 2013

  5. The 1946 Unimak Tsunami Earthquake Area: revised tectonic structure in reprocessed seismic images and a suspect near field tsunami source

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, John J.; von Huene, Roland E.; Ryan, Holly F.

    2014-01-01

    In 1946 at Unimak Pass, Alaska, a tsunami destroyed the lighthouse at Scotch Cap, Unimak Island, took 159 lives on the Hawaiian Islands, damaged island coastal facilities across the south Pacific, and destroyed a hut in Antarctica. The tsunami magnitude of 9.3 is comparable to the magnitude 9.1 tsunami that devastated the Tohoku coast of Japan in 2011. Both causative earthquake epicenters occurred in shallow reaches of the subduction zone. Contractile tectonism along the Alaska margin presumably generated the far-field tsunami by producing a seafloor elevation change. However, the Scotch Cap lighthouse was destroyed by a near-field tsunami that was probably generated by a coeval large undersea landslide, yet bathymetric surveys showed no fresh large landslide scar. We investigated this problem by reprocessing five seismic lines, presented here as high-resolution graphic images, both uninterpreted and interpreted, and available for the reader to download. In addition, the processed seismic data for each line are available for download as seismic industry-standard SEG-Y files. One line, processed through prestack depth migration, crosses a 10 × 15 kilometer and 800-meter-high hill presumed previously to be basement, but that instead is composed of stratified rock superimposed on the slope sediment. This image and multibeam bathymetry illustrate a slide block that could have sourced the 1946 near-field tsunami because it is positioned within a distance determined by the time between earthquake shaking and the tsunami arrival at Scotch Cap and is consistent with the local extent of high runup of 42 meters along the adjacent Alaskan coast. The Unimak/Scotch Cap margin is structurally similar to the 2011 Tohoku tsunamigenic margin where a large landslide at the trench, coeval with the Tohoku earthquake, has been documented. Further study can improve our understanding of tsunami sources along Alaska’s erosional margins.

  6. Plate-Tectonic Circulation is Driven by Cooling From the Top and is Closed Within the Upper Mantle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, W. B.

    2001-12-01

    Subduction drives plate tectonics and is due to cooling from the top: circulation is self-organized, and likely is closed above the discontinuity near 660 km. The contrary consensus that plate tectonics is driven by bottom heating and involves the entire mantle combines misunderstood kinematics with flawed concepts of through-the-mantle plumes and subduction. Plume conjecture came from the Emperor-Hawaii progression, the 45 Ma inflection in which was assumed to mark a 60-degree change in direction of that part of the Pacific plate over a fixed plume. Smooth spreading patterns around the east and south margin of the Pacific plate, and paleomagnetic data, disprove such a change. Speculations that plumes move, jump, etc. do not revive falsified conjecture. Geochemical distinctions between enriched island and depleted ridge basalts (which overlap) are expected products of normal upper-mantle processes, not plumes. MORB traverses solidus-T asthenosphere, whereas OIB zone-refines through subsolidus lithosphere and crust, crystallizing refractories to retain T of diminishing melt while assimilating and retaining fusibles. Tomographic inference of deep-mantle subduction is presented misleadingly and may reflect methodological and sampling artifacts (downward smearing, and concentration of recorded body waves in bundles within broad anomalies otherwise poorly sampled). Planetological and other data require hot Earth accretion, and thorough early fractionation, from material much more refractory than primitive meteorites, and are incompatible with the little-fractionated lower mantle postulated to permit whole-mantle circulation. The profound seismic discontinuity near 660 km is a thermodynamic and physical barrier to easy mass transfer in either direction. Refractory lower mantle convects slowly, perhaps in layers, and loses primarily original heat, whereas upper mantle churns rapidly, and the 660 decoupling boundary must have evolved into a compositional barrier also

  7. The 11 May 2011 earthquake at Lorca (SE Spain viewed in a structural-tectonic context

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. L. M. Vissers

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available The Lorca earthquake of 11 May 2011 in the Betic Cordillera of SE Spain occurred almost exactly on the Alhama de Murcia fault, a marked fault that forms part of a NE-SW trending belt of faults and thrusts. The fault belt is reminiscent of a strike-slip corridor, but recent structural studies have provided clear evidence for reverse motions on these faults. Focal mechanisms of the main earthquake, but also of a foreshock, are strikingly consistent with structural observations on the Alhama de Murcia fault. This strengthens the conclusion that, rather than a strike-slip fault, the fault is at present a contractional fault with an oblique reverse sense of motion, presumably in response to the NW-directed motion of Africa with respect to Europe.

  8. Estimates of stress drop and crustal tectonic stress from the 27 February 2010 Maule, Chile, earthquake: Implications for fault strength

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luttrell, K.M.; Tong, X.; Sandwell, D.T.; Brooks, B.A.; Bevis, M.G.

    2011-01-01

    The great 27 February 2010 Mw 8.8 earthquake off the coast of southern Chile ruptured a ???600 km length of subduction zone. In this paper, we make two independent estimates of shear stress in the crust in the region of the Chile earthquake. First, we use a coseismic slip model constrained by geodetic observations from interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) and GPS to derive a spatially variable estimate of the change in static shear stress along the ruptured fault. Second, we use a static force balance model to constrain the crustal shear stress required to simultaneously support observed fore-arc topography and the stress orientation indicated by the earthquake focal mechanism. This includes the derivation of a semianalytic solution for the stress field exerted by surface and Moho topography loading the crust. We find that the deviatoric stress exerted by topography is minimized in the limit when the crust is considered an incompressible elastic solid, with a Poisson ratio of 0.5, and is independent of Young's modulus. This places a strict lower bound on the critical stress state maintained by the crust supporting plastically deformed accretionary wedge topography. We estimate the coseismic shear stress change from the Maule event ranged from-6 MPa (stress increase) to 17 MPa (stress drop), with a maximum depth-averaged crustal shear-stress drop of 4 MPa. We separately estimate that the plate-driving forces acting in the region, regardless of their exact mechanism, must contribute at least 27 MPa trench-perpendicular compression and 15 MPa trench-parallel compression. This corresponds to a depth-averaged shear stress of at least 7 MPa. The comparable magnitude of these two independent shear stress estimates is consistent with the interpretation that the section of the megathrust fault ruptured in the Maule earthquake is weak, with the seismic cycle relieving much of the total sustained shear stress in the crust. Copyright 2011 by the American

  9. Stress fields in the Antarctic plate inferred from focal mechanisms of intraplate earthquakes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atsuki Kubo

    1999-03-01

    Full Text Available Typical directional features of intraplate stresses are extracted from focal mechanism solutions of earthquakes in the Antarctic plate. Typical directions of stresses are obtained in the following regions, 1 Bellingshausen Sea, 2 south of Juan-Fernandez microplate, 3 Balleny Island region and 4 Kerguelen region. P axes in regions 1 and 2 have been interpreted by ridge push force. However these interpretations are based on one focal mechanism for each event and on crude physical concept of ridge push. It is difficult to explain intraplate stress fields in these regions only by the local ridge push force. The stress direction in region 3 can be interpreted by both deformation near triple junction and deformation due to deglaciation. Earthquakes near region 4 appear to be normal fault event. Because normal fault events appear only in the younger ocean floor, the stress field may be affected by thermal features such as hot spots Quantitative modeling and superposition of various stress factors are required to discriminate among stress origins. It is difficult to discuss stress directions in and around Antarctic continent, because number of the earthquakes is not enough.

  10. The 2005 Tarapaca, Chile, Intermediate-depth Earthquake: Evidence of Heterogeneous Fluid Distribution Across the Plate?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuge, K.; Kase, Y.; Urata, Y.; Campos, J.; Perez, A.

    2008-12-01

    The physical mechanism of intermediate-depth earthquakes remains unsolved, and dehydration embrittlement in subducting plates is a candidate. An earthquake of Mw7.8 occurred at a depth of 115 km beneath Tarapaca, Chile. In this study, we suggest that the earthquake rupture can be attributed to heterogeneous fluid distribution across the subducting plate. The distribution of aftershocks suggests that the earthquake occurred on the subhorizontal fault plane. By modeling regional waveforms, we determined the spatiotemporal distribution of moment release on the fault plane, testing a different suite of velocity models and hypocenters. Two patches of high slip were robustly obtained, although their geometry tends to vary. We tested the results separately by computing the synthetic teleseismic P and pP waveforms. Observed P waveforms are generally modeled, whereas two pulses of observed pP require that the two patches are in the WNW-ESE direction. From the selected moment-release evolution, the dynamic rupture model was constructed by means of Mikumo et al. (1998). The model shows two patches of high dynamic stress drop. Notable is a region of negative stress drop between the two patches. This was required so that the region could lack wave radiation but propagate rupture from the first to the second patches. We found from teleseismic P that the radiation efficiency of the earthquake is relatively small, which can support the existence of negative stress drop during the rupture. The heterogeneous distribution of stress drop that we found can be caused by fluid. The T-P condition of dehydration explains the locations of double seismic zones (e.g. Hacker et al., 2003). The distance between the two patches of high stress drop agrees with the distance between the upper and lower layers of the double seismic zone observed in the south (Rietbrock and Waldhauser, 2004). The two patches can be parts of the double seismic zone, indicating the existence of fluid from dehydration

  11. Lateral structural variation within the overlying plate and its correlation to the Tonankai earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujie, G.; Nakanishi, A.; Park, J.; Obana, K.; Kodaira, S.; Kaneda, Y.

    2009-12-01

    Destructive interplate earthquakes have repeatedly occurred every 100-150 years beneath the Kumano-nada, off the Kii peninsula owing to the subduction of the Philippine Sea plate beneath the southwest Japan arc. The last great interplate earthquakes in this seismogenic subduction zone was the 1944 Tonankai earthquakes, and a number of coseismic slip distribution models derived from seismic and tsunami data show remarkable lateral variations along the trough axis. In 2006 and 2007, we conducted extensive wide-angle seismic refraction and reflection surveys in the entire rupture zone of the 1944 Tonankai earthquake. We designed two along-trough and two across-trench seismic survey lines and deployed a number of OBSs (Ocean Bottom Seismometers) with a spacing of 5km and fired an airgun array with a total volume of 200L at every 0.2km. The quality of the obtained wide-angle seismic record section is substantially good and we observed remarkable regional variation in the amplitude of refraction and reflection phases. For example, in some record sections, we can trace seismic signals up to the offset of more than 100 km, but in other sections, the airgun signals become dim at the offset of less than 30km. Such regional variation in the amplitude indicates the lateral variation of the seismic attenuation structure. For revealing lateral structural variation, we developed seismic structure models by the following approach. First, we applied the first arrival tomography for developing P-wave velocity structure models. Then, we imaged structural boundaries by the reflection traveltime mapping method. Finally, we developed seismic attenuation models by using raypaths and amplitude of first arrivals. Our seismic structure models showed remarkable along-trench structural variation. In the P-wave velocity models, we found a height on the subducting Philippine plate at the eastern end of the Kumano basin (south-east off Shima peninsula). In the western area (i.e. Kumano Basin

  12. Earthquake Directivity, Orientation, and Stress Drop Within the Subducting Plate at the Hikurangi Margin, New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abercrombie, Rachel E.; Poli, Piero; Bannister, Stephen

    2017-12-01

    We develop an approach to calculate earthquake source directivity and rupture velocity for small earthquakes, using the whole source time function rather than just an estimate of the duration. We apply the method to an aftershock sequence within the subducting plate beneath North Island, New Zealand, and investigate its resolution. We use closely located, highly correlated empirical Green's function (EGF) events to obtain source time functions (STFs) for this well-recorded sequence. We stack the STFs from multiple EGFs at each station, to improve the stability of the STFs. Eleven earthquakes (M 3.3-4.5) have sufficient azimuthal coverage, and both P and S STFs, to investigate directivity. The time axis of each STF in turn is stretched to find the maximum correlation between all pairs of stations. We then invert for the orientation and rupture velocity of both unilateral and bilateral line sources that best match the observations. We determine whether they are distinguishable and investigate the effects of limited frequency bandwidth. Rupture orientations are resolvable for eight earthquakes, seven of which are predominantly unilateral, and all are consistent with rupture on planes similar to the main shock fault plane. Purely unilateral rupture is rarely distinguishable from asymmetric bilateral rupture, despite a good station distribution. Synthetic testing shows that rupture velocity is the least well-resolved parameter; estimates decrease with loss of high-frequency energy, and measurements are best considered minimum values. We see no correlation between rupture velocity and stress drop, and spatial stress drop variation cannot be explained as an artifact of varying rupture velocity.

  13. Short-term volcano-tectonic earthquake forecasts based on a moving mean recurrence time algorithm: the El Hierro seismo-volcanic crisis experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    García, Alicia; De la Cruz-Reyna, Servando; Marrero, José M.; Ortiz, Ramón

    2016-05-01

    Under certain conditions, volcano-tectonic (VT) earthquakes may pose significant hazards to people living in or near active volcanic regions, especially on volcanic islands; however, hazard arising from VT activity caused by localized volcanic sources is rarely addressed in the literature. The evolution of VT earthquakes resulting from a magmatic intrusion shows some orderly behaviour that may allow the occurrence and magnitude of major events to be forecast. Thus governmental decision makers can be supplied with warnings of the increased probability of larger-magnitude earthquakes on the short-term timescale. We present here a methodology for forecasting the occurrence of large-magnitude VT events during volcanic crises; it is based on a mean recurrence time (MRT) algorithm that translates the Gutenberg-Richter distribution parameter fluctuations into time windows of increased probability of a major VT earthquake. The MRT forecasting algorithm was developed after observing a repetitive pattern in the seismic swarm episodes occurring between July and November 2011 at El Hierro (Canary Islands). From then on, this methodology has been applied to the consecutive seismic crises registered at El Hierro, achieving a high success rate in the real-time forecasting, within 10-day time windows, of volcano-tectonic earthquakes.

  14. TECTONIC AND SEISMOLOGICAL ASPECTS OF THE GREAT JAPAN EARTHQUAKE OF MARCH 11, 2011

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivan N. Tikhonov

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available The publication presents a review of the structure and seismotectonic features of the Pacific margin of the NorthEastern Honshu Island on the basis of data from seismic reflection and CDP, drilling and detailed seismic studies in view of the megaearthquake (Mw=9.0 which occurred in Japan on March 11, 2011. The megaearthquake is discussed in terms of its position in the succession of the strongest events (M≥7.6 in the area under study within the historical period and in the recent timeline. It is suggested that the period of recurrence is about 40 years for great events and about 1000+ years for megaearthquakes. A number of facts suggesting a probability of a planetaryscale earthquake in the Honshu Island region are revealed. Specifically, a seismic gap with a total length of about 800 km is determined in the study area. It is located southward of 39° north latitude has already manifested aftershocks of the megaearthquake of March 11, 2011. It is probable that the megaearthquake was related to the deep thrust along the Benioff zone and the Oyashio nappe being its structural cap rock in the middle Pacific slope. The sequence of its aftershocks is compared with those of the SumatraAndaman (Mw=9.3, 2004 and Simushir (Mw=8.3, 2006 earthquakes. It is established that development of the aftershock sequences of the first and second events was very similar in time, and development of the areas of aftershock epicentres of the first and third earthquakes is similar in space. The above similarities give grounds to suggest that an aftershock (M~8.0 is possible with a relative shifting from the main shock towards the deep trench.

  15. The 2016 Mihoub (north-central Algeria) earthquake sequence: Seismological and tectonic aspects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khelif, M. F.; Yelles-Chaouche, A.; Benaissa, Z.; Semmane, F.; Beldjoudi, H.; Haned, A.; Issaadi, A.; Chami, A.; Chimouni, R.; Harbi, A.; Maouche, S.; Dabbouz, G.; Aidi, C.; Kherroubi, A.

    2018-06-01

    On 28 May 2016 at 23:54 (UTC), an Mw5.4 earthquake occurred in Mihoub village, Algeria, 60 km southeast of Algiers. This earthquake was the largest event in a sequence recorded from 10 April to 15 July 2016. In addition to the permanent national network, a temporary network was installed in the epicentral region after this shock. Recorded event locations allow us to give a general overview of the sequence and reveal the existence of two main fault segments. The first segment, on which the first event in the sequence was located, is near-vertical and trends E-W. The second fault plane, on which the largest event of the sequence was located, dips to the southeast and strikes NE-SW. A total of 46 well-constrained focal mechanisms were calculated. The events located on the E-W-striking fault segment show mainly right-lateral strike-slip (strike N70°E, dip 77° to the SSE, rake 150°). The events located on the NE-SW-striking segment show mainly reverse faulting (strike N60°E, dip 70° to the SE, rake 130°). We calculated the static stress change caused by the first event (Md4.9) of the sequence; the result shows that the fault plane of the largest event in the sequence (Mw5.4) and most of the aftershocks occurred within an area of increased Coulomb stress. Moreover, using the focal mechanisms calculated in this work, we estimated the orientations of the main axes of the local stress tensor ellipsoid. The results confirm previous findings that the general stress field in this area shows orientations aligned NNW-SSE to NW-SE. The 2016 Mihoub earthquake sequence study thus improves our understanding of seismic hazard in north-central Algeria.

  16. Reducing risk where tectonic plates collide—U.S. Geological Survey subduction zone science plan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomberg, Joan S.; Ludwig, Kristin A.; Bekins, Barbara; Brocher, Thomas M.; Brock, John C.; Brothers, Daniel; Chaytor, Jason D.; Frankel, Arthur; Geist, Eric L.; Haney, Matt; Hickman, Stephen H.; Leith, William S.; Roeloffs, Evelyn A.; Schulz, William H.; Sisson, Thomas W.; Wallace, Kristi; Watt, Janet; Wein, Anne M.

    2017-06-19

    The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) serves the Nation by providing reliable scientific information and tools to build resilience in communities exposed to subduction zone earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, and volcanic eruptions. Improving the application of USGS science to successfully reduce risk from these events relies on whole community efforts, with continuing partnerships among scientists and stakeholders, including researchers from universities, other government labs and private industry, land-use planners, engineers, policy-makers, emergency managers and responders, business owners, insurance providers, the media, and the general public.Motivated by recent technological advances and increased awareness of our growing vulnerability to subduction-zone hazards, the USGS is uniquely positioned to take a major step forward in the science it conducts and products it provides, building on its tradition of using long-term monitoring and research to develop effective products for hazard mitigation. This science plan provides a blueprint both for prioritizing USGS science activities and for delineating USGS interests and potential participation in subduction zone science supported by its partners.The activities in this plan address many USGS stakeholder needs:High-fidelity tools and user-tailored information that facilitate increasingly more targeted, neighborhood-scale decisions to mitigate risks more cost-effectively and ensure post-event operability. Such tools may include maps, tables, and simulated earthquake ground-motion records conveying shaking intensity and frequency. These facilitate the prioritization of retrofitting of vulnerable infrastructure;Information to guide local land-use and response planning to minimize development in likely hazardous zones (for example, databases, maps, and scenario documents to guide evacuation route planning in communities near volcanoes, along coastlines vulnerable to tsunamis, and built on landslide-prone terrain);New tools

  17. Faunal breaks and species composition of Indo-Pacific corals: the role of plate tectonics, environment and habitat distribution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keith, S. A.; Baird, A. H.; Hughes, T. P.; Madin, J. S.; Connolly, S. R.

    2013-01-01

    Species richness gradients are ubiquitous in nature, but the mechanisms that generate and maintain these patterns at macroecological scales remain unresolved. We use a new approach that focuses on overlapping geographical ranges of species to reveal that Indo-Pacific corals are assembled within 11 distinct faunal provinces. Province limits are characterized by co-occurrence of multiple species range boundaries. Unexpectedly, these faunal breaks are poorly predicted by contemporary environmental conditions and the present-day distribution of habitat. Instead, faunal breaks show striking concordance with geological features (tectonic plates and mantle plume tracks). The depth range over which a species occurs, its larval development rate and genus age are important determinants of the likelihood that species will straddle faunal breaks. Our findings indicate that historical processes, habitat heterogeneity and species colonization ability account for more of the present-day biogeographical patterns of corals than explanations based on the contemporary distribution of reefs or environmental conditions. PMID:23698011

  18. Application of plate tectonics to the location of new mineral targets in the Appalachians. Progress report no. 3

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kutina, J.

    1979-01-01

    This report is concerned with the application of plate tectonics to the location of new mineral targets in the U.S. It reviews analyses presented in previous reports which suggest that the basement of the Central and Eastern U.S. consists of large crustal blocks separated by major zones of tectonic weakness. The curvature of the Appalachian Fold Belt appears to be related to the east-west boundaries caused by subsiding and uplifting at these zones. A plot of epigenetic uranium occurrences reveals that they tend to cluster along the greater curvatures of the Appalachian orogeny. These findings have led to a systematic study of the regularities in the distribution of ore deposits in the Appalachians presented in this report. They include a description of geologic and geographic base maps, preparation of maps showing distribution of individual minerals, and regularities in the distribution of uranium in the Appalachians. Comments on the segmentation of the Appalachian orogeny by transverse lineaments are presented. The report contains seventeen maps of the eastern half of the U.S. showing specific mineral deposits in relation to geologic formations

  19. Seismic ACROSS Transmitter Installed at Morimachi above the Subducting Philippine Sea Plate for the Test Monitoring of the Seismogenic Zone of Tokai Earthquake not yet to Occur

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunitomo, T.; Kumazawa, M.; Masuda, T.; Morita, N.; Torii, T.; Ishikawa, Y.; Yoshikawa, S.; Katsumata, A.; Yoshida, Y.

    2008-12-01

    Here we report the first seismic monitoring system in active and constant operation for the wave propagation characteristics in tectonic region just above the subducting plate driving the coming catastrophic earthquakes. Developmental works of such a system (ACROSS; acronym for Accurately Controlled, Routinely Operated, Signal System) have been started in 1994 at Nagoya University and since 1996 also at TGC (Tono Geoscience Center) of JAEA promoted by Hyogoken Nanbu Earthquakes (1995 Jan.17, Mj=7.3). The ACROSS is a technology system including theory of signal and data processing based on the brand new concept of measurement methodology of Green function between a signal source and observation site. The works done for first generation system are reported at IWAM04 and in JAEA report (Kumazawa et al.,2007). The Meteorological Research Institute of JMA has started a project of test monitoring of Tokai area in 2004 in corporation with Shizuoka University to realize the practical use of the seismic ACROSS for earthquake prediction researches. The first target was set to Tokai Earthquake not yet to take place. The seismic ACROSS transmitter was designed so as to be appropriate for the sensitive monitoring of the deep active fault zone on the basis of the previous technology elements accumulated so far. The ground coupler (antenna) is a large steel-reinforced concrete block (over 20m3) installed in the basement rocks in order to preserve the stability. Eccentric moment of the rotary transmitter is 82 kgm at maximum, 10 times larger than that of the first generation. Carrier frequency of FM signal for practical use can be from 3.5 to 15 Hz, and the signal phase is accurately controlled by a motor with vector inverter synchronized with GPS clock with a precision of 10-4 radian or better. By referring to the existing structure model in this area (Iidaka et al., 2003), the site of the transmitting station was chosen at Morimachi so as to be appropriate for detecting the

  20. Origin of marginal basins of the NW Pacific and their plate tectonic reconstructions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Junyuan; Ben-Avraham, Zvi; Kelty, Tom; Yu, Ho-Shing

    2014-03-01

    Geometry of basins can indicate their tectonic origin whether they are small or large. The basins of Bohai Gulf, South China Sea, East China Sea, Japan Sea, Andaman Sea, Okhotsk Sea and Bering Sea have typical geometry of dextral pull-apart. The Java, Makassar, Celebes and Sulu Seas basins together with grabens in Borneo also comprise a local dextral, transform-margin type basin system similar to the central and southern parts of the Shanxi Basin in geometry. The overall configuration of the Philippine Sea resembles a typical sinistral transpressional "pop-up" structure. These marginal basins except the Philippine Sea basin generally have similar (or compatible) rift history in the Cenozoic, but there do be some differences in the rifting history between major basins or their sub-basins due to local differences in tectonic settings. Rifting kinematics of each of these marginal basins can be explained by dextral pull-apart or transtension. These marginal basins except the Philippine Sea basin constitute a gigantic linked, dextral pull-apart basin system.

  1. Earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    An earthquake happens when two blocks of the earth suddenly slip past one another. Earthquakes strike suddenly, violently, and without warning at any time of the day or night. If an earthquake occurs in a populated area, it may cause ...

  2. Rotational inertia of continents: A proposed link between polar wandering and plate tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kane, M.F.

    1972-01-01

    A mechanism is proposed whereby displacement between continents and the earth's pole of rotation (polar wandering) gives rise to latitudinal transport of continental plates (continental drift) because of their relatively greater rotational inertia. When extended to short-term polar wobble, the hypothesis predicts an energy change nearly equivalent to the seismic energy rate.

  3. Damping scaling factors for elastic response spectra for shallow crustal earthquakes in active tectonic regions: "average" horizontal component

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rezaeian, Sanaz; Bozorgnia, Yousef; Idriss, I.M.; Abrahamson, Norman; Campbell, Kenneth; Silva, Walter

    2014-01-01

    Ground motion prediction equations (GMPEs) for elastic response spectra are typically developed at a 5% viscous damping ratio. In reality, however, structural and nonstructural systems can have other damping ratios. This paper develops a new model for a damping scaling factor (DSF) that can be used to adjust the 5% damped spectral ordinates predicted by a GMPE for damping ratios between 0.5% to 30%. The model is developed based on empirical data from worldwide shallow crustal earthquakes in active tectonic regions. Dependencies of the DSF on potential predictor variables, such as the damping ratio, spectral period, ground motion duration, moment magnitude, source-to-site distance, and site conditions, are examined. The strong influence of duration is captured by the inclusion of both magnitude and distance in the DSF model. Site conditions show weak influence on the DSF. The proposed damping scaling model provides functional forms for the median and logarithmic standard deviation of DSF, and is developed for both RotD50 and GMRotI50 horizontal components. A follow-up paper develops a DSF model for vertical ground motion.

  4. The threat of silent earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cervelli, Peter

    2004-01-01

    Not all earthquakes shake the ground. The so-called silent types are forcing scientists to rethink their understanding of the way quake-prone faults behave. In rare instances, silent earthquakes that occur along the flakes of seaside volcanoes may cascade into monstrous landslides that crash into the sea and trigger towering tsunamis. Silent earthquakes that take place within fault zones created by one tectonic plate diving under another may increase the chance of ground-shaking shocks. In other locations, however, silent slip may decrease the likelihood of destructive quakes, because they release stress along faults that might otherwise seem ready to snap.

  5. Stress Drops of Earthquakes on the Subducting Pacific Plate in the South-East off Hokkaido, Japan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saito, Y.; Yamada, T.

    2013-12-01

    Large earthquakes have been occurring repeatedly in the South-East of Hokkaido, Japan, where the Pacific Plate subducts beneath the Okhotsk Plate in the north-west direction. For example, the 2003 Tokachi-oki earthquake (Mw8.3 determined by USGS) took place in the region on September 26, 2003. Yamanaka and Kikuchi (2003) analyzed the slip distribution of the earthquake and concluded that the 2003 earthquake had ruptured the deeper half of the fault plane of the 1952 Tokachi-oki earthquake. Miyazaki et al. (2004) reported that a notable afterslip was observed at adjacent areas to the coseismic rupture zone of the 2003 earthquake, which suggests that there would be significant heterogeneities of strength, stress and frictional properties on the surface of the Pacific Plate in the region. In addition, some previous studies suggest that the region with a large slip in large earthquakes permanently have large difference of strength and the dynamic frictional stress level and that it would be able to predict the spatial pattern of slip in the next large earthquake by analyzing the stress drop of small earthquakes (e.g. Allmann and Shearer, 2007 and Yamada et al., 2010). We estimated stress drops of 150 earthquakes (4.2 ≤ M ≤ 5.0), using S-coda waves, or the waveforms from 4.00 to 9.11 seconds after the S wave arrivals, of Hi-net data. The 150 earthquakes were the ones that occurred from June, 2002 to December, 2010 in south-east of Hokkaido, Japan, from 40.5N to 43.5N and from 141.0E to 146.5E. First we selected waveforms of the closest earthquakes with magnitudes between 3.0 and 3.2 to individual 150 earthquakes as empirical Green's functions. We then calculated source spectral ratios of the 150 pairs of interested earthquakes and EGFs by deconvolving the individual S-coda waves. We finally estimated corner frequencies of earthquakes from the spectral ratios by assuming the omega-squared model of Boatwright (1978) and calculated stress drops of the earthquakes by

  6. The 27 February 1997 Sibi double-earthquake (Mw 6.9, 6.7) in the Sulaiman range of Pakistan - implications for the tectonics of fold-and-thrust belts and for earthquake triggering mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nissen, E.; Craig, T. J.; McMullan, K.; Parsons, B. E.; Rickerby, A.; Wright, T. J.

    2011-12-01

    The Sulaiman mountains form an arcuate fold-and-thrust belt which accommodates oblique shortening between the Indian and Eurasian plates in western Pakistan. Despite being an important component of the India-Eurasia collision zone, little is known about the active tectonics of the range. The Mw ~7 Sibi earthquake of 27 February 1997 was the largest event to strike the Sulaiman mountains in the past eighty years, and provides an excellent opportunity to investigate the regional style of deformation. A pair of radar interferograms constructed from descending-track ERS-2 data reveals two distinct areas containing coseismic surface displacements, spaced ~50 km apart. We model these displacements to yield source parameters for the two sub-events. The larger (Mw 6.9) north-western sub-event occurred on a buried, S-dipping reverse fault, with slip confined to depths of between ~10 km and ~20 km. The elongate pattern of surface deformation lies oblique to the trend of local surface anticlines, suggesting that the fault responsible for this sub-event is disconnected from surface folding, possibly by a weak decollement. The smaller (Mw 6.7) south-eastern sub-event also involved reverse slip on a buried, S-dipping fault, but slip here reached shallower depths of ~4 km. Here, coseismic uplift is concentrated along a prominent surface anticline, which we interpret as a fault-propagation fold whose growth is driven by slip on the underlying thrust. These results suggest that (1) detachment folding and forced folding both contribute towards shortening of the Sulaiman mountains, (2) the range contains active S-dipping reverse faults despite the overall southwards propagation of thrusting, and (3) earthquakes can be generated within the thick sedimentary cover and are not restricted to the underlying basement. Finally, we merge the spatial information provided by InSAR with temporal constraints from seismic body-waveform modelling to investigate possible mechanisms for the

  7. A tale of two arcs? Plate tectonics of the Izu-Bonin-Mariana (IBM) arc using subducted slab constraints

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, J. E.; Suppe, J.; Renqi, L.; Kanda, R. V. S.

    2014-12-01

    Published plate reconstructions typically show the Izu-Bonin Marianas arc (IBM) forming as a result of long-lived ~50 Ma Pacific subduction beneath the Philippine Sea. These reconstructions rely on the critical assumption that the Philippine Sea was continuously coupled to the Pacific during the lifetime of the IBM arc. Because of this assumption, significant (up to 1500 km) Pacific trench retreat is required to accommodate the 2000 km of Philippine Sea/IBM northward motion since the Eocene that is constrained by paleomagnetic data. In this study, we have mapped subducted slabs of mantle lithosphere from MITP08 global seismic tomography (Li et al., 2008) and restored them to a model Earth surface to constrain plate tectonic reconstructions. Here we present two subducted slab constraints that call into question current IBM arc reconstructions: 1) The northern and central Marianas slabs form a sub-vertical 'slab wall' down to maximum 1500 km depths in the lower mantle. This slab geometry is best explained by a near-stationary Marianas trench that has remained +/- 250 km E-W of its present-day position since ~45 Ma, and does not support any significant Pacific slab retreat. 2) A vanished ocean is revealed by an extensive swath of sub-horizontal slabs at 700 to 1000 km depths in the lower mantle below present-day Philippine Sea to Papua New Guinea. We call this vanished ocean the 'East Asian Sea'. When placed in an Eocene plate reconstruction, the East Asian Sea fits west of the reconstructed Marianas Pacific trench position and north of the Philippine Sea plate. This implies that the Philippine Sea and Pacific were not adjacent at IBM initiation, but were in fact separated by a lost ocean. Here we propose a new IBM arc reconstruction constrained by subducted slabs mapped under East Asia. At ~50 Ma, the present-day IBM arc initiated at equatorial latitudes from East Asian Sea subduction below the Philippine Sea. A separate arc was formed from Pacific subduction below

  8. Active tectonics of the Seattle fault and central Puget sound, Washington - Implications for earthquake hazards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, S.Y.; Dadisman, S.V.; Childs, J. R.; Stanley, W.D.

    1999-01-01

    We use an extensive network of marine high-resolution and conventional industry seismic-reflection data to constrain the location, shallow structure, and displacement rates of the Seattle fault zone and crosscutting high-angle faults in the Puget Lowland of western Washington. Analysis of seismic profiles extending 50 km across the Puget Lowland from Lake Washington to Hood Canal indicates that the west-trending Seattle fault comprises a broad (4-6 km) zone of three or more south-dipping reverse faults. Quaternary sediment has been folded and faulted along all faults in the zone but is clearly most pronounced along fault A, the northernmost fault, which forms the boundary between the Seattle uplift and Seattle basin. Analysis of growth strata deposited across fault A indicate minimum Quaternary slip rates of about 0.6 mm/yr. Slip rates across the entire zone are estimated to be 0.7-1.1 mm/yr. The Seattle fault is cut into two main segments by an active, north-trending, high-angle, strike-slip fault zone with cumulative dextral displacement of about 2.4 km. Faults in this zone truncate and warp reflections in Tertiary and Quaternary strata and locally coincide with bathymetric lineaments. Cumulative slip rates on these faults may exceed 0.2 mm/yr. Assuming no other crosscutting faults, this north-trending fault zone divides the Seattle fault into 30-40-km-long western and eastern segments. Although this geometry could limit the area ruptured in some Seattle fault earthquakes, a large event ca. A.D. 900 appears to have involved both segments. Regional seismic-hazard assessments must (1) incorporate new information on fault length, geometry, and displacement rates on the Seattle fault, and (2) consider the hazard presented by the previously unrecognized, north-trending fault zone.

  9. Plate tectonics and the origin of the Juan Fernández Ridge: analysis of bathymetry and magnetic patterns

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristián Rodrigo

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Juan Fernández Ridge (JFR is a cα. 800 km long alignment of seamounts and islands which is thought to be fed by a deep mantle plume. JFR includes the Friday and Domingo seamounts in the western active edge close to the active hotspot, and the O'Higgins Seamount and Guyot at the eastern limit just in front of the Chile-Perú trench. Recent bathymetric (Global Topography and magnetic (EMAG-2 datasets were interpreted both qualitatively and quantitatively by means of 3D inverse modeling and 2D direct modeling for geometry and susceptibility, together with an interpretation of the synthetic anomalies related to the classical hypothesis of deep seafloor spreading. Topographic and magnetic patterns are used to understand the tectonic evolution and origin of the JFR, especially in the western segment. Results show a continuous corridor with a base at ~3900 m depth formed by four groups of seamounts/islands with a number of summits. The deep ocean floor is ~22 to ~37 Myr old and is younger to the south of the Challenger Fracture Zone that runs in a SW-NE direction. The magnetic pattern of the western JFR segment, which is different than the eastern one, has no correlation with bathymetry and does not present a common polarity nor fit with magnetic models for isolated bodies. This superposition of magnetic patterns indicates a role of the faults/fractures of the Nazca Plate. Geological evidence supports the hypothesis of a fixed mantle plume for the origin of JFR but our data suggest that tectonic processes play a role, thus fueling the global controversy about these competing processes.

  10. The feature of the focal mechanism solutions and tectonic stress field around the focus of Zaduo earthquake (Ms 6.3) in eastern Tibet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Y.; Zeng, Z.; Shuang, X.; Li, X.

    2017-12-01

    On 17th October, 2016, an earthquake of Ms6.3 occurred in Zaduo County, Qinghai Province (32.9°N, 95.0°E), 159 km away from the epicenter of Yushu Ms7.3 earthquake in 2011. The earthquake is located in the eastern Tibet Plateau and the north region of Eastern Himalayan Syntaxis. Using the broadband seismic waveform data form regional networks, we determined the focal mechanism solutions (FMSs) of 83 earthquakes (M>3.5) occurred in Zaduo and its adjacent areas from 2009 to 2017. We also collected another 63 published FMSs and then inversed the current tectonic stress field in study region using the damped linear inversion method. The results show that the Zaduo earthquake is a normal oblique earthquake. The FMSs in our study region are mainly in strike-slip and normal fault patterns. The strike-slip earthquakes are mainly distributed in Yushu-Ganzi, Zaduo and Yanshiping fault zones, and the normal faulting events occurred in Nu Jiang fault zone and Nierong County and its vicinity, the south and southwest of the study areas. The tectonic stress field results indicate that the stress distribution in the north and east of the study region changes homogeneously and slowly. From west to east, the σ1 gradually changes from NNE to NE direction, and the σ3 varies from NWW to NW direction. Both the maximum (σ1) and minimum (σ3) principal stress axes in the study area are nearly horizontal, except in the Nu Jiang fault zone and its vicinity, the south of the study area, which is in a normal faulting stress regime (σ1 is vertical and σ3 is horizontal). The localized normal faulting stress field in the south area, which is almost limited in a semicircle, indicates that a high pressure and low viscosity body with low S-wave velocity and high conductivity might exists beneath the anomaly area. And there may be another semicircle abnormal area beyond the south of the study region. Waveform data for this study are provided by Data Management Centre of China National Seismic

  11. The Mw 5.4 Reggio Emilia 1996 earthquake: active compressional tectonics in the Po Plain, Italy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Selvaggi, G.; Ferulano, F.; Di Bona, M.; Frepoli, A.; Azzara, R.; Basili, A.; Chiarabba, C.; Ciaccio, M. G.; Di Luccio, F.; Lucente, F. P.; Margheriti, L.; Nostro, C.

    2001-01-01

    We have analysed the seismic sequence that occurred in October 1996 near the town of Reggio Emilia on the southern edge of the Po Plain. The onset of the sequence was marked by a 5.4 moment magnitude main shock, located at 15km depth. The main-shock focal mechanism is a reverse solution with a strike-slip component and the scalar moment is 1.46×1017Nm. We used broad-band digital recordings from a borehole station, located at about 70km from the epicentre, for a spectral analysis in order to estimate attenuation and source parameters for the main shock. In addition, the empirical Green's function method has been applied to evaluate the source time function in terms of both moment rate and stress rate. We infer an asperity-like rupture process for the main shock, as suggested by the short duration of the stress release with respect to the overall duration of the moment rate function. This analysis also allows us to estimate the average dynamic stress drop of the main shock (600bar). We analysed the digital recordings of the temporary local seismic network deployed after the main shock and of a permanent local network maintained by the Italian Petroleum Agency (AGIP). During 15days of field experiments, we recorded more than 800 aftershocks, which delineate a 9km long, NE-elongated distribution, confined between 12 and 15km depth, suggesting that the basement is involved in the deformation processes. 102 focal mechanism of aftershocks have been computed from P-wave polarities, showing mainly pure reverse solutions. We calculate the principal stress axes from a selected population of earthquakes providing a constraint on the stress regime of this part of the Po Plain. The focal mechanisms are consistent with a N-S subhorizontal σ1. All the seismological data we have analysed confirm that this region is undergoing active compressional tectonics, as already inferred from recent earthquakes, geomorphological data and other stress indicators. Moreover, the elongation of

  12. Structure and tectonics of the Main Himalayan Thrust and associated faults from recent earthquake and seismic imaging studies using the NAMASTE array

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karplus, M. S.; Pant, M.; Velasco, A. A.; Nabelek, J.; Kuna, V. M.; Sapkota, S. N.; Ghosh, A.; Mendoza, M.; Adhikari, L. B.; Klemperer, S. L.

    2017-12-01

    The India-Eurasia collision zone presents a significant earthquake hazard, as demonstrated by the recent, devastating April 25, 2015 M=7.8 Gorkha earthquake and the following May 12, 2015 M=7.3 earthquake. Important questions remain, including distinguishing possible geometries of the Main Himalayan Thrust (MHT), the role of other regional faults, the crustal composition and role of fluids in faulting, and the details of the rupture process, including structural causes and locations of rupture segmentation both along-strike and down-dip. These recent earthquakes and their aftershocks provide a unique opportunity to learn more about this collision zone. In June 2015, funded by NSF, we deployed the Nepal Array Measuring Aftershock Seismicity Trailing Earthquake (NAMASTE) array of 46 seismic stations distributed across eastern and central Nepal, spanning the region with most of the aftershocks. This array remained in place for 11 months from June 2015 to May 2016. We combine new results from this aftershock network in Nepal with previous geophysical and geological studies across the Himalaya to derive a new understanding of the tectonics of the Himalaya and southern Tibet in Nepal and surrounding countries. We focus on structure and composition of the Main Himalayan Thrust and compare this continent-continent subduction megathrust with megathrusts in other subduction zones.

  13. Local and regional minimum 1D models for earthquake location and data quality assessment in complex tectonic regions: application to Switzerland

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Husen, S.; Clinton, J. F.; Kissling, E.

    2011-01-01

    One-dimensional (1D) velocity models are still widely used for computing earthquake locations at seismological centers or in regions where three-dimensional (3D) velocity models are not available due to the lack of data of sufficiently high quality. The concept of the minimum 1D model with appropriate station corrections provides a framework to compute initial hypocenter locations and seismic velocities for local earthquake tomography. Since a minimum 1D model represents a solution to the coupled hypocenter-velocity problem it also represents a suitable velocity model for earthquake location and data quality assessment, such as evaluating the consistency in assigning pre-defined weighting classes and average picking error. Nevertheless, the use of a simple 1D velocity structure in combination with station delays raises the question of how appropriate the minimum 1D model concept is when applied to complex tectonic regions with significant three-dimensional (3D) variations in seismic velocities. In this study we compute one regional minimum 1D model and three local minimum 1D models for selected subregions of the Swiss Alpine region, which exhibits a strongly varying Moho topography. We compare the regional and local minimum 1D models in terms of earthquake locations and data quality assessment to measure their performance. Our results show that the local minimum 1D models provide more realistic hypocenter locations and better data fits than a single model for the Alpine region. We attribute this to the fact that in a local minimum 1D model local and regional effects of the velocity structure can be better separated. Consequently, in tectonically complex regions, minimum 1D models should be computed in sub-regions defined by similar structure, if they are used for earthquake location and data quality assessment. (authors)

  14. Local and regional minimum 1D models for earthquake location and data quality assessment in complex tectonic regions: application to Switzerland

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Husen, S.; Clinton, J. F. [Swiss Seismological Service, ETH Zuerich, Zuerich (Switzerland); Kissling, E. [Institute of Geophysics, ETH Zuerich, Zuerich (Switzerland)

    2011-10-15

    One-dimensional (1D) velocity models are still widely used for computing earthquake locations at seismological centers or in regions where three-dimensional (3D) velocity models are not available due to the lack of data of sufficiently high quality. The concept of the minimum 1D model with appropriate station corrections provides a framework to compute initial hypocenter locations and seismic velocities for local earthquake tomography. Since a minimum 1D model represents a solution to the coupled hypocenter-velocity problem it also represents a suitable velocity model for earthquake location and data quality assessment, such as evaluating the consistency in assigning pre-defined weighting classes and average picking error. Nevertheless, the use of a simple 1D velocity structure in combination with station delays raises the question of how appropriate the minimum 1D model concept is when applied to complex tectonic regions with significant three-dimensional (3D) variations in seismic velocities. In this study we compute one regional minimum 1D model and three local minimum 1D models for selected subregions of the Swiss Alpine region, which exhibits a strongly varying Moho topography. We compare the regional and local minimum 1D models in terms of earthquake locations and data quality assessment to measure their performance. Our results show that the local minimum 1D models provide more realistic hypocenter locations and better data fits than a single model for the Alpine region. We attribute this to the fact that in a local minimum 1D model local and regional effects of the velocity structure can be better separated. Consequently, in tectonically complex regions, minimum 1D models should be computed in sub-regions defined by similar structure, if they are used for earthquake location and data quality assessment. (authors)

  15. Gravity distribution characteristics and their relationship with the distribution of earthquakes and tectonic units in the North–South seismic belt, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guiju Wu

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The North–South Seismic Belt (NSSB is a Chinese tectonic boundary with a very complex structure, showing a sharp change in several geophysical field characteristics. To study these characteristics and their relationship with the distribution of earthquakes and faults in the study area, we first analyze the spatial gravity anomaly to achieve the Bouguer gravity anomaly (EGM2008 BGA and the regional gravity survey Bouguer gravity anomaly. Next, we ascertain the Moho depth and crustal thickness of the study area using interface inversion with the control points derived from the seismic and magnetotelluric sounding profiles achieved in recent years. In this paper, we summarize the relief, trend, Moho gradient, and crustal nature, in addition to their relationship with the distribution of earthquakes and faults in the study area. The findings show that earthquakes with magnitudes greater than Ms7.0 are mainly distributed in the Moho Bouguer anomaly variation belt and faults. The results of the study are important for future research on tectonic characteristics, geological and geophysical surveys, and seismicity patterns.

  16. 3D movies for teaching seafloor bathymetry, plate tectonics, and ocean circulation in large undergraduate classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, C. D.; Lisiecki, L. E.; Gebbie, G.; Hamann, B.; Kellogg, L. H.; Kreylos, O.; Kronenberger, M.; Spero, H. J.; Streletz, G. J.; Weber, C.

    2015-12-01

    Geologic problems and datasets are often 3D or 4D in nature, yet projected onto a 2D surface such as a piece of paper or a projection screen. Reducing the dimensionality of data forces the reader to "fill in" that collapsed dimension in their minds, creating a cognitive challenge for the reader, especially new learners. Scientists and students can visualize and manipulate 3D datasets using the virtual reality software developed for the immersive, real-time interactive 3D environment at the KeckCAVES at UC Davis. The 3DVisualizer software (Billen et al., 2008) can also operate on a desktop machine to produce interactive 3D maps of earthquake epicenter locations and 3D bathymetric maps of the seafloor. With 3D projections of seafloor bathymetry and ocean circulation proxy datasets in a virtual reality environment, we can create visualizations of carbon isotope (δ13C) records for academic research and to aid in demonstrating thermohaline circulation in the classroom. Additionally, 3D visualization of seafloor bathymetry allows students to see features of seafloor most people cannot observe first-hand. To enhance lessons on mid-ocean ridges and ocean basin genesis, we have created movies of seafloor bathymetry for a large-enrollment undergraduate-level class, Introduction to Oceanography. In the past four quarters, students have enjoyed watching 3D movies, and in the fall quarter (2015), we will assess how well 3D movies enhance learning. The class will be split into two groups, one who learns about the Mid-Atlantic Ridge from diagrams and lecture, and the other who learns with a supplemental 3D visualization. Both groups will be asked "what does the seafloor look like?" before and after the Mid-Atlantic Ridge lesson. Then the whole class will watch the 3D movie and respond to an additional question, "did the 3D visualization enhance your understanding of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge?" with the opportunity to further elaborate on the effectiveness of the visualization.

  17. Survey explores active tectonics in northeastern Caribbean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carbó, A.; Córdoba, D.; Muñoz-Martín, A.; Granja, J.L.; Martín-Dávila, J.; Pazos, A.; Catalán, M.; Gómez, M.; ten Brink, Uri S.; von Hillebrandt, Christa; Payero, J.

    2005-01-01

    There is renewed interest in studying the active and complex northeastern Caribbean plate boundary to better understand subduction zone processes and for earthquake and tsunami hazard assessments [e.g., ten Brink and Lin, 2004; ten Brink et al., 2004; Grindlay et al., 2005]. To study the active tectonics of this plate boundary, the GEOPRICO-DO (Geological, Puerto Rico-Dominican) marine geophysical cruise, carried out between 28 March and 17 April 2005 (Figure 1), studied the active tectonics of this plate boundary.Initial findings from the cruise have revealed a large underwater landslide, and active faults on the seafloor (Figures 2a and 2c). These findings indicate that the islands within this region face a high risk from tsunami hazards, and that local governments should be alerted in order to develop and coordinate possible mitigation strategies.

  18. Multi-type Tectonic Responses to Plate Motion Changes of Mega-Offset Transform Faults at the Pacific-Antarctic Ridge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, F.; Lin, J.; Yang, H.; Zhou, Z.

    2017-12-01

    Magmatic and tectonic responses of a mid-ocean ridge system to plate motion changes can provide important constraints on the mechanisms of ridge-transform interaction and lithospheric properties. Here we present new analysis of multi-type responses of the mega-offset transform faults at the Pacific-Antarctic Ridge (PAR) system to plate motion changes in the last 12 Ma. Detailed analysis of the Heezen, Tharp, and Udintsev transform faults showed that the extensional stresses induced by plate motion changes could have been released through a combination of magmatic and tectonic processes: (1) For a number of ridge segments with abundant magma supply, plate motion changes might have caused the lateral transport of magma along the ridge axis and into the abutting transform valley, forming curved "hook" ridges at the ridge-transform intersection. (2) Plate motion changes might also have caused vertical deformation on steeply-dipping transtensional faults that were developed along the Heezen, Tharp, and Udintsev transform faults. (3) Distinct zones of intensive tectonic deformation, resembling belts of "rift zones", were found to be sub-parallel to the investigated transform faults. These rift-like deformation zones were hypothesized to have developed when the stresses required to drive the vertical deformation on the steeply-dipping transtensional faults along the transform faults becomes excessive, and thus deformation on off-transform "rift zones" became favored. (4) However, to explain the observed large offsets on the steeply-dipping transtensional faults, the transform faults must be relatively weak with low apparent friction coefficient comparing to the adjacent lithospheric plates.

  19. Thrust-wrench interference tectonics in the Gulf of Cadiz (Africa-Iberia plate boundary in the North-East Atlantic): Insights from analog models

    OpenAIRE

    Duarte , João ,; Rosas , Filipe ,; Terrinha , Pedro; Gutscher , Marc-André ,; Malavielle , Jacques; Silva , Sonia; Matias , Luis

    2011-01-01

    International audience; In the Gulf of Cadiz key segment of the Africa-Iberia plate boundary (North-East Atlantic ocean), three main different modes of tectonic interference between a recently identified wrench system (SWIM) and the Gulf of Cadiz Accretionary Wedge (GCAW) were tested through analog sand-box modeling: a) An active accretionary wedge on top of a pre-existent inactive basement fault; b) An active strike-slip fault cutting a previously formed, inactive, accretionary wedge; and c)...

  20. A harbinger of plate tectonics: a commentary on Bullard, Everett and Smith (1965) 'The fit of the continents around the Atlantic'.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dewey, John F

    2015-04-13

    In the 1960s, geology was transformed by the paradigm of plate tectonics. The 1965 paper of Bullard, Everett and Smith was a linking transition between the theories of continental drift and plate tectonics. They showed, conclusively, that the continents around the Atlantic were once contiguous and that the Atlantic Ocean had grown at rates of a few centimetres per year since the Early Jurassic, about 160 Ma. They achieved fits of the continental margins at the 500 fathom line (approx. 900 m), not the shorelines, by minimizing misfits between conjugate margins and finding axes, poles and angles of rotation, using Euler's theorem, that defined the unique single finite difference rotation that carried congruent continents from contiguity to their present positions, recognizing that the real motion may have been more complex around a number of finite motion poles. Critically, they were concerned only with kinematic reality and were not restricted by considerations of the mechanism by which continents split and oceans grow. Many of the defining features of plate tectonics were explicit or implicit in their reconstructions, such as the torsional rigidity of continents, Euler's theorem, closure of the Tethyan ocean(s), major continental margin shear zones, the rapid rotation of small continental blocks (Iberia) around nearby poles, the consequent opening of small wedge-shaped oceans (Bay of Biscay), and misfit overlaps (deltas and volcanic piles) and underlaps (stretched continental edges). This commentary was written to celebrate the 350th anniversary of the journal Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society.

  1. Tectonic tremor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shelly, David R.

    2016-01-01

    Tectonic, non-volcanic tremor is a weak vibration of ground, which cannot be felt by humans but can be detected by sensitive seismometers. It is defined empirically as a low-amplitude, extended duration seismic signal associated with the deep portion (∼20–40 km depth) of some major faults. It is typically observed most clearly in the frequency range of 2–8 Hz and is depleted in energy at higher frequencies relative to regular earthquakes.

  2. Tectonic stress orientations and magnitudes, and friction of faults, deduced from earthquake focal mechanism inversions over the Korean Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soh, Inho; Chang, Chandong; Lee, Junhyung; Hong, Tae-Kyung; Park, Eui-Seob

    2018-05-01

    We characterize the present-day stress state in and around the Korean Peninsula using formal inversions of earthquake focal mechanisms. Two different methods are used to select preferred fault planes in the double-couple focal mechanism solutions: one that minimizes average misfit angle and the other choosing faults with higher instability. We invert selected sets of fault planes for estimating the principal stresses at regularly spaced grid points, using a circular-area data-binning method, where the bin radius is optimized to yield the best possible stress inversion results based on the World Stress Map quality ranking scheme. The inversions using the two methods yield well constrained and fairly comparable results, which indicate that the prevailing stress regime is strike-slip, and the maximum horizontal principal stress (SHmax) is oriented ENE-WSW throughout the study region. Although the orientation of the stresses is consistent across the peninsula, the relative stress magnitude parameter (R-value) varies significantly, from 0.22 in the northwest to 0.89 in the southeast. Based on our knowledge of the R-values and stress regime, and using a value for vertical stress (Sv) estimated from the overburden weight of rock, together with a value for the maximum differential stress (based on the Coulomb friction of faults optimally oriented for slip), we estimate the magnitudes of the two horizontal principal stresses. The horizontal stress magnitudes increase from west to east such that SHmax/Sv ratio rises from 1.5 to 2.4, and the Shmin/Sv ratio from 0.6 to 0.8. The variation in the magnitudes of the tectonic stresses appears to be related to differences in the rigidity of crustal rocks. Using the complete stress tensors, including both orientations and magnitudes, we assess the possible ranges of frictional coefficients for different types of faults. We show that normal and reverse faults have lower frictional coefficients than strike-slip faults, suggesting that

  3. Anomalously deep earthquakes related to the Ojo de Agua Lineament and its tectonic significance, Sierras Pampeanas of Córdoba, Central Argentina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Caro Montero

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The Sierras de Córdoba are the easternmost uplifted ranges of the Sierras Pampeanas geological province of Argentina. They are composed of a Neoproterozoic–Paleozoic basement arranged in north–south aligned mountain ranges, limited by west-vergent reverse faults, reactivated or formed by compressive tectonics during the Andean orogeny. The ranges are also affected by oblique subvertical lineaments, probably related to pan-Gondwanan structures. The recorded seismicity shows anomalously deep earthquakes (up to 80 km depth concentrated in the northwestern area. We attribute this seismicity to the current tectonic activity of the Ojo de Agua Lineament. This lineament is a N130º–135° strike, 70º–80° NE dip, macrostructure with more than 80 km depth and 160 km length. A sinistral transcompressional kinematics (convergent oblique shear is deduced by the focal mechanism of a deep earthquake, together with hydrological and geomorphological features strongly modified. The continental lithosphere under the Sierras de Córdoba would be colder and more rigid than in a normal subduction area, due to the retraction of the asthenospheric wedge to the foreland, causing seismicity to depths greater than 40 km, below the Mohorovičić discontinuity. Neogene volcanism would be closely related to this lineament, allowing the rapid ascent of melts from the mantle.

  4. Monitoring shallow resistivity changes prior to the 12 May 2008 M 8.0 Wenchuan earthquake on the Longmen Shan tectonic zone, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Jun; Xie, Tao; Li, Mei; Wang, Yali; Ren, Yuexia; Gao, Shude; Wang, Lanwei; Zhao, Jialiu

    2016-04-01

    An active source measurement of shallow resistivity using fixed-electrode quasi-Schlumberger arrays has been conducted at Pixian, Jiangyou and Wudu stations on the Longmen Shan tectonic zone in western China, with the hope of detecting earthquake-associated changes. For the duration of the monitoring experiment, a gradual decrease of apparent resistivity of up to 6.7% several years prior to the 12 May 2008 M 8.0 Wenchuan earthquake had been recorded clearly at Pixian station, approximately 35 km from the epicenter. The change of apparent resistivity was monitored with a fixed Schlumberger array of AB/MN spacings of 736 m/226 m in the direction of N57.5°E, giving precisions in measured daily averages of 0.16% or less. A coseismic resistivity drop of up to 5.3% was observed at Jiangyou station, using a Schlumberger array of AB/MN spacings of 710 m/90 m in the direction of N10°E. No fluctuation of resistivity was detected at Wudu station at the time of the Wenchuan mainshock. While the focus of this paper is on monitoring or tracking resistivity variations prior to, during, and after the Wenchuan earthquake, we also aim to compare resistivity records of the Wenchuan earthquake to those of the M 7.8 Tangshan and M 7.2 Songpan earthquakes of 1976. Attempts to explain the observed resistivity variations have been made. The results show that the resistivity variations observed at all three stations are in approximate agreement with resistivity-stress behavior deduced from in situ experiments, focal mechanisms, a simplified dynamical model, static stress analyses, and field investigations from along the Longmen Shan fault zone.

  5. Tectonics of the Philippine Sea plate before and after 52 Ma subduction initiation to form the Izu-Bonin-Mariana arc

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishizuka, O.; Tani, K.; Harigane, Y.; Umino, S.; Stern, R. J.; Reagan, M. K.; Hickey-Vargas, R.; Yogodzinski, G. M.; Kusano, Y.; Arculus, R. J.

    2016-12-01

    Robust tectonic reconstruction of the evolving Philippine Sea Plate for the period immediately before and after subduction initiation 52 Ma to form the Izu-Bonin-Mariana (IBM) arc is prerequisite to understand cause of subduction initiation (SI) and test competing hypotheses for SI such as spontaneous or induced nucleation. Understanding of nature and origin of overriding and subducting plates is especially important because plate density is a key parameter controlling SI based on numerical modeling (e.g., Leng and Gurnis 2015). There is increasing evidence that multiple geological events related to changing stress fields took place in and around Philippine Sea plate about the time of SI 52 Ma (Ishizuka et al., 2011). For our understanding of the early IBM arc system to increase, it is important to understand the pattern and tempo of these geological events, particularly the duration and extent of seafloor spreading in the proto arc associated with SI, and its temporal relationship with spreading in the West Philippine Basin (WPB). IODP Exp. 351 provided evidence of SI-related seafloor spreading west of the Kyushu-Palau Ridge (Arculus et al., 2015). Planned age determination of the basement crust at Site U1438 will constrain the timing and geometry of SI-related spreading and its relationship to variation in mode of spreading in the WPB including rotation of spreading axis. Some tectonic reconstructions suggest that part of the IBM arc could have formed on "young" WPB crust. Dredging of the northern Mariana forearc crust and mantle in 2014 aimed to test this hypothesis. Preliminary data indicates that early arc crustal section of the N. Mariana forearc is geochemically and temporally similar to that exposed in the Bonin and southern Mariana forearcs. New tectonic reconstructions for the nascent IBM system will be presented based on these observations.

  6. Upper-plate splay fault earthquakes along the Arakan subduction belt recorded by uplifted coral microatolls on northern Ramree Island, western Myanmar (Burma)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shyu, J. Bruce H.; Wang, Chung-Che; Wang, Yu; Shen, Chuan-Chou; Chiang, Hong-Wei; Liu, Sze-Chieh; Min, Soe; Aung, Lin Thu; Than, Oo; Tun, Soe Thura

    2018-02-01

    Upper-plate structures that splay out from the megathrusts are common features along major convergent plate boundaries. However, their earthquake and tsunami hazard potentials have not yet received significant attention. In this study, we identified at least one earthquake event that may have been produced by an upper-plate splay fault offshore western Myanmar, based on U-Th ages of uplifted coral microatolls. This event is likely an earthquake that was documented historically in C.E. 1848, with an estimated magnitude between 6.8 and 7.2 based on regional structural characteristics. Such magnitude is consistent with the observed co-seismic uplift amount of ∼0.5 m. Although these events are smaller in magnitude than events produced by megathrusts, they may produce higher earthquake and tsunami hazards for local coastal communities due to their proximity. Our results also indicate that earthquake events with co-seismic uplift along the coast may not necessarily produce a flight of marine terraces. Therefore, using only records of uplifted marine terraces as megathrust earthquake proxies may overlook the importance of upper-plate splay fault ruptures, and underestimate the overall earthquake frequency for future seismic and tsunami hazards along major subduction zones of the world.

  7. Dinosaur tectonics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Graversen, Ole; Milàn, Jesper; B. Loope, David

    2007-01-01

    A dinosaur trackway in the Middle Jurassic eolian Entrada Sandstone of southern Utah, USA, exposes three undertracks that we have modeled as isolated tectonic regimes showing the development of fold-thrust ramp systems induced by the dinosaur's feet. The faulted and folded sequence is comparable...... to crustal scale tectonics associated with plate tectonics and foreland fold-thrust belts. A structural analysis of the dinosaur tracks shows the timing and direction of the forces exercised on the substrate by the animal's foot during the stride. Based on the structural analysis, we establish a scenario...... the back. As the body accelerated, the foot was forced backward. The rotated disc was forced backward along a detachment fault that was bounded by lateral ramps. The interramp segment matches the width of the dinosaur's foot which created an imbricate fan thrust system that extended to the far end...

  8. A harbinger of plate tectonics: a commentary on Bullard, Everett and Smith (1965) ‘The fit of the continents around the Atlantic’

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dewey, John F.

    2015-01-01

    In the 1960s, geology was transformed by the paradigm of plate tectonics. The 1965 paper of Bullard, Everett and Smith was a linking transition between the theories of continental drift and plate tectonics. They showed, conclusively, that the continents around the Atlantic were once contiguous and that the Atlantic Ocean had grown at rates of a few centimetres per year since the Early Jurassic, about 160 Ma. They achieved fits of the continental margins at the 500 fathom line (approx. 900 m), not the shorelines, by minimizing misfits between conjugate margins and finding axes, poles and angles of rotation, using Euler's theorem, that defined the unique single finite difference rotation that carried congruent continents from contiguity to their present positions, recognizing that the real motion may have been more complex around a number of finite motion poles. Critically, they were concerned only with kinematic reality and were not restricted by considerations of the mechanism by which continents split and oceans grow. Many of the defining features of plate tectonics were explicit or implicit in their reconstructions, such as the torsional rigidity of continents, Euler's theorem, closure of the Tethyan ocean(s), major continental margin shear zones, the rapid rotation of small continental blocks (Iberia) around nearby poles, the consequent opening of small wedge-shaped oceans (Bay of Biscay), and misfit overlaps (deltas and volcanic piles) and underlaps (stretched continental edges). This commentary was written to celebrate the 350th anniversary of the journal Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society. PMID:25750142

  9. 3D geometry of a plate boundary fault related to the 2016 Off-Mie earthquake in the Nankai subduction zone, Japan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsuji, Takeshi; Minato, Shohei; Kamei, Rie; Tsuru, Tetsuro; Kimura, Gaku

    2017-11-01

    We used recent seismic data and advanced techniques to investigate 3D fault geometry over the transition from the partially coupled to the fully coupled plate interface inboard of the Nankai Trough off the Kii Peninsula, Japan. We found that a gently dipping plate boundary décollement with a thick underthrust layer extends beneath the entire Kumano forearc basin. The 1 April 2016 Off-Mie earthquake (Mw6.0) and its aftershocks occurred, where the plate boundary décollement steps down close to the oceanic crust surface. This location also lies beneath the trenchward edge of an older accretionary prism (∼14 Ma) developed along the coast of the Kii peninsula. The strike of the 2016 rupture plane was similar to that of a formerly active splay fault system in the accretionary prism. Thus, the fault planes of the 2016 earthquake and its aftershocks were influenced by the geometry of the plate interface as well as splay faulting. The 2016 earthquake occurred within the rupture area of large interplate earthquakes such as the 1944 Tonankai earthquake (Mw8.1), although the 2016 rupture area was much smaller than that of the 1944 event. Whereas the hypocenter of the 2016 earthquake was around the underplating sequence beneath the younger accretionary prism (∼6 Ma), the 1944 great earthquake hypocenter was close to oceanic crust surface beneath the older accretionary prism. The variation of fault geometry and lithology may influence the degree of coupling along the plate interface, and such coupling variation could hinder slip propagation toward the deeper plate interface in the 2016 event.

  10. Clustered and transient earthquake sequences in mid-continents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, M.; Stein, S. A.; Wang, H.; Luo, G.

    2012-12-01

    Earthquakes result from sudden release of strain energy on faults. On plate boundary faults, strain energy is constantly accumulating from steady and relatively rapid relative plate motion, so large earthquakes continue to occur so long as motion continues on the boundary. In contrast, such steady accumulation of stain energy does not occur on faults in mid-continents, because the far-field tectonic loading is not steadily distributed between faults, and because stress perturbations from complex fault interactions and other stress triggers can be significant relative to the slow tectonic stressing. Consequently, mid-continental earthquakes are often temporally clustered and transient, and spatially migrating. This behavior is well illustrated by large earthquakes in North China in the past two millennia, during which no single large earthquakes repeated on the same fault segments, but moment release between large fault systems was complementary. Slow tectonic loading in mid-continents also causes long aftershock sequences. We show that the recent small earthquakes in the Tangshan region of North China are aftershocks of the 1976 Tangshan earthquake (M 7.5), rather than indicators of a new phase of seismic activity in North China, as many fear. Understanding the transient behavior of mid-continental earthquakes has important implications for assessing earthquake hazards. The sequence of large earthquakes in the New Madrid Seismic Zone (NMSZ) in central US, which includes a cluster of M~7 events in 1811-1812 and perhaps a few similar ones in the past millennium, is likely a transient process, releasing previously accumulated elastic strain on recently activated faults. If so, this earthquake sequence will eventually end. Using simple analysis and numerical modeling, we show that the large NMSZ earthquakes may be ending now or in the near future.

  11. A Decade of Giant Earthquakes - What does it mean?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wallace, Terry C. Jr. [Los Alamos National Laboratory

    2012-07-16

    On December 26, 2004 the largest earthquake since 1964 occurred near Ache, Indonesia. The magnitude 9.2 earthquake and subsequent tsunami killed a quarter of million people; it also marked the being of a period of extraordinary seismicity. Since the Ache earthquake there have been 16 magnitude 8 earthquakes globally, including 2 this last April. For the 100 years previous to 2004 there was an average of 1 magnitude 8 earthquake every 2.2 years; since 2004 there has been 2 per year. Since magnitude 8 earthquakes dominate global seismic energy release, this period of seismicity has seismologist rethinking what they understand about plate tectonics and the connectivity between giant earthquakes. This talk will explore this remarkable period of time and its possible implications.

  12. Analysis simulation of tectonic earthquake impact to the lifetime of radioactive waste container and equivalent dose rate predication in Yucca Mountain geologic repository, Nevada test site, USA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ko, I.S.; Imardjoko, Y.U.; Karnawati, Dwikorita

    2003-01-01

    US policy not to recycle her spent nuclear fuels brings consequence to provide a nuclear waste repository site Yucca Mountain in Nevada, USA, considered the proper one. High-level radioactive waste to be placed into containers and then will be buried in three hundred meter underground tunnels. Tectonic earthquake is the main factor causing container's damage. Goldsim version 6.04.007 simulates mechanism of container's damage due to a great devastating impact load, the collapse of the tunnels. Radionuclide inventories included are U-234, C-14, Tc-99, I-129, Se-79, Pa-231, Np-237, Pu-242, and Pu-239. Simulation carried out in 100,000 years time span. The research goals are: 1). Estimating tunnels stan-up time, and 2). Predicting the equivalent dose rate contributed by the included radionuclides to the human due to radioactive polluted drinking water intake. (author)

  13. Upper-Mantel Earthquakes in the Australia-Pacific Plate Boundary Zone and the Roots of the Alpine Fault

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boese, C. M.; Warren-Smith, E.; Townend, J.; Stern, T. A.; Lamb, S. H.

    2016-12-01

    Seismicity in the upper mantle in continental collision zones is relatively rare, but observed around the world. Temporary seismometer deployments have repeatedly detected mantle earthquakes at depths of 40-100 km within the Australia-Pacific plate boundary zone beneath the South Island of New Zealand. Here, the transpressive Alpine Fault constitutes the primary plate boundary structure linking subduction zones of opposite polarity farther north and south. The Southern Alps Microearthquake Borehole Array (SAMBA) has been operating continuously since November 2008 along a 50 km-long section of the central Alpine Fault, where the rate of uplift of the Southern Alps is highest. To date it has detected more than 40 small to moderate-sized mantle events (1≤ML≤3.9). The Central Otago Seismic Array (COSA) has been in operation since late 2012 and detected 15 upper mantle events along the sub-vertical southern Alpine Fault. Various mechanisms have been proposed to explain the occurrence of upper mantle seismicity in the South Island, including intra-continental subduction (Reyners 1987, Geology); high shear-strain gradients due to depressed geotherms and viscous deformation of mantle lithosphere (Kohler and Eberhart-Phillips 2003, BSSA); high strain rates resulting from plate bending (Boese et al. 2013, EPSL), and underthrusting of the Australian plate (Lamb et al. 2015, G3). Focal mechanism analysis reveals a variety of mechanisms for the upper mantle events but predominantly strike-slip and reverse faulting. In this study, we apply spectral analysis to better constrain source parameters for these mantle events. These results are interpreted in conjunction with new information about crustal structure and low-frequency earthquakes near the Moho and in light of existing velocity, attenuation and resistivity models.

  14. Plate flexure and volcanism: Late Cenozoic tectonics of the Tabar-Lihir-Tanga-Feni alkalic province, New Ireland Basin, Papua New Guinea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindley, I. D.

    2016-05-01

    Late Cenozoic Tabar-Lihir-Tanga-Feni (TLTF) alkaline volcanism, New Ireland Basin, PNG, is associated with extensional cracks along the crests of flexed ridges developed on the New Ireland Microplate (New name). The tectonic alignment of the TLTF volcanic arc is essentially perpendicular to the flexed ridges, suggesting that fractures parallel to the direction of maximum horizontal compression facilitated the rapid ascent of alkaline magmas from the mantle region, perhaps 60-70 km depth. The mainly Pliocene to Pleistocene volcanoes were localized at the intersection of ridge-parallel Kabang structures and arc-parallel Niffin structures, suggesting that the Kabang-Niffin structural intersections underlying each of the TLTF island groups provided a well developed, clustered network of open conduits which tapped the mantle source region. Periodic post-Miocene locking and unlocking along the strike-slip Kilinailau Fault (New name) are thought to have functioned as a valve, turning on (Pliocene) and then turning off (Pleistocene) volcanic activity, respectively. Partial locking of the Kilinailau Fault during the Pliocene resulted in the accumulation of intraplate stresses within the New Ireland Microplate, and caused plate flexure and ridge development, plate-cracking along ridge crests and the development of arc-parallel regional fractures parallel to the direction of maximum compression. Unlocking of the Kilinailau Fault in the Pleistocene resulted in the release of intraplate stresses in the New Ireland Microplate and a cessation of volcanic activity across most of the TLTF arc. The style and scale of plate flexure and cracking, accompanied by within-plate alkaline volcanism from equally spaced ridge-top eruptive centers confined to a narrow, linear volcanic arc are unknown from any other tectonic province.

  15. Transformation of graphite by tectonic and hydrothermal processes in an active plate boundary fault zone, Alpine Fault, New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirilova, Matina; Toy, Virginia; Timms, Nicholas; Halfpenny, Angela; Menzies, Catriona; Craw, Dave; Rooney, Jeremy; Giorgetti, Carolina

    2017-04-01

    Graphite is a material with one of the lowest frictional strengths, with coefficient of friction of 0.1 and thus in natural fault zones it may act as a natural solid lubricant. Graphitization, or the transformation of organic matter (carbonaceous material, or CM) into crystalline graphite, is induced by compositional and structural changes during diagenesis and metamorphism. The supposed irreversible nature of this process has allowed the degree of graphite crystallinity to be calibrated as an indicator of the peak temperatures reached during progressive metamorphism. We examine processes of graphite emplacement and deformation in the Alpine Fault Zone, New Zealand's active continental tectonic plate boundary. Raman spectrometry indicates that graphite in the distal, amphibolite-facies Alpine Schist, which experienced peak metamorphic temperatures up to 640 ◦C, is highly crystalline and occurs mainly along grain boundaries within quartzo-feldspathic domains. The subsequent mylonitisation in the Alpine Fault Zone resulted in progressive reworking of CM under lower temperature conditions (500◦C-600◦C) in a structurally controlled environment, resulting in spatial clustering in lower-strain protomylonites, and further foliation-alignment in higher-strain mylonites. Subsequent brittle deformation of the mylonitised schists resulted in cataclasites that contain over three-fold increase in the abundance of graphite than mylonites. Furthermore, cataclasites contain graphite with two different habits: highly-crystalline, foliated forms that are inherited mylonitic graphite; and lower-crystallinity, less mature patches of finer-grained graphite. The observed graphite enrichment and the occurrence of poorly-organised graphite in the Alpine Fault cataclasites could result from: i) hydrothermal precipitation from carbon-supersaturated fluids; and/or ii) mechanical degradation by structural disordering of mylonitic graphite combined with strain-induced graphite

  16. Numerical modeling of intraplate seismicity with a deformable loading plate

    Science.gov (United States)

    So, B. D.; Capitanio, F. A.

    2017-12-01

    We use finite element modeling to investigate on the stress loading-unloading cycles and earthquakes occurrence in the plate interiors, resulting from the interactions of tectonic plates along their boundary. We model a visco-elasto-plastic plate embedding a single or multiple faults, while the tectonic stress is applied along the plate boundary by an external loading visco-elastic plate, reproducing the tectonic setting of two interacting lithospheres. Because the two plates deform viscously, the timescale of stress accumulation and release on the faults is self-consistently determined, from the boundary to the interiors, and seismic recurrence is an emerging feature. This approach overcomes the constraints on recurrence period imposed by stress (stress-drop) and velocity boundary conditions, while here it is unconstrained. We illustrate emerging macroscopic characteristics of this system, showing that the seismic recurrence period τ becomes shorter as Γ and Θ decreases, where Γ = ηI/ηL the viscosity ratio of the viscosities of the internal fault-embedded to external loading plates, respectively, and Θ = σY/σL the stress ratio of the elastic limit of the fault to far-field loading stress. When the system embeds multiple, randomly distributed faults, stress transfer results in recurrence period deviations, however the time-averaged recurrence period of each fault show the same dependence on Γ and Θ, illustrating a characteristic collective behavior. The control of these parameters prevails even when initial pre-stress was randomly assigned in terms of the spatial arrangement and orientation on the internal plate, mimicking local fluctuations. Our study shows the relevance of macroscopic rheological properties of tectonic plates on the earthquake occurrence in plate interiors, as opposed to local factors, proposing a viable model for the seismic behavior of continent interiors in the context of large-scale, long-term deformation of interacting tectonic

  17. Closure of the Africa-Eurasia-North America plate motion circuit and tectonics of the Gloria fault

    Science.gov (United States)

    Argus, Donald F.; Gordon, Richard G.; Demets, Charles; Stein, Seth

    1989-01-01

    The current motions of the African, Eurasian, and North American plates are examined. The problems addressed include whether there is resolvable motion of a Spitsbergen microplate, the direction of motion between the African and North American plates, whether the Gloria fault is an active transform fault, and the implications of plate circuit closures for rates of intraplate deformation. Marine geophysical data and magnetic profiles are used to construct a model which predicts about 4 mm/yr slip across the Azores-Gibraltar Ridge, and west-northwest convergence near Gibraltar. The analyzed data are consistent with a rigid plate model with the Gloria fault being a transform fault.

  18. Tectonic interpretation of the 13 february 2001, mw 6.6, El Salvador Earthquake: New evidences of coseismic surface rupture and paleoseismic activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez-Diaz, J. J.; Canora, C.; Villamor, P.; Capote, R.; Alvarez-Gomez, J. A.; Berryman, K.; Bejar, M.; Tsige, M.

    2009-04-01

    In February 2001 a major strike slip earthquake stroke the central part of El Salvador causing hundreds of people killed, thousands injured and extensive damage. After this event the scientific effort was mainly focused on the study of the enormous and catastrophic landslides triggered by this event and no evidences of surface faulting were detected. This earthquake was produced by the reactivation of the Ilopango-San Vicente segment of the El Salvador Fault Zone. Recently, a surface rupture displacement on the ground was identified. The analysis of aerial and field photographs taken few hours after the event and the mapping of the conserved ground structures shows a pure strike-slip displacement ranging from 20 to 50 cm, with secondary features indicating dextral shearing. The paleoseismic analysis made through the excavation of six trenches and Radiocarbon dating indicate a minimum slip rate of 2.0 mm/yr and a recurrence of major ruptures (Mw > 6.5) lower than 500 yr. These evidences give interesting local data to increase our understanding about the tectonic behavior and the way how active deformation develops along the northern limit of the forearc sliver related to the Centroamerican subduction area.

  19. Charles Darwin's earthquake reports

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galiev, Shamil

    2010-05-01

    As it is the 200th anniversary of Darwin's birth, 2009 has also been marked as 170 years since the publication of his book Journal of Researches. During the voyage Darwin landed at Valdivia and Concepcion, Chile, just before, during, and after a great earthquake, which demolished hundreds of buildings, killing and injuring many people. Land was waved, lifted, and cracked, volcanoes awoke and giant ocean waves attacked the coast. Darwin was the first geologist to observe and describe the effects of the great earthquake during and immediately after. These effects sometimes repeated during severe earthquakes; but great earthquakes, like Chile 1835, and giant earthquakes, like Chile 1960, are rare and remain completely unpredictable. This is one of the few areas of science, where experts remain largely in the dark. Darwin suggested that the effects were a result of ‘ …the rending of strata, at a point not very deep below the surface of the earth…' and ‘…when the crust yields to the tension, caused by its gradual elevation, there is a jar at the moment of rupture, and a greater movement...'. Darwin formulated big ideas about the earth evolution and its dynamics. These ideas set the tone for the tectonic plate theory to come. However, the plate tectonics does not completely explain why earthquakes occur within plates. Darwin emphasised that there are different kinds of earthquakes ‘...I confine the foregoing observations to the earthquakes on the coast of South America, or to similar ones, which seem generally to have been accompanied by elevation of the land. But, as we know that subsidence has gone on in other quarters of the world, fissures must there have been formed, and therefore earthquakes...' (we cite the Darwin's sentences following researchspace. auckland. ac. nz/handle/2292/4474). These thoughts agree with results of the last publications (see Nature 461, 870-872; 636-639 and 462, 42-43; 87-89). About 200 years ago Darwin gave oneself airs by the

  20. COMPARATIVE EVALUATION OF THE INFLUENCING EFFECTS OF GEOMAGNETIC SOLAR STORMS ON EARTHQUAKES IN ANATOLIAN PENINSULA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yesugey Sadik Cengiz

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Earthquakes are tectonic events that take place within the fractures of the earth's crust, namely faults. Above certain scale, earthquakes can result in widespread fatalities and substantial financial loss. In addition to the movement of tectonic plates relative to each other, it is widely discussed that there are other external influences originate outside earth that can trigger earthquakes. These influences are called "triggering effects". The purpose of this article is to present a statistical view to elaborate if the solar geomagnetic storms trigger earthquakes.As a model, the research focuses on the Anatolian peninsula, presenting 41 years of historical data on magnetic storms and earthquakes collated from national and international resources. As a result of the comparative assessment of the data, it is concluded that the geomagnetic storms do not trigger earthquakes.

  1. Misconceptions and Conceptual Changes Concerning Continental Drift and Plate Tectonics among Portuguese Students Aged 16-17.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marques, Luis; Thompson, David

    1997-01-01

    This study investigates student misconceptions in the areas of continent, ocean, permanence of ocean basins, continental drift, Earth's magnetic field, and plates and plate motions. A teaching-learning model was designed based on a constructivist approach. Results show that students held a substantial number of misconceptions. (Author/DKM)

  2. Earthquake potential revealed by tidal influence on earthquake size-frequency statistics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ide, Satoshi; Yabe, Suguru; Tanaka, Yoshiyuki

    2016-11-01

    The possibility that tidal stress can trigger earthquakes is long debated. In particular, a clear causal relationship between small earthquakes and the phase of tidal stress is elusive. However, tectonic tremors deep within subduction zones are highly sensitive to tidal stress levels, with tremor rate increasing at an exponential rate with rising tidal stress. Thus, slow deformation and the possibility of earthquakes at subduction plate boundaries may be enhanced during periods of large tidal stress. Here we calculate the tidal stress history, and specifically the amplitude of tidal stress, on a fault plane in the two weeks before large earthquakes globally, based on data from the global, Japanese, and Californian earthquake catalogues. We find that very large earthquakes, including the 2004 Sumatran, 2010 Maule earthquake in Chile and the 2011 Tohoku-Oki earthquake in Japan, tend to occur near the time of maximum tidal stress amplitude. This tendency is not obvious for small earthquakes. However, we also find that the fraction of large earthquakes increases (the b-value of the Gutenberg-Richter relation decreases) as the amplitude of tidal shear stress increases. The relationship is also reasonable, considering the well-known relationship between stress and the b-value. This suggests that the probability of a tiny rock failure expanding to a gigantic rupture increases with increasing tidal stress levels. We conclude that large earthquakes are more probable during periods of high tidal stress.

  3. GEOMAGNETIC CONJUGACY OF MODERN TECTONIC STRUCTURES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Ya. Khachikyan

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available An earthquake is an element of the global electric circuit (GEC –  this new idea suggested in the space age is tested in our study. In the frame of the GEC concept, one may expect that tectonic structures of the northern and southern hemispheres may be magnetically conjugated. It is found that the midocean ridges of the southern hemisphere, located along the boundary of the Antarctic lithosphere plate, are magnetically conjugated with the areas of the junction of continental orogens and platforms in the northern hemisphere. The closest geomagnetic conjugacy exists between the southern boundary of Nazca lithospheric plate and the northern boundaries of Cocos and Caribbean lithospheric plates.

  4. Using Low-Frequency Earthquakes to Investigate Slow Slip Processes and Plate Interface Structure Beneath the Olympic Peninsula, WA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chestler, Shelley

    This dissertation seeks to further understand the LFE source process, the role LFEs play in generating slow slip, and the utility of using LFEs to examine plate interface structure. The work involves the creation and investigation of a 2-year-long catalog of low-frequency earthquakes beneath the Olympic Peninsula, Washington. In the first chapter, we calculate the seismic moments for 34,264 low-frequency earthquakes (LFEs) beneath the Olympic Peninsula, WA. LFE moments range from 1.4x1010- 1.9x1012 N-m (M W=0.7-2.1). While regular earthquakes follow a power-law moment-frequency distribution with a b-value near 1 (the number of events increases by a factor of 10 for each unit increase in MW), we find that while for large LFEs the b-value is ˜6, for small LFEs it is families, or spots on the plate interface where LFEs repeat, can also be fit by exponential distributions. An exponential moment-frequency distribution implies a scale-limited source process. We consider two end-member models where LFE moment is limited by (1) the amount of slip or (2) slip area. We favor the area-limited model. Based on the observed exponential distribution of LFE moment and geodetically observed total slip we estimate that the total area that slips within an LFE family has a diameter of 300 m. Assuming an area-limited model, we estimate the slips, sub-patch diameters, stress drops, and slip rates for LFEs during ETS events. We allow for LFEs to rupture smaller sub-patches within the LFE family patch. Models with 1-10 sub-patches produce slips of 0.1-1 mm, sub-patch diameters of 80-275 m, and stress drops of 30-1000 kPa. While one sub-patch is often assumed, we believe 3-10 sub-patches are more likely. In the second chapter, using high-resolution relative low-frequency earthquake (LFE) locations, we calculate the patch areas (Ap) of LFE families. During Episodic Tremor and Slip (ETS) events, we define AT as the area that slips during LFEs and ST as the total amount of summed LFE slip

  5. Continued Trenchward Procession of Upper Plate GPS Sites Following the 2012 Mw 7.6 Nicoya Earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hobbs, T. E.; Newman, A. V.; Protti, M.

    2015-12-01

    When studying subduction zone deformation one is often forced to consider a region significantly landward of the trench. The Nicoya Peninsula in Costa Rica presents a unique opportunity to obtain rich datasets from land in relatively close proximity to an active megathrust. A recent moment magnitude (Mw) 7.6 earthquake in September 2012 on this portion of the Middle America Trench affords an opportunity to constrain the ongoing postseismic deformation on the subduction interface between the Cocos and Caribbean plates. GPS campaigns occupying 22 sites were undertaken immediately following the earthquake in September-December 2012 and most recently in March 2015. Combined with data from a network of 17 continuous GPS in the region, we analyze the spatial and temporal changes in the postseismic velocity field. Another campaign is planned for 2017, in conjunction with our ongoing analysis of the continuous GPS network. After 2.5 years, campaign GPS results indicate significant trenchward motion of at least 7 cm, relative to a fixed Caribbean plate, for all sites up to the volcanic chain. Maximum values of 22 cm are observed above and updip of the coseismic rupture zone. The trench-parallel component of the displacement field is small, with few deviations between sites. Together these observations are substantially more self-similar over a larger region than what was observed for the coseismic offset. This implies that there may be a low stress differential across the upper plate, suggesting that the subduction interface environment, including the mainshock and surrounding area, has remained relatively weak following the earthquake. By utilizing a dense and long-term geodetic network we will report on initial modeling that aims to characterize the evolution of afterslip. The effect of regional aftershocks, including an Mw 6.5 in October 2012, and viscoelastic mantle relaxation will be considered to establish the necessity of such effects in robustly accounting for

  6. Intermediate-depth earthquakes within young Cocos plate beneath Central Mexico: A hypothesis test for dehydration embrittlement and shear instability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, T.

    2010-12-01

    Subducting slab undergoes a series of dehydration reactions on their ways into the mantle and these processes are responsible for transporting water, recycling volatiles and chemical elements in arc magmas. It is generally accepted that the SOC is hydrated. However, it is not clear if subducting oceanic mantle (SOM) is hydrated and how deep the hydration is. Seismic refraction studies found that normal-fault type faulting can extend 12-20 km deep into the interior of the slab off Nicaragua, suggesting deep hydration of the SOM. Seismic refraction studies also found that the uppermost SOM is seismically slow and is partially serpentinized. The fluids released from dehydration inside the SOM can reduce the normal stress locally and facilitate the occurrences of intra-slab events through dehydration embrittlement and hydraulic fracture. It has been suggested that the dehydration of antigorite at about 600C is particularly important in facilitating the lower plane of the double seismic zone. To link the dehydration process to the occurrences of intra-slab events, it is critical to clarify where these events are located, either located at the dehydration boundary or in the neighborhood rocks. However, if the SOM is anhydrous, other mechanism, such as shear instabilities, has to be invoked to explain the occurrences of intermediate-depth intraslab earthquakes. Here I discuss locations of intermediate-depth intraslab earthquakes in Central Mexico subduction zone, where young Cocos plate subducts beneath North America plate. Recent studies involving local converted wave modeling and receiver function analysis indicate the presence of an ultra-slow velocity layer (USL) of about 3 km thick, likely an over-pressured upper oceanic crust. Most events display anomalously large converted SP waves that are 2-2.5 secs after direct P waves and finite difference modeling converge the location of these events about 9 km below the lower boundary USL. With a lower oceanic crust of about

  7. Exploring Earthquakes in Real-Time

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bravo, T. K.; Kafka, A. L.; Coleman, B.; Taber, J. J.

    2013-12-01

    Earthquakes capture the attention of students and inspire them to explore the Earth. Adding the ability to view and explore recordings of significant and newsworthy earthquakes in real-time makes the subject even more compelling. To address this opportunity, the Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology (IRIS), in collaboration with Moravian College, developed ';jAmaSeis', a cross-platform application that enables students to access real-time earthquake waveform data. Students can watch as the seismic waves are recorded on their computer, and can be among the first to analyze the data from an earthquake. jAmaSeis facilitates student centered investigations of seismological concepts using either a low-cost educational seismograph or streamed data from other educational seismographs or from any seismic station that sends data to the IRIS Data Management System. After an earthquake, students can analyze the seismograms to determine characteristics of earthquakes such as time of occurrence, distance from the epicenter to the station, magnitude, and location. The software has been designed to provide graphical clues to guide students in the analysis and assist in their interpretations. Since jAmaSeis can simultaneously record up to three stations from anywhere on the planet, there are numerous opportunities for student driven investigations. For example, students can explore differences in the seismograms from different distances from an earthquake and compare waveforms from different azimuthal directions. Students can simultaneously monitor seismicity at a tectonic plate boundary and in the middle of the plate regardless of their school location. This can help students discover for themselves the ideas underlying seismic wave propagation, regional earthquake hazards, magnitude-frequency relationships, and the details of plate tectonics. The real-time nature of the data keeps the investigations dynamic, and offers students countless opportunities to explore.

  8. DISCUSSION: When and How did Plate Tectonics Begin, What Came Before, and Why is this Controversy important for Understanding the Earth and Exoplanets?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, R. J.; Gerya, T.; Sobolev, S. V.; Tackley, P.

    2015-12-01

    Because all 5 presentations in the Union session "When and How did Plate Tectonics Begin, What Came Before, and Why is this Controversy important for Understanding the Earth and Exoplanets?" will have 5 minute discussion periods, the scheduled 15 minute end-of-session discussion period is intended to allow other perspectives to be presented by the scientific community. We invite brief (2 powerpoint slides) comments from the community about any aspect of the topic at hand. We encourage anyone who has something pertinent or interesting to say to submit 2 powerpoint slides directly to any one of the four co-convenors listed on this abstract. The first slide should be a simple title with the name and affiliation of the commenter. The second slide should be the content of the comment. The convenors will compile all of these that are submitted up to the noon on the day before the session occurs, when we will upload the compiled files in the order that they were received (if we have received digital scans of signed waivers by that time, see below). During the discussion, we will call on those who have submitted 2 slides to the podium to make their points in 2 minutes or less (total time from being called to leaving the podium). Because this AGU Union session including the discussion period will be live-streamed and recorded, all Discussion Session commenters will be required to sign an AGU waiver acknowledging this and giving permission to be recorded. These will be sent via e-mail to those who submit 2 slide powerpoints. Commenters that do not sign and return the waiver will be scheduled after all commenters who have returned signed waivers and AGU will terminate live streaming and recording accordingly. If no one submits anything then we will have open discussion from the floor. We will also advertise the Monte Verita conference in Locarno Switzerland 17-22 July 2016. This conference will explore in greater detail the 5 key aspects of Plate Tectonic evolution briefly

  9. Off-fault ground ruptures in the Santa Cruz Mountains, California: Ridge-top spreading versus tectonic extension during the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ponti, Daniel J.; Wells, Ray E.

    1991-01-01

    The Ms 7.1 Loma Prieta earthquake of 18 October 1989 produced abundant ground ruptures in an 8 by 4 km area along Summit Road and Skyland Ridge in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Predominantly extensional fissures formed a left-stepping, crudely en echelon pattern along ridges of the hanging-wall block southwest of the San Andreas fault, about 12 km northwest of the epicenter. The fissures are subparallel to the San Andreas fault and appear to be controlled by bedding planes, faults, joints, and other weak zones in the underlying Tertiary sedimentary strata of the hanging-wall block. The pattern of extensional fissures is generally consistent with tectonic extension across the crest of the uplifted hanging-wall block. Also, many displacements in Laurel Creek canyon and along the San Andreas and Sargent faults are consistent with right-lateral reverse faulting inferred for the mainshock. Additional small tensile failures along the axis of the Laurel anticline may reflect growth of the fold during deep-seated compression. However, the larger ridge-top fissures commonly have displacements that are parallel to the north-northeast regional slope directions and appear inconsistent with east-northeast extension expected from this earthquake. Measured cumulative displacements across the ridge crests are at least 35 times larger than that predicted by the geodetically determined surface deformation. These fissures also occur in association with ubiquitous landslide complexes that were reactivated by the earthquake to produce the largest concentration of co-seismic slope failures in the epicentral region. The anomalously large displacements and the apparent slope control of the geometry and displacement of many co-seismic surface ruptures lead us to conclude that gravity is an important driving force in the formation of the ridge-top fissures. Shaking-induced gravitational spreading of ridges and downslope movement may account for 90¿ or more of the observed displacements on

  10. The assessment of the transformation of global tectonic plate models and the global terrestrial reference frames using the Velocity Decomposition Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ampatzidis, Dimitrios; König, Rolf; Glaser, Susanne; Heinkelmann, Robert; Schuh, Harald; Flechtner, Frank; Nilsson, Tobias

    2016-04-01

    The aim of our study is to assess the classical Helmert similarity transformation using the Velocity Decomposition Analysis (VEDA). The VEDA is a new methodology, developed by GFZ for the assessment of the reference frames' temporal variation and it is based on the separation of the velocities into two specified parts: The first is related to the reference system choice (the so called datum effect) and the latter one which refers to the real deformation of the terrestrial points. The advantage of the VEDA is its ability to detect the relative biases and reference system effects between two different frames or two different realizations of the same frame, respectively. We apply the VEDA for the assessment between several modern tectonic plate models and the recent global terrestrial reference frames.

  11. Seismicity and tectonics of Bangladesh

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hossain, K.M.

    1989-05-01

    Northern and eastern Bangladesh and surrounding areas belong to a seismically active zone and are associated with the subduction of the Indian plate. The seismicity and tectonics have been studied in detail and the observations have been correlated to understand the earthquake phenomenon in the region. The morphotectonic behaviour of northern Bangladesh shows that it is deeply related to the movement of the Dauki fault system and relative upliftment of the Shillong plateau. Contemporary seismicity in the Dauki fault system is relatively quiet comparing to that in the Naga-Disang-Haflong thrust belt giving rise to the probability of sudden release of energy being accumulated in the vicinity of the Dauki fault system. This observation corresponds with the predicted average return period of a large earthquake (1897 type) and the possibility of M > 8 earthquake in the vicinity of the Dauki fault within this century should not be ruled out. The seismicity in the folded belt in the east follows the general trend of Arakan-Yoma anticlinorium and represents shallow and low-angled thrust movements in conformity with the field observation. Seismotectonic behaviour in the deep basin part of Bangladesh demonstrates that an intraplate movement in the basement rock has been taking place along the deep-seated faults causing relative upliftment and subsidence in the basin. Bangladesh has been divided into three seismic zones on the basis of morphotectonic and seismic behaviour. Zone-I has been identified as the zone of high seismic risk. (author). 43 refs, 5 figs, 3 tabs

  12. Plate convergence, crustal delamination, extrusion tectonics and minimization of shortening work as main controlling factors of the recent Mediterranean deformation pattern

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Babbucci

    1997-06-01

    Full Text Available It is argued that the time-space distribution of major post middle Miocene deformation events in the Central-Eastern Mediterranean region, deduced from the relevant literature, can be coherently explained as a consequence of the convergence between the Africa/Arabia and Eurasia blocks. This plate convergence has mainly been accommodated by the consumption of the thinnest parts of the Northern African (Ionian and Levantine basins and peri-Adriatic margins. During each evolutionary phase the space distribution of trench zones is controlled by the basic physical requirement of minimizing the work of horizontal forces, induced by plate convergence, against the resisting forces, i.e., the cohesion of the upper brittle crustal layer and the buoyancy forces at the consuming boundaries. The significant changes of tectonic styles which determined the transition from one phase to the next, like those which occurred around the Messinian and the late Pliocene-early Pleistocene, were determined by the suture of consuming boundaries. When such an event occurs, the system must activate alternative consuming processes to accommodate the convergence of the major confining blocks. The observed deformations in the study area suggest that this tectonic reorganization mostly developed by the lateral extrusion of crustal wedges away from the sutured borders. This mechanism allowed the translation of maximum horizontal stresses from the locked collisional fronts to the zones where consumable lithosphere was still present, in order to activate the next consuming processes. The extensional episodes which led to the formation of basins and troughs in the Tyrrhenian and Aegean zones are interpreted as secondary effects of the outward escape of crustal wedges, like those which occurred in response to longitudinal compressional regimes in the Apennines and Aegean regions.

  13. Båth's law and its relation to the tectonic environment: A case study for earthquakes in Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez-Pérez, Q.; Zúñiga, F. R.

    2016-09-01

    We studied 66 mainshocks and their largest aftershocks in the Mexican subduction zone and in the Gulf of California with magnitudes in the range of 5.2 worldwide studies supporting the observation of mechanism dependence of radiated seismic energy. The statistical tests indicate that the only significant difference is for shallow thrust and strike-slip events for these parameters. The statistical comparison of stress drop of shallow thrust versus that of inslab events shows a strongly significant difference with a confidence better than 99%. The comparison of stress drop of shallow thrust events with that of strike-slip events, also indicates a strongly significant difference. We see no dependence of stress drop with magnitude, which is strong evidence of earthquake self-similarity. We do not observe a systematic depth dependence of stress drop. The results also reveal differences in the earthquake rupture among the events. The magnitude difference between the mainshock and the largest aftershock for inslab events is larger than interplate and strike-slip events suggesting focal mechanism dependence of Båth's law. For the case of this parameter, only that for inslab and strike-slip events present a significant difference with 95% confidence.

  14. Distribution and migration of aftershocks of the 2010 Mw 7.4 Ogasawara Islands intraplate normal-faulting earthquake related to a fracture zone in the Pacific plate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obana, Koichiro; Takahashi, Tsutomu; No, Tetsuo; Kaiho, Yuka; Kodaira, Shuichi; Yamashita, Mikiya; Sato, Takeshi; Nakamura, Takeshi

    2014-04-01

    describe the aftershocks of a Mw 7.4 intraplate normal-faulting earthquake that occurred 150 km east Ogasawara (Bonin) Islands, Japan, on 21 December 2010. It occurred beneath the outer trench slope of the Izu-Ogasawara trench, where the Pacific plate subducts beneath the Philippine Sea plate. Aftershock observations using ocean bottom seismographs (OBSs) began soon after the earthquake and multichannel seismic reflection surveys were conducted across the aftershock area. Aftershocks were distributed in a NW-SE belt 140 km long, oblique to the N-S trench axis. They formed three subparallel lineations along a fracture zone in the Pacific plate. The OBS observations combined with data from stations on Chichi-jima and Haha-jima Islands revealed a migration of the aftershock activity. The first hour, which likely outlines the main shock rupture, was limited to an 80 km long area in the central part of the subsequent aftershock area. The first hour activity occurred mainly around, and appears to have been influenced by, nearby large seamounts and oceanic plateau, such as the Ogasawara Plateau and the Uyeda Ridge. Over the following days, the aftershocks expanded beyond or into these seamounts and plateau. The aftershock distribution and migration suggest that crustal heterogeneities related to a fracture zone and large seamounts and oceanic plateau in the incoming Pacific plate affected the rupture of the main shock. Such preexisting structures may influence intraplate normal-faulting earthquakes in other regions of plate flexure prior to subduction.

  15. Understanding seismic heterogeneities in the lower mantle beneath the Americas from seismic tomography and plate tectonic history

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ren, Y.; Stutzmann, E.; Hilst, R.D. van der; Besse, J.

    2007-01-01

    We combine results from seismic tomography and plate motion history to investigate slabs of subducted lithosphere in the lower mantle beneath the Americas. Using broadband waveform cross correlation, we measured 37,000 differential P and S traveltimes, 2000 PcP-P and ScS-S times along a wide

  16. Geochronological and sedimentological evidences of Panyangshan foreland basin for tectonic control on the Late Paleozoic plate marginal orogenic belt along the northern margin of the North China Craton

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jialiang; Zhou, Zhiguang; He, Yingfu; Wang, Guosheng; Wu, Chen; Liu, Changfeng; Yao, Guang; Xu, Wentao; Zhao, Xiaoqi; Dai, Pengfei

    2017-08-01

    Palaeo-uplift also was developed in the Early Permian to Middle Triassic (277-236 Ma), related to the final closure of the Paleo-Asian Ocean. Furthermore, we advocate that the tectonic setting of Inner Mongolia Palaeo-uplift probably belonged to the plate marginal orogenic belt during Early Permian-Middle Triassic.

  17. Designing an Earthquake-Proof Art Museum: An Arts- and Engineering-Integrated Science Lesson

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carignan, Anastasia; Hussain, Mahjabeen

    2016-01-01

    In this practical arts-integrated science and engineering lesson, an inquiry-based approach was adopted to teach a class of fourth graders in a Midwest elementary school about the scientific concepts of plate tectonics and earthquakes. Lessons were prepared following the 5 E instructional model. Next Generation Science Standards (4-ESS3-2) and the…

  18. Earthquakes, detecting and understanding them

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2008-05-01

    The signatures at the surface of the Earth is continually changing on a geological timescale. The tectonic plates, which make up this surface, are moving in relation to each other. On human timescale, these movements are the result of earthquakes, which suddenly, release energy accumulated over a period of time. The vibrations they produce propagate through the interior of the Earth: these are seismic waves. However, other phenomena can generate seismic waves, such as volcanoes, quarry blasts, etc. The surf of the ocean waves on the coasts, the wind in the trees and human activity (industry and road traffic) all contribute to the 'seismic background noise'. Sensors are able to detect signals from events which are then discriminated, analyzed and located. Earthquakes and active volcanoes are not distributed randomly over the surface of the globe: they mainly coincide with mountain chains and ocean trenches and ridges. 'An earthquake results from the abrupt release of the energy accumulated by movements and rubbing of different plates'. The study of the propagation of seismic waves has allowed to determine the outline of the plates inside the Earth and has highlighted their movements. There are seven major plates which are colliding, diverging or sliding past each other. Each year the continents move several centimeters with respect to one another. This process, known as 'continental drift', was finally explained by plate tectonics. The initial hypothesis for this science dates from the beginning of the 20. century, but it was not confirmed until the 1960's. It explains that convection inside the Earth is the source of the forces required for these movements. This science, as well as explaining these great movements, has provided a coherent, unifying and quantitative framework, which unites the explanations for all the geophysical phenomena under one mechanism. (authors)

  19. Neutron star crustal plate tectonics. I. Magnetic dipole evolution in millisecond pulsars and low-mass X-ray binaries

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ruderman, M.

    1991-01-01

    Crust lattices in spinning-up or spinning-down neutron stars have growing shear stresses caused by neutron superfluid vortex lines pinned to lattice nuclei. For the most rapidly spinning stars, this stress will break and move the crust before vortex unpinning occurs. In spinning-down neutron stars, crustal plates will move an equatorial subduction zone in which the plates are forced into the stellar core below the crust. The opposite plate motion occurs in spinning-up stars. Magnetic fields which pass through the crust or have sources in it move with the crust. Spun-up neutron stars in accreting low-mass X-ray binaries LMXBs should then have almost axially symmetric magnetic fields. Spun-down ones with very weak magnetic fields should have external magnetic fields which enter and leave the neutron star surface only near its equator. The lowest field millisecond radiopulsars seem to be orthogonal rotators implying that they have not previously been spun-up in LMXBs but are neutron stars initially formed with periods near 0.001 s that subsequently spin down to their present periods. Accretion-induced white dwarf collapse is then the most plausible genesis for them. 29 refs

  20. How We Got to the Northern Hemisphere Ice Ages: Late Miocene Global Cooling and Plate Tectonic CO2 Forcing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herbert, T.; Dalton, C. A.; Carchedi, C.

    2017-12-01

    The evolution of Earth's climate between "refrigeration" of East Antarctica and the onset of cyclic Northern Hemisphere glaciation spanned more than 11 Myr. In the latest Miocene (Messinian) time, approximately half way on this journey, changes on land, ranging from the expansion of arid zones to major floral and faunal ecosystem shifts, accelerated. Recent compilations of marine surface temperatures reveal that global cooling from the Miocene Optimum (14-16Ma) also accelerated in late Miocene (7-5.35 Ma) time to reach temperatures not much above Holocene conditions. Both hemispheres cooled in parallel, with the changes amplified at higher latitudes in comparison to the tropics. Despite the strong circumstantial case for CO2 decline as the dominant cause of late Miocene climatic and evolutionary change, proxy indicators of CO2concentrations paint an equivocal picture of greenhouse forcing. Here we provide evidence that global sea floor spreading (SFS) rates decelerated at exactly the times of major climatic cooling, linking a decline in tectonic degassing (at both subduction zones and mid-ocean ridges) to fundamental shifts in the global carbon cycle. Our work utilizes newly available global compilations of seafloor fabric and marine magnetic anomalies provided by the NSF-funded Global Seafloor Fabric and Magnetic Lineation Data Base Project. Previous global compilations of SFS typically binned estimates over 10 Myr increments, losing critical resolution on the timescale of late Neogene climate changes. We further improve the signal:noise of SFS estimates by incorporating recent advances in the astronomical calibration of the Miocene geomagnetic polarity timescale. We use two approaches to compile spreading rate estimates over the past 20 Myr at each spreading system: optimized finite rotation calculations, and averages of sea floor-spreading derived from the distances of magnetic lineations along flow lines on the sea floor. Weighted by ridge length, we find an 25

  1. Seismic swarm associated with the 2008 eruption of Kasatochi Volcano, Alaska: earthquake locations and source parameters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruppert, Natalia G.; Prejean, Stephanie G.; Hansen, Roger A.

    2011-01-01

    An energetic seismic swarm accompanied an eruption of Kasatochi Volcano in the central Aleutian volcanic arc in August of 2008. In retrospect, the first earthquakes in the swarm were detected about 1 month prior to the eruption onset. Activity in the swarm quickly intensified less than 48 h prior to the first large explosion and subsequently subsided with decline of eruptive activity. The largest earthquake measured as moment magnitude 5.8, and a dozen additional earthquakes were larger than magnitude 4. The swarm exhibited both tectonic and volcanic characteristics. Its shear failure earthquake features were b value = 0.9, most earthquakes with impulsive P and S arrivals and higher-frequency content, and earthquake faulting parameters consistent with regional tectonic stresses. Its volcanic or fluid-influenced seismicity features were volcanic tremor, large CLVD components in moment tensor solutions, and increasing magnitudes with time. Earthquake location tests suggest that the earthquakes occurred in a distributed volume elongated in the NS direction either directly under the volcano or within 5-10 km south of it. Following the MW 5.8 event, earthquakes occurred in a new crustal volume slightly east and north of the previous earthquakes. The central Aleutian Arc is a tectonically active region with seismicity occurring in the crusts of the Pacific and North American plates in addition to interplate events. We postulate that the Kasatochi seismic swarm was a manifestation of the complex interaction of tectonic and magmatic processes in the Earth's crust. Although magmatic intrusion triggered the earthquakes in the swarm, the earthquakes failed in context of the regional stress field.

  2. Towards community-driven paleogeographic reconstructions: integrating open-access paleogeographic and paleobiology data with plate tectonics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Wright

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available A variety of paleogeographic reconstructions have been published, with applications ranging from paleoclimate, ocean circulation and faunal radiation models to resource exploration; yet their uncertainties remain difficult to assess as they are generally presented as low-resolution static maps. We present a methodology for ground-truthing the digital Palaeogeographic Atlas of Australia by linking the GPlates plate reconstruction tool to the global Paleobiology Database and a Phanerozoic plate motion model. We develop a spatio-temporal data mining workflow to validate the Phanerozoic Palaeogeographic Atlas of Australia with paleoenvironments derived from fossil data. While there is general agreement between fossil data and the paleogeographic model, the methodology highlights key inconsistencies. The Early Devonian paleogeographic model of southeastern Australia insufficiently describes the Emsian inundation that may be refined using biofacies distributions. Additionally, the paleogeographic model and fossil data can be used to strengthen numerical models, such as the dynamic topography and the associated inundation of eastern Australia during the Cretaceous. Although paleobiology data provide constraints only for paleoenvironments with high preservation potential of organisms, our approach enables the use of additional proxy data to generate improved paleogeographic reconstructions.

  3. Combining Earthquake Focal Mechanism Inversion and Coulomb Friction Law to Yield Tectonic Stress Magnitudes in Strike-slip Faulting Regime

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soh, I.; Chang, C.

    2017-12-01

    The techniques for estimating present-day stress states by inverting multiple earthquake focal mechanism solutions (FMS) provide orientations of the three principal stresses and their relative magnitudes. In order to estimate absolute magnitudes of the stresses that are generally required to analyze faulting mechanics, we combine the relative stress magnitude parameter (R-value) derived from the inversion process and the concept of frictional equilibrium of stress state defined by Coulomb friction law. The stress inversion in Korean Peninsula using 152 FMS data (magnitude≥2.5) conducted at regularly spaced grid points yields a consistent strike-slip faulting regime in which the maximum (S1) and the minimum (S3) principal stresses act in horizontal planes (with an S1 azimuth in ENE-WSW) and the intermediate principal stress (S2) close to vertical. However, R-value varies from 0.28 to 0.75 depending on locations, systematically increasing eastward. Based on the assumptions that the vertical stress is lithostatic, pore pressure is hydrostatic, and the maximum differential stress (S1-S3) is limited by Byerlee's friction of optimally oriented faults for slip, we estimate absolute magnitudes of the two horizontal principal stresses using R-value. As R-value increases, so do the magnitudes of the horizontal stresses. Our estimation of the stress magnitudes shows that the maximum horizontal principal stress (S1) normalized by vertical stress tends to increase from 1.3 in the west to 1.8 in the east. The estimated variation of stress magnitudes is compatible with distinct clustering of faulting types in different regions. Normal faulting events are densely populated in the west region where the horizontal stress is relatively low, whereas numerous reverse faulting events prevail in the east offshore where the horizontal stress is relatively high. Such a characteristic distribution of distinct faulting types in different regions can only be explained in terms of stress

  4. The M w = 5.8 14 August 2016 middle Sakhalin earthquake on a boundary between Okhotsk and Eurasian (Amurian) plates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konovalov, A. V.; Stepnov, A. A.; Safonov, D. A.; Kozhurin, A. I.; Pavlov, A. S.; Gavrilov, A. V.; Manaychev, K. A.; Tomilev, D. Ye.; Takahashi, H.; Ichiyanagi, M.

    2018-04-01

    An earthquake with the moment magnitude M w = 5.8 occurred in the middle part of the Sakhalin Island, Russian Federation, on 14 August 2016, at 11:17 a.m. UTC. The earthquake source was located west of the Central Sakhalin Fault Zone, which is considered to mark the boundary between the Okhotsk and Eurasian (Amurian) plates. Moment tensor solution of the mainshock as well as the configuration of aftershock cloud suggests that the earthquake was caused by slip on a SW-dipping reverse fault. For the first time for Sakhalin, we have got the felt reports unified in accordance with DYFI. We also analyzed observed PGA values and, based on them, produced shaking maps.

  5. SAR-revealed slip partitioning on a bending fault plane for the 2014 Northern Nagano earthquake at the northern Itoigawa-Shizuoka tectonic line

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kobayashi, Tomokazu; Morishita, Yu; Yarai, Hiroshi

    2018-05-01

    By applying conventional cross-track synthetic aperture radar interferometry (InSAR) and multiple aperture InSAR techniques to ALOS-2 data acquired before and after the 2014 Northern Nagano, central Japan, earthquake, a three-dimensional ground displacement field has been successfully mapped. Crustal deformation is concentrated in and around the northern part of the Kamishiro Fault, which is the northernmost section of the Itoigawa-Shizuoka tectonic line. The full picture of the displacement field shows contraction in the northwest-southeast direction, but northeastward movement along the fault strike direction is prevalent in the northeast portion of the fault, which suggests that a strike-slip component is a significant part of the activity of this fault, in addition to a reverse faulting. Clear displacement discontinuities are recognized in the southern part of the source region, which falls just on the previously known Kamishiro Fault trace. We inverted the SAR and GNSS data to construct a slip distribution model; the preferred model of distributed slip on a two-plane fault surface shows a combination of reverse and left-lateral fault motions on a bending east-dipping fault surface with a dip of 30° in the shallow part and 50° in the deeper part. The hypocenter falls just on the estimated deeper fault plane where a left-lateral slip is inferred, whereas in the shallow part, a reverse slip is predominant, which causes surface ruptures on the ground. The slip partitioning may be accounted for by shear stress resulting from a reverse fault slip with left-lateral component at depth, for which a left-lateral slip is suppressed in the shallow part where the reverse slip is inferred. The slip distribution model with a bending fault surface, instead of a single fault plane, produces moment tensor solution with a non-double couple component, which is consistent with the seismically estimated mechanism.

  6. A Kinesthetic Demonstration for Locating Earthquake Epicenters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keyantash, J.; Sperber, S.

    2005-12-01

    During Spring 2005, an inquiry-based curriculum for plate tectonics was developed for implementation in sixth-grade classrooms within the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD). Two cohorts of LAUSD teachers received training and orientation to the plate tectonics unit during one week workshops in July 2005. However, during the training workshops, it was observed that there was considerable confusion among the teachers as to how the traditional "textbook" explanation of the time lag between P and S waves on a seismogram could possibly be used to determine the epicenter of an earthquake. One of the State of California science content standards for sixth grade students is that they understand how the epicenters of earthquakes are determined, so it was critical that the teachers themselves grasped the concept. In response to the adult learner difficulties, the classroom explanation of earthquake epicenter location was supplemented with an outdoor kinesthetic activity. Based upon the experience of the kinesthetic model, it was found that the hands-on model greatly cemented the teachers' understanding of the underlying theory. This paper details the steps of the kinesthetic demonstration for earthquake epicenter identification, as well as offering extended options for its classroom implementation.

  7. Waveform through the subducted plate under the Tokyo region in Japan observed by a ultra-dense seismic network (MeSO-net) and seismic activity around mega-thrust earthquakes area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakai, S.; Kasahara, K.; Nanjo, K.; Nakagawa, S.; Tsuruoka, H.; Morita, Y.; Kato, A.; Iidaka, T.; Hirata, N.; Tanada, T.; Obara, K.; Sekine, S.; Kurashimo, E.

    2009-12-01

    In central Japan, the Philippine Sea plate (PSP) subducts beneath the Tokyo Metropolitan area, the Kanto region, where it causes mega-thrust earthquakes, such as the 1703 Genroku earthquake (M8.0) and the 1923 Kanto earthquake (M7.9) which had 105,000 fatalities. A M7 or greater earthquake in this region at present has high potential to produce devastating loss of life and property with even greater global economic repercussions. The Central Disaster Management Council of Japan estimates the next great earthquake will cause 11,000 fatalities and 112 trillion yen (1 trillion US$) economic loss. This great earthquake is evaluated to occur with a probability of 70 % in 30 years by the Earthquake Research Committee of Japan. We had started the Special Project for Earthquake Disaster Mitigation in Tokyo Metropolitan area (2007-2012). Under this project, the construction of the Metropolitan Seismic Observation network (MeSO-net) that consists of about 400 observation sites was started [Kasahara et al., 2008; Nakagawa et al., 2008]. Now, we had 178 observation sites. The correlation of the wave is high because the observation point is deployed at about 2 km intervals, and the identification of the later phase is recognized easily thought artificial noise is very large. We also discuss the relation between a deformation of PSP and intra-plate M7+ earthquakes: the PSP is subducting beneath the Honshu arc and also colliding with the Pacific plate. The subduction and collision both contribute active seismicity in the Kanto region. We are going to present a high resolution tomographic image to show low velocity zone which suggests a possible internal failure of the plate; a source region of the M7+ intra-plate earthquake. Our study will contribute a new assessment of the seismic hazard at the Metropolitan area in Japan. Acknowledgement: This study was supported by the Earthquake Research Institute cooperative research program.

  8. SEISMOTECTONIC DEFORMATION IN THE CONTACT AREA OF THE NAZCA AND SOUTH AMERICAN LITHOSPHERIC PLATES IN RELATION TO THE FEBRUARY 27, 2010 MW 8.8 MAULE EARTHQUAKE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. G. Dyadkov

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Based on the data on earthquake focal mechanisms, we estimated seismotectonic deformation related to the 2010 Мw 8.8 Maule earthquake and analyzed the deformation at different depths. In the main seismic dislocation of the Maule earthquake and the northern area, the deformation field to a depth of 70 km is typical of subduction zones as evidenced by shortening in the direction of the oceanic plate subduction. Below a depth of 70 km, the deformation pattern changes sharply to horizontal stretching. After the main seismic event, as well as before it, nearlatitudinal shortening was dominant in the focal zone, while the region of the main seismic dislocations was surrounded by separate areas of near-latitudinal stretching, which is an opposite type of deformation. We conducted a detailed analysis of the seismotectonic deformations in the oceanic uplift area to the west of the deep-water trough and identified local zones of near-latitudinal stretching near the southern and northern boundaries of the future Maule earthquake zone. Detecting such zones can provide important data for early forecasting of regions wherein strong subduction-related earthquakes are being prepared.

  9. Assessment of precast beam-column using capacity demand response spectrum subject to design basis earthquake and maximum considered earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghani, Kay Dora Abd.; Tukiar, Mohd Azuan; Hamid, Nor Hayati Abdul

    2017-08-01

    Malaysia is surrounded by the tectonic feature of the Sumatera area which consists of two seismically active inter-plate boundaries, namely the Indo-Australian and the Eurasian Plates on the west and the Philippine Plates on the east. Hence, Malaysia experiences tremors from far distant earthquake occurring in Banda Aceh, Nias Island, Padang and other parts of Sumatera Indonesia. In order to predict the safety of precast buildings in Malaysia under near field ground motion the response spectrum analysis could be used for dealing with future earthquake whose specific nature is unknown. This paper aimed to develop of capacity demand response spectrum subject to Design Basis Earthquake (DBE) and Maximum Considered Earthquake (MCE) in order to assess the performance of precast beam column joint. From the capacity-demand response spectrum analysis, it can be concluded that the precast beam-column joints would not survive when subjected to earthquake excitation with surface-wave magnitude, Mw, of more than 5.5 Scale Richter (Type 1 spectra). This means that the beam-column joint which was designed using the current code of practice (BS8110) would be severely damaged when subjected to high earthquake excitation. The capacity-demand response spectrum analysis also shows that the precast beam-column joints in the prototype studied would be severely damaged when subjected to Maximum Considered Earthquake (MCE) with PGA=0.22g having a surface-wave magnitude of more than 5.5 Scale Richter, or Type 1 spectra.

  10. Temporal stress changes caused by earthquakes: A review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardebeck, Jeanne L.; Okada, Tomomi

    2018-01-01

    Earthquakes can change the stress field in the Earth’s lithosphere as they relieve and redistribute stress. Earthquake-induced stress changes have been observed as temporal rotations of the principal stress axes following major earthquakes in a variety of tectonic settings. The stress changes due to the 2011 Mw9.0 Tohoku-Oki, Japan, earthquake were particularly well documented. Earthquake stress rotations can inform our understanding of earthquake physics, most notably addressing the long-standing problem of whether the Earth’s crust at plate boundaries is “strong” or “weak.” Many of the observed stress rotations, including that due to the Tohoku-Oki earthquake, indicate near-complete stress drop in the mainshock. This implies low background differential stress, on the order of earthquake stress drop, supporting the weak crust model. Earthquake stress rotations can also be used to address other important geophysical questions, such as the level of crustal stress heterogeneity and the mechanisms of postseismic stress reloading. The quantitative interpretation of stress rotations is evolving from those based on simple analytical methods to those based on more sophisticated numerical modeling that can capture the spatial-temporal complexity of the earthquake stress changes.

  11. Long-Term Fault Memory: A New Time-Dependent Recurrence Model for Large Earthquake Clusters on Plate Boundaries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salditch, L.; Brooks, E. M.; Stein, S.; Spencer, B. D.; Campbell, M. R.

    2017-12-01

    A challenge for earthquake hazard assessment is that geologic records often show large earthquakes occurring in temporal clusters separated by periods of quiescence. For example, in Cascadia, a paleoseismic record going back 10,000 years shows four to five clusters separated by approximately 1,000 year gaps. If we are still in the cluster that began 1700 years ago, a large earthquake is likely to happen soon. If the cluster has ended, a great earthquake is less likely. For a Gaussian distribution of recurrence times, the probability of an earthquake in the next 50 years is six times larger if we are still in the most recent cluster. Earthquake hazard assessments typically employ one of two recurrence models, neither of which directly incorporate clustering. In one, earthquake probability is time-independent and modeled as Poissonian, so an earthquake is equally likely at any time. The fault has no "memory" because when a prior earthquake occurred has no bearing on when the next will occur. The other common model is a time-dependent earthquake cycle in which the probability of an earthquake increases with time until one happens, after which the probability resets to zero. Because the probability is reset after each earthquake, the fault "remembers" only the last earthquake. This approach can be used with any assumed probability density function for recurrence times. We propose an alternative, Long-Term Fault Memory (LTFM), a modified earthquake cycle model where the probability of an earthquake increases with time until one happens, after which it decreases, but not necessarily to zero. Hence the probability of the next earthquake depends on the fault's history over multiple cycles, giving "long-term memory". Physically, this reflects an earthquake releasing only part of the elastic strain stored on the fault. We use the LTFM to simulate earthquake clustering along the San Andreas Fault and Cascadia. In some portions of the simulated earthquake history, events would

  12. The Northern Rupture of the 1762 Arakan Meghathrust Earthquake and other Potential Earthquake Sources in Bangladesh.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akhter, S. H.; Seeber, L.; Steckler, M. S.

    2015-12-01

    Bangladesh is one of the most densely populated countries in the world. It occupies a major part of the Bengal Basin, which contains the Ganges-Brahmaputra Delta (GBD), the largest and one of the most active of world deltas, and is located along the Alpine-Himalayan seismic belt. As such it is vulnerable to many natural hazards, especially earthquakes. The country sits at the junction of three tectonic plates - Indian, Eurasian, and the Burma 'sliver' of the Sunda plate. These form two boundaries where plates converge- the India-Eurasia plate boundary to the north forming the Himalaya Arc and the India-Burma plate boundary to the east forming the Indo-Burma Arc. The India-Burma plate boundary is exceptionally wide because collision with the GBD feeds an exception amount of sediment into the subduction zone. Thus the Himalayan continent collision orogeny along with its syntaxes to the N and NE of Bangladesh and the Burma Arc subduction boundary surround Bangladesh on two sides with active faults of regional scale, raising the potential for high-magnitude earthquakes. In recent years Bangladesh has experienced minor to moderate earthquakes. Historical records show that major and great earthquakes have ravaged the country and the neighboring region several times over the last 450 years. Field observations of Tertiary structures along the Chittagong-Teknaf coast reveal that the rupture of 1762 Arakan megathrust earthquake extended as far north as the Sitakund anticline to the north of the city of Chittagong. This earthquake brought changes to the landscape, uplifting the Teknaf peninsula and St. Martin's Island by about 2-2.5 m, and activated two mud volcanos along the axis of the Sitakund anticline, where large tabular blocks of exotic crystalline limestone, were tectonically transported from a deep-seated formation along with the eruptive mud. Vast area of the coast including inland areas east of the lower Meghna River were inundated. More than 500 peoples died near

  13. Earthquake statistics, spatiotemporal distribution of foci and source mechanisms - a key to understanding of the West Bohemia/Vogtland earthquake swarms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horálek, Josef; Čermáková, Hana; Fischer, Tomáš

    2016-04-01

    Earthquake swarms are sequences of numerous events closely clustered in space and time and do not have a single dominant mainshock. A few of the largest events in a swarm reach similar magnitudes and usually occur throughout the course of the earthquake sequence. These attributes differentiate earthquake swarms from ordinary mainshock-aftershock sequences. Earthquake swarms occur worldwide, in diverse geological units. The swarms typically accompany volcanic activity at margins of the tectonic plate but also occur in intracontinental areas where strain from tectonic-plate movement is small. The origin of earthquake swarms is still unclear. The swarms typically occur at the plate margins but also in intracontinental areas. West Bohemia-Vogtland represents one of the most active intraplate earthquake-swarm areas in Europe. It is characterised by a frequent reoccurrence of ML 2.8 swarm events are located in a few dense clusters which implies step by step rupturing of one or a few asperities during the individual swarms. The source mechanism patters (moment-tensor description, MT) of the individual swarms indicate several families of the mechanisms, which fit well geometry of respective fault segments. MTs of the most events signify pure shears except for the 1997-swarm events the MTs of which indicates a combine sources including both shear and tensile components. The origin of earthquake swarms is still unclear. Nevertheless, we infer that the individual earthquake swarms in West Bohemia-Vogtland are mixture of the mainshock-aftershock sequences which correspond to step by step rupturing of one or a few asperities. The swarms occur on short fault segments with heterogeneous stress and strength, which may be affected by pressurized crustal fluids reducing normal component of the tectonic stress and lower friction. This way critically loaded faults are brought to failure and the swarm activity is driven by the differential local stress.

  14. Aftershocks of the 2010 Mw 7.4 Bonin Islands normal-faulting earthquake: Implication for deformation of the Pacific Plate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obana, K.; Takahashi, T.; No, T.; Kaiho, Y.; Kodaira, S.; Yamashita, M.; Sato, T.; Noguchi, N.; Nakamura, T.

    2011-12-01

    A Mw 7.4 normal-faulting earthquake occurred 150 km east of Chichi-jima Island, Bonin Islands, Japan on December 21, 2010 (UTC). This is an earthquake occurred within the Pacific plate beneath the outer trench-slope region along the Izu-Ogasawara (Bonin) trench, where the Pacific plate subducts beneath the Philippine Sea plate. According to Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA), the associated tsunami was observed over a wide area along the Pacific coast of Japan. Normal faulting earthquakes in outer trench-slope region are a result of the bending of the incoming/subducting oceanic plates. The bending-related normal faults cutting the oceanic plate are likely associated with hydration of the oceanic plate prior to subduction [e.g., Ranero et al., 2003]. The normal faulting earthquakes can be a key to understand deformation and resulting hydration of the oceanic plate. That is also important for consideration of tsunami generation in shallow outer trench-slope region. Aftershock observation of the 2010 Bonin Islands earthquake were conducted by R/V Kairei of Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) using ocean bottom seismographs (OBSs). First OBS was deployed in the source area on December 25, 2010 and retrieved on January 7, 2011. Other 4 OBSs were deployed on January 6 and 7 and retrieved on March 11 and 12, 2011. Overall aftershocks distributed in a 130 km long area extended in a NW-SE direction although Izu-Bonin trench extends N-S direction in this area. Most of the aftershocks were located at depths shallower than 30 km, corresponding to the oceanic crust and the uppermost mantle of the Pacific plate. The aftershocks show a complicated distribution. In the central part of the aftershock area, aftershocks formed three subparallel lines with roughly 15 km intervals oriented NW-SE direction. In the southeastern part of the aftershock area away from the trench, the aftershocks distributed along ESE-WNW direction. We estimated aftershock

  15. Mechanics and Partitioning of Deformation of the Northwestern Okhostk Plate, Northeast Russia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hindle, D.; Mackey, K.; Fujita, K.

    2007-12-01

    The tectonic evolution and present day deformation of northeastern Russia remains one of the major challenges in plate tectonics. Arguments over the existence of at least a separate Okhotsk plate between North America and Eurasia appear to be resolved on the basis of the latest GPS studies combined with elastic modeling. The question of the mechanical behaviour of the Okhotsk plate, caught between the slowly, obliquely converging North American and Eurasian plates now becomes important. We present an analysis of geological lineaments, micro-seismicity, total seismic moment release and seismic deformation rate and GPS campaign data and global plate tectonic model data (REVEL) to estimate the likelihood of future seismicity and the relative amount of elastic and viscous deformation of the lithosphere of the northwestern Okhotsk plate. We find that it is likely that the Okhotsk plate is cracked into slivers, but that rates of relative motion of these slivers are close to indistinguishable from the behaviour of a single, rigid plate. The analysis also suggests the upper bound for large earthquakes in the region to be Mw 7-7.5 which we expect to occur only on the plate boundary fault itself. This fits geological evidence for a long term offset rate 5-10 times higher on the major plate boundary fault than other lineaments cutting the Okhotsk plate itself.

  16. Spiral tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hassan Asadiyan, Mohammad

    2014-05-01

    Spiral Tectonics (ST) is a new window to global tectonics introduced as alternative model for Plate Tectonics (PT). ST based upon Dahw(rolling) and Tahw(spreading) dynamics. Analogues to electric and magnetic components in the electromagnetic theory we could consider Dahw and Tahw as components of geodynamics, when one component increases the other decreases and vice versa. They are changed to each other during geological history. D-component represents continental crust and T-component represents oceanic crust. D and T are two arm of spiral-cell. T-arm 180 degree lags behind D-arm so named Retard-arm with respect to D or Forward-arm. It seems primary cell injected several billions years ago from Earth's center therefore the Earth's core was built up first then mantel and finally the crust was build up. Crust building initiate from Arabia (Mecca). As the universe extended gravitation wave swirled the earth fractaly along cycloid path from big to small scale. In global scale (order-0) ST collect continents in one side and abandoned Pacific Ocean in the other side. Recent researches also show two mantels upwelling in opposite side of the Earth: one under Africa (tectonic pose) and the other under Pacific Ocean (tectonic tail). In higher order (order-1) ST build up Africa in one side and S.America in the other side therefore left Atlantic Ocean meandered in between. In order-n e.g. Khoor Musa and Bandar-Deylam bay are seen meandered easterly in the Iranian part but Khoor Abdullah and Kuwait bay meandered westerly in the Arabian part, they are distributed symmetrically with respect to axis of Persian Gulf(PG), these two are fractal components of easterly Caspian-wing and westerly Black Sea-wing which split up from Anatoly. Caspian Sea and Black Sea make two legs of Y-like structure, this shape completely fitted with GPS-velocity map which start from PG and split up in the Catastrophic Point(Anatoly). We could consider PG as remnants of Ancient Ocean which spent up

  17. Diverse rupture modes for surface-deforming upper plate earthquakes in the southern Puget Lowland of Washington State

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Alan R.; Personius, Stephen F.; Sherrod, Brian L.; Kelsey, Harvey M.; Johnson, Samuel Y.; Bradley, Lee-Ann; Wells, Ray E.

    2014-01-01

    Earthquake prehistory of the southern Puget Lowland, in the north-south compressive regime of the migrating Cascadia forearc, reflects diverse earthquake rupture modes with variable recurrence. Stratigraphy and Bayesian analyses of previously reported and new 14C ages in trenches and cores along backthrust scarps in the Seattle fault zone restrict a large earthquake to 1040–910 cal yr B.P. (2σ), an interval that includes the time of the M 7–7.5 Restoration Point earthquake. A newly identified surface-rupturing earthquake along the Waterman Point backthrust dates to 940–380 cal yr B.P., bringing the number of earthquakes in the Seattle fault zone in the past 3500 yr to 4 or 5. Whether scarps record earthquakes of moderate (M 5.5–6.0) or large (M 6.5–7.0) magnitude, backthrusts of the Seattle fault zone may slip during moderate to large earthquakes every few hundred years for periods of 1000–2000 yr, and then not slip for periods of at least several thousands of years. Four new fault scarp trenches in the Tacoma fault zone show evidence of late Holocene folding and faulting about the time of a large earthquake or earthquakes inferred from widespread coseismic subsidence ca. 1000 cal yr B.P.; 12 ages from 8 sites in the Tacoma fault zone limit the earthquakes to 1050–980 cal yr B.P. Evidence is too sparse to determine whether a large earthquake was closely predated or postdated by other earthquakes in the Tacoma basin, but the scarp of the Tacoma fault was formed by multiple earthquakes. In the northeast-striking Saddle Mountain deformation zone, along the western limit of the Seattle and Tacoma fault zones, analysis of previous ages limits earthquakes to 1200–310 cal yr B.P. The prehistory clarifies earthquake clustering in the central Puget Lowland, but cannot resolve potential structural links among the three Holocene fault zones.

  18. Geoprospective study of a nuclear waste repository. Prospective tectonics: convergent and divergent episodes, evolution of stress during the next 100,000 years

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gros, Y.

    1985-01-01

    Within the frame of a contract with the CEC, dealing with storage and disposal of radioactive wastes in geological formations, the B.R.G.M. has been involved in a research on prospective tectonics. Within the Western European continental plate, since Mesozoic times, one sees the alternation or succession of convergent and divergent tectonic episodes. These tectonic episodes, although representing geologically discontinuous phenomena, still have time periods of between 4 to 40 millions years. These tectonic phenomena are the cause of the formation or reactivation, at all scales in the continental plate, of brittle, fault-like structures. Tectonic analysis and the in situ measures of stress and the earthquake focal phenomena show that, from the lower Quaternary to the present, the Western European continental plate has been subjected to NNW to SSE convergent stress. A study of the arrangement of European and African plates in the Western Mediterranean shows that the entire region, is undergoing a period of continental collision. The change in the process implies a westerly continental drift of the Spanish plate, a movement which would take several million years. On the Western European scale, the most likely hypothesis during the next 100,000 years is the persistance of the present stress trending approximately N-5. On the other hand, on a local scale, reorganisations of this stress are possible, owing to the presence of tectonic or lithological heterogeneities

  19. A Proton Flare Triggered the Mw 8.1 Chiapos Mexican Earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elfaki, H.; Yousef, S.

    2017-12-01

    In a 2015 Cairo University M.Sc. thesis by Sarah Khodairy, very strong earthquakes were found to be highly correlated with proton flares. Strange blue and green bright flashes of light across Mexico accompanied the 8th of September 2017 Mw 1.8 Chiapas earthquake. Those lights were contemporary with a solar proton flare. Those green and blue lights are indicative of the arrival of proton streams over Mexico and their interaction with atmospheric Oxygen and Nitrogen atoms respectively in analogy with aurora lights. The proton streams attacked the weak spots of tectonic plates where the Coscos plate is being subducted below the North American plate. It is suggested that they induced telluric electric currents in the ground and in the magma thus caused motion and more subduction in the tectonic plates. Such motion immediately trigged the Chiapas earthquake in the near vicinity. The Bz component of the interplanetary magnetic field was highly negative, a door was opened in the magnetosphere and the proton stream easily leaked inside and targeted Mexico. This proton flare was accompanied by coronal mass ejection and extremely strong X.9.3- class X-ray flare as well as magnetic storms. On the other hand, the 19th of September Mw 7.1 Puebla central Mexico earthquake was initiated by fast solar wind coronal hole stream. Such stream if they hit ground they cause earthquakes, if they hit narrow seas like the Red Sea they cause flash floods. However if they target Oceans they initiate hurricanes.

  20. Using Tectonic Tremor to Constrain Seismic-wave Attenuation in Cascadia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Littel, G.; Thomas, A.; Baltay, A.

    2017-12-01

    In addition to fast, seismic slip, many subduction zones also host slow, largely aseismic slip, accompanied by a weak seismic signal known as tectonic tremor. Tremor is a small amplitude, low-frequency seismic signal that originates at the plate interface, down-dip of where large earthquakes typically occur. The Cascadia subduction zone has not seen a large megathrust earthquake since 1700, yet its recurrence interval of 350-500 years motivates heightened interest in understanding the seismic hazard of the region. Of great importance is to understand the degree to which waves are attenuated as they leave the plate interface and travel towards populated regions of interest. Ground motion prediction equations (GMPEs) relate ground motion to a number of parameters, including earthquake magnitude, depth, style of faulting, and anelastic attenuation, and are typically determined empirically from earthquake ground motion recordings. In Cascadia, however, earthquakes of the moderate size typically used to constrain GMPEs occur relatively infrequently compared to tectonic tremor events, which, in contrast, occur periodically approximately every 10-19 months. Studies have shown that the abundant tectonic tremor in Cascadia, despite its small amplitudes, can be used to constrain seismic wave attenuation in GMPEs. Here we quantify seismic wave attenuation and determine its spatial variations in Cascadia by performing an inversion using tremor ground motion amplitudes, taken as peak ground acceleration (PGA) and peak ground velocity (PGV) from 1 min window waveforms of each individual tremor event. We estimate the anelastic attenuation parameter for varying regional sections along the Cascadia margin. Changes in seismic-wave attenuation along the Cascadia Subduction Zone could result in significantly different ground motions in the event of a very large earthquake, hence quantifying attenuation may help to better estimate the severity of shaking in densely populated

  1. Earthquake swarms and the semidiurnal solid earth tide

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Klein, F W

    1976-01-01

    Several correlations between peak earthquake activity during swarms and the phase and stress orientation of the calculated solid earth tide are described. The events correlating with the tide are clusters of swarm earthquakes. Swarm clusters from many sequences recorded over several years are used. Significant tidal correlations (which have less than a 5% chance of being observed if earthquakes were random) are found in the Reykjanes Peninsula in Iceland, the central Mid-Atlantic Ridge, the Imperial Valley and northern Gulf of California, and larger (m/sub b/ greater than or equal to 5.0) aftershocks of the 1965 Rat Islands earthquake. In addition, sets of larger single earthquakes on Atlantic and north-east Pacific fracture zones are significantly correlated with the calculated solid tide. No tidal correlation, however, could be found for the Matsushiro Japan swarm of 1965 to 1967. The earthquake-tide correlations other than those of the Reykjanes Peninsula and Mid-Atlantic Ridge can be interpreted as triggering caused by enhancement of the tectonic stress by tidal stress, i.e. the alignment of fault and tidal principal stresses. All tidal correlations except in the Aleutians are associated with oceanic rifts or their landward extensions. If lithospheric plates are decoupled at active rifts, then tidal stresses channeled along the lithospheric stress guide may be concentrated at ridge-type plate boundaries. Tidal triggering of earthquakes at rifts may reflect this possible amplification of tidal strains in the weakened lithosphere at ridges. 25 figures, 2 tables.

  2. Plate tectonics: A supercontinental boost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenardic, Adrian

    2017-01-01

    180 million years ago Earth's continents were amalgamated into one supercontinent called Pangaea. Analysis of oceanic crust formed since that time suggests that the cooling rate of Earth was enhanced in the wake of Pangaea's dispersal.

  3. Does permanent extensional deformation in lower forearc slopes indicate shallow plate-boundary rupture?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geersen, J.; Ranero, C. R.; Kopp, H.; Behrmann, J. H.; Lange, D.; Klaucke, I.; Barrientos, S.; Diaz-Naveas, J.; Barckhausen, U.; Reichert, C.

    2018-05-01

    Seismic rupture of the shallow plate-boundary can result in large tsunamis with tragic socio-economic consequences, as exemplified by the 2011 Tohoku-Oki earthquake. To better understand the processes involved in shallow earthquake rupture in seismic gaps (where megathrust earthquakes are expected), and investigate the tsunami hazard, it is important to assess whether the region experienced shallow earthquake rupture in the past. However, there are currently no established methods to elucidate whether a margin segment has repeatedly experienced shallow earthquake rupture, with the exception of mechanical studies on subducted fault-rocks. Here we combine new swath bathymetric data, unpublished seismic reflection images, and inter-seismic seismicity to evaluate if the pattern of permanent deformation in the marine forearc of the Northern Chile seismic gap allows inferences on past earthquake behavior. While the tectonic configuration of the middle and upper slope remains similar over hundreds of kilometers along the North Chilean margin, we document permanent extensional deformation of the lower slope localized to the region 20.8°S-22°S. Critical taper analyses, the comparison of permanent deformation to inter-seismic seismicity and plate-coupling models, as well as recent observations from other subduction-zones, including the area that ruptured during the 2011 Tohoku-Oki earthquake, suggest that the normal faults at the lower slope may have resulted from shallow, possibly near-trench breaking earthquake ruptures in the past. In the adjacent margin segments, the 1995 Antofagasta, 2007 Tocopilla, and 2014 Iquique earthquakes were limited to the middle and upper-slope and the terrestrial forearc, and so are upper-plate normal faults. Our findings suggest a seismo-tectonic segmentation of the North Chilean margin that seems to be stable over multiple earthquake cycles. If our interpretations are correct, they indicate a high tsunami hazard posed by the yet un

  4. Surveys on environmental tectonics. Special volume.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cloetingh, S.A.P.L.; Cornu, T.

    2005-01-01

    Until now, research on neotectonics and related seismicity has mostly focused on active plate boundaries characterized by generally high earthquake activity. Current seismic hazard estimates for intraplate areas are commonly based on probabilistic analyses of historical and instrumental earthquake

  5. A global earthquake discrimination scheme to optimize ground-motion prediction equation selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia, Daniel; Wald, David J.; Hearne, Michael

    2012-01-01

    We present a new automatic earthquake discrimination procedure to determine in near-real time the tectonic regime and seismotectonic domain of an earthquake, its most likely source type, and the corresponding ground-motion prediction equation (GMPE) class to be used in the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Global ShakeMap system. This method makes use of the Flinn–Engdahl regionalization scheme, seismotectonic information (plate boundaries, global geology, seismicity catalogs, and regional and local studies), and the source parameters available from the USGS National Earthquake Information Center in the minutes following an earthquake to give the best estimation of the setting and mechanism of the event. Depending on the tectonic setting, additional criteria based on hypocentral depth, style of faulting, and regional seismicity may be applied. For subduction zones, these criteria include the use of focal mechanism information and detailed interface models to discriminate among outer-rise, upper-plate, interface, and intraslab seismicity. The scheme is validated against a large database of recent historical earthquakes. Though developed to assess GMPE selection in Global ShakeMap operations, we anticipate a variety of uses for this strategy, from real-time processing systems to any analysis involving tectonic classification of sources from seismic catalogs.

  6. Variation of radon concentration in Guwahati, Assam due to six earthquakes (Magnitude >5) occurred in N.E. India: a comparative study with baseline disparity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Laskar, I.; Goswami, A.K.; Chetry, G.; Roy, U.C.; Mahanta, Kashyap; Chowdhury, Jyotirmoy Das; Laskar, J.

    2013-01-01

    Six earthquakes (M>5) have occurred in N.E. India within a time span of forty two days from August 11, 2009 to September 21, 2009. The minimum and maximum values of magnitudes of these earthquakes are 5.0 and 6.3 respectively in Richter Scale (RS). The origins of these earthquakes are reported to be Indo-Myanmar border, Sonitpur dist of Assam and neighboring Bhutan (USGS report). We, in our lab in Guwahati, Assam, have observed prominent radon peaks in the continuously monitored Alpha-GUARD, which can be regarded as precursor peaks for these earthquakes except the one that has origin in Bhutan. The post -effect of this earthquake was observed as a radon peak one day later. This may be due to the fact that the Bhutan tectonic plate and the tectonic plate on which Guwahati along with Shillong shield do not lie on the same plate. The extended part of the Kopili Fault has separated the Bhutan tectonic plate and makes the region more seismic. Continuous seven years GPS data analysis has given a remarkable depiction. The baseline analysis between IISC, Bangalore and some of our campaign mode GPS stations near Guwahati have made the picture clear. An analysis of available data is reported in this paper. (author)

  7. Thermal History of Planetary Objects: From Asteroids to super-Earths, from plate-tectonics to life (Runcorn-Florensky Medal Lecture)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spohn, Tilman

    2013-04-01

    planets - like the Earth - the volatile budget matters for the interior evolution. With plate tectonics, large-scale volatile cycles are invoked. On the Earth, even the biosphere is speculated to interact with the interior. It has been argued (e.g., Rosing et al. 2006; Sleep et al, 2012) that the formation of continents could be a consequence of bioactivity harvesting solar energy through photosynthesis to help build the continents and that the mantle should carry a chemical biosignature. A model is presented that includes mantle convection, mantle water vapor degassing at mid-oceanic ridges and regassing through subduction zones, continental crust formation and erosion and water storage and transport in a porous oceanic crust that includes hydrous mineral phases. The biosphere enters the model through its effect on continental erosion and through a reduction of the activation barrier to metamorphic reactions (e.g., Kim et al., 2004) in sediment layers. An abiotic world is found to have a much drier mantle than the present Earth but may have a similar surface coverage by continents. The reduced rate of continental crust production on the abiotic world would be balanced by a reduced rate of continent erosion. Through the effect of water on the mantle rheology, the biotic world would tend to be tectonically more active and have a more rapid long-term carbon-silicate cycle. J. Kim, H. Dong, J. Seabaugh, S. W. Newell, D. D. Eberl, Science 303, 830-832, 2004 N. H. Sleep, D. K. Bird, E. Pope, Annu. Rev. Earth Planet. Sci. 40, 277-300, 2012 M. T. Rosing, D. K. Bird, N. H. Sleep, W. Glassley, F. Albarede, Paleo3 232, 90-113, 2006

  8. Aftershock stress analysis of the April 2015 Mw 7.8 Gorkha earthquake from the NAMASTE project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pant, M.; Velasco, A. A.; Karplus, M. S.; Patlan, E.; Ghosh, A.; Nabelek, J.; Kuna, V. M.; Sapkota, S. N.; Adhikari, L. B.; Klemperer, S. L.

    2016-12-01

    Continental collision between the Indian plate and the Eurasian plate, converging at 45 mm/yr, has uplifted the northern part of Nepal forming the Himalaya. Because of this convergence, the region has experienced large, devastating earthquakes, including the 1934 Mw 8.4 Nepal-Bihar earthquake and two recent earthquakes on April 25, 2015 Mw 7.8 (Gorkha earthquake) and May 12, 2015 Mw 7.2. These quakes killed thousands of people and caused billion dollars of property loss. Despite some recent geologic and geophysical studies of this area, many tectonic questions remain unanswered. Shortly after the Gorkha earthquake, we deployed a seismic network, NAMASTE (Nepal Array Measuring Aftershock Seismicity Trailing Earthquake), to study the aftershocks of these two large events. Our network included 45 different seismic stations (16 short period, 25 broadband, and 4 strong motion sensors) that spanned the Gorkha rupture area. The deployment extends from south of the Main Frontal Thrust (MFT) to the Main Central Thrust region (MCT), and it to recorded aftershocks for more than ten months from June 2015 to May 2016. We are leveraging high-precision earthquake locations by measuring and picking P-wave first-motion arrival polarity to develop a catalog of focal mechanisms for the larger aftershocks. We will use this catalog to correlate the seismicity and stress related of the Indo-Eurasian plate margin, hoping to address questions regarding the complex fault geometries and future earthquake hazards at this plate margin.

  9. Measurements of Active Tectonic Deformation on the Guerrero Coast, Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramirez, T.; Cundy, A.; Carranza-Edwards, A.; Morales, E.; Kostoglodov, V.; Urrutia-Fucugauchi, J.

    2004-12-01

    The study of tectonic deformation rates using displaced shoreline features is relatively well-established, and has provided much useful information on seismic hazard. Such studies have frequently been complemented by analysis of the coastal sedimentary record, where past marine to terrestrial environmental changes (and vice versa) may be recorded by clear changes in stratigraphy. Studies of this type are particularly valuable for tectonically-active areas where the preservation of former shoreline features is poor, or where long-term subsidence has resulted in their erosion, drowning or burial. The specific objective of this study is to derive rates of tectonic deformation from geomorphic and stratigraphic studies of the Guerrero coastal area, and to examine the feasibility of this stratigraphic approach in the coastal lagoons of the Mexican Pacific coast, in the Guerrero gap. The Guerrero gap coastal area, where a major earthquake is expected to occur, parallels the Cocos plate subduction zone. Here convergence rates vary from 5.2 cm/yr to 5.8 cm/yr. The Guerrero gap has experienced several historical earthquakes, notably the 1911 (7.8 Ms). However, no large magnitude events since the 1911 earthquake and only a few Ms~6 events have occurred near the Guerrero gap edges. It is expected that a major interplate earthquake of estimated magnitude Mw=8.1 to 8.4 has a high probability to occur. Landforms within the Guerrero gap indicate that the coast is subsiding. A series of key indicators such as elongated islands reminiscent of ancient barriers, submerged barriers island, extensive marshy environments, increased depths in the lagoons, and submerged anthropogenic features (shell mounds), among others, suggest active tectonic subsidence of the coast. In contrast, the adjacent northwest area off the Guerrero gap exhibits landforms characteristic of tectonic uplift (marine terraces and uplifted beach ridges), indicating a different seismo-tectonic regime northwest of the

  10. Space-time behavior of continental intraplate earthquakes and implications for hazard assessment in China and the Central U.S.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stein, Seth; Liu, Mian; Luo, Gang; Wang, Hui

    2014-05-01

    Earthquakes in midcontinents and those at plate boundaries behave quite differently in space and time, owing to the geometry of faults and the rate at which they are loaded. Faults at plate boundaries are loaded at constant rates by steady relative plate motion. Consequently, earthquakes concentrate along the plate boundary faults, and show quasi-periodic occurrences, although the actual temporal patterns are often complicated. However, in midcontinents, the tectonic loading is shared by a complex system of interacting faults spread over a large region, such that a large earthquake on one fault could increase the loading rates on remote faults in the system. Because the low tectonic loading rate is shared by many faults in midcontinents, individual faults may remain dormant for a long time and then become active for a short period. The resulting earthquakes are therefore episodic and spatially migrating. These effects can be seen in many areas, with a prime example being a 2000-year record from North China, which shows migration of large earthquakes between fault systems spread over a large region such that no large earthquakes rupture the same fault segment twice. Because seismic activity within mid-continents is usually much lower than that along plate boundary zones, even small earthquakes can cause widespread concerns, especially when these events occur in the source regions of previous large earthquakes. However, these small earthquakes may be aftershocks that continue for decades or even longer, because aftershock sequences often last much longer in midcontinents where tectonic loading is slow, than at plate boundaries. The recent seismicity in the Tangshan region in North China is likely aftershocks of the 1976 M7.8 Tangshan earthquake. Similarly, current seismicity in the New Madrid seismic zone in central U.S. appears to be aftershocks of a cluster of M ~7.0 events in 1811-1812. These large events and similar events in the past millennium release strain

  11. Tectonic History and Deep Structure of the Demerara Plateau from Combined Wide-Angle and Reflection Seismic Data and Plate Kinematic Reconstructions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klingelhoefer, F.; Museur, T.; Roest, W. R.; Graindorge, D.; Chauvet, F.; Loncke, L.; Basile, C.; Poetisi, E.; Deverchere, J.; Lebrun, J. F.; Perrot, J.; Heuret, A.

    2017-12-01

    Many transform margins have associated intermediate depth marginal plateaus, which are commonly located between two oceanic basins. The Demerara plateau is located offshore Surinam and French Guiana. Plate kinematic reconstructions show that the plateau is located between the central and equatorial Atlantic in a position conjugate to the Guinean Plateau. In the fall of 2016, the MARGATS cruise acquired geophysical data along the 400 km wide Demerara plateau. The main objective of the cruise was to image the deep structure of the Demerara plateau and to study its tectonic history. A set of 4 combined wide-angle and reflection seismic profiles was acquired along the plateau, using 80 ocean-bottom seismometers, a 3 km long seismic streamer and a 8000 cu inch tuned airgun array. Forward modelling of the wide-angle seismic data on a profile, located in the eastern part of the plateau and oriented in a NE-SW direction, images the crustal structure of the plateau, the transition zone and the neighbouring crust of oceanic origin, up to a depth of 40 km. The plateau itself is characterised by a crust of 30 km thickness, subdivided into three distinct layers. However, the velocities and velocity gradients do not fit typical continental crust, with a lower crustal layer showing untypically high velocities and an upper layer having a steep velocity gradient. From this model we propose that the lowermost layer is probably formed from volcanic underplated material and that the upper crustal layer likely consists of the corresponding extrusive volcanic material, forming thick seaward-dipping reflector sequences on the plateau. A basement high is imaged at the foot of the slope and forms the ocean-continent transition zone. Further oceanward, a 5-6 km thick crust is imaged with velocities and velocity gradients corresponding to a thin oceanic crust. A compilation of magnetic data from the MARGATS and 3 previous cruises shows a high amplitude magnetic anomaly along the northern

  12. Global tectonics and space geodesy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gordon, Richard G.; Stein, Seth

    1992-01-01

    Much of the success of plate tectonics can be attributed to the near rigidity of tectonic plates and the availability of data that describe the rates and directions of motion across narrow plate boundaries of about 1 to 60 kilometers. Nonetheless, many plate boundaries in both continental and oceanic lithosphere are not narrow but are hundreds to thousands of kilometers wide. Wide plate boundary zones cover approximately 15 percent of earth's surface area. Space geodesy, which includes very long baseline radio interferometry, satellite laser ranging, and the global positioning system, provides the accurate long-distance measurements needed to estimate the present motion across and within wide plate boundary zones. Space geodetic data show that plate velocities averaged over years are remarkably similar to velocities avaraged over millions of years.

  13. Back-arc extension in the Andaman Sea: Tectonic and magmatic processes imaged by high-precision teleseismic double-difference earthquake relocation

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Diehl, T.; Waldhauser, F.; Cochran, J. R.; KameshRaju, K.A.; Seeber, L.; Schaff, D.; Engdahl, E.R.

    -Plate) by the � � underthrusting Indian-Australian plate, ‘pull-apart’ basins develop along the plate ��� boundary, resulting in NE-SW extension of the Andaman Sea [e.g., Curray, 2005; ��� McCaffrey, 2009]. While the term ‘pull-apart’ usually refers to intracrustal extension...

  14. Pakistan’s Earthquake and Tsunami Hazards Potential Impact on Infrastructure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    GEORGE PARARAS-CARAYANNIS

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Interaction of the Indian, Arabian and Eurasian tectonic plates has resulted in the formation of major active fault systems in South Asia. Compression along the tectonic boundaries results in thrust or reverse type of faulting and zones of crustal deformation characterized by high seismic activity and continuing Orogenesis. The more intense seismic activity occurs near regions of thrust faulting which is developing at the Himalayan foothills. In northern Pakistan, the Hindu Kush Mountains converge with the Karakoram Range to form a part of the Himalayan mountain system. Northern, western as well as southern Pakistan, Kashmir and northern India and Afghanistan are along such zones of high seismic activity. In Pakistan, most of the earthquakes occur in the north and western regions along the boundary of the Indian tectonic plate with the Iranian and Afghan micro-plates. The active zone extends from the Makran region in the southwest to the Hazara-Kashmir syntaxial bend in the north. Southwest Pakistan is vulnerable to both earthquake and tsunami hazards. In 2005, earthquakes devastated northern Pakistan and Kashmir and severely affected the cities of Muzaffarabad, Islamadad and Rawalpindi, causing severe destruction to the infrastructure of the northern region. A major earthquake along an extensive transform fault system in 1935 destroyed the city Quetta and the adjoining region. A major earthquake along the northern Arabian sea in 1945 generated a very destructive tsunami along the coasts of Baluchistan and Sindh Provinces. The region near Karachi is vulnerable as it is located near four major faults where destructive earthquakes and tsunamis have occurred in the past. Given Pakistan’s vulnerability and extensive infrastructure development in recent years, the present study reviews briefly the earthquake and tsunami risk factors and assesses the impact that such disasters can have on the country’s critical infrastructure - which includes

  15. INVESTIGATION OF b-VALUE VARIATIONS IN THE AFRICAN AND PARTS OF EURASIAN PLATES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Awoyemi, M. O.

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Numerous earthquakes have occurred along the collision zones of the African and parts of Eurasian plates. Some of these earthquakes along these zones have generated tsunamis. To mitigate this hazard, knowledge of b-values of the Gutenberg – Richter relation for tectonic earthquakes in the African and parts of Eurasian plates is essential. The temporal variations of b-values were evaluated using sliding time windows with each window containing a total of 100 events with a view to utilizing the results as a precursor for the earthquake occurrence. The spatial variation of b-values of the study area was also delineated by dividing it into grids and calculating the b-values for each grid using constant radius and constant number of events. Results obtained from the temporal variation of b-values showed that earthquakes of large magnitudes occurred when the b-values were low while earthquakes of small magnitudes occurred when the b-values were high throughout the study period. The results of the spatial distribution of b-values also showed that earthquakes of large magnitudes occurred in areas of low b-values while earthquakes of small magnitudes occurred in areas of high b-values. The study therefore concluded that the temporal and spatial variations of b-values might be considered as a precursor for earthquake prediction.

  16. Identifying tectonic parameters that influence tsunamigenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Zelst, Iris; Brizzi, Silvia; van Dinther, Ylona; Heuret, Arnauld; Funiciello, Francesca

    2017-04-01

    The role of tectonics in tsunami generation is at present poorly understood. However, the fact that some regions produce more tsunamis than others indicates that tectonics could influence tsunamigenesis. Here, we complement a global earthquake database that contains geometrical, mechanical, and seismicity parameters of subduction zones with tsunami data. We statistically analyse the database to identify the tectonic parameters that affect tsunamigenesis. The Pearson's product-moment correlation coefficients reveal high positive correlations of 0.65 between, amongst others, the maximum water height of tsunamis and the seismic coupling in a subduction zone. However, these correlations are mainly caused by outliers. The Spearman's rank correlation coefficient results in more robust correlations of 0.60 between the number of tsunamis in a subduction zone and subduction velocity (positive correlation) and the sediment thickness at the trench (negative correlation). Interestingly, there is a positive correlation between the latter and tsunami magnitude. In an effort towards multivariate statistics, a binary decision tree analysis is conducted with one variable. However, this shows that the amount of data is too scarce. To complement this limited amount of data and to assess physical causality of the tectonic parameters with regard to tsunamigenesis, we conduct a numerical study of the most promising parameters using a geodynamic seismic cycle model. We show that an increase in sediment thickness on the subducting plate results in a shift in seismic activity from outerrise normal faults to splay faults. We also show that the splay fault is the preferred rupture path for a strongly velocity strengthening friction regime in the shallow part of the subduction zone, which increases the tsunamigenic potential. A larger updip limit of the seismogenic zone results in larger vertical surface displacement.

  17. How Long Is Long Enough? Estimation of Slip-Rate and Earthquake Recurrence Interval on a Simple Plate-Boundary Fault Using 3D Paleoseismic Trenching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wechsler, N.; Rockwell, T. K.; Klinger, Y.; Agnon, A.; Marco, S.

    2012-12-01

    Models used to forecast future seismicity make fundamental assumptions about the behavior of faults and fault systems in the long term, but in many cases this long-term behavior is assumed using short-term and perhaps non-representative observations. The question arises - how long of a record is long enough to represent actual fault behavior, both in terms of recurrence of earthquakes and of moment release (aka slip-rate). We test earthquake recurrence and slip models via high-resolution three-dimensional trenching of the Beteiha (Bet-Zayda) site on the Dead Sea Transform (DST) in northern Israel. We extend the earthquake history of this simple plate boundary fault to establish slip rate for the past 3-4kyr, to determine the amount of slip per event and to study the fundamental behavior, thereby testing competing rupture models (characteristic, slip-patch, slip-loading, and Gutenberg Richter type distribution). To this end we opened more than 900m of trenches, mapped 8 buried channels and dated more than 80 radiocarbon samples. By mapping buried channels, offset by the DST on both sides of the fault, we obtained for each an estimate of displacement. Coupled with fault crossing trenches to determine event history, we construct earthquake and slip history for the fault for the past 2kyr. We observe evidence for a total of 9-10 surface-rupturing earthquakes with varying offset amounts. 6-7 events occurred in the 1st millennium, compared to just 2-3 in the 2nd millennium CE. From our observations it is clear that the fault is not behaving in a periodic fashion. A 4kyr old buried channel yields a slip rate of 3.5-4mm/yr, consistent with GPS rates for this segment. Yet in spite of the apparent agreement between GPS, Pleistocene to present slip rate, and the lifetime rate of the DST, the past 800-1000 year period appears deficit in strain release. Thus, in terms of moment release, most of the fault has remained locked and is accumulating elastic strain. In contrast, the

  18. Mantle constraints on the plate tectonic evolution of the Tonga-Kermadec-Hikurangi subduction zone and the South Fiji Basin region

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schellart, W. P.; Spakman, W.

    The Tonga-Kermadec-Hikurangi subduction zone is a major plate boundary in the Southwest Pacific region, where the Pacific plate subducts westward underneath the Australian plate. Considerable controversy exists regarding the Cenozoic evolution of this subduction zone, its connection with the

  19. Mantle constraints on the plate tectonic evolution of the Tonga-Kermadec-Hikurangi subduction zone and the South Fiji Basin region

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schellart, W.P.; Spakman, W.

    2012-01-01

    The Tonga–Kermadec–Hikurangi subduction zone is a major plate boundary in the Southwest Pacific region, where the Pacific plate subducts westward underneath the Australian plate. Considerable controversy exists regarding the Cenozoic evolution of this subduction zone, its connection with

  20. How Do Regional Stress Changes Following Megathrust Events Affect Active Retroarc Tectonics? A Case Study of the 27 February 2010 Mw 6.1 Salta Earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    McFarland, P. K.; Bennett, R. A.

    2017-12-01

    The 27 February 2010 M­­w 6.1 Salta earthquake occurred in the active retroarc fold-thrust belt of northwest Argentina approximately 9 hours after and 1500 km away from the Mw 8.8 Maule earthquake that occurred off the coast of central Chile. It has been proposed that the Salta earthquake occurred on a fault that was already at or near failure at the time of the Maule event, and the Maule earthquake simply advanced the seismic cycle of the fault. In this study, we examine a transient signal in the east component of the position time series for the continuously operating GPS (cGPS) station UNSA, which lies approximately 32 km northeast of the Salta earthquake epicenter. The transient signal is observed in the roughly 2.3 years prior to the Salta earthquake. It begins immediately following the 11 November 2007 Mw 7.7 Tocopilla megathrust event that occurred about 550 km due west of Salta on the Nazca-South America subduction interface and terminates abruptly after the Salta earthquake. We use the published relocated main shock and aftershock hypocenters determined using data from a local seismic network (INPRES) along with the published main shock focal mechanism to demonstrate that the Salta earthquake likely occurred on the Golgota Fault, a N-S striking and steeply-east-dipping reverse fault. Further, we use elastic dislocation modeling to show that rupture on the Golgota Fault is consistent with the co-seismic offsets observed at the surrounding cGPS stations. We propose that the transient signal observed at station UNSA may be due to initiation or acceleration of interseismic strain accumulation on the Golgota Fault at mid-crustal depths following a change in the regional stress field associated with the Tocopilla megathrust earthquake. Finally, we use published rupture models for both the Tocopilla and Maule events to demonstrate that the regional static Coulomb stress change following each of these megathrusts is consistent with our proposed model.

  1. Fault on-off versus strain rate and earthquakes energy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Doglioni

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available We propose that the brittle-ductile transition (BDT controls the seismic cycle. In particular, the movements detected by space geodesy record the steady state deformation in the ductile lower crust, whereas the stick-slip behavior of the brittle upper crust is constrained by its larger friction. GPS data allow analyzing the strain rate along active plate boundaries. In all tectonic settings, we propose that earthquakes primarily occur along active fault segments characterized by relative minima of strain rate, segments which are locked or slowly creeping. We discuss regional examples where large earthquakes happened in areas of relative low strain rate. Regardless the tectonic style, the interseismic stress and strain pattern inverts during the coseismic stage. Where a dilated band formed during the interseismic stage, this will be shortened at the coseismic stage, and vice-versa what was previously shortened, it will be dilated. The interseismic energy accumulation and the coseismic expenditure rather depend on the tectonic setting (extensional, contractional, or strike-slip. The gravitational potential energy dominates along normal faults, whereas the elastic energy prevails for thrust earthquakes and performs work against the gravity force. The energy budget in strike-slip tectonic setting is also primarily due elastic energy. Therefore, precursors may be different as a function of the tectonic setting. In this model, with a given displacement, the magnitude of an earthquake results from the coseismic slip of the deformed volume above the BDT rather than only on the fault length, and it also depends on the fault kinematics.

  2. The dynamic nature of relative sea level in Southeast Asia: tectonic effects and human impacts (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, E.; Qiu, Q.; Feng, L.; Lubis, A.; Meltzner, A. J.; Tsang, L. L.; Daly, P.; McCaughey, J.; Banerjee, P.; Rubin, C. M.; Sieh, K.

    2013-12-01

    Simeulue a station has been subsiding, on average, by ~39 mm/yr since 2005, with higher rates immediately after the earthquake). Photos and stories from people in affected communities bring life to these coastline changes. Further afield, viscoelastic relaxation of the mantle causes widespread regional changes. For example, postseismic deformation following the 2004 Sumatra-Andaman earthquake has caused subsidence of 20-30 mm/yr along the Thai coastline. This subsidence - and therefore relative sea-level rise - will continue for many years to come. One question this raises is the degree to which countries close to tectonic plate boundaries should consider tectonic effects in their planning for future sea-level change. For example, in the event of an earthquake occurring on the Mentawai patch of the Sunda megathrust (an event which has been forecast based on paleogeodetic data), Singapore could face up to 15 cm of subsidence in the decades following the earthquake.

  3. Migrating pattern of deformation prior to the Tohoku-Oki earthquake revealed by GRACE data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panet, Isabelle; Bonvalot, Sylvain; Narteau, Clément; Remy, Dominique; Lemoine, Jean-Michel

    2018-05-01

    Understanding how and when far-field continuous motions lead to giant subduction earthquakes remains a challenge. An important limitation comes from an incomplete description of aseismic mass fluxes at depth along plate boundaries. Here we analyse Earth's gravity field variations derived from GRACE satellite data in a wide space-time domain surrounding the Mw 9.0 2011 Tohoku-Oki earthquake. We show that this earthquake is the extreme expression of initially silent deformation migrating from depth to the surface across the entire subduction system. Our analysis indeed reveals large-scale gravity and mass changes throughout three tectonic plates and connected slabs, starting a few months before March 2011. Before the Tohoku-Oki earthquake rupture, the gravity variations can be explained by aseismic extension of the Pacific plate slab at mid-upper mantle depth, concomitant with increasing seismicity in the shallower slab. For more than two years after the rupture, the deformation propagated far into the Pacific and Philippine Sea plate interiors, suggesting that subduction accelerated along 2,000 km of the plate boundaries in March 2011. This gravitational image of the earthquake's long-term dynamics provides unique information on deep and crustal processes over intermediate timescales, which could be used in seismic hazard assessment.

  4. Seafloor morphology of the Eurasia-Nubia (Africa) plate boundary between the Tore-Madeira Rise and the Straits of Gibraltar: a case of coexistent Mesozoic through Present day features of tectonic, oceanographic and sedimentary origin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terrinha, Pedro; Duarte, João.; Valadares, Vasco; Batista, Luis; Zitellini, Nevio; Grácia, Eulalia; Lourenço, Nuno; Rosas, Filipe; Roque, Cristina

    2010-05-01

    The joint use of more than 10.000 km multichannel seismic reflection profiles and 180.000km2 of multibeam swath bathymetry and backscatter allowed for a new vision of the seafloor tectonic and geomorphic processes of the area that encompasses the present day plate boundary between Africa and Eurasia, between the Gibraltar Straits and the Tore-Madeira Rise, in the southern sector of the North Atlantic Ocean. The interpretation of this data allowed for the detailed description of the seafloor morphology (i.e. a morphologic map) and the classification of the morphologic features in what respects the genetic process and age. It can be seen that in the same region coexist morphologic features that result from tectonic processes associated with the Triassic-Cretaceous break-up of Pangea, the Paleogene-Miocene compressive phase, the Miocene through Present subduction under the Gibraltar Arc (Gutscher et al., 2002), the Pliocene-Quaternary wrench tectonics and possible coeval plate boundary (Zitellini et al., 2009), the Present day mud volcanism and propagation of the compressive deformation along the West Continental Margin of Portugal (Terrinha et al., 2009). Interpretation of the seismic profiles together with the bathymetry allows the understanding of endogenous and exogenous processes that creates reliefs associated with active structures (related to the Miocene through Present compressive stress field). Other reliefs generated in Mesozoic times by analogous processes can be as well preserved as these active ones. In what concerns exogenous processes, the analysis of the two datasets (reflection seismics and bathymetry) allowed for the description of morphologic features associated with oceanic currents that interact with the seafloor forming these important features. As is the case of the well known active contourites but also less known features, like giant scours at 4 km water depth that have recently been described, suggesting the interaction of deep currents and

  5. Petrogenesis and tectonic association of rift-related basic Panjal dykes from the northern Indian plate, North-Western Pakistan: evidence of high-Ti basalts analogous to dykes from Tibet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sajid, Muhammad; Andersen, Jens; Arif, Mohammad

    2017-10-01

    Rift related magmatism during Permian time in the northern margin of Indian plate is represented by basic dykes in several Himalayan terranes including north western Pakistan. The field relations, mineralogy and whole rock geochemistry of these basic dykes reveal significant textural, mineralogical and chemical variation between two major types (a) dolerite and (b) amphibolite. Intra-plate tectonic settings for both rock types have been interpreted on the basis of low Zr/Nb ratios (primitive mantle using Dy/Yb, La/Yb, Sm/Yb and La/Sm ratios show that amphibolite formed by smaller degrees (< 5%) of partial melting than the dolerites (< 10%). The trace elements ratios suggest the origination of dolerites from the subcontinental lithospheric mantle with some crustal contamination. This is consistent with a petrogenetic relationship with Panjal trap magmatism, reported from Kashmir and other parts of north western India. The amphibolites, in contrast, show affinity towards Ocean Island basalts (OIB) with a relatively deep asthenospheric mantle source and minimal crustal contribution and are geochemically similar to the High-Ti mafic dykes of southern Qiangtang, Tibet. These similarities combined with Permian tectonic restoration of Gondwana indicate the coeval origin for both dykes from distinct mantle source during continental rifting related to formation of the Neotethys Ocean.

  6. Petrogenesis and tectonic association of rift-related basic Panjal dykes from the northern Indian plate, North-Western Pakistan: evidence of high-Ti basalts analogous to dykes from Tibet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sajid, Muhammad; Andersen, Jens; Arif, Mohammad

    2018-06-01

    Rift related magmatism during Permian time in the northern margin of Indian plate is represented by basic dykes in several Himalayan terranes including north western Pakistan. The field relations, mineralogy and whole rock geochemistry of these basic dykes reveal significant textural, mineralogical and chemical variation between two major types (a) dolerite and (b) amphibolite. Intra-plate tectonic settings for both rock types have been interpreted on the basis of low Zr/Nb ratios (evolution of dolerites, which also show depletion in rare earth elements (REEs) and other incompatible elements compared to the amphibolites. The equilibrium partial melting models from primitive mantle using Dy/Yb, La/Yb, Sm/Yb and La/Sm ratios show that amphibolite formed by smaller degrees (< 5%) of partial melting than the dolerites (< 10%). The trace elements ratios suggest the origination of dolerites from the subcontinental lithospheric mantle with some crustal contamination. This is consistent with a petrogenetic relationship with Panjal trap magmatism, reported from Kashmir and other parts of north western India. The amphibolites, in contrast, show affinity towards Ocean Island basalts (OIB) with a relatively deep asthenospheric mantle source and minimal crustal contribution and are geochemically similar to the High-Ti mafic dykes of southern Qiangtang, Tibet. These similarities combined with Permian tectonic restoration of Gondwana indicate the coeval origin for both dykes from distinct mantle source during continental rifting related to formation of the Neotethys Ocean.

  7. Tectonic Geomorphology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bull, William B.

    1984-01-01

    Summarizes representative quantitative tectonic-geomorphology studies made during the last century, focusing on fault-bounded mountain-front escarpments, marine terraces, and alluvial geomorphic surfaces (considering stream terraces, piedmont fault scarps, and soils chronosequences). Also suggests where tectonic-geomorphology courses may best fit…

  8. Textile Tectonics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mossé, Aurélie

    2008-01-01

    of the discipline. Inspiring time gathering some of the most exciting architects of the moment, Lars Spuybroeck, Mark Burry, Evan Douglis, Michael Hensel and Cecil Balmond were invited to discuss their understanding of tectonics. Full text available at http://textilefutures.co.uk/exchange/bin/view/TextileFutures/TextileTectonics...

  9. Teaching Tectonics to Undergraduates with Web GIS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anastasio, D. J.; Bodzin, A.; Sahagian, D. L.; Rutzmoser, S.

    2013-12-01

    Geospatial reasoning skills provide a means for manipulating, interpreting, and explaining structured information and are involved in higher-order cognitive processes that include problem solving and decision-making. Appropriately designed tools, technologies, and curriculum can support spatial learning. We present Web-based visualization and analysis tools developed with Javascript APIs to enhance tectonic curricula while promoting geospatial thinking and scientific inquiry. The Web GIS interface integrates graphics, multimedia, and animations that allow users to explore and discover geospatial patterns that are not easily recognized. Features include a swipe tool that enables users to see underneath layers, query tools useful in exploration of earthquake and volcano data sets, a subduction and elevation profile tool which facilitates visualization between map and cross-sectional views, drafting tools, a location function, and interactive image dragging functionality on the Web GIS. The Web GIS platform is independent and can be implemented on tablets or computers. The GIS tool set enables learners to view, manipulate, and analyze rich data sets from local to global scales, including such data as geology, population, heat flow, land cover, seismic hazards, fault zones, continental boundaries, and elevation using two- and three- dimensional visualization and analytical software. Coverages which allow users to explore plate boundaries and global heat flow processes aided learning in a Lehigh University Earth and environmental science Structural Geology and Tectonics class and are freely available on the Web.

  10. New Perspectives on Active Tectonics: Observing Fault Motion, Mapping Earthquake Strain Fields, and Visualizing Seismic Events in Multiple Dimensions Using Satellite Imagery and Geophysical Data Base

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crippen, R.; Blom, R.

    1994-01-01

    By rapidly alternating displays of SPOT satellite images acquired on 27 July 1991 and 25 July 1992 we are able to see spatial details of terrain movements along fault breaks associated with the 28 June 1992 Landers, California earthquake that are virtually undetectable by any other means.

  11. Note on: "Inevitability of Plate Tectonics on Super-Earths" by Valencia, O Connell and Sasselov, arXiv preprint 0710.0699

    OpenAIRE

    Omerbashich, Mensur

    2008-01-01

    Valencia et al. recently claimed that the mass of a Super-Earth (SE) is a sole factor in determining whether a SE is tectonically active or not. However, mass resolving astrometry is unable to discern between a SE and its moons if any. The fact that no exomoons have been discovered yet is rather a matter of instrumentation imperfection at the present, not of physical absence of exomoons. This, with recently discovered relationships between geometric and physical properties in astronomical bod...

  12. Succession of earthquakes in the Ebro Delta. A sequence to research pupils’ ideas and the prac tice of using evidence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Blanca Puig Mauriz

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available A “socially live” issue related to Geology is dealt with: the controversy surrounding the succession of earthquakes in the Ebro Delta (Spain. This article examines both students’ ideas about earthquakes and the practice of using evidence in the context of choosing a causal explanation of Delta’s earthquakes. The study is part of the researches on reasoning about socioscientific issues in Geology. Three groups are involved: one belonging to CSE 4th grade (students aged from 16 to 17 and two to baccalaureate 1st grade (aged from 17 to 18. The results indicate that most of students understand an earthquake as a common phenomenon, and relate it exclusively to the tectonics plates. Regarding the controversy of Ebro Delta most choose as the cause of earthquakes the combination of natural causes and human activity, and focus on building an explanation, rather than justify their choice based on evidence.

  13. Tectonic and metamorphic discontinuities in the Greater Himalayan Sequence in Central Himalaya: in-sequence shearing by accretion from the Indian plate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carosi, Rodolfo

    2016-04-01

    The Greater Himalayan Sequence (GHS) is the main metamorphic unit of the Himalayas, stretching for over 2400 km, bounded to the South by the Main Central Thrust (MCT) and to the North by the South Tibetan Detachment (STD) whose contemporanous activity controlled its exhumation between 23 and 17 Ma (Godin et al., 2006). Several shear zones and/or faults have been recognized within the GHS, usually regarded as out of sequence thrusts. Recent investigations, using a multitechnique approach, allowed to recognize a tectonic and metamorphic discontinuity, localized in the mid GHS, with a top-to-the SW sense of shear (Higher Himalayan Discontinuity: HHD) (Carosi et al., 2010; Montomoli et al., 2013). U-(Th)-Pb in situ monazite ages provide temporal constraint of the acitivity of the HHD from ~ 27-25 Ma to 18-17 Ma. Data on the P and T evolution testify that this shear zone affected the tectono-metamorphic evolution of the belt and different P and T conditions have been recorded in the hanging-wall and footwall of the HHD. The HHD is a regional tectonic feature running for more than 700 km, dividing the GHS in two different portions (Iaccarino et al., 2015; Montomoli et al., 2015). The occurrence of even more structurally higher contractional shear zone in the GHS (above the HHD): the Kalopani shear zone (Kali Gandaki valley, Central Nepal), active from ~ 41 to 30 Ma (U-Th-Pb on monazite) points out to a more complex deformation pattern in the GHS characterized by in sequence shearing. The actual proposed models of exhumation of the GHS, based exclusively on the MCT and STD activities, are not able to explain the occurrence of the HHD and other in-sequence shear zones. Any model of the tectonic and metamorphic evolution of the GHS should account for the occurrence of the tectonic and metamorphic discontinuities within the GHS and its consequences on the metamorphic paths and on the assembly of Himalayan belt. References Godin L., Grujic D., Law, R. D. & Searle, M. P. 2006

  14. Seismotectonic features of the African plate: the possible dislocation of a continent

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meghraoui, Mustapha

    2014-05-01

    , the Libyan rifting and Maghreb thrusting. Although bearing a relatively slow deformation with regards to the East Africa Rift System, the Nubia plate previously considered as a homogeneous tectonic block appears to be dislocating progressively also forming a system of microplates. A synthesis of earthquake studies and regional deformation exposed in a seismotectonic map hitherto serves as a basis for the seismic hazard evaluations and the reduction of seismic risks. * IGCP/SIDA: International Geoscience Program/Swedish International Cooperation Authority http://www.unesco.org/science/IGCP IGCP-601 Working Group: Paulina Amponsah (Ghana Atomic Energy Commission), Atalay Ayele (Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia), Bekoa Ateba (Inst. of Geol. and Min. Res., Buea, Cameroon), Abdelhakim Ayadi (CRAAG, Algeria), Abdunnur Bensuleman (University of Tripoli, Libya), Damien Delvaux (Royal Museum for Central Africa, Tervuren, Belgium), Mohamed El Gabry (National Research Institute of Geophysics, Cairo, Egypt), Rui-Manuel Fernandes (Universidade da Beira Interior, Portugal), Mustapha Meghraoui (IPG Strasbourg, France), Vunganai Midzi & Magda Roos (Council for Geoscience, Pretoria, South Africa), and Youssef Timoulali (CNRST, Rabat, Morocco).

  15. Linking fault permeability, fluid flow, and earthquake triggering in a hydrothermally active tectonic setting: Numerical Simulations of the hydrodynamics in the Tjörnes Fracture Zone, Iceland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lupi, M.; Geiger, S.; Graham, C.; Claesson, L.; Richter, B.

    2007-12-01

    A good insight into the transient fluid flow evolution within a hydrothermal system is of primary importance for the understanding of several geologic processes, for example the hydrodynamic triggering of earthquakes or the formation of mineral deposits. The strong permeability contrast between different crustal layers as well as the high geothermal gradient of these areas are elements that strongly affect the flow behaviour. In addition, the sudden and transient occurrence of joints, faults and magmatic intrusions are likely to change the hydrothermal flow paths in very short time. The Tjörnes Fracture Zone (TFZ) north of Iceland, is such a hydrothermal area where a high geothermal gradient, magmatic bodies, faults, and the strong contrast between sediments and fractured lava layers govern the large-scale fluid flow. The TFZ offsets the Kolbeinsey Ridge and the Northern Rift Zone. It is characterized by km-scale faults that link sub-seafloor sediments and lava layers with deeper crystalline rocks. These structures focus fluid flow and allow for the mixing between cold seawater and deep hydrothermal fluids. A strong seismic activity is present in the TFZ: earthquakes up to magnitude 7 have been recorded over the past years. Hydrogeochemical changes before, during and after a magnitude 5.8 earthquake suggest that the evolving stress state before the earthquake leads to (remote) permeability variations, which alter the fluid flow paths. This is in agreement with recent numerical fluid flow simulations which demonstrate that fluid flow in magmatic- hydrothermal systems is often convective and very sensitive to small variations in permeability. In order to understand the transient fluid flow behaviour in this complex geological environment, we have conducted numerical simulations of heat and mass transport in two geologically realistic cross-sectional models of the TFZ. The geologic models are discretised using finite element and finite volume methods. They hence have

  16. Digital Tectonics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christiansen, Karl; Borup, Ruben; Søndergaard, Asbjørn

    2014-01-01

    Digital Tectonics treats the architectonical possibilities in digital generation of form and production. The publication is the first volume of a series, in which aspects of the strategic focus areas of the Aarhus School of Architecture will be disseminated.......Digital Tectonics treats the architectonical possibilities in digital generation of form and production. The publication is the first volume of a series, in which aspects of the strategic focus areas of the Aarhus School of Architecture will be disseminated....

  17. Crustal deformation and volcanism at active plate boundaries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geirsson, Halldor

    Most of Earth's volcanoes are located near active tectonic plate boundaries, where the tectonic plates move relative to each other resulting in deformation. Likewise, subsurface magma movement and pressure changes in magmatic systems can cause measurable deformation of the Earth's surface. The study of the shape of Earth and therefore studies of surface deformation is called geodesy. Modern geodetic techniques allow precise measurements (˜1 mm accuracy) of deformation of tectonic and magmatic systems. Because of the spatial correlation between tectonic boundaries and volcanism, the tectonic and volcanic deformation signals can become intertwined. Thus it is often important to study both tectonic and volcanic deformation processes simultaneously, when one is trying to study one of the systems individually. In this thesis, I present research on crustal deformation and magmatic processes at active plate boundaries. The study areas cover divergent and transform plate boundaries in south Iceland and convergent and transform plate boundaries in Central America, specifically Nicaragua and El Salvador. The study is composed of four main chapters: two of the chapters focus on the magma plumbing system of Hekla volcano, Iceland and the plate boundary in south Iceland; one chapter focuses on shallow controls of explosive volcanism at Telica volcano, Nicaragua; and the fourth chapter focuses on co- and post-seismic deformation from a Mw = 7.3 earthquake which occurred offshore El Salvador in 2012. Hekla volcano is located at the intersection of a transform zone and a rift zone in Iceland and thus is affected by a combination of shear and extensional strains, in addition to co-seismic and co-rifting deformation. The inter-eruptive deformation signal from Hekla is subtle, as observed by a decade (2000-2010) of GPS data in south Iceland. A simultaneous inversion of this data for parameters describing the geometry and source characteristics of the magma chamber at Hekla, and

  18. Strike-slip tectonics during rift linkage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pagli, C.; Yun, S. H.; Ebinger, C.; Keir, D.; Wang, H.

    2017-12-01

    The kinematics of triple junction linkage and the initiation of transforms in magmatic rifts remain debated. Strain patterns from the Afar triple junction provide tests of current models of how rifts grow to link in area of incipient oceanic spreading. Here we present a combined analysis of seismicity, InSAR and GPS derived strain rate maps to reveal that the plate boundary deformation in Afar is accommodated primarily by extensional tectonics in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden rifts, and does not require large rotations about vertical axes (bookshelf faulting). Additionally, models of stress changes and seismicity induced by recent dykes in one sector of the Afar triple junction provide poor fit to the observed strike-slip earthquakes. Instead we explain these patterns as rift-perpendicular shearing at the tips of spreading rifts where extensional strains terminate against less stretched lithosphere. Our results demonstrate that rift-perpendicular strike-slip faulting between rift segments achieves plate boundary linkage during incipient seafloor spreading.

  19. Glacier ice mass fluctuations and fault instability in tectonically active Southern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauber, Jeanne M.; Molnia, Bruce F.

    2004-07-01

    Across the plate boundary zone in south central Alaska, tectonic strain rates are high in a region that includes large glaciers undergoing wastage (glacier retreat and thinning) and surges. For the coastal region between the Bering and Malaspina Glaciers, the average ice mass thickness changes between 1995 and 2000 range from 1 to 5 m/year. These ice changes caused solid Earth displacements in our study region with predicted values of -10 to 50 mm in the vertical and predicted horizontal displacements of 0-10 mm at variable orientations. Relative to stable North America, observed horizontal rates of tectonic deformation range from 10 to 40 mm/year to the north-northwest and the predicted tectonic uplift rates range from approximately 0 mm/year near the Gulf of Alaska coast to 12 mm/year further inland. The ice mass changes between 1995 and 2000 resulted in discernible changes in the Global Positioning System (GPS) measured station positions of one site (ISLE) located adjacent to the Bagley Ice Valley and at one site, DON, located south of the Bering Glacier terminus. In addition to modifying the surface displacements rates, we evaluated the influence ice changes during the Bering glacier surge cycle had on the background seismic rate. We found an increase in the number of earthquakes ( ML≥2.5) and seismic rate associated with ice thinning and a decrease in the number of earthquakes and seismic rate associated with ice thickening. These results support the hypothesis that ice mass changes can modulate the background seismic rate. During the last century, wastage of the coastal glaciers in the Icy Bay and Malaspina region indicates thinning of hundreds of meters and in areas of major retreat, maximum losses of ice thickness approaching 1 km. Between the 1899 Yakataga and Yakutat earthquakes ( Mw=8.1, 8.1) and prior to the 1979 St. Elias earthquake ( Ms=7.2), the plate interface below Icy Bay was locked and tectonic strain accumulated. We used estimated ice mass

  20. Quantitative prediction of strong motion for a potential earthquake fault

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shamita Das

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes a new method for calculating strong motion records for a given seismic region on the basis of the laws of physics using information on the tectonics and physical properties of the earthquake fault. Our method is based on a earthquake model, called a «barrier model», which is characterized by five source parameters: fault length, width, maximum slip, rupture velocity, and barrier interval. The first three parameters may be constrained from plate tectonics, and the fourth parameter is roughly a constant. The most important parameter controlling the earthquake strong motion is the last parameter, «barrier interval». There are three methods to estimate the barrier interval for a given seismic region: 1 surface measurement of slip across fault breaks, 2 model fitting with observed near and far-field seismograms, and 3 scaling law data for small earthquakes in the region. The barrier intervals were estimated for a dozen earthquakes and four seismic regions by the above three methods. Our preliminary results for California suggest that the barrier interval may be determined if the maximum slip is given. The relation between the barrier interval and maximum slip varies from one seismic region to another. For example, the interval appears to be unusually long for Kilauea, Hawaii, which may explain why only scattered evidence of strong ground shaking was observed in the epicentral area of the Island of Hawaii earthquake of November 29, 1975. The stress drop associated with an individual fault segment estimated from the barrier interval and maximum slip lies between 100 and 1000 bars. These values are about one order of magnitude greater than those estimated earlier by the use of crack models without barriers. Thus, the barrier model can resolve, at least partially, the well known discrepancy between the stress-drops measured in the laboratory and those estimated for earthquakes.

  1. GIS learning tool for world's largest earthquakes and their causes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chatterjee, Moumita

    The objective of this thesis is to increase awareness about earthquakes among people, especially young students by showing the five largest and two most predictable earthquake locations in the world and their plate tectonic settings. This is a geographic based interactive tool which could be used for learning about the cause of great earthquakes in the past and the safest places on the earth in order to avoid direct effect of earthquakes. This approach provides an effective way of learning for the students as it is very user friendly and more aligned to the interests of the younger generation. In this tool the user can click on the various points located on the world map which will open a picture and link to the webpage for that point, showing detailed information of the earthquake history of that place including magnitude of quake, year of past quakes and the plate tectonic settings that made this place earthquake prone. Apart from knowing the earthquake related information students will also be able to customize the tool to suit their needs or interests. Students will be able to add/remove layers, measure distance between any two points on the map, select any place on the map and know more information for that place, create a layer from this set to do a detail analysis, run a query, change display settings, etc. At the end of this tool the user has to go through the earthquake safely guidelines in order to be safe during an earthquake. This tool uses Java as programming language and uses Map Objects Java Edition (MOJO) provided by ESRI. This tool is developed for educational purpose and hence its interface has been kept simple and easy to use so that students can gain maximum knowledge through it instead of having a hard time to install it. There are lots of details to explore which can help more about what a GIS based tool is capable of. Only thing needed to run this tool is latest JAVA edition installed in their machine. This approach makes study more fun and

  2. Why and Where do Large Shallow Slab Earthquakes Occur?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seno, T.; Yoshida, M.

    2001-12-01

    Within a shallow portion (20-60 km depth) of subducting slabs, it has been believed that large earthquakes seldom occur because the differential stress is generally expected to be low between bending at the trench-outer rise and unbending at the intermediate-depth. However, there are several regions in which large ( M>=7.0 ) earthquakes, including three events early in this year, have occurred in this portion. Searching such events from published individual studies and Harvard University centroid moment tensor catalogue, we find nineteen events in eastern Hokkaido, Kyushu-SW Japan, Mariana, Manila, Sumatra, Vanuatu, Chile, Peru, El Salvador, Mexico, and Cascadia. Slab stresses revealed from the mechanism solutions of those large events and smaller events are tensional in a slab dip direction. However, ages of the subducting oceanic plates are generally young, which denies a possibility that the slab pull works as a cause. Except for Manila and Sumatra, the stresses in the overriding plates are characterized by the change in {σ }Hmax direction from arc-parallel in the back-arc to arc-perpendicular in the fore-arc, which implies that a horizontal stress gradient exists in the across-arc direction. Peru and Chile, where the back-arc is compressional, can be categorized into this type, because a horizontal stress gradient exists over the continent from tension in east to compression in the west. In these regions, it is expected that mantle drag forces are operating beneath the upper plates, which drive the upper plates to the trenchward overriding the subducting oceanic plates. Assuming that the mantle drag forces beneath the upper plates originate from the mantle convection currents or upwelling plumes, we infer that the upper plates driven by the convection suck the oceanic plates, making the shallow portion of the slabs in extra-tension, thus resulting in the large shallow slab earthquakes in this tectonic regime.

  3. Preseismic anomalies in soil-gas radon associated with 2016 M 6.6 Meinong earthquake, Southern Taiwan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ching-Chou Fu

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Taiwan is tectonically situated in a terrain resulting from the oblique collision between the Philippine Sea plate and the continental margin of the Asiatic plate, with a continuous stress causing the density of strong-moderate earthquakes and regional active faults. The continuous time series of soil radon for earthquake studies have been recorded and some significant variations associated with strong earthquakes have been observed. Earthquake prediction is not still operative but these correlations should be added to the literature about seismo-geochemical transients associated to strong earthquakes. Rain-pore pressure related variations, crustal weakness at the studied faults system is consistent with the simultaneous radon anomalies observed. During the observations, a significant increase of soil radon concentrations was observed at Chunglun-T1 (CL-T1, Hsinhua (HH, Pingtung (PT, and Chihshan (CS stations approximately two weeks before the Meinong earthquake (ML = 6.6, 6 February 2016 in Southern Taiwan. The precursory changes in a multi-stations array may reflect the preparation stage of a large earthquake. Precursory signals are observed simultaneously and it can apply certain algorithms the approximate location and magnitude of the impending earthquake.

  4. Peculiarity of the Relationship between the Seismicity and Tectonic Structure of the Pyrenees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukk, A. A.; Shevchenko, V. I.

    2018-05-01

    The geotectonic position of the Pyrenees mountain massif in the Alpine-Indonesian mobile belt is considered. The geological data testify to the formation of the structure of the Pyrenees in the setting of a subhorizontal compression perpendicular to the ridge. The commonly accepted interpretation considers this compression in the context of plate tectonic notions related to the collision between the Iberian and Eurasian lithospheric plates resulting from the convergence of the Eurasian and African plates. However, this interpretation is challenged by the the geodetic and seismological measurements. The GPS measurements suggest a certain cross-strike spreading rather than shortening of the Earth's crust; the focal mechanisms of the earthquakes indicate the predominance of a subhorizontal extension perpendicular to the strike of the Pyrenees mountain range. The processes of the gravitational collapse of the mountain chain during the isostatic upwelling of the orogenic crust are considered as the most probable cause of this spreading by a number of the authors.

  5. Education for Earthquake Disaster Prevention in the Tokyo Metropolitan Area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oki, S.; Tsuji, H.; Koketsu, K.; Yazaki, Y.

    2008-12-01

    Japan frequently suffers from all types of disasters such as earthquakes, typhoons, floods, volcanic eruptions, and landslides. In the first half of this year, we already had three big earthquakes and heavy rainfall, which killed more than 30 people. This is not just for Japan but Asia is the most disaster-afflicted region in the world, accounting for about 90% of all those affected by disasters, and more than 50% of the total fatalities and economic losses. One of the most essential ways to reduce the damage of natural disasters is to educate the general public to let them understand what is going on during those desasters. This leads individual to make the sound decision on what to do to prevent or reduce the damage. The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), therefore, offered for public subscription to choose several model areas to adopt scientific education to the local elementary schools, and ERI, the Earthquake Research Institute, is qualified to develop education for earthquake disaster prevention in the Tokyo metropolitan area. The tectonic setting of this area is very complicated; there are the Pacific and Philippine Sea plates subducting beneath the North America and the Eurasia plates. The subduction of the Philippine Sea plate causes mega-thrust earthquakes such as the 1703 Genroku earthquake (M 8.0) and the 1923 Kanto earthquake (M 7.9) which had 105,000 fatalities. A magnitude 7 or greater earthquake beneath this area is recently evaluated to occur with a probability of 70 % in 30 years. This is of immediate concern for the devastating loss of life and property because the Tokyo urban region now has a population of 42 million and is the center of approximately 40 % of the nation's activities, which may cause great global economic repercussion. To better understand earthquakes in this region, "Special Project for Earthquake Disaster Mitigation in Tokyo Metropolitan Area" has been conducted mainly by ERI. It is a 4-year

  6. GIS Based System for Post-Earthquake Crisis Managment Using Cellular Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raeesi, M.; Sadeghi-Niaraki, A.

    2013-09-01

    Earthquakes are among the most destructive natural disasters. Earthquakes happen mainly near the edges of tectonic plates, but they may happen just about anywhere. Earthquakes cannot be predicted. Quick response after disasters, like earthquake, decreases loss of life and costs. Massive earthquakes often cause structures to collapse, trapping victims under dense rubble for long periods of time. After the earthquake and destroyed some areas, several teams are sent to find the location of the destroyed areas. The search and rescue phase usually is maintained for many days. Time reduction for surviving people is very important. A Geographical Information System (GIS) can be used for decreasing response time and management in critical situations. Position estimation in short period of time time is important. This paper proposes a GIS based system for post-earthquake disaster management solution. This system relies on several mobile positioning methods such as cell-ID and TA method, signal strength method, angel of arrival method, time of arrival method and time difference of arrival method. For quick positioning, the system can be helped by any person who has a mobile device. After positioning and specifying the critical points, the points are sent to a central site for managing the procedure of quick response for helping. This solution establishes a quick way to manage the post-earthquake crisis.

  7. GIS BASED SYSTEM FOR POST-EARTHQUAKE CRISIS MANAGMENT USING CELLULAR NETWORK

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Raeesi

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Earthquakes are among the most destructive natural disasters. Earthquakes happen mainly near the edges of tectonic plates, but they may happen just about anywhere. Earthquakes cannot be predicted. Quick response after disasters, like earthquake, decreases loss of life and costs. Massive earthquakes often cause structures to collapse, trapping victims under dense rubble for long periods of time. After the earthquake and destroyed some areas, several teams are sent to find the location of the destroyed areas. The search and rescue phase usually is maintained for many days. Time reduction for surviving people is very important. A Geographical Information System (GIS can be used for decreasing response time and management in critical situations. Position estimation in short period of time time is important. This paper proposes a GIS based system for post–earthquake disaster management solution. This system relies on several mobile positioning methods such as cell-ID and TA method, signal strength method, angel of arrival method, time of arrival method and time difference of arrival method. For quick positioning, the system can be helped by any person who has a mobile device. After positioning and specifying the critical points, the points are sent to a central site for managing the procedure of quick response for helping. This solution establishes a quick way to manage the post–earthquake crisis.

  8. The GIS and analysis of earthquake damage distribution of the 1303 Hongtong M=8 earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Meng-Tan; Jin, Xue-Shen; An, Wei-Ping; Lü, Xiao-Jian

    2004-07-01

    The geography information system of the 1303 Hongton M=8 earthquake has been established. Using the spatial analysis function of GIS, the spatial distribution characteristics of damage and isoseismal of the earthquake are studies. By comparing with the standard earthquake intensity attenuation relationship, the abnormal damage distribution of the earthquake is found, so the relationship of the abnormal distribution with tectonics, site condition and basin are analyzed. In this paper, the influence on the ground motion generated by earthquake source and the underground structures near source also are studied. The influence on seismic zonation, anti-earthquake design, earthquake prediction and earthquake emergency responding produced by the abnormal density distribution are discussed.

  9. Everyday Tectonics?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Beim, Anne; Hvejsel, Marie Frier

    2016-01-01

    Frascari and Kenneth Frampton (Harris & Berke 1997, Read 2000, Frascari 1984, Frampton 1995kilder). Whereas the focus upon everyday architecture seems to have lost its momentum too quickly, tectonic theory in architecture has been steadily growing as a field of research in architecture, especially related...

  10. The Occurrence of the Recent Deadly Mexico Earthquakes was not that Unexpected

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flores-Marquez, L.; Sarlis, N. V.; Skordas, E. S.; Varotsos, P.; Ramírez-Rojas, A.

    2017-12-01

    Most big Mexican earthquakes occur right along the interface between the colliding Cocos and North American plates, but the two recent deadly Mexico earthquakes, i.e., the magnitude 8.2 earthquake that struck the Mexico's Chiapas state on 7 September 2017 and the magnitude 7.1 earthquake that struck central Mexico, almost 12 days later, killing more than 400 people and reducing buildings to rubble in several States happened at two different spots in the flat-slab in the middle of the Cocos tectonic plate which is considered a geologically surprising area [1]. Here, upon considering a new type of analysis termed natural time, we show that their occurrence should not in principle puzzle scientists. Earthquakes may be considered as critical phenomena, see Ref. [2] and references therein and natural time analysis [3] uncovers an order parameter for seismicity. It has been shown [2] that the fluctuations of this order parameter exhibit a universal behavior with a probability density function (pdf), which is non-Gaussian having a left exponential tail [3]. Natural time analysis of seismicity in various tectonic regions of the Mexican Pacific Coast has been made in Ref.[4]. The study of the order parameter pdf for the Chiapas area as well as for the Guerrero area shows that the occurrence of large earthquakes in these two areas was not unexpected. References A. Witze, Deadly Mexico quakes not linked, Nature 549, 442 (2017). Varotsos PA, Sarlis NV, Skordas ES, Natural Time Analysis: The new view of time. Precursory Seismic Electric Signals, Earthquakes and other Complex Time-Series (Springer-Verlag, Berlin Heidelberg 2011) P. Varotsos et al., Similarity of fluctuations in correlated systems: the case of seismicity. Phys. Rev. E 72, 041103 (2005) A. Ramírez-Rojas and E.L. Flores-Márquez, Order parameter analysis of seismicity of the Mexican Pacific coast. Physica A, 392 2507 (2013)

  11. Complex rupture during the 12 January 2010 Haiti earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, G.P.; Briggs, R.W.; Sladen, A.; Fielding, E.J.; Prentice, C.; Hudnut, K.; Mann, P.; Taylor, F.W.; Crone, A.J.; Gold, R.; Ito, T.; Simons, M.

    2010-01-01

    Initially, the devastating Mw 7.0, 12 January 2010 Haiti earthquake seemed to involve straightforward accommodation of oblique relative motion between the Caribbean and North American plates along the Enriquillog-Plantain Garden fault zone. Here, we combine seismological observations, geologic field data and space geodetic measurements to show that, instead, the rupture process may have involved slip on multiple faults. Primary surface deformation was driven by rupture on blind thrust faults with only minor, deep, lateral slip along or near the main Enriquillog-Plantain Garden fault zone; thus the event only partially relieved centuries of accumulated left-lateral strain on a small part of the plate-boundary system. Together with the predominance of shallow off-fault thrusting, the lack of surface deformation implies that remaining shallow shear strain will be released in future surface-rupturing earthquakes on the Enriquillog-Plantain Garden fault zone, as occurred in inferred Holocene and probable historic events. We suggest that the geological signature of this earthquakeg-broad warping and coastal deformation rather than surface rupture along the main fault zoneg-will not be easily recognized by standard palaeoseismic studies. We conclude that similarly complex earthquakes in tectonic environments that accommodate both translation and convergenceg-such as the San Andreas fault through the Transverse Ranges of Californiag-may be missing from the prehistoric earthquake record. ?? 2010 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

  12. How to build and teach with QuakeCaster: an earthquake demonstration and exploration tool

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linton, Kelsey; Stein, Ross S.

    2015-01-01

    QuakeCaster is an interactive, hands-on teaching model that simulates earthquakes and their interactions along a plate-boundary fault. QuakeCaster contains the minimum number of physical processes needed to demonstrate most observable earthquake features. A winch to steadily reel in a line simulates the steady plate tectonic motions far from the plate boundaries. A granite slider in frictional contact with a nonskid rock-like surface simulates a fault at a plate boundary. A rubber band connecting the line to the slider simulates the elastic character of the Earth’s crust. By stacking and unstacking sliders and cranking in the winch, one can see the results of changing the shear stress and the clamping stress on a fault. By placing sliders in series with rubber bands between them, one can simulate the interaction of earthquakes along a fault, such as cascading or toggling shocks. By inserting a load scale into the line, one can measure the stress acting on the fault throughout the earthquake cycle. As observed for real earthquakes, QuakeCaster events are not periodic, time-predictable, or slip-predictable. QuakeCaster produces rare but unreliable “foreshocks.” When fault gouge builds up, the friction goes to zero and fault creep is seen without large quakes. QuakeCaster events produce very small amounts of fault gouge that strongly alter its behavior, resulting in smaller, more frequent shocks as the gouge accumulates. QuakeCaster is designed so that students or audience members can operate it and record its output. With a stopwatch and ruler one can measure and plot the timing, slip distance, and force results of simulated earthquakes. People of all ages can use the QuakeCaster model to explore hypotheses about earthquake occurrence. QuakeCaster takes several days and about $500.00 in materials to build.

  13. Fault tectonics and earthquake hazards in parts of southern California. [penninsular ranges, Garlock fault, Salton Trough area, and western Mojave Desert

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merifield, P. M. (Principal Investigator); Lamar, D. L.; Gazley, C., Jr.; Lamar, J. V.; Stratton, R. H.

    1976-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. Four previously unknown faults were discovered in basement terrane of the Peninsular Ranges. These have been named the San Ysidro Creek fault, Thing Valley fault, Canyon City fault, and Warren Canyon fault. In addition fault gouge and breccia were recognized along the San Diego River fault. Study of features on Skylab imagery and review of geologic and seismic data suggest that the risk of a damaging earthquake is greater along the northwestern portion of the Elsinore fault than along the southeastern portion. Physiographic indicators of active faulting along the Garlock fault identifiable in Skylab imagery include scarps, linear ridges, shutter ridges, faceted ridges, linear valleys, undrained depressions and offset drainage. The following previously unrecognized fault segments are postulated for the Salton Trough Area: (1) An extension of a previously known fault in the San Andreas fault set located southeast of the Salton Sea; (2) An extension of the active San Jacinto fault zone along a tonal change in cultivated fields across Mexicali Valley ( the tonal change may represent different soil conditions along opposite sides of a fault). For the Skylab and LANDSAT images studied, pseudocolor transformations offer no advantages over the original images in the recognition of faults in Skylab and LANDSAT images. Alluvial deposits of different ages, a marble unit and iron oxide gossans of the Mojave Mining District are more readily differentiated on images prepared from ratios of individual bands of the S-192 multispectral scanner data. The San Andreas fault was also made more distinct in the 8/2 and 9/2 band ratios by enhancement of vegetation differences on opposite sides of the fault. Preliminary analysis indicates a significant earth resources potential for the discrimination of soil and rock types, including mineral alteration zones. This application should be actively pursued.

  14. Formwork tectonics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Manelius, Anne-Mette

    2012-01-01

    På engelsk: Based on the concept of techné and framed in architectural studies of tectonics and an experimental practice of making, this paper investigates the multiple technological roles of textiles in fabric formwork for concrete in four analytical studies of experimental data of the author......’s doctoral dissertation Fabric Formwork for Concrete – Investigations into Formwork Tectonics and Stereogeneity in Architectural Constructions. In the paper only textile roles are discussed but it is suggested that a study of multiple technological roles of key formwork elements will emphasize...... their potential as ‘common denominators’ between architects, engineers and builders. Findings include textile used for the ‘textilization’ of concrete and the ‘concretization’ of textiles as two opposite starting points in fabric-forming. Recent research into thin-shell construction using fabric formwork is shown...

  15. Is There Really A North American Plate?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krill, A.

    2011-12-01

    Lithospheric plates are typically identified from earthquake epicenters and evidence such as GPS movements. But no evidence indicates a plate boundary between the North American and South American Plates. Some plate maps show them separated by a transform boundary, but it is only a fracture zone. Other maps show an "undefined plate boundary" or put no boundary between these two plates (check Google images). Early plate maps showed a single large American Plate, quite narrow east of the Caribbean Plate (Le Pichon 1968, Morgan 1968). The North and South American Plates became established by the leading textbook Earth (Press & Siever 1974). On their map, from a Scientific American article by John Dewey (1972), these new plates were separated by an "uncertain plate boundary." The reasons for postulating a North American Plate were probably more psychological than geological. Each of the other continents of the world had its own plate, and North American geologists naturally wanted theirs. Similarly, European geographers used to view Europe as its own continent. A single large plate should again be hypothesized. But the term American Plate would now be ambiguous ("Which plate, North or South?") Perhaps future textbook authors could call it the "Two-American Plate." Textbook authors ultimately decide such global-tectonic matters. I became aware of textbook authors' opinions and influence from my research into the history of Alfred Wegener's continental drift (see Fixists vs. Mobilists by Krill 2011). Leading textbook author Charles Schuchert realized that continental drift would abolish his cherished paleogeographic models of large east-west continents (Eria, Gondwana) and small oceans (Poseiden, Nereis). He and his junior coauthors conspired to keep drift evidence out of their textbooks, from the 1934-editions until the 1969-editions (Physical Geology by Longwell et al. 1969, Historical Geology by Dunbar & Waage 1969). Their textbooks ruled in America. Textbooks

  16. A Virtual Tour of the 1868 Hayward Earthquake in Google EarthTM

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lackey, H. G.; Blair, J. L.; Boatwright, J.; Brocher, T.

    2007-12-01

    The 1868 Hayward earthquake has been overshadowed by the subsequent 1906 San Francisco earthquake that destroyed much of San Francisco. Nonetheless, a modern recurrence of the 1868 earthquake would cause widespread damage to the densely populated Bay Area, particularly in the east Bay communities that have grown up virtually on top of the Hayward fault. Our concern is heightened by paleoseismic studies suggesting that the recurrence interval for the past five earthquakes on the southern Hayward fault is 140 to 170 years. Our objective is to build an educational web site that illustrates the cause and effect of the 1868 earthquake drawing on scientific and historic information. We will use Google EarthTM software to visually illustrate complex scientific concepts in a way that is understandable to a non-scientific audience. This web site will lead the viewer from a regional summary of the plate tectonics and faulting system of western North America, to more specific information about the 1868 Hayward earthquake itself. Text and Google EarthTM layers will include modeled shaking of the earthquake, relocations of historic photographs, reconstruction of damaged buildings as 3-D models, and additional scientific data that may come from the many scientific studies conducted for the 140th anniversary of the event. Earthquake engineering concerns will be stressed, including population density, vulnerable infrastructure, and lifelines. We will also present detailed maps of the Hayward fault, measurements of fault creep, and geologic evidence of its recurrence. Understanding the science behind earthquake hazards is an important step in preparing for the next significant earthquake. We hope to communicate to the public and students of all ages, through visualizations, not only the cause and effect of the 1868 earthquake, but also modern seismic hazards of the San Francisco Bay region.

  17. Geomorphological features of active tectonics and ongoing ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    earthquakes (magnitude 1.0–3.0) frequently occur in the region and hypocenters of these earthquakes are ... movement of Indian landmass and its collision with ... within the Eurasian Plate (Avouac and Tapponnier .... Description of ... (a) Terrace deposition in Dharchula (India) and Darchula (Nepal) side; (b) series of three ...

  18. Numerical Simulation of the Borehole Magnetic Field for Resolving the Possible Rotation of Tectonic Basins and Plates during ICDP and IODP Experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, S. M.; Parq, J. H.

    2017-12-01

    An accurate measurement of magnetic field inside the borehole, together with a right set of paleomagnetic measurements on the recovered core samples, should allow one to resolve important elements such as the rotation of the basin or the plate on which the basin is located. The ability to resolve the rotation of the basin can be crucial during drilling experiments by International Continental Scientific Drilling Program (ICDP) and International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP). A good example where the rotation is a central question is the Philippine Sea Plate, which is thought to have rotated about 90° clockwise during the last 55 million years. Despite the significance, previous borehole magnetometers were not accurate enough to achieve such a goal because, among various technical issues, determining the orientation of the sensor inside the borehole to a very high level of accuracy was not easy. The next-generation (third-generation) borehole magnetometer (3GBM) was developed to overcome this difficulty and to bring paleomagnetic investigations to a new level. Even with the new development, however, there are still concerns whether the new instrument can really resolve the rotation because the magnetic field anomalies generated by the sediment is generally very low. In this paper, we present numerical simulations based on finite element method of the magnetic field inside the borehole that were conducted as part of a test to demonstrate that, despite low levels of magnetization, the magnetic fields can be resolved. The results also served as an important input on the design requirements of the borehole magnetometer. Various cases were considered, including the situation where the sedimentary layer is horizontal and inclined. We also explored the cases where volcanic sills were present within the sedimentary layer as they may provide a greater magnetic signature than having sediment alone, and thus improving our chances of determining the rotation. Simulations are

  19. Modeling the poroelastic response to megathrust earthquakes: A look at the 2012 Mw 7.6 Costa Rican event

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCormack, Kimberly A.; Hesse, Marc A.

    2018-04-01

    We model the subsurface hydrologic response to the 7.6 Mw subduction zone earthquake that occurred on the plate interface beneath the Nicoya peninsula in Costa Rica on September 5, 2012. The regional-scale poroelastic model of the overlying plate integrates seismologic, geodetic and hydrologic data sets to predict the post-seismic poroelastic response. A representative two-dimensional model shows that thrust earthquakes with a slip width less than a third of their depth produce complex multi-lobed pressure perturbations in the shallow subsurface. This leads to multiple poroelastic relaxation timescales that may overlap with the longer viscoelastic timescales. In the three-dimensional model, the complex slip distribution of 2012 Nicoya event and its small width to depth ratio lead to a pore pressure distribution comprising multiple trench parallel ridges of high and low pressure. This leads to complex groundwater flow patterns, non-monotonic variations in predicted well water levels, and poroelastic relaxation on multiple time scales. The model also predicts significant tectonically driven submarine groundwater discharge off-shore. In the weeks following the earthquake, the predicted net submarine groundwater discharge in the study area increases, creating a 100 fold increase in net discharge relative to topography-driven flow over the first 30 days. Our model suggests the hydrological response on land is more complex than typically acknowledged in tectonic studies. This may complicate the interpretation of transient post-seismic surface deformations. Combined tectonic-hydrological observation networks have the potential to reduce such ambiguities.

  20. Hardware-software system for simulating and analyzing earthquakes applied to civil structures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. P. Amezquita-Sanchez

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The occurrence of recent strong earthquakes, the incessant worldwide movements of tectonic plates and the continuous ambient vibrations caused by traffic and wind have increased the interest of researchers in improving the capacity of energy dissipation to avoid damages to civil structures. Experimental testing of structural systems is essential for the understanding of physical behaviors and the building of appropriate analytic models in order to expose difficulties that may not have been considered in analytical studies. This paper presents a hardware-software system for exciting, monitoring and analyzing simultaneously a structure under earthquake signals and other types of signals in real-time. Effectiveness of the proposed system has been validated by experimental case studies and has been found to be a useful tool in the analysis of earthquake effects on structures.

  1. The earthquakes of the Baltic shield

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Slunga, R.

    1990-06-01

    More than 200 earthquakes in the Baltic Shield area in the size range ML 0.6-4.5 have been studied by dense regional seismic networks. The analysis includes focal depths, dynamic source parameters, and fault plane solutions. In southern Sweden a long part of the Protogene zone marks a change in the seismic activity. The focal depths indicate three crustal layers: Upper crust (0-18 km in southern Sweden, 0-13 km in northern Sweden), middle crust down to 35 km, and the quiet lower crust. The fault plane solutions show that strike-slip is dominating. Along the Tornquist line significant normal faulting occurs. The stresses released by the earthquakes show a remarkable consistency with a regional principle compression N60W. This indicates that plate-tectonic processes are more important than the land uplift. The spatial distribution is consistent with a model where the earthquakes are breakdowns of asperities on normally stably sliding faults. The aseismic sliding is estimated to be 2000 times more extensive than the seismic sliding. Southern Sweden is estimated to deform horizontally at a rate of 1 mm/year or more. (orig.)

  2. Estimation of Source Parameters of Historical Major Earthquakes from 1900 to 1970 around Asia and Analysis of Their Uncertainties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, J.; Zhou, S.

    2017-12-01

    Asia, located in the conjoined areas of Eurasian, Pacific, and Indo-Australian plates, is the continent with highest seismicity. Earthquake catalogue on the bases of modern seismic network recordings has been established since around 1970 in Asia and the earthquake catalogue before 1970 was much more inaccurate because of few stations. With a history of less than 50 years of modern earthquake catalogue, researches in seismology are quite limited. After the appearance of improved Earth velocity structure model, modified locating method and high-accuracy Optical Character Recognition technique, travel time data of earthquakes from 1900 to 1970 can be included in research and more accurate locations can be determined for historical earthquakes. Hence, parameters of these historical earthquakes can be obtained more precisely and some research method such as ETAS model can be used in a much longer time scale. This work focuses on the following three aspects: (1) Relocating more than 300 historical major earthquakes (M≥7.0) in Asia based on the Shide Circulars, International Seismological Summary and EHB Bulletin instrumental records between 1900 and 1970. (2) Calculating the focal mechanisms of more than 50 events by first motion records of P wave of ISS. (3) Based on the geological data, tectonic stress field and the result of relocation, inferring focal mechanisms of historical major earthquakes.

  3. Preface of special issue on ;tectonics, volcanism and geo-energy in East Asia;

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Sheng-Rong; Chen, Cheng-Hong; Ryu, Byong-Jae; Lin, Saulwood

    2017-11-01

    The East Asia, from north to south, including Russia, China, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Philippines and Indonesia etc., is one of the most active tectonic and natural hazardous regions in the world. The subduction and collision zones, such as the Pacific Plate subducting into the Japan Arc and the Philippine Sea, and the Philippine Sea Plate subducting into the Eurasia Plate, and the collision zones of the Philippine Sea Plate with the Asian continental margin in the Taiwan mountain belt, and the India Plate with the Eurasia Plate in Himalaya mountain belts, distribute widely in this region. It is also the most densely populated areas in the world. More than two billion people (one/third populations of the world) live in East Asia. Most of disastrous natural hazards, such as volcanic eruptions, earthquakes and debris flows induced by floods occur frequently and cause many building collapses and causalities in this area. Geoscientists, therefore, must seriously consider and endeavor for mitigations of the natural hazards and reduction of the properties lose and human death.

  4. The Quanzhou large earthquake: environment impact and deep process

    Science.gov (United States)

    WANG, Y.; Gao*, R.; Ye, Z.; Wang, C.

    2017-12-01

    The Quanzhou earthquake is the largest earthquake in China's southeast coast in history. The ancient city of Quanzhou and its adjacent areas suffered serious damage. Analysis of the impact of Quanzhou earthquake on human activities, ecological environment and social development will provide an example for the research on environment and human interaction.According to historical records, on the night of December 29, 1604, a Ms 8.0 earthquake occurred in the sea area at the east of Quanzhou (25.0°N, 119.5°E) with a focal depth of 25 kilometers. It affected to a maximum distance of 220 kilometers from the epicenter and caused serious damage. Quanzhou, which has been known as one of the world's largest trade ports during Song and Yuan periods was heavily destroyed by this earthquake. The destruction of the ancient city was very serious and widespread. The city wall collapsed in Putian, Nanan, Tongan and other places. The East and West Towers of Kaiyuan Temple, which are famous with magnificent architecture in history, were seriously destroyed.Therefore, an enormous earthquake can exert devastating effects on human activities and social development in the history. It is estimated that a more than Ms. 5.0 earthquake in the economically developed coastal areas in China can directly cause economic losses for more than one hundred million yuan. This devastating large earthquake that severely destroyed the Quanzhou city was triggered under a tectonic-extensional circumstance. In this coastal area of the Fujian Province, the crust gradually thins eastward from inland to coast (less than 29 km thick crust beneath the coast), the lithosphere is also rather thin (60 70 km), and the Poisson's ratio of the crust here appears relatively high. The historical Quanzhou Earthquake was probably correlated with the NE-striking Littoral Fault Zone, which is characterized by right-lateral slip and exhibiting the most active seismicity in the coastal area of Fujian. Meanwhile, tectonic

  5. Active Deformation in the Overriding Plate Associated with Temporal Changes of the Philippine Sea Plate Motion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishiyama, T.; Sato, H.; Van Horne, A.

    2015-12-01

    We present detailed geologic evidence linking changes over time in Philippine Sea plate (PHS) motion and intracontinental deformation in central and southwest (SW) Japan during the Pliocene and after. In the early Pliocene, subduction of the PHS plate under SW Japan restarted in a northerly direction after period of deceleration or cessation. Later, motion changed to a more westerly direction. Corresponding geological changes found in the overriding plate include unconformities in the forearc basins, changes in slip sense on faults, depocenter migration, re-organization of drainage systems and volcanism. Quaternary intraplate deformation is prominent north of the Median Tectonic Line (MTL) inactive segment, above a shallow flat slab. In contrast, less Quaternary tectonic activity is found north of the MTL active segment which lies over a steadily-slipping portion of the subducting slab that behaves as a less-deformed rigid block. Depocenters and active thrusting have migrated north/northwestward over the past 5 My above the shallow flat slab segment of the PHS. We reconstructed the Plio-Pleistocene migration history using Neogene stratigraphy and shallow seismic reflection profiles. We see shallow PHS slab contact with the lower continental crust in our deep seismic reflection profiles, which may explain its enhanced downward drag of the overriding plate and synchronous strong compression in the crust. We find evidence of more westerly PHS plate subduction since the middle Pleistocene in (1) unconformities in the Kumano forearc basin deposits in SW Japan, (2) drastic stream captures in Shikoku, and (3) concordant changes in fault slip sense from thrust to dextral slip along the MTL. Oblique subduction could have induced stronger horizontal stress in the overriding plate above the shallow flat slab which could account for the increasing geologic slip rate observed on active structures. During four repetitions of megathrust earthquake sequences since the 17th century

  6. Earthquake Drill using the Earthquake Early Warning System at an Elementary School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oki, Satoko; Yazaki, Yoshiaki; Koketsu, Kazuki

    2010-05-01

    Japan frequently suffers from many kinds of disasters such as earthquakes, typhoons, floods, volcanic eruptions, and landslides. On average, we lose about 120 people a year due to natural hazards in this decade. Above all, earthquakes are noteworthy, since it may kill thousands of people in a moment like in Kobe in 1995. People know that we may have "a big one" some day as long as we live on this land and that what to do; retrofit houses, appliance heavy furniture to walls, add latches to kitchen cabinets, and prepare emergency packs. Yet most of them do not take the action, and result in the loss of many lives. It is only the victims that learn something from the earthquake, and it has never become the lore of the nations. One of the most essential ways to reduce the damage is to educate the general public to be able to make the sound decision on what to do at the moment when an earthquake hits. This will require the knowledge of the backgrounds of the on-going phenomenon. The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), therefore, offered for public subscription to choose several model areas to adopt scientific education to the local elementary schools. This presentation is the report of a year and half courses that we had at the model elementary school in Tokyo Metropolitan Area. The tectonic setting of this area is very complicated; there are the Pacific and Philippine Sea plates subducting beneath the North America and the Eurasia plates. The subduction of the Philippine Sea plate causes mega-thrust earthquakes such as the 1923 Kanto earthquake (M 7.9) making 105,000 fatalities. A magnitude 7 or greater earthquake beneath this area is recently evaluated to occur with a probability of 70 % in 30 years. This is of immediate concern for the devastating loss of life and property because the Tokyo urban region now has a population of 42 million and is the center of approximately 40 % of the nation's activities, which may cause great global

  7. Tectonic reactivation in the Indian Ocean: Evidences from seamount morphology and manganese nodule characteristics

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Mukhopadhyay, R.; Khadge, N.H.

    The Central Indian Ocean Basin (CIOB) was subjected to tectonic reactivation in geological past which is unusual for a basin occurring on an apparently single tectonic plate. ENE-WSW trending latitude parallel zone of reactivation across the central...

  8. Using Groundwater physiochemical properties for assessing potential earthquake precursor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inbar, Nimrod; Reuveni, Yuval; Anker, Yaakov; Guttman, Joseph

    2017-04-01

    Worldwide studies reports pre-seismic, co-seismic and post-seismic reaction of groundwater to earthquakes. The unique hydrological and geological situation in Israel resulted in relatively deep water wells which are located close to seismically active tectonic plate boundary. Moreover, the Israeli experience show that anomalies may occurs 60-90 minutes prior to the seismic event (Guttman et al., 2005; Anker et al., 2016). Here, we try to assess the possible connection between changes in physiochemical parameters of groundwater and earthquakes along the Dead Sea Transform (DST) region. A designated network of monitoring stations was installed in MEKOROT abandoned deep water wells, continuously measuring water table, conductivity and temperature at a sampling rate of 1 minute. Preliminary analysis compares changes in the measured parameters with rain events, tidal effects and earthquake occurrences of all measured magnitudes (>2.5Md) at monitoring area surroundings. The acquired data set over one year recorded simultaneous abrupt changes in several wells which seems disconnected from standard hydrological occurrences such as precipitation, abstraction or tidal effects. At this stage, our research aims to determine and rationalize a baseline for "normal response" of the measured parameters to external occurrences while isolating those cases in which "deviations" from that base line is recorded. We apply several analysis techniques both in time and frequency domain with the measured signal as well as statistical analysis of several measured earthquake parameters, which indicate potential correlations between earthquakes occurrences and the measured signal. We show that at least in one seismic event (5.1 Md) a potential precursor may have been recorded. Reference: Anker, Y., N. Inbar, A. Y. Dror, Y. Reuveni, J. Guttman, A. Flexer, (2016). Groundwater response to ground movements, as a tool for earthquakes monitoring and a possible precursor. 8th International Conference

  9. Earthquake Energy Distribution along the Earth Surface and Radius

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Varga, P.; Krumm, F.; Riguzzi, F.; Doglioni, C.; Suele, B.; Wang, K.; Panza, G.F.

    2010-07-01

    The global earthquake catalog of seismic events with M W ≥ 7.0, for the time interval from 1950 to 2007, shows that the depth distribution of earthquake energy release is not uniform. The 90% of the total earthquake energy budget is dissipated in the first ∼30km, whereas most of the residual budget is radiated at the lower boundary of the transition zone (410 km - 660 km), above the upper-lower mantle boundary. The upper border of the transition zone at around 410 km of depth is not marked by significant seismic energy release. This points for a non-dominant role of the slabs in the energy budged of plate tectonics. Earthquake number and energy release, although not well correlated, when analysed with respect to the latitude, show a decrease toward the polar areas. Moreover, the radiated energy has the highest peak close to (±5 o ) the so-called tectonic equator defined by Crespi et al. (2007), which is inclined about 30 o with respect to the geographic equator. At the same time the presence of a clear axial co- ordination of the radiated seismic energy is demonstrated with maxima at latitudes close to critical (±45 o ). This speaks about the presence of external forces that influence seismicity and it is consistent with the fact that Gutenberg-Richter law is linear, for events with M>5, only when the whole Earth's seismicity is considered. These data are consistent with an astronomical control on plate tectonics, i.e., the despinning (slowing of the Earth's angular rotation) of the Earth's rotation caused primarily by the tidal friction due to the Moon. The mutual position of the shallow and ∼660 km deep earthquake energy sources along subduction zones allows us to conclude that they are connected with the same slab along the W-directed subduction zones, but they may rather be disconnected along the opposed E-NE-directed slabs, being the deep seismicity controlled by other mechanisms. (author)

  10. Active faults and historical earthquakes in the Messina Straits area (Ionian Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Polonia

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available The Calabrian Arc (CA subduction complex is located at the toe of the Eurasian Plate in the Ionian Sea, where sediments resting on the lower plate have been scraped off and piled up in the accretionary wedge due to the African/Eurasian plate convergence and back arc extension. The CA has been struck repeatedly by destructive historical earthquakes, but knowledge of active faults and source parameters is relatively poor, particularly for seismogenic structures extending offshore. We analysed the fine structure of major tectonic features likely to have been sources of past earthquakes: (i the NNW–SSE trending Malta STEP (Slab Transfer Edge Propagator fault system, representing a lateral tear of the subduction system; (ii the out-of-sequence thrusts (splay faults at the rear of the salt-bearing Messinian accretionary wedge; and (iii the Messina Straits fault system, part of the wide deformation zone separating the western and eastern lobes of the accretionary wedge.

    Our findings have implications for seismic hazard in southern Italy, as we compile an inventory of first order active faults that may have produced past seismic events such as the 1908, 1693 and 1169 earthquakes. These faults are likely to be source regions for future large magnitude events as they are long, deep and bound sectors of the margin characterized by different deformation and coupling rates on the plate interface.

  11. River history and tectonics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vita-Finzi, C

    2012-05-13

    The analysis of crustal deformation by tectonic processes has gained much from the clues offered by drainage geometry and river behaviour, while the interpretation of channel patterns and sequences benefits from information on Earth movements before or during their development. The interplay between the two strands operates at many scales: themes which have already benefited from it include the possible role of mantle plumes in the breakup of Gondwana, the Cenozoic development of drainage systems in Africa and Australia, Himalayan uplift in response to erosion, alternating episodes of uplift and subsidence in the Mississippi delta, buckling of the Indian lithospheric plate, and changes in stream pattern and sinuosity along individual alluvial channels subject to localized deformation. Developments in remote sensing, isotopic dating and numerical modelling are starting to yield quantitative analyses of such effects, to the benefit of geodymamics as well as fluvial hydrology. This journal is © 2012 The Royal Society

  12. Seismogenic Structure Beneath Décollement Inferred from 2009/11/5 ML 6.2 Mingjian Earthquake in Central Taiwan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Che-Min Lin

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available One decade after the 1999 Chi-Chi earthquake, central Taiwan experienced more strong ground shaking [Central Weather Bureau (CWB, intensity VII] induced by a ML 6.2 earthquake on 5th November 2009. This earthquake occurred in the Mingjian Township of Nantou County, only 12 km southwest of the Chi-Chi earthquake epicenter. The broadband microearthquake monitoring network operated by the National Center for Research on Earthquake Engineering (NCREE observed numerous aftershocks in the five days following the mainshock. The relocated aftershocks and the mainshock focal mechanism indicated a NE-SW striking fault dipping 60¢X toward the northwest. This fault plane is inside the pre-Miocene basement and the rupture extends from the lower crust to 10 km depth just beneath the basal décollement of the thin-skinned model that is generally used to explain the regional tectonics in Taiwan. The fault plane is vertically symmetrical with the Chelungpu fault by the basal décollement. The NW-SE compressive stress of plate collision in Taiwan, as well as the deep tectonic background, resulted in the seismogenic structure of the Mingjian earthquake at this location.

  13. 1964 Great Alaska Earthquake: a photographic tour of Anchorage, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thoms, Evan E.; Haeussler, Peter J.; Anderson, Rebecca D.; McGimsey, Robert G.

    2014-01-01

    On March 27, 1964, at 5:36 p.m., a magnitude 9.2 earthquake, the largest recorded earthquake in U.S. history, struck southcentral Alaska (fig. 1). The Great Alaska Earthquake (also known as the Good Friday Earthquake) occurred at a pivotal time in the history of earth science, and helped lead to the acceptance of plate tectonic theory (Cox, 1973; Brocher and others, 2014). All large subduction zone earthquakes are understood through insights learned from the 1964 event, and observations and interpretations of the earthquake have influenced the design of infrastructure and seismic monitoring systems now in place. The earthquake caused extensive damage across the State, and triggered local tsunamis that devastated the Alaskan towns of Whittier, Valdez, and Seward. In Anchorage, the main cause of damage was ground shaking, which lasted approximately 4.5 minutes. Many buildings could not withstand this motion and were damaged or collapsed even though their foundations remained intact. More significantly, ground shaking triggered a number of landslides along coastal and drainage valley bluffs underlain by the Bootlegger Cove Formation, a composite of facies containing variably mixed gravel, sand, silt, and clay which were deposited over much of upper Cook Inlet during the Late Pleistocene (Ulery and others, 1983). Cyclic (or strain) softening of the more sensitive clay facies caused overlying blocks of soil to slide sideways along surfaces dipping by only a few degrees. This guide is the document version of an interactive web map that was created as part of the commemoration events for the 50th anniversary of the 1964 Great Alaska Earthquake. It is accessible at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Alaska Science Center website: http://alaska.usgs.gov/announcements/news/1964Earthquake/. The website features a map display with suggested tour stops in Anchorage, historical photographs taken shortly after the earthquake, repeat photography of selected sites, scanned documents

  14. Cascading elastic perturbation in Japan due to the 2012 Mw 8.6 Indian Ocean earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delorey, Andrew A.; Chao, Kevin; Obara, Kazushige; Johnson, Paul A.

    2015-01-01

    Since the discovery of extensive earthquake triggering occurring in response to the 1992 Mw (moment magnitude) 7.3 Landers earthquake, it is now well established that seismic waves from earthquakes can trigger other earthquakes, tremor, slow slip, and pore pressure changes. Our contention is that earthquake triggering is one manifestation of a more widespread elastic disturbance that reveals information about Earth’s stress state. Earth’s stress state is central to our understanding of both natural and anthropogenic-induced crustal processes. We show that seismic waves from distant earthquakes may perturb stresses and frictional properties on faults and elastic moduli of the crust in cascading fashion. Transient dynamic stresses place crustal material into a metastable state during which the material recovers through a process termed slow dynamics. This observation of widespread, dynamically induced elastic perturbation, including systematic migration of offshore seismicity, strain transients, and velocity transients, presents a new characterization of Earth’s elastic system that will advance our understanding of plate tectonics, seismicity, and seismic hazards. PMID:26601289

  15. Southern Perú coseismic subsidence: 23 June 2001 8.4-Mw earthquake

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Ocola

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The 23-June-2001 8.4-Mw magnitude earthquake partially filled the 1868-seismic-gap in southern Perú. This earthquake produced a thrust faulting dislocation with a rupture that started at about ~200 km SE from the 1996's Nazca earthquake epicenter, and stopped near Ilo, at about 300 km from the epicenter, near a positive gravity anomaly offshore Ilo. The 23-June-2001-earthquake dislocation zone is under the Arequipa sedimentary Basin. Pre- and post-seismic GPS measurements at Camaná and Ilo at SIRGAS-GPS points (SIRGAS: Sistema de Referencia Geocéntrico para América del Sur and the average sea level pre- and post-seismic event at Mollendo tide gauge provide evidence of a regional subsidence of southern Perú, with 84 cm at Camaná, 16 cm at Ilo, and 15 cm at Mollendo. Field surveys post earthquake document significant subsidence in Camaná resort beaches. Results of a simple dislocation modelling of 23-June-2001 earthquake agree reasonably well with the observed data. However, the coseismic subsidence of southern Perú is at variance with the regional uplift of southern Perú based on Neotectonic studies. This fact, suggests that, in recent geological times, the magnitude of the secular uplift due to tectonic plate converge has been larger than the coseismic deformation recovery.

  16. The 2009 Samoa-Tonga great earthquake triggered doublet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lay, T.; Ammon, C.J.; Kanamori, H.; Rivera, L.; Koper, K.D.; Hutko, Alexander R.

    2010-01-01

    Great earthquakes (having seismic magnitudes of at least 8) usually involve abrupt sliding of rock masses at a boundary between tectonic plates. Such interplate ruptures produce dynamic and static stress changes that can activate nearby intraplate aftershocks, as is commonly observed in the trench-slope region seaward of a great subduction zone thrust event1-4. The earthquake sequence addressed here involves a rare instance in which a great trench-slope intraplate earthquake triggered extensive interplate faulting, reversing the typical pattern and broadly expanding the seismic and tsunami hazard. On 29 September 2009, within two minutes of the initiation of a normal faulting event with moment magnitude 8.1 in the outer trench-slope at the northern end of the Tonga subduction zone, two major interplate underthrusting subevents (both with moment magnitude 7.8), with total moment equal to a second great earthquake of moment magnitude 8.0, ruptured the nearby subduction zone megathrust. The collective faulting produced tsunami waves with localized regions of about 12metres run-up that claimed 192 lives in Samoa, American Samoa and Tonga. Overlap of the seismic signals obscured the fact that distinct faults separated by more than 50km had ruptured with different geometries, with the triggered thrust faulting only being revealed by detailed seismic wave analyses. Extensive interplate and intraplate aftershock activity was activated over a large region of the northern Tonga subduction zone. ?? 2010 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

  17. Trench motion-controlled slab morphology and stress variations: Implications for the isolated 2015 Bonin Islands deep earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Ting; Gurnis, Michael; Zhan, Zhongwen

    2017-07-01

    The subducted old and cold Pacific Plate beneath the young Philippine Sea Plate at the Izu-Bonin trench over the Cenozoic hosts regional deep earthquakes. We investigate slab morphology and stress regimes under different trench motion histories with mantle convection models. Viscosity, temperature, and deviatoric stress are inherently heterogeneous within the slab, which we link to the occurrence of isolated earthquakes. Models expand on previous suggestions that observed slab morphology variations along the Izu-Bonin subduction zone, exhibited as shallow slab dip angles in the north and steeper dip angles in the south, are mainly due to variations in the rate of trench retreat from the north (where it is fast) to the south (where it is slow). Geodynamic models consistent with the regional plate tectonics, including oceanic plate age, plate convergence rate, and trench motion history, reproduce the seismologically observed principal stress direction and slab morphology. We suggest that the isolated 680 km deep, 30 May 2015 Mw 7.9 Bonin Islands earthquake, which lies east of the well-defined Benioff zone and has its principal compressional stress direction oriented toward the tip of the previously defined Benioff zone, can be explained by Pacific slab buckling in response to the slow trench retreat.

  18. Plate Tectonics and Europa's Icy Shell

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    defence of his theory with the 1915 publication of The Origin of Continents and Oceans. Wegener .... is one of the most promising places in our solar system to search .... Universe, Paperback Edition, Copernicus Books, pp.191–216, 2003.

  19. The seismicity of Ethiopia; active plate tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohr, P.

    1981-01-01

    "But I tell you, when you look at the way the pieces of the northeastern portion of the African continent seem to fit together, separated by a narrow gulf, you could almost make a believer [in continental drift] of anybody" Astronaut Harrison Schmidt, on the view from Apollo 17.

  20. A Paleoseismic Record of Earthquakes for the Dead Sea Transform Fault between the First and Seventh Centuries C.E.: Nonperiodic Behavior of a Plate Boundary Fault

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Wechsler, N.; Rockwell, T.K.; Klinger, Y.; Štěpančíková, Petra; Kanari, M.; Marco, S.; Agnon, A.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 104, č. 3 (2014), s. 1329-1347 ISSN 0037-1106 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP210/12/0573 Institutional support: RVO:67985891 Keywords : active tectonics * paleoseismology * paleoearthquake * Dead Sea Transform fault * Jordan Gorge fault Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy Impact factor: 2.322, year: 2014

  1. Marginal inherited structures impact on the oblique convergent N American Plate/ Central Caribbean plate-boundary in the Northern Caribbean. The tectonic evolution since Miocene times based on Haiti data acquired onshore and offshore since 2012- a step toward an ADP Drilling Proposal (Haiti-DRILL).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellouz, N.; Hamon, Y.; Deschamps, R.; Battani, A.; Wessels, R.; Boisson, D.; Prepetit, C.; Momplaisir, R.

    2017-12-01

    Since Early Paleogene times, the North Caribbean plate is colliding obliquely with the south continental part of the old N. American Margins, which is represented by various segments from West to East, inherited from Jurassic times. Location, amount of displacement, rotation and the structural deformation of these margin segments, resulting from the dislocation of the continental N American margin, are not clearly yet established. At present, the plate limits are marked either by two left lateral faults west and inside Haiti (OSF in the North and EPGF in the South), oblique collision front (further west in Cuba), oblique subducted segments (to the East, Porto-Rico). From our recent works operated both offshore (Haiti-SIS and Haiti-BGF surveys 2012-2015) and onshore (field campaigns 2013-2017) in Haitian zone, the position of the present-day and paleo major limits have been redefined. These paleolimits have been reconstructed up to early Miocene times, based on: restoration of regional structural cross-sections, sedimentology and on paleoenvironement studies. In a preliminary way, we analyzed the complexity of the tectonic heritage with possible nature, heterogeneity of the crustal fragments and associated margins close to Haiti (age, structure, environment, location of the dislocated blocks through times) which profoundly impact the partitioning of the deformation along this complex transformed margin. The change in the structure wavelength, decollement level variations are primary constraints in the restoration of the main units and do impose a deep connection along specific segments either related to strike-slip or to splay faults. The asymmetry on the repartition of the fault activity tend to prove that the past motion related to "EPGF transfer zone" is mainly partitioned in Haiti to the North of the present-day EPGF position. At present, these results are still coherent with the distribution of the aftershoks registered after 2010, and with the present

  2. Automatic Earthquake Shear Stress Measurement Method Developed for Accurate Time- Prediction Analysis of Forthcoming Major Earthquakes Along Shallow Active Faults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serata, S.

    2006-12-01

    basis to disclose an acting earthquake shear stress S at top of the tectonic plate is established at the depth of 600-800m (Window). This concept is supported by outcome of the Japanese government stress measurement made at the epicenter of the Kobe earthquake of 1995, where S is found to be less than 5 MPa. At the same time S at the earthquake active Ashio mining district was found to be 36 MPa (90 percent of maximum S) at Window. These findings led to formulation of a quantitative method proposed to monitor earthquake triggering potential in and around any growing earthquake stress nucleus along shallow active faults. For future earthquake time prediction, the Stressmeter can be applied first to survey general distribution of earthquake shear stress S along major active faults. A site with its shear stress greater than 30 MPa may be identified as a site of growing stress nucleus. A Stressmeter must be permanently buried at the site to monitor future stress growth toward a possible triggering by mathematical analysis of the stress excursion dynamics. This is made possible by the automatic stress measurement capability of the Stressmeter at a frequency up to 100 times per day. The significance of this approach is a possibility to save lives by time-prediction of a forthcoming major earthquake with accuracy in hours and minutes.

  3. Geomorphology and Neogene tectonic evolution of the Palomares continental margin (Western Mediterranean)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez de la Peña, Laura; Gràcia, Eulàlia; Muñoz, Araceli; Acosta, Juan; Gómez-Ballesteros, María; R. Ranero, César; Uchupi, Elazar

    2016-10-01

    The Palomares continental margin is located in the southeastern part of Spain. The margin main structure was formed during Miocene times, and it is currently part of the wide deformation zone characterizing the region between the Iberian and African plates, where no well-defined plate boundary occurs. The convergence between these two plates is here accommodated by several structures, including the left lateral strike-slip Palomares Fault. The region is characterized by sparse, low to moderate magnitude (Mw shallow instrumental earthquakes, although large historical events have also occurred. To understand the recent tectonic history of the margin we analyze new high-resolution multibeam bathymetry data and re-processed three multichannel seismic reflection profiles crossing the main structures. The analysis of seafloor morphology and associated subsurface structure provides new insights of the active tectonic features of the area. In contrast to other segments of the southeastern Iberian margin, the Palomares margin contains numerous large and comparatively closely spaced canyons with heads that reach near the coast. The margin relief is also characterized by the presence of three prominent igneous submarine ridges that include the Aguilas, Abubacer and Maimonides highs. Erosive processes evidenced by a number of scars, slope failures, gullies and canyon incisions shape the present-day relief of the Palomares margin. Seismic images reveal the deep structure distinguishing between Miocene structures related to the formation of the margin and currently active features, some of which may reactivate inherited structures. The structure of the margin started with an extensional phase accompanied by volcanic accretion during the Serravallian, followed by a compressional pulse that started during the Latemost Tortonian. Nowadays, tectonic activity offshore is subdued and limited to few, minor faults, in comparison with the activity recorded onshore. The deep Algero

  4. Petrology, geochemistry and tectonic settings of the mafic dikes and ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    R. Narasimhan (Krishtel eMaging) 1461 1996 Oct 15 13:05:22

    margins of the basin, whereas, others are aligned .... areas of mantle upwelling, igneous intrusions, deep ... to and during the sedimentary accumulation, and ...... The development of continental margins in plate tectonic theory; J. Aust. Petrol.

  5. Influence of increasing convergence obliquity and shallow slab geometry onto tectonic deformation and seismogenic behavior along the Northern Lesser Antilles zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laurencin, M.; Graindorge, D.; Klingelhoefer, F.; Marcaillou, B.; Evain, M.

    2018-06-01

    In subduction zones, the 3D geometry of the plate interface is one of the key parameters that controls margin tectonic deformation, interplate coupling and seismogenic behavior. The North American plate subducts beneath the convex Northern Lesser Antilles margin. This convergent plate boundary, with a northward increasing convergence obliquity, turns into a sinistral strike-slip limit at the northwestern end of the system. This geodynamic context suggests a complex slab geometry, which has never been imaged before. Moreover, the seismic activity and particularly the number of events with thrust focal mechanism compatible with subduction earthquakes, increases northward from the Barbuda-Anguilla segment to the Anguilla-Virgin Islands segment. One of the major questions in this area is thus to analyze the influence of the increasing convergence obliquity and the slab geometry onto tectonic deformation and seismogenic behavior of the subduction zone. Based on wide-angle and multichannel reflection seismic data acquired during the Antithesis cruises (2013-2016), we decipher the deep structure of this subduction zone. Velocity models derived from wide-angle data acquired across the Anegada Passage are consistent with the presence of a crust of oceanic affinity thickened by hotspot magmatism and probably affected by the Upper Cretaceous-Eocene arc magmatism forming the 'Great Arc of the Caribbean'. The slab is shallower beneath the Anguilla-Virgin Islands margin segment than beneath the Anguilla-Barbuda segment which is likely to be directly related to the convex geometry of the upper plate. This shallower slab is located under the forearc where earthquakes and partitioning deformations increase locally. Thus, the shallowing slab might result in local greater interplate coupling and basal friction favoring seismic activity and tectonic partitioning beneath the Virgin Islands platform.

  6. Probable Maximum Earthquake Magnitudes for the Cascadia Subduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rong, Y.; Jackson, D. D.; Magistrale, H.; Goldfinger, C.

    2013-12-01

    The concept of maximum earthquake magnitude (mx) is widely used in seismic hazard and risk analysis. However, absolute mx lacks a precise definition and cannot be determined from a finite earthquake history. The surprising magnitudes of the 2004 Sumatra and the 2011 Tohoku earthquakes showed that most methods for estimating mx underestimate the true maximum if it exists. Thus, we introduced the alternate concept of mp(T), probable maximum magnitude within a time interval T. The mp(T) can be solved using theoretical magnitude-frequency distributions such as Tapered Gutenberg-Richter (TGR) distribution. The two TGR parameters, β-value (which equals 2/3 b-value in the GR distribution) and corner magnitude (mc), can be obtained by applying maximum likelihood method to earthquake catalogs with additional constraint from tectonic moment rate. Here, we integrate the paleoseismic data in the Cascadia subduction zone to estimate mp. The Cascadia subduction zone has been seismically quiescent since at least 1900. Fortunately, turbidite studies have unearthed a 10,000 year record of great earthquakes along the subduction zone. We thoroughly investigate the earthquake magnitude-frequency distribution of the region by combining instrumental and paleoseismic data, and using the tectonic moment rate information. To use the paleoseismic data, we first estimate event magnitudes, which we achieve by using the time interval between events, rupture extent of the events, and turbidite thickness. We estimate three sets of TGR parameters: for the first two sets, we consider a geographically large Cascadia region that includes the subduction zone, and the Explorer, Juan de Fuca, and Gorda plates; for the third set, we consider a narrow geographic region straddling the subduction zone. In the first set, the β-value is derived using the GCMT catalog. In the second and third sets, the β-value is derived using both the GCMT and paleoseismic data. Next, we calculate the corresponding mc

  7. Application of earthquake early warning system for disaster prevention in nuclear facilities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ionescu, C.; Dumitru, G.; Oprescu, T.; Ana, E.; Sofilca, N.; Grigore, D.

    2007-01-01

    Full text: The Romanian seismicity is dominated by the Vrancea deep (60-200 km) earthquakes which take place in a small volume located at the bend of Carpathian mountains, the place where three tectonic units are interacting: East-European, Intra-Alpine plates and Moesic sub-plate. Two or three events per century are devastating; having high energy they are felt over large and highly populated areas. The achievement of a seismic vulnerability reduction system for industrial and technological processes in the nuclear field intends to reduce possible after-earthquake damages which can take place in nuclear facilities situated in an extended area as compared to the usual one affected by Vrancea earthquakes. In this situation there are nuclear specific facilities like: - Van de Graaff Accelerator of IFIN-HH at Magurele; - TRIGA reactor operated at Pitesti, Mioveni, Jud. Arges; - Experimental Pilot Plant for tritium and deuterium separation of ICSI at Ramnicu Valcea; - Heavy water plant Drobeta Turnu Severin, Mehedinti. We intend to implement EEWS in the above sites in order to have a warning decision for earthquakes produced in Vrancea, Campulung Muscel and Herculane areas and its error-free transmission for activating the safety regulations for these facilities. (authors)

  8. Continental tectonics and continental kinetics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Allegre, C.J.; Jaupart, C.; Paris-7 Univ., 75

    1985-01-01

    We present a model of continental growth which combines the results of geochemical studies and tectonic ideas about the evolution of continents through geological time. The process of continental growth is mainly controlled by surface phenomena. Continental material is extracted from the mantle along subduction zones at the periphery of oceans, and is destroyed in collision zones where it is remobilized and made available for subduction. We derive an equation for S, the portion of the Earth's surface occupied by continents, which reads as follows: dS/dt=a . √(1-S)-b . S. Coefficients a and b depend on the geometry of plates, on their number and on their velocities. We assume that they decrease exponentially with time with the same time-scale α. This model satisfies both geochemical and tectonic constraints, and allows the integration of several current observations in a single framework. (orig.)

  9. Drilling to investigate processes in active tectonics and magmatism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shervais, J.; Evans, J.; Toy, V.; Kirkpatrick, J.; Clarke, A.; Eichelberger, J.

    2014-12-01

    Coordinated drilling efforts are an important method to investigate active tectonics and magmatic processes related to faults and volcanoes. The US National Science Foundation (NSF) recently sponsored a series of workshops to define the nature of future continental drilling efforts. As part of this series, we convened a workshop to explore how continental scientific drilling can be used to better understand active tectonic and magmatic processes. The workshop, held in Park City, Utah, in May 2013, was attended by 41 investigators from seven countries. Participants were asked to define compelling scientific justifications for examining problems that can be addressed by coordinated programs of continental scientific drilling and related site investigations. They were also asked to evaluate a wide range of proposed drilling projects, based on white papers submitted prior to the workshop. Participants working on faults and fault zone processes highlighted two overarching topics with exciting potential for future scientific drilling research: (1) the seismic cycle and (2) the mechanics and architecture of fault zones. Recommended projects target fundamental mechanical processes and controls on faulting, and range from induced earthquakes and earthquake initiation to investigations of detachment fault mechanics and fluid flow in fault zones. Participants working on active volcanism identified five themes: the volcano eruption cycle; eruption sustainability, near-field stresses, and system recovery; eruption hazards; verification of geophysical models; and interactions with other Earth systems. Recommended projects address problems that are transferrable to other volcanic systems, such as improved methods for identifying eruption history and constraining the rheological structure of shallow caldera regions. Participants working on chemical geodynamics identified four major themes: large igneous provinces (LIPs), ocean islands, continental hotspot tracks and rifts, and

  10. THE POTENTIAL OF TSUNAMI GENERATION ALONG THE MAKRAN SUBDUCTION ZONE IN THE NORTHERN ARABIAN SEA. CASE STUDY: THE EARTHQUAKE AND TSUNAMI OF NOVEMBER 28, 1945

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    George Pararas-Carayannis

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Although large earthquakes along the Makran Subduction Zone are infrequent, the potential for the generation of destructive tsunamis in the Northern Arabian Sea cannot be overlooked. It is quite possible that historical tsunamis in this region have not been properly reported or documented. Such past tsunamis must have affected Southern Pakistan, India, Iran, Oman, the Maldives and other countries bordering the Indian Ocean.The best known of the historical tsunamis in the region is the one generated by the great earthquake of November 28, 1945 off Pakistan's Makran Coast (Balochistan in the Northern Arabian Sea. The destructive tsunami killed more than 4,000 people in Southern Pakistan but also caused great loss of life and devastation along the coasts of Western India, Iran, Oman and possibly elsewhere.The seismotectonics of the Makran subduction zone, historical earthquakes in the region, the recent earthquake of October 8, 2005 in Northern Pakistan, and the great tsunamigenic earthquakes of December 26, 2004 and March 28, 2005, are indicative of the active tectonic collision process that is taking place along the entire southern and southeastern boundary of the Eurasian plate as it collides with the Indian plate and adjacent microplates. Tectonic stress transference to other, stress loaded tectonic regions could trigger tsunamigenic earthquakes in the Northern Arabian Sea in the future.The northward movement and subduction of the Oman oceanic lithosphere beneath the Iranian micro-plate at a very shallow angle and at the high rate is responsible for active orogenesis and uplift that has created a belt of highly folded and densely faulted coastal mountain ridges along the coastal region of Makran, in both the Balochistan and Sindh provinces. The same tectonic collision process has created offshore thrust faults. As in the past, large destructive tsunamigenic earthquakes can occur along major faults in the east Makran region, near Karachi, as

  11. The mechanism of earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Kunquan; Cao, Zexian; Hou, Meiying; Jiang, Zehui; Shen, Rong; Wang, Qiang; Sun, Gang; Liu, Jixing

    2018-03-01

    The physical mechanism of earthquake remains a challenging issue to be clarified. Seismologists used to attribute shallow earthquake to the elastic rebound of crustal rocks. The seismic energy calculated following the elastic rebound theory and with the data of experimental results upon rocks, however, shows a large discrepancy with measurement — a fact that has been dubbed as “the heat flow paradox”. For the intermediate-focus and deep-focus earthquakes, both occurring in the region of the mantle, there is not reasonable explanation either. This paper will discuss the physical mechanism of earthquake from a new perspective, starting from the fact that both the crust and the mantle are discrete collective system of matters with slow dynamics, as well as from the basic principles of physics, especially some new concepts of condensed matter physics emerged in the recent years. (1) Stress distribution in earth’s crust: Without taking the tectonic force into account, according to the rheological principle of “everything flows”, the normal stress and transverse stress must be balanced due to the effect of gravitational pressure over a long period of time, thus no differential stress in the original crustal rocks is to be expected. The tectonic force is successively transferred and accumulated via stick-slip motions of rock blocks to squeeze the fault gouge and then exerted upon other rock blocks. The superposition of such additional lateral tectonic force and the original stress gives rise to the real-time stress in crustal rocks. The mechanical characteristics of fault gouge are different from rocks as it consists of granular matters. The elastic moduli of the fault gouges are much less than those of rocks, and they become larger with increasing pressure. This peculiarity of the fault gouge leads to a tectonic force increasing with depth in a nonlinear fashion. The distribution and variation of the tectonic stress in the crust are specified. (2) The

  12. The alternative concept of global tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anokhin, Vladimir; Kholmyansky, Mikhael

    2016-04-01

    The existing plate tectonic paradigm becomes more questionable in relation to the new facts of the Earth. The most complete to date criticism of plate tectonics provisions contained in the article (Pratt, 2000). Authors can recall a few facts that contradict the idea of long-range movement of plates: - The absence of convection cells in the mantle, detected by seismic tomography; - The presence of long-lived deep regmatic network in the crust, not distorted by the movement of plates; - The inability of linking the global geometry of the of mutual long-distance movement of plates. All this gives reason to believe that correct, or at least a satisfactory concept of global tectonics are not exist now. After overcoming the usual inertia of thinking the plate paradigm in the foreseeable future will replace by different concept, more relevant as the observable facts of the Earth and the well-known physical laws. The authors suggest that currently accumulated sufficient volume of facts and theoretical ideas for the synthesis of a new general hypothesis of the structure and dynamics of the Earth. Analysis of the existing tectonic theory suggests that most of their provisions are mutually compatible. Obviously, plume tectonics perfectly compatible with any of classical models. It contradicts the only plate tectonics (movement of hot spots in principle not linked either with each other or with the general picture of the plate movements, the presence of mantle convection and mantle streams are mutually exclusive, and so on). The probable transfer of the heated material down up within the Earth may occur in various forms, the simplest of which (and, consequently, the most probable) are presented plumes. The existence in the mantle numerous large volumes of decompressed substances (detected seismic tomography), can be correlated with the bodies of plumes at different stages of uplift. Plumes who raise to the bottom of the lithosphere, to spread out to the sides and form a set

  13. Lithosphere-Atmosphere-Ionosphere Coupling (LAIC) Model - An Unified Concept for Earthquake Precursors Validation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pulinets, S.; Ouzounov, D.

    2010-01-01

    The paper presents a conception of complex multidisciplinary approach to the problem of clarification the nature of short-term earthquake precursors observed in atmosphere, atmospheric electricity and in ionosphere and magnetosphere. Our approach is based on the most fundamental principles of tectonics giving understanding that earthquake is an ultimate result of relative movement of tectonic plates and blocks of different sizes. Different kind of gases: methane, helium, hydrogen, and carbon dioxide leaking from the crust can serve as carrier gases for radon including underwater seismically active faults. Radon action on atmospheric gases is similar to the cosmic rays effects in upper layers of atmosphere: it is the air ionization and formation by ions the nucleus of water condensation. Condensation of water vapor is accompanied by the latent heat exhalation is the main cause for observing atmospheric thermal anomalies. Formation of large ion clusters changes the conductivity of boundary layer of atmosphere and parameters of the global electric circuit over the active tectonic faults. Variations of atmospheric electricity are the main source of ionospheric anomalies over seismically active areas. Lithosphere-Atmosphere-Ionosphere Coupling (LAIC) model can explain most of these events as a synergy between different ground surface, atmosphere and ionosphere processes and anomalous variations which are usually named as short-term earthquake precursors. A newly developed approach of Interdisciplinary Space-Terrestrial Framework (ISTF) can provide also a verification of these precursory processes in seismically active regions. The main outcome of this paper is the unified concept for systematic validation of different types of earthquake precursors united by physical basis in one common theory.

  14. Chaotic behavior of earthquakes induced by a nonlinear magma up flow

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pelap, F.B.; Kagho, L.Y.; Fogang, C.F.

    2016-01-01

    This paper considers the dynamics of a modified 1D nonlinear spring-block model for earthquake subjected to the strengths induced by the motion of the tectonic plates and the up flow of magma during volcanism. Based on the multiple time scales method, we establish that after the slip, the fault remains active and the frictions increase with the power of the earthquake. We also obtain in the non-resonance case that the appearing probability of an event decreases with these frictions. In the resonance case, the dynamics of harmonic oscillations show that the rocks constituting the block will fracture or resist to the effects induced by the magma motion. Our analytical investigations are complemented by numerical simulations from which it appears that, for given values of the magma thrust strength magnitude, the friction coefficient, the quadratic and cubic nonlinear parameters, the system exhibits chaotic behavior.

  15. Guidelines for earthquake ground motion definition for the eastern United States

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gwaltney, R.C.; Aramayo, G.A.; Williams, R.T.

    1985-01-01

    Guidelines for the determination of earthquake ground-motion definition for the eastern United States are established in this paper. Both far-field and near-field guidelines are given. The guidelines were based on an extensive review of the current procedures for specifying ground motion in the United States. Both empirical and theoretical procedures were used in establishing the guidelines because of the low seismicity in the eastern United States. Only a few large to great (M > 7.5) sized earthquakes have occurred in this region, no evidence of tectonic surface ruptures related to historic or Holocene earthquakes have been found, and no currently active plate boundaries of any kind are known in this region. Very little instrumented data has been gathered in the East. Theoretical procedures are proposed so that in regions of almost no data a reasonable level of seismic ground motion activity can be assumed. The guidelines are to be used to develop the Safe Shutdown Earthquake, SSE. A new procedure for establishing the Operating Basis Earthquake, OBE, is proposed, in particular for the eastern United States. The OBE would be developed using a probabilistic assessment of the geological conditions and the recurrence of seismic events at a site. These guidelines should be useful in development of seismic design requirements for future reactors. 17 refs., 2 figs., 1 tab

  16. Guidelines for earthquake ground motion definition for the Eastern United States

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gwaltney, R.C.; Aramayo, G.A.; Williams, R.T.

    1985-01-01

    Guidelines for the determination of earthquake ground-motion definition for the eastern United States are established in this paper. Both far-field and near-field guidelines are given. The guidelines were based on an extensive review of the current procedures for specifying ground motion in the United States. Both empirical and theoretical procedures were used in establishing the guidelines because of the low seismicity in the eastern United States. Only a few large to great (M > 7.5) sized earthquakes have occurred in this region, no evidence of tectonic surface ruptures related to historic or Holocene earthquakes have been found, and no currently active plate boundaries of any kind are known in this region. Very little instrumented data has been gathered in the East. Theoretical procedures are proposed so that in regions of almost no data a reasonable level of seismic ground motion activity can be assumed. The guidelines are to be used to develop the Safe Shutdown Earthquake, SSE. A new procedure for establishing the Operating Basis Earthquake, OBE, is proposed, in particular for the eastern United States. The OBE would be developed using a probabilistic assessment of the geological conditions and the recurrence of seismic events at a site. These guidelines should be useful in development of seismic design requirements for future reactors

  17. Moment Magnitude ( M W) and Local Magnitude ( M L) Relationship for Earthquakes in Northeast India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baruah, Santanu; Baruah, Saurabh; Bora, P. K.; Duarah, R.; Kalita, Aditya; Biswas, Rajib; Gogoi, N.; Kayal, J. R.

    2012-11-01

    An attempt has been made to examine an empirical relationship between moment magnitude ( M W) and local magnitude ( M L) for the earthquakes in the northeast Indian region. Some 364 earthquakes that were recorded during 1950-2009 are used in this study. Focal mechanism solutions of these earthquakes include 189 Harvard-CMT solutions ( M W ≥ 4.0) for the period 1976-2009, 61 published solutions and 114 solutions obtained for the local earthquakes (2.0 ≤ M L ≤ 5.0) recorded by a 27-station permanent broadband network during 2001-2009 in the region. The M W- M L relationships in seven selected zones of the region are determined by linear regression analysis. A significant variation in the M W- M L relationship and its zone specific dependence are reported here. It is found that M W is equivalent to M L with an average uncertainty of about 0.13 magnitude units. A single relationship is, however, not adequate to scale the entire northeast Indian region because of heterogeneous geologic and geotectonic environments where earthquakes occur due to collisions, subduction and complex intra-plate tectonics.

  18. Cascading elastic perturbation in Japan due to the 2012 M w 8.6 Indian Ocean earthquake.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delorey, Andrew A; Chao, Kevin; Obara, Kazushige; Johnson, Paul A

    2015-10-01

    Since the discovery of extensive earthquake triggering occurring in response to the 1992 M w (moment magnitude) 7.3 Landers earthquake, it is now well established that seismic waves from earthquakes can trigger other earthquakes, tremor, slow slip, and pore pressure changes. Our contention is that earthquake triggering is one manifestation of a more widespread elastic disturbance that reveals information about Earth's stress state. Earth's stress state is central to our understanding of both natural and anthropogenic-induced crustal processes. We show that seismic waves from distant earthquakes may perturb stresses and frictional properties on faults and elastic moduli of the crust in cascading fashion. Transient dynamic stresses place crustal material into a metastable state during which the material recovers through a process termed slow dynamics. This observation of widespread, dynamically induced elastic perturbation, including systematic migration of offshore seismicity, strain transients, and velocity transients, presents a new characterization of Earth's elastic system that will advance our understanding of plate tectonics, seismicity, and seismic hazards.

  19. Internal tectonic structure of the Central American Wadati-Benioff zone based on analysis of aftershock sequences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Špičák, Aleš; Hanuš, Václav; Vaněk, Jiří; Běhounková, Marie

    2007-09-01

    Relocated Engdahl et al. (1998) global seismological data for 10 aftershock sequences were used to analyze the internal tectonic structure of the Central American subduction zone; the main shocks of several of these were the most destructive and often referenced earthquakes in the region (e.g., the 1970 Chiapas, 1983 Osa, 1992 Nicaragua, 1999 Quepos, 2001 El Salvador earthquakes). The spatial analysis of aftershock foci distribution was performed in a rotated Cartesian coordinate system (x, y, z) related to the Wadati-Benioff zone, and not in a standard coordinate system ($\\varphi$, λ, h are latitude, longitude, focal depth, respectively). Available fault plane solutions were also transformed into the plane approximating the Wadati-Benioff zone. The spatial distribution of earthquakes in each aftershock sequence was modeled as either a plane fit using a least squares approximation or a volume fit with a minimum thickness rectangular box. The analysis points to a quasi-planar distribution of earthquake foci in all aftershock sequences, manifesting the appurtenance of aftershocks to fracture zones. Geometrical parameters of fracture zones (strike, dip, and dimensions) hosting individual sequences were calculated and compared with the seafloor morphology of the Cocos Plate. The smooth character of the seafloor correlates with the aftershock fracture zones oriented parallel to the trench and commonly subparallel to the subducting slab, whereas subduction of the Cocos Ridge and seamounts around the Quepos Plateau coincides with steeply dipping fracture zones. Transformed focal mechanisms are almost exclusively (>90%) of normal character.

  20. A review on earthquake and tsunami hazards of the Sumatran plate boundary: Observing expected and unexpected events after the Aceh-Andaman Mw 9.15 event

    Science.gov (United States)

    Natawidjaja, D.

    2013-12-01

    The 600-km Mentawai megathrust had produced two giant historical earthquakes generating big tsunamies in 1797 and 1833. The SuGAr (Sumatran GPS continuous Array) network, first deployed in 2002, shows that the subduction interface underlying Mentawai Islands and the neighboring Nias section in the north are fully locked, thus confirming their potential hazards. Outreach activities to warn people about earthquake and tsunamies had been started since 4 months prior to the 26 December 2004 in Aceh-Andaman earthquake (Mw 9.15). Later in March 2005, the expected megathrust earthquake (Mw 8.7) hit Nias-Simelue area and killed about 2000 people, releasing the accumulated strain since the previous 1861 event (~Mw 8.5). After then many Mw 7s and smaller events occured in Sumatra, filling areas between and around two giant ruptures and heighten seismicities in neighboring areas. In March 2007, the twin earthquake disaster (Mw 6.3 and Mw 6.4) broke two consecutive segments of the transcurrent Sumatran fault in the Singkarak lake area. Only six month later, in September 2007, the rapid-fire-failures of three consecutive megathrust patches (Mw 8.5, Mw 7.9 and Mw 7.0) ruptured a 250-km-section of the southern part of the Mentawai. It was a big surprise since this particular section is predicted as a very-low coupled section from modelling the SuGAr data, and hence, bypassing the more potential fully coupled section of the Mentawai in between the 2005 and 2007 ruptures. In September 2009, a rare unexpected event (Mw 7.6) suddenly ruptured an intracrustal fault in the subducted slab down under Padang City and killed about 500 people. Padang had been in preparation for the next tsunami but not for strong shakes from near by major earthquake. This event seems to have remotely triggered another Mw 6.7 on the Sumatran fault near kerinci Lake, a few hundred kilometers south of Padang, in less than a day. Just a year later, in November 2010, again an unexpected large slow-slip event of

  1. ON TECTONIC PROBLEMS OF THE OKINAWA TROUGH

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2001-01-01

    The Okinawa Trough is a very active tectonic zone at the margin of the Northwest Pacific and is typical of back-arc rifting at the young stage of tectonic evolution. Many scientists from Japan, China, Germany, France, the U.S.A. and Russia have done a lot of geologic and geophysical investigations there. It is well known that the Okinawa Trough is an active back-arc rift with extremely high heat flow, very strong hydrothermal circulation, strong volcanic and magmatic activity, frequent earthquakes, rapid subsidence and rifting, well-developed fault and central graben. But up to now, there are still some important tectonic problems about the Okinawa Trough that require clarification on some aspects such as the type of its crust, its forming time, its tectonic evolution, the distribution of its central grabens, the relationship between its high heat flow and tectonic activity. Based on the data obtained from seismic survey, geomagnetic and gravity measurements, submarine sampling and heat flow measurements in the last 15 years, the author discusses the following tectonic problems about the Okinawa Trough: (1) If the Okinawa Trough develops oceanic crust or not. (2) Is the South Okinawa Trough tectonically more active than the North Okinawa Trough with shallower water and few investigation data on it. (3) The formation time of the Okinawa Trough and its tectonic evolution. The Okinawa Trough has a very thin continental crust. Up to now, there is no evidence of oceanic crust in the Okinawa Trough. The North, Middle and South Okinawa Trough are all very strongly active areas. From 6 Ma B.P., the Okinawa Trough began to form. Since 2 Ma, the Okinawa Trough has been very active.

  2. ON TECTONIC PROBLEMS OF THE OKINAWA TROUGH

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李乃胜

    2001-01-01

    The Okinawa Trough is a very active tectonic zone at the margin of the Northwest Pacific and is typical of back-arc rifting at the young stage of tectonic evolution. Many scientists from Japan,China, Germany, France, the U. S.A. and Russia have done a lot of geologic and geophysical investigations there. It is well known that the Okinawa Trough is an active back-arc rift with extremely high heat flow, very strong hydrothermal circulation, strong volcanic and magmatic activity, frequent earthquakes,rapid subsidence and rifting, well-developed fault and central graben. But up to now, there are still some important tectonic problems about the Okinawa Trough that require clarification on some aspects such as the type of its crust, its forming time, its tectonic evolution, the distribution of its central grabens, the relationship between its high heat flow and tectonic activity. Based on the data obtained from seismic sur-vey, geomagnetic and gravity measurements, submarine sampling and heat flow measurements in the last 15 years, the author discusses the following tectonic problems about the Okinawa Trough: (1) If the Okinawa Trough develops oceanic crust or not. (2) Is the South Okinawa Trough tectonically more active than the North Okinawa Trough with shallower water and few investigation data on it. (3) The formation time of the Okinawa Trough and its tectonic evolution. The Okinawa Trough has a very thin continental crust. Up to now, there is no evidence of oceanic crust in the Okinawa Trough. The North, Middle and South Okinawa Trough are all very strongly active areas. From 6 Ma B.P. , the Okinawa Trough began to form. Since 2 Ma, the Okinawa Trough has been very active.

  3. Use of Fault Displacement Vector to Identify Future Zones of Seismicity: An Example from the Earthquakes of Nepal Himalayas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naim, F.; Mukherjee, M. K.

    2017-12-01

    Earthquakes occur due to fault slip in the subsurface. They can occur either as interplate or intraplate earthquakes. The region of study is the Nepal Himalayas that defines the boundary of Indian-Eurasian plate and houses the focus of the most devastating earthquakes. The aim of the study was to analyze all the earthquakes that occurred in the Nepal Himalayas upto May 12, 2015 earthquake in order to mark the regions still under stress and vulnerable for future earthquakes. Three different fault systems in the Nepal Himalayas define the tectonic set up of the area. They are: (1) Main Frontal Thrust(MFT), (2) Main Central Thrust(MCT) and (3) Main Boundary Thrust(MBT) that extend from NW to SE. Most of the earthquakes were observed to occur between the MBT and MCT. Since the thrust faults are dipping towards NE, the focus of most of the earthquakes lies on the MBT. The methodology includes estimating the dip of the fault by considering the depths of different earthquake events and their corresponding distance from the MBT. In order to carry out stress analysis on the fault, the beach ball diagrams associated with the different earthquakes were plotted on a map. Earthquakes in the NW and central region of the fault zone were associated with reverse fault slip while that on the South-Eastern part were associated with a strike slip component. The direction of net slip on the fault associated with the different earthquakes was known and from this a 3D slip diagram of the fault was constructed. The regions vulnerable for future earthquakes in the Nepal Himalaya were demarcated on the 3D slip diagram of the fault. Such zones were marked owing to the fact that the slips due to earthquakes cause the adjoining areas to come under immense stress and this stress is directly proportional to the amount of slip occuring on the fault. These vulnerable zones were in turn projected on the map to show their position and are predicted to contain the epicenter of the future earthquakes.

  4. Defeating Earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stein, R. S.

    2012-12-01

    The 2004 M=9.2 Sumatra earthquake claimed what seemed an unfathomable 228,000 lives, although because of its size, we could at least assure ourselves that it was an extremely rare event. But in the short space of 8 years, the Sumatra quake no longer looks like an anomaly, and it is no longer even the worst disaster of the Century: 80,000 deaths in the 2005 M=7.6 Pakistan quake; 88,000 deaths in the 2008 M=7.9 Wenchuan, China quake; 316,000 deaths in the M=7.0 Haiti, quake. In each case, poor design and construction were unable to withstand the ferocity of the shaken earth. And this was compounded by inadequate rescue, medical care, and shelter. How could the toll continue to mount despite the advances in our understanding of quake risk? The world's population is flowing into megacities, and many of these migration magnets lie astride the plate boundaries. Caught between these opposing demographic and seismic forces are 50 cities of at least 3 million people threatened by large earthquakes, the targets of chance. What we know for certain is that no one will take protective measures unless they are convinced they are at risk. Furnishing that knowledge is the animating principle of the Global Earthquake Model, launched in 2009. At the very least, everyone should be able to learn what his or her risk is. At the very least, our community owes the world an estimate of that risk. So, first and foremost, GEM seeks to raise quake risk awareness. We have no illusions that maps or models raise awareness; instead, earthquakes do. But when a quake strikes, people need a credible place to go to answer the question, how vulnerable am I, and what can I do about it? The Global Earthquake Model is being built with GEM's new open source engine, OpenQuake. GEM is also assembling the global data sets without which we will never improve our understanding of where, how large, and how frequently earthquakes will strike, what impacts they will have, and how those impacts can be lessened by

  5. The Role of Long-Term Tectonic Deformation on the Distribution of Present-Day Seismic Activity in the Caribbean and Central America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schobelock, J.; Stamps, D. S.; Pagani, M.; Garcia, J.; Styron, R. H.

    2017-12-01

    The Caribbean and Central America region (CCAR) undergoes the entire spectrum of earthquake types due to its complex tectonic setting comprised of transform zones, young oceanic spreading ridges, and subductions along its eastern and western boundaries. CCAR is, therefore, an ideal setting in which to study the impacts of long-term tectonic deformation on the distribution of present-day seismic activity. In this work, we develop a continuous tectonic strain rate model based on inter-seismic geodetic data and compare it with known active faults and earthquake focal mechanism data. We first create a 0.25o x 0.25o finite element mesh that is comprised of block geometries defined in previously studies. Second, we isolate and remove transient signals from the latest open access community velocity solution from UNAVCO, which includes 339 velocities from COCONet and TLALOCNet GNSS data for the Caribbean and Central America, respectively. In a third step we define zones of deformation and rigidity by creating a buffer around the boundary of each block that varies depending on the size of the block and the expected deformation zone based on locations of GNSS data that are consistent with rigid block motion. We then assign each node within the buffer a 0 for the deforming areas and a plate index outside the buffer for the rigid. Finally, we calculate a tectonic strain rate model for CCAR using the Haines and Holt finite element approach to fit bi-cubic Bessel splines to the the GNSS/GPS data assuming block rotation for zones of rigidity. Our model of the CCAR is consistent with compression along subduction zones, extension across the mid-Pacific Rise, and a combination of compression and extension across the North America - Caribbean plate boundary. The majority of CCAR strain rate magnitudes range from -60 to 60 nanostrains/yr. Modeling results are then used to calculate expected faulting behaviors that we compare with mapped geologic faults and seismic activity.

  6. International Field Research with Undergraduate Students: Investigating Active Tectonics of the Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, J. S.; Gardner, T. W.; Protti, M.

    2005-12-01

    Over the past eight years, 18 undergraduate students from 12 U.S. and Costa Rican universities and colleges have participated in field research projects investigating coastal tectonics on the Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica. These projects have been organized around two different models: 1) a month-long "field camp" with 10 students and 5 project faculty (Keck Geology Consortium Project, 1998), and 2) several two-week field projects with 1-3 students and one faculty advisor (Cal Poly Pomona University and Trinity University). Under the direction of the authors, each of these projects has been carefully designed to provide a new piece to a larger research puzzle. The Nicoya Peninsula lies along Costa Rica's northern Pacific coast inboard of the Middle America Trench where the Cocos and Caribbean plates converge at 10 cm/yr. In 1950, the peninsula was shaken by a ~M 7.7 subduction earthquake that produced widespread damage and 0.5-1.0 m of coseismic coastal uplift. With a large slip deficit since 1950, the Nicoya Peninsula is viewed as a high-potential seismic gap. Field study of uplifted Quaternary marine terraces along the Nicoya coastline provides undergraduate students with a unique opportunity to examine rapid forearc deformation related to large subduction earthquakes. The field research conducted by each of these students provides the basis for a senior thesis at their home institution. In most cases, the students have focused their individual work on separate, but adjacent field areas. Collectively, each of these projects has generated significant data that contribute toward of an ongoing investigation of fore arc tectonics and subduction cycle earthquakes along the Costa Rican Pacific margin.

  7. Inverse models of plate coupling and mantle rheology: Towards a direct link between large-scale mantle flow and mega thrust earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gurnis, M.; Ratnaswamy, V.; Stadler, G.; Rudi, J.; Liu, X.; Ghattas, O.

    2017-12-01

    We are developing high-resolution inverse models for plate motions and mantle flow to recover the degree of mechanical coupling between plates and the non-linear and plastic parameters governing viscous flow within the lithosphere and mantle. We have developed adjoint versions of the Stokes equations with fully non-linear viscosity with a cost function that measures the fit with plate motions and with regional constrains on effective upper mantle viscosity (from post-glacial rebound and post seismic relaxation). In our earlier work, we demonstrate that when the temperature field is known, the strength of plate boundaries, the yield stress and strain rate exponent in the upper mantle are recoverable. As the plate boundary coupling drops below a threshold, the uncertainty of the inferred parameters increases due to insensitivity of plate motion to plate coupling. Comparing the trade-offs between inferred rheological parameters found from a Gaussian approximation of the parameter distribution and from MCMC sampling, we found that the Gaussian approximation—which is significantly cheaper to compute—is often a good approximation. We have extended our earlier method such that we can recover normal and shear stresses within the zones determining the interface between subducting and over-riding plates determined through seismic constraints (using the Slab1.0 model). We find that those subduction zones with low seismic coupling correspond with low inferred values of mechanical coupling. By fitting plate motion data in the optimization scheme, we find that Tonga and the Marianas have the lowest values of mechanical coupling while Chile and Sumatra the highest, among the subduction zones we have studies. Moreover, because of the nature of the high-resolution adjoint models, the subduction zones with the lowest coupling have back-arc extension. Globally we find that the non-linear stress-strain exponent, n, is about 3.0 +/- 0.25 (in the upper mantle and lithosphere) and a

  8. Andean tectonics: Implications for Satellite Geodesy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allenby, R. J.

    1984-01-01

    Current knowledge and theories of large scale Andean tectonics as they relate to site planning for the NASA Crustal Dynamics Program's proposed high precision geodetic measurements of relative motions between the Nazca and South American plates are summarized. The Nazca Plate and its eastern margin, the Peru-Chile Trench, is considered a prototype plate marked by rapid motion, strong seismicity and well defined boundaries. Tectonic activity across the Andes results from the Nazca Plate subducting under the South American plate in a series of discrete platelets with different widths and dip angles. This in turn, is reflected in the tectonic complexity of the Andes which are a multitutde of orogenic belts superimposed on each other since the Precambrian. Sites for Crustal Dynamics Program measurements are being located to investigate both interplate and extraplate motions. Observing operations have already been initiated at Arequipa, Peru and Easter Island, Santiago and Cerro Tololo, Chile. Sites under consideration include Iquique, Chile; Oruro and Santa Cruz, Bolivia; Cuzco, Lima, Huancayo and Bayovar, Peru; and Quito and the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador. Based on scientific considerations, Santa Cruz, Huancayo (or Lima), Quito and the Galapagos Islands should be replaced by Isla San Felix, Chile; Brazilia or Petrolina, Brazil; and Guayaquil, Ecuador. If resources permit, additional important sites would be Buenaventura and Villavicencio or Puerto La Concordia, Colombia; and Mendoza and Cordoba, Argentina.

  9. The earthquakes of stable continental regions. Volume 2: Appendices A to E. Final report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnston, A.C.; Kanter, L.R.; Coppersmith, K.J.; Cornell, C.A.

    1994-12-01

    The objectives of the study were to develop a comprehensive database of earthquakes in stable continental regions (SCRs) and to statistically examine use of the database for the assessment of large earthquake potential. We identified nine major and several minor SCRs worldwide and compiled a database of geologic characteristics of tectonic domains within each SCR. We examined all available earthquake data from SCRs, from historical accounts of events with no instrumental ground-motion data to present-day instrumentally recorded events. In all, 1,385 events were analyzed. Using moment magnitude 4.5 as the lower bound threshold for inclusion in the database, 870 were assigned to an SCR, 124 were found to be transitional to an SCR, and 391 were examined, but rejected. We then performed a seismotectonic analysis to determine what distinguishes seismic activity in SCRs from other types of crust, such as active plate margins or active continental regions. General observations are: (1) SCRs comprise nearly two-thirds of all continental crust of which 25% is considered to be extended (i.e., rifted); (2) the majority of seismic energy release and the largest earthquakes in SCRs have occurred in extended crust; and (3) active plate margins release seismic energy at a rate per unit area approximately 7,000 times the average for non-extended SCRs. Finally, results of a statistical examination of distributions of historical maximum earthquakes between different crustal domain types indicated that additional information is needed in order to adequately constrain estimates of maximum earthquakes for any given region. Thus, a Bayesian approach was developed in which statistical constraints from the database were used to develop a prior distribution, which may then be combined with source-specific information to constrain maximum magnitude assessments for use in probabilistic seismic hazard analyses

  10. Towards an Earthquake and Tsunami Early Warning in the Caribbean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huerfano Moreno, V. A.; Vanacore, E. A.

    2017-12-01

    The Caribbean region (CR) has a documented history of large damaging earthquakes and tsunamis that have affected coastal areas, including the events of Jamaica in 1692, Virgin Islands in 1867, Puerto Rico in 1918, the Dominican Republic in 1946 and Haiti in 2010. There is clear evidence that tsunamis have been triggered by large earthquakes that deformed the ocean floor around the Caribbean Plate boundary. The CR is monitored jointly by national/regional/local seismic, geodetic and sea level networks. All monitoring institutions are participating in the UNESCO ICG/Caribe EWS, the purpose of this initiative is to minimize loss of life and destruction of property, and to mitigate against catastrophic economic impacts via promoting local research, real time (RT) earthquake, geodetic and sea level data sharing and improving warning capabilities and enhancing education and outreach strategies. Currently more than, 100 broad-band seismic, 65 sea levels and 50 GPS high rate stations are available in real or near real-time. These real-time streams are used by Local/Regional or Worldwide detection and warning institutions to provide earthquake source parameters in a timely manner. Currently, any Caribbean event detected to have a magnitude greater than 4.5 is evaluated, and sea level is measured, by the TWC for tsumanigenic potential. The regional cooperation is motivated both by research interests as well as geodetic, seismic and tsunami hazard monitoring and warning. It will allow the imaging of the tectonic structure of the Caribbean region to a high resolution which will consequently permit further understanding of the seismic source properties for moderate and large events and the application of this knowledge to procedures of civil protection. To reach its goals, the virtual network has been designed following the highest technical standards: BB sensors, 24 bits A/D converters with 140 dB dynamic range, real-time telemetry. Here we will discuss the state of the PR

  11. Chilean earthquake and identity in the nerudian letter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis Rubilar Solís

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Given the geo-physic consistency of the narrow Chilean territory, extended between volcanoes and tectonic plates, the occurrence of natural catastrophes has been diachronic in its bicentennial existence as a nation. The oral as well as the written traditions have expressed this seismic nature as an ancestral ingredient of national identity. In Neruda's vital circumstances (1904-1973 four earthquakes took place, whose semiotic aftershocks resound in his writing. Noticing the telluric fate in this fi nis terrae, the poet's voice invites us to avoid mechanical and collective forgetfulness, warning us to install in the social imagination preventive attitudes to face futures disasters.

  12. Habitability from Tidally Induced Tectonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valencia, Diana; Tan, Vivian Yun Yan; Zajac, Zachary

    2018-04-01

    The stability of Earth’s climate on geological timescales is enabled by the carbon–silicate cycle that acts as a negative feedback mechanism stabilizing surface temperatures via the intake and outgassing of atmospheric carbon. On Earth, this thermostat is enabled by plate tectonics that sequesters outgassed CO2 back into the mantle via weathering and subduction at convergent margins. Here we propose a separate tectonic mechanism—vertical recycling—that can serve as the vehicle for CO2 outgassing and sequestration over long timescales. The mechanism requires continuous tidal heating, which makes it particularly relevant to planets in the habitable zone of M stars. Dynamical models of this vertical recycling scenario and stability analysis show that temperate climates stable over timescales of billions of years are realized for a variety of initial conditions, even as the M star dims over time. The magnitude of equilibrium surface temperatures depends on the interplay of sea weathering and outgassing, which in turn depends on planetary carbon content, so that planets with lower carbon budgets are favored for temperate conditions. The habitability of planets such as found in the Trappist-1 system may be rooted in tidally driven tectonics.

  13. ASSESSMENT OF THE TSUNAMIGENIC POTENTIAL ALONG THE NORTHERN CARIBBEAN MARGIN Case Study: Earthquake and Tsunamis of 12 January 2010 in Haiti.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    George Pararas-Carayannis

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available The potential tsunami risk for Hispaniola, as well as for the other Greater Antilles Islands is assessed by reviewing the complex geotectonic processes and regimes along the Northern Caribbean margin, including the convergent, compressional and collisional tectonic activity of subduction, transition, shearing, lateral movements, accretion and crustal deformation caused by the eastward movement of the Caribbean plate in relation to the North American plate. These complex tectonic interactions have created a broad, diffuse tectonic boundary that has resulted in an extensive, internal deformational sliver slab - the Gonâve microplate – as well as further segmentation into two other microplates with similarly diffused boundary characteristics where tsunamigenic earthquakes have and will again occur. The Gonâve microplate is the most prominent along the Northern Caribbean margin and extends from the Cayman Spreading Center to Mona Pass, between Puerto Rico and the island of Hispaniola, where the 1918 destructive tsunami was generated. The northern boundary of this sliver microplate is defined by the Oriente strike-slip fault south of Cuba, which appears to be an extension of the fault system traversing the northern part of Hispaniola, while the southern boundary is defined by another major strike-slip fault zone where the Haiti earthquake of 12 January 2010 occurred. Potentially tsunamigenic regions along the Northern Caribbean margin are located not only along the boundaries of the Gonâve microplate’s dominant western transform zone but particularly within the eastern tectonic regimes of the margin where subduction is dominant - particularly along the Puerto Rico trench. The Haiti earthquake of 12 January 2010 and its focal mechanism are examined, as they provide additional clues of potential tsunami generation that can occur along transform zones and, more specifically, from interplate and intraplate seismic events and subsequently induced

  14. Fundamental structure model of island arcs and subducted plates in and around Japan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwasaki, T.; Sato, H.; Ishiyama, T.; Shinohara, M.; Hashima, A.

    2015-12-01

    The eastern margin of the Asian continent is a well-known subduction zone, where the Pacific (PAC) and Philippine Sea (PHS) plates are being subducted. In this region, several island arcs (Kuril, Northeast Japan, Southwest Japan, Izu-Bonin and Ryukyu arcs) meet one another to form a very complicated tectonic environment. At 2014, we started to construct fundamental structure models for island arcs and subducted plates in and around Japan. Our research is composed of 6 items of (1) topography, (2) plate geometry, (3) fault models, (4) the Moho and brittle-ductile transition zone, (5) the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary, and (6) petrological/rheological models. Such information is basic but inevitably important in qualitative understanding not only for short-term crustal activities in the subduction zone (particularly caused by megathrust earthquakes) but also for long-term cumulative deformation of the arcs as a result of strong plate-arc/arc-arc interactions. This paper is the first presentation of our research, mainly presenting the results of items (1) and (2). The area of our modelling is 12o-54o N and 118o-164o E to cover almost the entire part of Japanese Islands together with Kuril, Ryukyu and Izu-Bonin trenches. The topography model was constructed from the 500-m mesh data provided from GSJ, JODC, GINA and Alaska University. Plate geometry models are being constructed through the two steps. In the first step, we modelled very smooth plate boundaries of the Pacific and Philippine Sea plates in our whole model area using 42,000 earthquake data from JMA, USGS and ISC. For 7,800 cross sections taken with several directions to the trench axes, 2D plate boundaries were defined by fitting to the earthquake distribution (the Wadati-Benioff zone), from which we obtained equi-depth points of the plate boundary. These equi-depth points were then approximated by spline interpolation technique to eliminate shorter wave length undulation (75-150 km), but provide a

  15. A seismotectonic study of the 21 May 2014 Bay of Bengal intraplate earthquake: Evidence of onshore-offshore tectonic linkage and fracture zone reactivation in the northern Bay of Bengal

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Rao, G.S.; Radhakrishna, M.; Murthy, K.S.R.

    of the earthquake is located at a water depth of 2.5 km where the sediment thickness is nearly 12 km, and it occurs at a depth of ~50 km within the upper mantle. Its location on the seismotectonic map of the region shows that the epicenter is far from...

  16. Use of high resolution satellite images for monitoring of earthquakes and volcano activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arellano-Baeza, Alonso A.

    Our studies have shown that the strain energy accumulation deep in the Earth's crust that precedes a strong earthquake can be detected by applying a lineament extraction technique to the high-resolution multispectral satellite images. A lineament is a straight or a somewhat curved feature in a satellite image, which it is possible to detect by a special processing of images based on directional filtering and or Hough transform. We analyzed tens of earthquakes occurred in the Pacific coast of the South America with the Richter scale magnitude ˜4.5, using ASTER/TERRA multispectral satellite images for detection and analysis of changes in the system of lineaments previous to a strong earthquake. All events were located in the regions with small seasonal variations and limited vegetation to facilitate the tracking of features associated with the seismic activity only. It was found that the number and orientation of lineaments changed significantly about one month before an earthquake approximately, and a few months later the system returns to its initial state. This effect increases with the earthquake magnitude. It also was shown that the behavior of lineaments associated to the volcano seismic activity is opposite to that obtained previously for earthquakes. This discrepancy can be explained assuming that in the last case the main reason of earthquakes is compression and accumulation of strength in the Earth's crust due to subduction of tectonic plates, whereas in the first case we deal with the inflation of a volcano edifice due to elevation of pressure and magma intrusion. The results obtained made it possible to include this research as a part of scientific program of Chilean Remote Sensing Satellite mission to be launched in 2010.

  17. Stress Transfer Processes during Great Plate Boundary Thrusting Events: A Study from the Andaman and Nicobar Segments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrade, V.; Rajendran, K.

    2010-12-01

    The response of subduction zones to large earthquakes varies along their strike, both during the interseismic and post-seismic periods. The December 26, 2004 earthquake nucleated at 3° N latitude and its rupture propagated northward, along the Andaman-Sumatra subduction zone, terminating at 15°N. Rupture speed was estimated at about 2.0 km per second in the northern part under the Andaman region and 2.5 - 2.7 km per second under southern Nicobar and North Sumatra. We have examined the pre and post-2004 seismicity to understand the stress transfer processes within the subducting plate, in the Andaman (10° - 15° N ) and Nicobar (5° - 10° N) segments. The seismicity pattern in these segments shows distinctive characteristics associated with the outer rise, accretionary prism and the spreading ridge, all of which are relatively better developed in the Andaman segment. The Ninety East ridge and the Sumatra Fault System are significant tectonic features in the Nicobar segment. The pre-2004 seismicity in both these segments conform to the steady-state conditions wherein large earthquakes are fewer and compressive stresses dominate along the plate interface. Among the pre-2004 great earthquakes are the 1881 Nicobar and 1941 Andaman events. The former is considered to be a shallow thrust event that generated a small tsunami. Studies in other subduction zones suggest that large outer-rise tensional events follow great plate boundary breaking earthquakes due to the the up-dip transfer of stresses within the subducting plate. The seismicity of the Andaman segment (1977-2004) concurs with the steady-state stress conditions where earthquakes occur dominantly by thrust faulting. The post-2004 seismicity shows up-dip migration along the plate interface, with dominance of shallow normal faulting, including a few outer rise events and some deeper (> 100 km) strike-slip faulting events within the subducting plate. The September 13, 2002, Mw 6.5 thrust faulting earthquake at

  18. The tectonics of Mercury

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Melosh, H.J.; Mckinnon, W.B.

    1988-01-01

    The probable tectonic history of Mercury and the relative sequence of events are discussed on the basis of data collected by the Mariner-10 spacecraft. Results indicate that Mercury's tectonic activity was confined to its early history; its endogenic activity was principally due to a small change in the shape of its lithosphere, caused by tidal despinning, and a small change in area caused by shrinkage due to cooling. Exogenic processes, in particular the impact activity, have produced more abundant tectonic features. Many features associated with the Caloris basin are due to loading of Mercury's thick lithosphere by extrusive lavas or subsidence due to magma withdrawal. It is emphasized that tectonic features observed on Mercury yield insight into the earliest tectonic events on planets like Mars and, perhaps, the earth, where subsequent events obscured or erased the most ancient tectonic records

  19. The Tectonic Practice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schmidt, Anne Marie Due

    has the consequence that it is difficult to create architecture where the technical concerns are an inherent part of the architectural expression. The aim of the thesis is to discuss the role of digital tools in overcoming the distance between the professional specializations and thereby support...... a tectonic practice. The project develops a framework to understand the role of digital tools in the tectonic practice from and discusses how and in which areas the tectonic practice could become supported by digital tools....

  20. Geomorphology, tectonics, and exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabins, F. F., Jr.

    1985-01-01

    Explorationists interpret satellite images for tectonic features and patterns that may be clues to mineral and energy deposits. The tectonic features of interest range in scale from regional (sedimentary basins, fold belts) to local (faults, fractures) and are generally expressed as geomorphic features in remote sensing images. Explorationists typically employ classic concepts of geomorphology and landform analysis for their interpretations, which leads to the question - Are there new and evolving concepts in geomorphology that may be applicable to tectonic analyses of images?

  1. Evaluation of 0 ≤ M ≤ 8 earthquake data sets in African – Asian region during 1966–2015

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Theophilus Aanuoluwa Adagunodo

    2018-04-01

    neural network analysis was also applied to the magnitude of the earthquake. The network uses a time series magnitude data as input with the output being the magnitude of the following day. If the nature of the earthquakes time series is stochastic, modeling and prediction is possible. The earthquake data sets presented in this article can further be adopted in the study of seismicity pattern, b-value using series of models, earthquake prediction and variations of earthquake parameters on African and/or Arabian plates. When this approach is integrated with other technique(s, it can provide insights to stability of African lithospehric plates especially the coastal region of Africa. Keywords: African plates, Arabian plates, b-value, Gutenberg-Richter’s model, Artificial neural network, Earthquake magnitudes, Focal depth, Seismic events, Seismographs, Time series, Tectonic stress

  2. Tsunamigenic earthquakes in the Gulf of Cadiz: fault model and recurrence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. M. Matias

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The Gulf of Cadiz, as part of the Azores-Gibraltar plate boundary, is recognized as a potential source of big earthquakes and tsunamis that may affect the bordering countries, as occurred on 1 November 1755. Preparing for the future, Portugal is establishing a national tsunami warning system in which the threat caused by any large-magnitude earthquake in the area is estimated from a comprehensive database of scenarios. In this paper we summarize the knowledge about the active tectonics in the Gulf of Cadiz and integrate the available seismological information in order to propose the generation model of destructive tsunamis to be applied in tsunami warnings. The fault model derived is then used to estimate the recurrence of large earthquakes using the fault slip rates obtained by Cunha et al. (2012 from thin-sheet neotectonic modelling. Finally we evaluate the consistency of seismicity rates derived from historical and instrumental catalogues with the convergence rates between Eurasia and Nubia given by plate kinematic models.

  3. Preliminary results of local earthquake tomography around Bali, Lombok, and Sumbawa regions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nugraha, Andri Dian, E-mail: nugraha@gf.itb.ac.id; Puspito, Nanang T; Yudistira, Tedi [Global Geophysical Reserach Group, Faculty of Mining and Petroleum Engineering, Institute of Technology Bandung, JlGanesa 10, Bandung, 40132 (Indonesia); Kusnandar, Ridwan; Sakti, Artadi Pria [Meteorological, Climatological, and Geophysical Agency (MCGA) of Indonesian, Jakarta (Indonesia)

    2015-04-24

    Bali, Sumbawa, and Lombok regions are located in active tectonic influence by Indo-Australia plate subducts beneath Sunda plate in southern part and local back-arc thrust in northern part the region. Some active volcanoes also lie from eastern part of Java, Bali, Lombok and Sumbawa regions. Previous studies have conducted subsurface seismic velocity imaging using regional and global earthquake data around the region. In this study, we used P-arrival time from local earthquake networks compiled by MCGA, Indonesia within time periods of 2009 up to 2013 to determine seismic velocity structure and simultaneously hypocenter adjustment by applying seismic tomography inversion method. For the tomographic inversion procedure, we started from 1-D initial velocity structure. We evaluated the resolution of tomography inversion results through checkerboard test and calculating derivative weigh sum. The preliminary results of tomography inversion show fairly clearly high seismic velocity subducting Indo-Australian and low velocity anomaly around volcano regions. The relocated hypocenters seem to cluster around the local fault system such as back-arc thrust fault in northern part of the region and around local fault in Sumbawa regions. Our local earthquake tomography results demonstrated consistent with previous studies and improved the resolution. For future works, we will determine S-wave velocity structure using S-wave arrival time to enhance our understanding of geological processes and for much better interpretation.

  4. Earthquake prediction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ward, P.L.

    1978-01-01

    The state of the art of earthquake prediction is summarized, the possible responses to such prediction are examined, and some needs in the present prediction program and in research related to use of this new technology are reviewed. Three basic aspects of earthquake prediction are discussed: location of the areas where large earthquakes are most likely to occur, observation within these areas of measurable changes (earthquake precursors) and determination of the area and time over which the earthquake will occur, and development of models of the earthquake source in order to interpret the precursors reliably. 6 figures

  5. PRESENTDAY STRESS STATE OF THE SHANXI TECTONIC BELT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wang Kaiying

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The Shanxi tectonic belt is a historically earthquakeabundant area. For the majority of strong earthquakes in this area, the distribution of earthquake foci was controlled by the N–S oriented local structures on the tectonic belt. Studies of the present stress state of the Shanxi tectonic belt can contribute to the understanding of the relationship between strong earthquakes’ occurrence and their structural distribution and also facilitate assessments of regional seismic danger and determination of the regions wherein strong earthquakes may occur in future. Using the Cataclastic Analysis Method (CAM, we performed stress inversion based on the focal mechanism data of earthquakes which took place in the Shanxi tectonic belt from 1967 to 2010. Our results show that orientations of the maximum principal compressive stress axis of the Shanxi tectonic belt might have been variable before and after the 2001 Kunlun MS=8.1 strong earthquake, with two different superior trends of the NW–SE and NE–SW orientation in different periods. When the maximum principal compressive stress axis is oriented in the NE–SW direction, the pattern of the space distribution of the seismic events in the Shanxi tectonic belt shows a trend of their concentration in the N–S oriented tectonic segments. At the same time, the stress state is registered as horizontal shearing and horizontal extension in the N–S and NE–SW oriented local segments in turn. When the maximum principal compressive stress axis is NW–SE oriented, the stress state of the N–S and NE–SW oriented tectonic segments is primarily registered as horizontal shearing. Estimations of plunges of stress axes show that seismicity in the Shanxi belt  corresponds primarily to the activity of lowangle faults, and highangle stress sites are located in the NE–SW oriented extensional tectonic segments of the Shanxi belt. This indicates that the stress change of the Shanxi belt is

  6. Stress triggering of the Lushan M7. 0 earthquake by the Wenchuan Ms8. 0 earthquake

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wu Jianchao

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available The Wenchuan Ms8. 0 earthquake and the Lushan M7. 0 earthquake occurred in the north and south segments of the Longmenshan nappe tectonic belt, respectively. Based on the focal mechanism and finite fault model of the Wenchuan Ms8. 0 earthquake, we calculated the coulomb failure stress change. The inverted coulomb stress changes based on the Nishimura and Chenji models both show that the Lushan M7. 0 earthquake occurred in the increased area of coulomb failure stress induced by the Wenchuan Ms8. 0 earthquake. The coulomb failure stress increased by approximately 0. 135 – 0. 152 bar in the source of the Lushan M7. 0 earthquake, which is far more than the stress triggering threshold. Therefore, the Lushan M7. 0 earthquake was most likely triggered by the coulomb failure stress change.

  7. Locating Very-Low-Frequency Earthquakes in the San Andreas Fault.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peña-Castro, A. F.; Harrington, R. M.; Cochran, E. S.

    2016-12-01

    The portion of tectonic fault where rheological properties transtition from brittle to ductile hosts a variety of seismic signals suggesting a range of slip velocities. In subduction zones, the two dominantly observed seismic signals include very-low frequency earthquakes ( VLFEs), and low-frequency earthquakes (LFEs) or tectonic tremor. Tremor and LFE are also commonly observed in transform faults, however, VLFEs have been reported dominantly in subduction zone environments. Here we show some of the first known observations of VLFEs occurring on a plate boundary transform fault, the San Andreas Fault (SAF) between the Cholame-Parkfield segment in California. We detect VLFEs using both permanent and temporary stations in 2010-2011 within approximately 70 km of Cholame, California. We search continous waveforms filtered from 0.02-0.05 Hz, and remove time windows containing teleseismic events and local earthquakes, as identified in the global Centroid Moment Tensor (CMT) and the Northern California Seismic Network (NCSN) catalog. We estimate the VLFE locations by converting the signal into envelopes, and cross-correlating them for phase-picking, similar to procedures used for locating tectonic tremor. We first perform epicentral location using a grid search method and estimate a hypocenter location using Hypoinverse and a shear-wave velocity model when the epicenter is located close to the SAF trace. We account for the velocity contrast across the fault using separate 1D velocity models for stations on each side. Estimated hypocentral VLFE depths are similar to tremor catalog depths ( 15-30 km). Only a few VLFEs produced robust hypocentral locations, presumably due to the difficulty in picking accurate phase arrivals with such a low-frequency signal. However, for events for which no location could be obtained, the moveout of phase arrivals across the stations were similar in character, suggesting that other observed VLFEs occurred in close proximity.

  8. Catalog of Hawaiian earthquakes, 1823-1959

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Fred W.; Wright, Thomas L.

    2000-01-01

    This catalog of more than 17,000 Hawaiian earthquakes (of magnitude greater than or equal to 5), principally located on the Island of Hawaii, from 1823 through the third quarter of 1959 is designed to expand our ability to evaluate seismic hazard in Hawaii, as well as our knowledge of Hawaiian seismic rhythms as they relate to eruption cycles at Kilauea and Mauna Loa volcanoes and to subcrustal earthquake patterns related to the tectonic evolution of the Hawaiian chain.

  9. Studies of earthquakes stress drops, seismic scattering, and dynamic triggering in North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escudero Ayala, Christian Rene

    at 1.5, 3, 5, 7.5, 10.5, and 13.5 Hz. Coda Q present a great correlation with tectonic and geology setting, as well as the crustal thickness. I analyze global and Middle American Subduction Zone (MASZ) seismicity from 1998 to 2008 to quantify the transient stresses effects at teleseismic distances. I use the Bulletin of the International Seismological Centre Catalog (ISCCD) published by the Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology (IRIS). To identify MASZ seismicity changes due to distant, large (Mw ¿ 7) earthquakes, I first identify local earthquakes that occurred before and after the mainshocks. I then group the local earthquakes within a cluster radius between 75 to 200 km. I obtain statistics based on characteristics of both mainshocks and local earthquakes clusters, such as cluster-mainshock azimuth, mainshock focal mechanism, and local earthquakes clusters within the MASZ. Based on the lateral variations of the dip along the subducted oceanic plate, I divide the Mexican subduction zone into four segments. I then apply the Paired Samples Statistical Test (PSST) to the sorted data to identify increment, decrement or either in the local seismicity associated with distant large earthquakes passage of surface waves. I identify dynamic triggering for all MASZ segments produced by large earthquakes emerging from specific azimuths, as well as, a decrease for some cases. I find no dependence of seismicity changes on mainshock focal mechanism.

  10. Plate rotations, fault slip rates, fault locking, and distributed deformation in northern Central America from 1999-2017 GPS observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis, A. P.; DeMets, C.; Briole, P.; Cosenza, B.; Flores, O.; Guzman-Speziale, M.; Hernandez, D.; Kostoglodov, V.; La Femina, P. C.; Lord, N. E.; Lasserre, C.; Lyon-Caen, H.; McCaffrey, R.; Molina, E.; Rodriguez, M.; Staller, A.; Rogers, R.

    2017-12-01

    We describe plate rotations, fault slip rates, and fault locking estimated from a new 100-station GPS velocity field at the western end of the Caribbean plate, where the Motagua-Polochic fault zone, Middle America trench, and Central America volcanic arc faults converge. In northern Central America, fifty-one upper-plate earthquakes caused approximately 40,000 fatalities since 1900. The proximity of main population centers to these destructive earthquakes and the resulting loss of human life provide strong motivation for studying the present-day tectonics of Central America. Plate rotations, fault slip rates, and deformation are quantified via a two-stage inversion of daily GPS position time series using TDEFNODE modeling software. In the first stage, transient deformation associated with three M>7 earthquakes in 2009 and 2012 is estimated and removed from the GPS position time series. In Stage 2, linear velocities determined from the corrected GPS time series are inverted to estimate deformation within the western Caribbean plate, slip rates along the Motagua-Polochic faults and faults in the Central America volcanic arc, and the gradient of extension in the Honduras-Guatemala wedge. Major outcomes of the second inversion include the following: (1) Confirmation that slip rates on the Motagua fault decrease from 17-18 mm/yr at its eastern end to 0-5 mm/yr at its western end, in accord with previous results. (2) A transition from moderate subduction zone locking offshore from southern Mexico and parts of southern Guatemala to weak or zero coupling offshore from El Salvador and parts of Nicaragua along the Middle America trench. (3) Evidence for significant east-west extension in southern Guatemala between the Motagua fault and volcanic arc. Our study also shows evidence for creep on the eastern Motagua fault that diminishes westward along the North America-Caribbean plate boundary.

  11. Towards a Tectonic Approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hvejsel, Marie Frier; Kirkegaard, Poul Henning; Mortensen, Sophie Bondgaard

    2015-01-01

    through this transformation is inevitably a tectonic question. By analyzing three historical examples, Adolf Loos’ Villa Moller, Le Corbusier’s Unité d’Habitation, and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Johnson Wax Administration Building, chosen for their tectonic ability to exploit the technical ‘principle’ defining...

  12. Digital Tectonic Tools

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schmidt, Anne Marie Due

    2005-01-01

    Tectonics has been an inherent part of the architectural field since the Greek temples while the digital media is new to the field. This paper is built on the assumption that in the intermediate zone between the two there is a lot to be learned about architecture in general and the digital media...... in particular. A model of the aspects in the term tectonics – epresentation, ontology and culture – will be presented and used to discuss the current digital tools’ ability in tectonics. Furthermore it will be discussed what a digital tectonic tool is and could be and how a connection between the digital...... and tectonic could become a part of the architectural education....

  13. Shallow very-low-frequency earthquakes accompany slow slip events in the Nankai subduction zone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakano, Masaru; Hori, Takane; Araki, Eiichiro; Kodaira, Shuichi; Ide, Satoshi

    2018-03-14

    Recent studies of slow earthquakes along plate boundaries have shown that tectonic tremor, low-frequency earthquakes, very-low-frequency events (VLFEs), and slow-slip events (SSEs) often accompany each other and appear to share common source faults. However, the source processes of slow events occurring in the shallow part of plate boundaries are not well known because seismic observations have been limited to land-based stations, which offer poor resolution beneath offshore plate boundaries. Here we use data obtained from seafloor observation networks in the Nankai trough, southwest of Japan, to investigate shallow VLFEs in detail. Coincident with the VLFE activity, signals indicative of shallow SSEs were detected by geodetic observations at seafloor borehole observatories in the same region. We find that the shallow VLFEs and SSEs share common source regions and almost identical time histories of moment release. We conclude that these slow events arise from the same fault slip and that VLFEs represent relatively high-frequency fluctuations of slip during SSEs.

  14. Safety requirements for buildings under induced earthquakes due to gas extraction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Steenbergen, R.D.J.M.; Vrouwenvelder, A.C.W.M.

    2017-01-01

    In the Dutch province of Groningen over the last year shallow earthquakes are induced due to large scale gas extraction from the gas field at 3 km depth. The induced earthquakes differ from the better known tectonic earthquakes all over the world, caused by movement of the earth at large depths. The

  15. Spatial variations of current tectonic stress field and its relationship to the structure and rheology of lithosphere around the Bohai Sea, North China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xianrui; Wang, Jie; Zeng, Zuoxun; Dai, Qingqin

    2017-05-01

    The tectonic stress field in the middle-upper crust is closely related to the structure and rheology of the lithosphere. To determine the stress field in the deep crust, we inversed the focal mechanism solutions (FMSs) of 62 earthquakes that occurred between 2009 and 2015 in the Bohai Sea and its surrounding areas using broadband seismic waveforms collected from 140 stations. We then derived the tectonic stress field using the software SATSI (Spatial And Temporal Stress Inversion) based on the damped linear inversion method. The inversion results show that both the maximum (σ1) and minimum (σ3) principle stress axes throughout the entire region are nearly horizontal except in the Tangshan and Haicheng areas, suggesting that the study area is predominantly under a strike-slip faulting stress regime. The σ1 and σ3 axes are found to be oriented in the NEE-SWW or nearly E-W and NNW-SSE or nearly S-N directions, respectively. These results indicate that the stress field in the North China Craton is controlled by the combined effects of the Pacific Plate westward subduction and the India-Eurasia Plate collision. However, localized normal faulting stress regimes (where the vertical stress σv ≈ σ1) are observed in the Tangshan and Haicheng areas, where low viscosity bodies (LVBs) were identified using geophysical data. Based on the analysis of focal mechanism solutions, active faults and lithosphere rheology characteristics in the Tangshan and Haicheng areas, we speculate that the anomalous stress regime is caused by the local extension resulting from the movement of strike-slip faults under the action of the regional stress field. The existence of LVB may indicate weakness in the crust that favors the accumulation of tectonic stress and triggers large earthquakes.

  16. The EarthScope Plate Boundary Observatory and allied networks, the makings of nascent Earthquake and Tsunami Early Warning System in Western North America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattioli, Glen; Mencin, David; Hodgkinson, Kathleen; Meertens, Charles; Phillips, David; Blume, Fredrick; Berglund, Henry; Fox, Otina; Feaux, Karl

    2016-04-01

    The NSF-funded GAGE Facility, managed by UNAVCO, operates approximately ~1300 GNSS stations distributed across North and Central America and in the circum-Caribbean. Following community input starting in 2011 from several workshops and associated reports,UNAVCO has been exploring ways to increase the capability and utility of the geodetic resources under its management to improve our understanding in diverse areas of geophysics including properties of seismic, volcanic, magmatic and tsunami deformation sources. Networks operated by UNAVCO for the NSF have the potential to profoundly transform our ability to rapidly characterize events, provide rapid characterization and warning, as well as improve hazard mitigation and response. Specific applications currently under development include earthquake early warning, tsunami early warning, and tropospheric modeling with university, commercial, non-profit and government partners on national and international scales. In the case of tsunami early warning, for example, an RT-GNSS network can provide multiple inputs in an operational system starting with rapid assessment of earthquake sources and associated deformation, which leads to the initial model of ocean forcing and tsunami generation. In addition, terrestrial GNSScan provide direct measurements of the tsunami through the associated traveling ionospheric disturbance from several 100's of km away as they approach the shoreline,which can be used to refine tsunami inundation models. Any operational system like this has multiple communities that rely on a pan-Pacific real-time open data set. Other scientific and operational applications for high-rate GPS include glacier and ice sheet motions, tropospheric modeling, and better constraints on the dynamics of space weather. Combining existing data sets and user communities, for example seismic data and tide gauge observations, with GNSS and Met data products has proven complicated because of issues related to metadata

  17. WAVE TECTONICS OF THE EARTH

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatiana Yu. Tveretinova

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available In the Earth's lithosphere, wavy alternation of positive and negative heterochronous structures is revealed; such structures are variable in ranks and separated by vergence zones of fractures and folds. In the vertical profile of the lithosphere, alternating are layers characterized by relatively plastic or fragile rheological properties and distinguished by different states of stress. During the Earth’s evolution, epochs of compression and extension are cyclically repeated, including planetary-scale phenomena which are manifested by fluctuating changes of the planet’s volume. Migration of geological and geophysical (geodynamic processes takes place at the Earth's surface and in its interior. The concept of the wave structure and evolution of the Earth's lithosphere provides explanations to the abovementioned regularities. Wavy nature of tectonic structures of the lithosphere, the cyclic recurrence of migration and geological processes in space and time can be described in terms of the multiple-order wave geodynamics of the Earth's lithosphere that refers to periodical variations of the state of stress. Effects of structure-forming tectonic forces are determined by «interference» of tangential and radial stresses of the Earth. The tangential stresses, which occur primarily due to the rotational regime of the planet, cause transformations of the Earth’s shape, redistributions of its substance in depths, the westward drift of the rock mass in its upper levels, and changes of structural deformation plans. The radial stresses, which are largely impacted by gravity, determine the gravitational differentiation of the substance, vertical flattening and sub-horizontal flow of the rock masses, and associated fold-rupture deformation. Under the uniform momentum geodynamic concept proposed by [Vikulin, Tveritinova, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008], it is possible to provide consistent descriptions of seismic and volcanic, tectonic and geological processes

  18. Extending Whole-earth Tectonics To The Terrestrial Planets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, V. R.; Maruyama, S.; Dohm, J. M.

    Based on the need to explain a great many geological and geophysical anomalies on Mars, and stimulated by the new results from the Mars Global Surveyor Mission, we propose a conceptual model of whole-EARTH (Episodic Annular Revolving Thermal Hydrologic) tectonics for the long-term evolution of terrestrial planets. The theory emphasizes (1) the importance of water in planetary evolution, and (2) the physi- cal transitions in modes of mantle convection in relation to planetary heat produc- tion. Depending on their first-order geophysical parameters and following accretion and differentiation from volatile-rich planetessimals, terrestrial planets should evolve through various stages of mantle convection, including magma ocean, plate tectonic, and stagnant lid processes. If a water ocean is able to condense from the planet's early steam atmosphere, an early regime of plate tectonics will follow the initial magma ocean. This definitely happened on earth, probably on Mars, and possibly on Venus. The Mars history led to transfer of large amounts of water to the mantle during the pe- riod of heavy bombardment. Termination of plate tectonics on Mars during the heavy bombardment period led to initiation of superplumes at Tharsis and Elysium, where long-persistent volcanism and water outbursts dominated much of later Martian his- tory. For Venus, warming of the early sun made the surface ocean unstable, eliminating its early plate-tectonic regime. Although Venus now experiences stagnant-lid convec- tion with episodic mantle overturns, the water subducted to its lower mantle during the ancient plate-tectonic regime manifests itself in the initation of volatile-rich plumes that dominate its current tectonic regime.

  19. Slow Earthquakes in the Alaska-Aleutian Subduction Zone Detected by Multiple Mini Seismic Arrays

    Science.gov (United States)

    LI, B.; Ghosh, A.; Thurber, C. H.; Lanza, F.

    2017-12-01

    The Alaska-Aleutian subduction zone is one of the most seismically and volcanically active plate boundaries on earth. Compared to other subduction zones, the slow earthquakes, such as tectonic tremors (TTs) and low frequency earthquakes (LFEs), are relatively poorly studied due to the limited data availability and difficult logistics. The analysis of two-months of continuous data from a mini array deployed in 2012 shows abundant tremor and LFE activities under Unalaska Island that is heterogeneously distributed [Li & Ghosh, 2017]. To better study slow earthquakes and understand their physical characteristics in the study region, we deployed a hybrid array of arrays, consisting of three well-designed mini seismic arrays and five stand alone stations, in the Unalaska Island in 2014. They were operational for between one and two years. Using the beam back-projection method [Ghosh et al., 2009, 2012], we detect continuous tremor activities for over a year when all three arrays are running. The sources of tremors are located south of the Unalaska and Akutan Islands, at the eastern and down-dip edge of the rupture zone of the 1957 Mw 8.6 earthquake, and they are clustered in several patches, with a gap between the two major clusters. Tremors show multiple migration patterns with propagation in both along-strike and dip directions and a wide range of velocities. We also identify tens of LFE families and use them as templates to search for repeating LFE events with the matched-filter method. Hundreds to thousands of LFEs for each family are detected and their activities are spatiotemporally consistent with tremor activities. The array techniques are revealing a near-continuous tremor activity in this area with remarkable spatiotemporal details. It helps us to better recognize the physical properties of the transition zone, provides new insights into the slow earthquake activities in this area, and explores their relation with the local earthquakes and the potential slow

  20. My Road to Transform Faulting 1963; Long-Term Precursors to Recent Great Earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sykes, L. R.

    2017-12-01

    My road to plate tectonics started serendipitously in 1963 in a remote area of the southeast Pacific when I was studying the propagation of short-period seismic surface waves for my PhD. The earthquakes I used as sources were poorly located. I discovered that my relocated epicenters followed the crest of the East Pacific Rise but then suddenly took a sharp turn to the east at what I interpreted to be a major fracture zone 1000 km long before turning again to the north near 55 degrees south. I noted that earthquakes along that zone only occurred between the two ridge crests, an observation Tuzo Wilson used to develop his hypothesis of transform faulting. Finding a great, unknown fracture zone led me to conclude that work on similar faults that intersect the Mid-Oceanic Ridge System was more important than my study of surface waves. I found similar great faults over the next two years and obtained refined locations of earthquakes along several island arcs. When I was in Fiji and Tonga during 1965 studying deep earthquakes, James Dorman wrote to me about Wilson's paper and I thought about testing his hypothesis. I started work on it the spring of 1966 immediately after I learned about the symmetrical "magic magnetic anomaly profile" across the East Pacific Rise of Pitman and Heirtzler. I quickly obtained earthquake mechanisms that verified the transform hypothesis and its related concepts of seafloor spreading and continental drift. As an undergraduate in the late 1950s, my mentor told me that respectable young earth scientists should not work on vague and false mobilistic concepts like continental drift since continents cannot plow through strong oceanic crust. Hence, until spring 1966, I did not take continental drift seriously. The second part of my presentation involves new evidence from seismology and GPS of what appear to be long-term precursors to a number of great earthquakes of the past decade.

  1. Volcanism/tectonics working group summary

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kovach, L.A.; Young, S.R.

    1995-01-01

    This article is a summary of the proceedings of a group discussion which took place at the Workshop on the Role of Natural Analogs in Geologic Disposal of High-Level Nuclear Waste in San Antonio, Texas on July 22-25, 1991. The working group concentrated on the subject of the impacts of earthquakes, fault rupture, and volcanic eruption on the underground repository disposal of high-level radioactive wastes. The tectonics and seismic history of the Yucca Mountain site in Nevada is discussed and geologic analogs to that site are described

  2. Tectonic movements monitored in the Bohemian Massif

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Košťák, Blahoslav; Mrlina, Jan; Stemberk, Josef; Chán, Bohumil

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 52, č. 1 (2011), s. 34-44 ISSN 0264-3707 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/09/2024; GA AV ČR IBS3012353; GA AV ČR IAA300120905; GA MŠk OC 625.10 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z30460519; CEZ:AV0Z30120515 Keywords : pressure pulse * tectonic displacement * earthquake micro swarm Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy Impact factor: 2.007, year: 2011

  3. Intraplate Earthquakes and Deformation within the East Antarctic Craton

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lough, A. C.; Wiens, D.; Nyblade, A.

    2017-12-01

    The apparent lack of tectonic seismicity within Antarctica has long been discussed. Explanations have ranged from a lack of intraplate stress due to the surrounding spreading ridges and low absolute plate velocity (Sykes, 1978), to the weight of ice sheets increasing the vertical normal stress (Johnston, 1987). The 26 station GAMSEIS/AGAP array deployed in East Antarctica from late 2008 to early 2010 provides the first opportunity to study the intraplate seismicity of the Antarctic interior using regional data. Here we report 27 intraplate tectonic earthquakes that occurred during 2009. Depth determination together with their corresponding uncertainty estimates, show that most events originate in the shallow to middle crust, indicating a tectonic and not a cryoseismic origin. The earthquakes are primarily located beneath linear alignments of basins adjacent to the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains (GSM) that have been denoted as the East Antarctic rift system (Ferraccioli et al, 2011). The geophysical properties of the `rift' system contrast sharply with those of the GSM and Vostok Subglacial Highlands on either side. Crustal thickness, seismic velocity, and gravity anomalies all indicate large lateral variation in lithospheric properties. We propose the events outline an ancient continental rift, a terrain boundary feature, or a combination of the two where rifting exploited pre-existing weakness. It is natural to draw parallels between East Antarctica and the St. Lawrence depression where rifting and a collisional suture focus intraplate earthquakes within a craton (Schulte and Mooney, 2005). We quantify the East Antarctic seismicity by developing a frequency-magnitude relation, constraining the lower magnitudes with the 2009 results and the larger magnitudes with 1982-2012 teleseismic seismicity. East Antarctica and the Canadian Shield show statistically indistinguishable b-values (near 1) and seismicity rates as expressed as the number of events with mb > 4 per

  4. Volcanic and Tectonic Activity in the Red Sea Region (2004-2013): Insights from Satellite Radar Interferometry and Optical Imagery

    KAUST Repository

    Xu, Wenbin

    2015-04-01

    Studying recent volcanic and tectonic events in the Red Sea region is important for improving our knowledge of the Red Sea plate boundary and for regional geohazard assessments. However, limited information has been available about the past activity due to insufficient in-situ data and remoteness of some of the activity. In this dissertation, I have used satellite remote sensing to derive new information about several recent volcanic and tectonic events in the Red Sea region. I first report on three volcanic eruptions in the southern Red Sea, the 2007-8 Jebel at Tair eruption and the 2011-12 & 2013 Zubair eruptions, which resulted in formation of two new islands. Series of high- resolution optical images were used to map the extent of lava flows and to observe and analyze the growth and destructive processes of the new islands. I used Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) data to study the evolution of lava flows, to estimate their volumes, as well as to generate ground displacements maps, which were used to model the dikes that fed the eruptions. I then report on my work of the 2009 Harrat Lunayyir dike intrusion and the 2004 Tabuk earthquake sequence in western Saudi Arabia. I used InSAR observations and stress calculations to study the intruding dike at Harrat Lunayyir, while I combined InSAR data and Bayesian estimation to study the Tabuk earthquake activity. The key findings of the thesis are: 1) The recent volcanic eruptions in the southern Red Sea indicate that the area is magmatically more active than previously acknowledged and that a rifting episode has been taken place in the southern Red Sea; 2) Stress interactions between an ascending dike intrusion and normal faulting on graben-bounding faults above the dike can inhibit vertical propagation of magma towards the surface; 3) InSAR observations can improve locations of shallow earthquakes and fault model uncertainties are useful to associate earthquake activity with mapped faults; 4). The

  5. A new estimate for present-day Cocos-Caribbean Plate motion: Implications for slip along the Central American Volcanic Arc

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeMets, Charles

    Velocities from 153 continuously-operating GPS sites on the Caribbean, North American, and Pacific plates are combined with 61 newly estimated Pacific-Cocos seafloor spreading rates and additional marine geophysical data to derive a new estimate of present-day Cocos-Caribbean plate motion. A comparison of the predicted Cocos-Caribbean direction to slip directions of numerous shallow-thrust subduction earthquakes from the Middle America trench between Costa Rica and Guatemala shows the slip directions to be deflected 10° clockwise from the plate convergence direction, supporting the hypothesis that frequent dextral strike-slip earthquakes along the Central American volcanic arc result from partitioning of oblique Cocos-Caribbean plate convergence. Linear velocity analysis for forearc locations in Nicaragua and Guatemala predicts 14±2 mm yr-1 of northwestward trench-parallel slip of the forearc relative to the Caribbean plate, possibly decreasing in magnitude in El Salvador and Guatemala, where extension east of the volcanic arc complicates the tectonic setting.

  6. Tectonic predictions with mantle convection models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coltice, Nicolas; Shephard, Grace E.

    2018-04-01

    Over the past 15 yr, numerical models of convection in Earth's mantle have made a leap forward: they can now produce self-consistent plate-like behaviour at the surface together with deep mantle circulation. These digital tools provide a new window into the intimate connections between plate tectonics and mantle dynamics, and can therefore be used for tectonic predictions, in principle. This contribution explores this assumption. First, initial conditions at 30, 20, 10 and 0 Ma are generated by driving a convective flow with imposed plate velocities at the surface. We then compute instantaneous mantle flows in response to the guessed temperature fields without imposing any boundary conditions. Plate boundaries self-consistently emerge at correct locations with respect to reconstructions, except for small plates close to subduction zones. As already observed for other types of instantaneous flow calculations, the structure of the top boundary layer and upper-mantle slab is the dominant character that leads to accurate predictions of surface velocities. Perturbations of the rheological parameters have little impact on the resulting surface velocities. We then compute fully dynamic model evolution from 30 and 10 to 0 Ma, without imposing plate boundaries or plate velocities. Contrary to instantaneous calculations, errors in kinematic predictions are substantial, although the plate layout and kinematics in several areas remain consistent with the expectations for the Earth. For these calculations, varying the rheological parameters makes a difference for plate boundary evolution. Also, identified errors in initial conditions contribute to first-order kinematic errors. This experiment shows that the tectonic predictions of dynamic models over 10 My are highly sensitive to uncertainties of rheological parameters and initial temperature field in comparison to instantaneous flow calculations. Indeed, the initial conditions and the rheological parameters can be good enough

  7. Pennsylvania seismic monitoring network and related tectonic studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alexander, S.S.

    1991-06-01

    This report summarizes the results of the operation of the Pennsylvania Seismic Monitoring Network during the interval May 1, 1983--March 31, 1985 to monitor seismic activity in Pennsylvania and surrounding areas, to characterize the earthquake activity in terms of controlling tectonic structures and related tectonic stress conditions in the crust, and to obtain improved crustal velocity models for hypocentral determinations. Most of the earthquake activity was concentrated in the Lancaster, PA area. The magnitude 4.2 mainshock that occurred there on April 23, 1984 was the largest ever recorded instrumentally and its intensity of VI places it among the largest in the historic record for that area. Other activity during the monitoring interval of this report was confined to eastern Pennsylvania. The very large number of quarry explosions that occur regularly in Pennsylvania account for most of the seismic events recorded and they provide important crustal velocity data that are needed to obtain accurate hypocenter estimates. In general the earthquakes that occurred are located in areas of past historic seismicity. Block-tectonic structures resulting from pre-Ordovician tectonic displacements appear to influence the distribution of contemporary seismicity in Pennsylvania and surrounding areas. 17 refs., 5 figs

  8. An ongoing earthquake sequence near Dhaka, Bangladesh, from regional recordings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howe, M.; Mondal, D. R.; Akhter, S. H.; Kim, W.; Seeber, L.; Steckler, M. S.

    2013-12-01

    Earthquakes in and around the syntaxial region between the continent-continent collision of the Himalayan arc and oceanic subduction of the Sunda arc result primarily from the convergence of India and Eurasia-Sunda plates along two fronts. The northern front, the convergence of the Indian and Eurasian plates, has produced the Himalayas. The eastern front, the convergence of the Indian and Sunda plates, ranges from ocean-continent subduction at the Andaman Arc and Burma Arc, and transitions to continent-continent collision to the north at the Assam Syntaxis in northeast India. The India-Sunda convergence at the Burma Arc is extremely oblique. The boundary-normal convergence rate is ~17 mm/yr while the boundary-parallel rate is ~45 mm/yr including the well-known Sagaing strike-slip fault, which accommodates about half the shear component. This heterogeneous tectonic setting produces multiple earthquake sources that need to be considered when assessing seismic hazard and risk in this region. The largest earthquakes, just as in other subduction systems, are expected to be interplate events that occur on the low-angle megathrusts, such as the Mw 9.2 2004 Sumatra-Andaman earthquake and the 1762 earthquake along the Arakan margin. These earthquakes are known to produce large damage over vast areas, but since they account for large fault motions they are relatively rare. The majority of current seismicity in the study area is intraplate. Most of the seismicity associated with the Burma Arc subduction system is in the down-going slab, including the shallow-dipping part below the megathrust flooring the accretionary wedge. The strike of the wedge is ~N-S and Dhaka lies at its outer limit. One particular source relevant to seismic risk in Dhaka is illuminated by a multi-year sequence of earthquakes in Bangladesh less than 100 km southeast of Dhaka. The population in Dhaka (now at least 15 million) has been increasing dramatically due to rapid urbanization. The vulnerability

  9. News and Views: Keep it down! AU becomes au, and is defined in metres; Kepler survey announces two planets in a binary star system; Is there plate tectonics on Mars? Vaporizing Earth - for research!

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-10-01

    Division 1 of the IAU recommended that the astronomical unit - originally the length of the semi-major axis of the Earth's orbit - be redefined as a fixed number of kilometres. A team of observers using data from NASA's Kepler space observatory announced at the IAU General Assembly that they had discovered two planets orbiting a pair of binary stars, and that such planets could exist in the habitable zone of their system. The Red Planet has long been considered something of a dead planet as far as tectonic movements of its crust, but careful analysis of thermal and topographic images of the surface suggest the existence of major faults with horizontal slip along the Valles Marineris. The question of what would happen if Earth were to approach the Sun and start vaporizing has been modelled in order to help to model the composition of super-Earths.

  10. Large earthquakes and creeping faults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Ruth A.

    2017-01-01

    Faults are ubiquitous throughout the Earth's crust. The majority are silent for decades to centuries, until they suddenly rupture and produce earthquakes. With a focus on shallow continental active-tectonic regions, this paper reviews a subset of faults that have a different behavior. These unusual faults slowly creep for long periods of time and produce many small earthquakes. The presence of fault creep and the related microseismicity helps illuminate faults that might not otherwise be located in fine detail, but there is also the question of how creeping faults contribute to seismic hazard. It appears that well-recorded creeping fault earthquakes of up to magnitude 6.6 that have occurred in shallow continental regions produce similar fault-surface rupture areas and similar peak ground shaking as their locked fault counterparts of the same earthquake magnitude. The behavior of much larger earthquakes on shallow creeping continental faults is less well known, because there is a dearth of comprehensive observations. Computational simulations provide an opportunity to fill the gaps in our understanding, particularly of the dynamic processes that occur during large earthquake rupture and arrest.

  11. Historical earthquake investigations in Greece

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Makropoulos

    2004-06-01

    Full Text Available The active tectonics of the area of Greece and its seismic activity have always been present in the country?s history. Many researchers, tempted to work on Greek historical earthquakes, have realized that this is a task not easily fulfilled. The existing catalogues of strong historical earthquakes are useful tools to perform general SHA studies. However, a variety of supporting datasets, non-uniformly distributed in space and time, need to be further investigated. In the present paper, a review of historical earthquake studies in Greece is attempted. The seismic history of the country is divided into four main periods. In each one of them, characteristic examples, studies and approaches are presented.

  12. Depths of Intraplate Indian Ocean Earthquakes from Waveform Modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baca, A. J.; Polet, J.

    2014-12-01

    The Indian Ocean is a region of complex tectonics and anomalous seismicity. The ocean floor in this region exhibits many bathymetric features, most notably the multiple inactive fracture zones within the Wharton Basin and the Ninetyeast Ridge. The 11 April 2012 MW 8.7 and 8.2 strike-slip events that took place in this area are unique because their rupture appears to have extended to a depth where brittle failure, and thus seismic activity, was considered to be impossible. We analyze multiple intraplate earthquakes that have occurred throughout the Indian Ocean to better constrain their focal depths in order to enhance our understanding of how deep intraplate events are occurring and more importantly determine if the ruptures are originating within a ductile regime. Selected events are located within the Indian Ocean away from major plate boundaries. A majority are within the deforming Indo-Australian tectonic plate. Events primarily display thrust mechanisms with some strike-slip or a combination of the two. All events are between MW5.5-6.5. Event selections were handled this way in order to facilitate the analysis of teleseismic waveforms using a point source approximation. From these criteria we gathered a suite of 15 intraplate events. Synthetic seismograms of direct P-waves and depth phases are computed using a 1-D propagator matrix approach and compared with global teleseismic waveform data to determine a best depth for each event. To generate our synthetic seismograms we utilized the CRUST1.0 software, a global crustal model that generates velocity values at the hypocenter of our events. Our waveform analysis results reveal that our depths diverge from the Global Centroid Moment Tensor (GCMT) depths, which underestimate our deep lithosphere events and overestimate our shallow depths by as much as 17 km. We determined a depth of 45km for our deepest event. We will show a comparison of our final earthquake depths with the lithospheric thickness based on

  13. Deformation of the Northwestern Okhotsk Plate: How is it happening?

    OpenAIRE

    Hindle, D.; Fujita, K.; Mackey, K.

    2009-01-01

    The Eurasia (EU) – North America (NA) plate boundary zone across Northeast Asia still presents many open questions within the plate tectonic paradigm. Constraining the geometry and number of plates or microplates present in the plate boundary zone is especially difficult because of the location of the EU-NA euler pole close to or even upon the EU-NA boundary. One of the major challenges remains the geometry of the Okhotsk plate (OK). whose northwestern portion terminates on ...

  14. Long-term evolution of the Campine area in Northern Belgium: past and expected future evolution of tectonics and climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    De Craen, M.; Beerten, K.; Brassinnes, S.; Wouters, L.

    2012-01-01

    Document available in extended abstract form only. Disposal of radioactive waste in a geological repository involves the reliance, now and in the long-term future, on the geological and hydrogeological environment. In preparation of the safety and feasibility case 1 (SFC1), the long-term geodynamic evolution of Boom Clay and its geological environment in the Campine area in northern Belgium is studied. Time frames considered are the geological past and the future 1 million year. The idea is that the past long-term evolution can be extended to predict what might happen in the future. In this paper, we first focusses on the past long-term tectonic evolution of the Campine area, and make an extrapolation for the future 1 Ma. We then focus on past climate evolution, and similarly, an assessment of possible future climate conditions is made for the Campine area within the next 1 Ma. Another paper focusses on the combined effect of tectonics and climate on the evolution of the surface environment in the Campine area for the next 1 Ma, with respect to geomorphological, pedological and hydrological processes. During the Palaeozoic, the geodynamic evolution of the Campine area was mainly determined by tectonics. A large intermittently subsiding sedimentary basin existed in which large amounts of sediments were deposited, and which was protected by the Brabant Massif from major oro-genetic compressive processes. Palaeozoic sediments in the Campine Basin reach a maximum thickness of 4000 m. During Mesozoic and Cenozoic, its geodynamic evolution was the interactive result of plate tectonics, sea level changes and climate evolution. Further subsidence resulted in a thick sequence of sedimentary deposits. Mesozoic sediments are found throughout the Campine area while remains of Jurassic-Triassic sediments are found only in the central Roer Valley Graben in the east. The Cenozoic is characterised by a succession of sub-horizontal layers of Tertiary clays and sands and covered by

  15. Results from the Geodetic Observatory TIGO due to the Mw 8.8 Earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hase, H.; Böer, A.; Sierk, B.; Ihde, J.; Weber, G.; Wilmes, H.; Falk, R.; Hessels, U.; Neumaier, P.; Söhne, W.; Wziontek, H.; Engelhard, G.; Sobarzo, S.; Cifuentes, O.; Guaitiao, C.; Cona, I.; Avendaño, M.; Herrera, C.; Mora, V.; Fernandez, A.; Oñate, E.; Zaror, P.; Pedreros, F.; Zapata, O.

    2010-12-01

    The Geodetic Observatory TIGO is unique in Latin America. With its sensors and instruments it defines a reference point in the time, space and gravity field domain. Its operation started in 2002, for which reason data series documented the preseismic situation very well. With the Mw 8.8 earthquake on February 27, 2010, the entire observatory was exposed to strong motions due to its closeness to the epicenter. Since then the postseismic behaviour of the subduction zone can be studied and compared with the preseismic situation. TIGO provided continuous GPS/GLONASS data with 1s samples which give an insight to the mechanism of the decoupling of the Nazca and the South-American plate. The displacement of more than 3m had a duration of 30s at the beginning of the 147s duration of the earthquake. The displacement could be confirmed afterwards with VLBI and SLR methods. TIGO used its absolute gravity meter in an unusual way with weekly measurements on the same monument. These data show an irregularity during the last 3 weeks before the earthquake. Finally the postseismic movement to the west triggered by the earthquake and registered by geodetic space techniques indicate that the western expansion of the South-American plate did not stop yet. The pre- and post-seismic displacement vectors differ by less than 180° which might be explained by a fractional strike slip in the mega thrust. The coincidence of the epicenter with one of the keystations for global reference frames showed deficiencies by the linear modelling of tectonical movements in terrestial reference frames. This problem calls for near-real time reference frames.

  16. African Plate Seismicity and Gravity Field Anomalies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryzhii, B. P.; Nachapkin, N. I.; Milanovsky, Svet

    The analysis of connection plate of earthquakes of the African continent with Bouguer gravity anomalies is carried out. As input dataSs were used the catalog of earthquakes and numeral map of Bouguer gravity field. The catalog contains geographical coor- dinates of epicenters and magnitudes of 8027 earthquakes recorded on continent and adjacent oceanic areas for the period from 1904 to 1988 years. The values of a gravity field preset in knots of a grid with a step 1 grade. For the analysis of plate seismicity from the catalog the parameters of 6408 earthquakes were chosen, which one have taken place in the field of restricted shore line. The earthquakes fixed in a band of a concatenation of continent with the Arabian plate were excluded from the analysis. On the basis of a numeral gravity map for everyone epicenter the value of Bouguer anomaly was calculated. The allocation of epicenters of earthquakes with magnitude M is obtained depending on value of a gravity Bouguer field. The outcomes of a sta- tistical analysis testify that practically all earthquakes are associated with the areas with negative values of Bouguer gravity field. Thus in areas with values of a field -160 mgal to -100 mgal there was 80 % of all earthquakes. It is necessary to note, that the mean value of the field for the African continent is -70 mgal. Obtained result gives us the possibility to make a conclusion about connection of plate earthquakes of Africa predominantly with structural complexes of earth crust with lower density. These out- comes are in the consent with a hypothesis of one of the authors (Ryzhii B.P.) about connection of plate earthquakes hypocenters on the territory of Russia with negative values of a gravity field and heightened silica content in the Earth crust. This work was supported with RFFI grant N 00-05-65067

  17. Study On Aftershock Triggering In Consideration Of Tectonic Stress Field

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, C.; Cai, Y.

    2007-12-01

    : The occurrence of earthquake is related to the strength of rock and tectonic stress field. The seismic risk factor (SRF),D=\\left|{τn }\\right|/(μσn ) is proposed to describe the dangerous status of aftershock triggering in this paper. Dearthquakes, velocity field from GPS as well as geological survey. As one order of approximation, the magnitudes of the regional tectonic stress field can be estimated by the Coulomb failure criterion. Finite element method (FEM) and the concept of the factor D are used to study the aftershock triggering of the 1976 Tangshan Ms=7.8 earthquake. The results show that: (1) Most of the aftershocks triggered by the Tangshan earthquake occurred in the two-leaf-shaped regions of D≥ 1 near the north-east end of the main-shock fault. The largest leaf is about 100km long and 40km wide. (2) The areas of aftershock triggering predicted by the seismic risk factorD and Δ CFS (the changes in the Coulomb failure stress) are almost the same near the fault. The difference between them is that the aftershock area predicted by Δ CFS≥ 0 is too large and the area predicted by the factor D≥ 1 is limited. The areas of aftershock triggering predicted by Δ CFS≥ 0.04 MPa are nearly the same as those of D≥ 1 obtained by the study. (3) Sometimes Δ CFS =0.01MPa is taken as a low threshold of aftershock triggering. However, Δ CFS≥ 0 only means the probability increase of the earthquake triggering, not means the earthquake will occur. The earthquake occurrence is not only related to Δ CFS, but also to the tectonic stress field before the main-shock.

  18. Great earthquake potential in Oregon and Washington: An overview of recent coastal geologic studies and possible segmentation of the central Cascadia subduction zone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nelson, A.R.; Personius, S.F.

    1990-01-01

    Fundamental questions in earthquake hazards research in the Pacific Northwest concern the magnitude and recurrence of great earthquakes in the Cascadia subduction zone in Oregon and Washington. Geologic work of the last few years has produced convincing evidence for coseismic subsidence along the Washington and Oregon coasts. Regional subsidence recorded by estuarine deposits suggests that plate-interface earthquakes of at least M w 8 (>100-km-long ruptures) occurred during the late Holocene in northern Oregon and southern Washington. Differences in the types of coastal marsh sequences between northern and south-central Oregon, however, suggest that regional coastal subsidence does not extend south of about 45.5 degrees N along the Oregon coast. North of this latitude, the coast may intersect the seaward edge of a zone of coseismic subsidence that continues southward onshore. Alternatively, the Cascadia subduction zone is segmented near 44-45 degrees N; a segment boundary at this location would suggest that plate-interface events near M w 8 along the central CSZ would be more frequent than larger (M w 9) events. South of this boundary in the Coos Bay region, the tectonic framework developed through mapping and dating of marine and fluvial terraces indicates that many episodes of abrupt marsh burial in south-central Oregon are best interpreted as the product of deformation on local structures. Some of the local deformation could be associated with moderate earthquakes (M s <6). At most sites in south-central Oregon, however, it is still unclear whether coseismic events were responses to local faulting or folding, to regional deformation during great plate-interface earthquakes, or to both. This study has potential implications for risk assessments for light water reactors in North America

  19. Where and why do large shallow intraslab earthquakes occur?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seno, Tetsuzo; Yoshida, Masaki

    2004-03-01

    We try to find how often, and in what regions large earthquakes ( M≥7.0) occur within the shallow portion (20-60 km depth) of a subducting slab. Searching for events in published individual studies and the Harvard University centroid moment tensor catalogue, we find twenty such events in E. Hokkaido, Kyushu-SW, Japan, S. Mariana, Manila, Sumatra, Vanuatu, N. Chile, C. Peru, El Salvador, Mexico, N. Cascadia and Alaska. Slab stresses revealed from the mechanism solutions of these large intraslab events and nearby smaller events are almost always down-dip tensional. Except for E. Hokkaido, Manila, and Sumatra, the upper plate shows horizontal stress gradient in the arc-perpendicular direction. We infer that shear tractions are operating at the base of the upper plate in this direction to produce the observed gradient and compression in the outer fore-arc, balancing the down-dip tensional stress of the slab. This tectonic situation in the subduction zone might be realized as part of the convection system with some conditions, as shown by previous numerical simulations.

  20. Aftershocks of the India Republic Day Earthquake: the MAEC/ISTAR Temporary Seismograph Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bodin, P.; Horton, S.; Johnston, A.; Patterson, G.; Bollwerk, J.; Rydelek, P.; Steiner, G.; McGoldrick, C.; Budhbhatti, K. P.; Shah, R.; Macwan, N.

    2001-05-01

    The MW=7.7 Republic Day (26 January, 2001) earthquake on the Kachchh in western India initiated a strong sequence of small aftershocks. Seventeen days following the mainshock, we deployed a network of portable digital event recorders as a cooperative project of the Mid America Earthquake Center in the US and the Institute for Scientific and Technological Advanced Research. Our network consisted of 8 event-triggered Kinemetrics K2 seismographs with 6 data channels (3 accelerometer, 3 Mark L-28/3d seismometer) sampled at 200 Hz, and one continuously-recording Guralp CMG40TD broad-band seismometer sampled at 220 Hz. This network was in place for 18 days. Underlying our network deployment was the notion that because of its tectonic and geologic setting the Republic Day earthquake and its aftershocks might have source and/or propagation characteristics common to earthquakes in stable continental plate-interiors rather than those on plate boundaries or within continental mobile belts. Thus, our goals were to provide data that could be used to compare the Republic Day earthquake with other earthquakes. In particular, the objectives of our network deployment were: (1) to characterize the spatial distribution and occurrence rates of aftershocks, (2) to examine source characteristics of the aftershocks (stress-drops, focal mechanisms), (3) to study the effect of deep unconsolidated sediment on wave propagation, and (4) to determine if other faults (notably the Allah Bundh) were simultaneously active. Most of our sites were on Jurassic bedrock, and all were either free-field, or on the floor of light structures built on rock or with a thin soil cover. However, one of our stations was on a section of unconsolidated sediments hundreds of meters thick adjacent to a site that was subjected to shaking-induced sediment liquefaction during the mainshock. The largest aftershock reported by global networks was an MW=5.9 event on January 28, prior to our deployment. The largest

  1. Pleistocene slip rates on the Boconó fault along the North Andean Block plate boundary, Venezuela

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pousse-Beltran, Lea; Vassallo, Riccardo; Audemard, Franck; Jouanne, François; Carcaillet, Julien; Pathier, Erwan; Volat, Matthieu

    2017-07-01

    The Boconó fault is a strike-slip fault lying between the North Andean Block and the South American plate which has triggered at least five Mw > 7 historical earthquakes in Venezuela. The North Andean Block is currently moving toward NNE with respect to a stable South American plate. This relative displacement at 12 mm yr-1 in Venezuela (within the Maracaibo Block) was measured by geodesy, but until now the distribution and rates of Quaternary deformation have remained partially unclear. We used two alluvial fans offset by the Boconó fault (Yaracuy Valley) to quantify slip rates, by combining 10Be cosmogenic dating with measurements of tectonic displacements on high-resolution satellite images (Pleiades). Based upon a fan dated at >79 ka and offset by 1350-1580 m and a second fan dated at 120-273 ka and offset by 1236-1500 m, we obtained two Pleistocene rates of 5.0-11.2 and <20.0 mm yr-1, consistent with the regional geodesy. This indicates that the Boconó fault in the Yaracuy Valley accommodates 40 to 100% of the deformation between the South American plate and the Maracaibo Block. As no aseismic deformation was shown by interferometric synthetic aperture radar analysis, we assume that the fault is locked since the 1812 event. This implies that there is a slip deficit in the Yaracuy Valley since the last earthquake ranging from 1 to 4 m, corresponding to a Mw 7-7.6 earthquake. This magnitude is comparable to the 1812 earthquake and to other historical events along the Boconó fault.

  2. Simulating subduction zone earthquakes using discrete element method: a window into elusive source processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blank, D. G.; Morgan, J.

    2017-12-01

    Large earthquakes that occur on convergent plate margin interfaces have the potential to cause widespread damage and loss of life. Recent observations reveal that a wide range of different slip behaviors take place along these megathrust faults, which demonstrate both their complexity, and our limited understanding of fault processes and their controls. Numerical modeling provides us with a useful tool that we can use to simulate earthquakes and related slip events, and to make direct observations and correlations among properties and parameters that might control them. Further analysis of these phenomena can lead to a more complete understanding of the underlying mechanisms that accompany the nucleation of large earthquakes, and what might trigger them. In this study, we use the discrete element method (DEM) to create numerical analogs to subduction megathrusts with heterogeneous fault friction. Displacement boundary conditions are applied in order to simulate tectonic loading, which in turn, induces slip along the fault. A wide range of slip behaviors are observed, ranging from creep to stick slip. We are able to characterize slip events by duration, stress drop, rupture area, and slip magnitude, and to correlate the relationships among these quantities. These characterizations allow us to develop a catalog of rupture events both spatially and temporally, for comparison with slip processes on natural faults.

  3. Extension of the energy-to-moment parameter Θ to intermediate and deep earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saloor, Nooshin; Okal, Emile A.

    2018-01-01

    We extend to intermediate and deep earthquakes the slowness parameter Θ originally introduced by Newman and Okal (1998). Because of the increasing time lag with depth between the phases P, pP and sP, and of variations in anelastic attenuation parameters t∗ , we define four depth bins featuring slightly different algorithms for the computation of Θ . We apply this methodology to a global dataset of 598 intermediate and deep earthquakes with moments greater than 1025 dyn∗cm. We find a slight increase with depth in average values of Θ (from -4.81 between 80 and 135 km to -4.48 between 450 and 700 km), which however all have intersecting one- σ bands. With widths ranging from 0.26 to 0.31 logarithmic units, these are narrower than their counterpart for a reference dataset of 146 shallow earthquakes (σ = 0.55). Similarly, we find no correlation between values of Θ and focal geometry. These results point to stress conditions within the seismogenic zones inside the Wadati-Benioff slabs more homogeneous than those prevailing at the shallow contacts between tectonic plates.

  4. Reevaluation of 1935 M 7.0 earthquake fault, Miaoli-Taichung Area, western Taiwan: a DEM and field study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Y. N.; Chen, Y.; Ota, Y.

    2003-12-01

    A large earthquake (M 7.0) took place in Miaoli area, western Taiwan on April 21st, 1935. Right to its south is the 1999 Chi-Chi earthquake fault, indicating it is not only tectonically but seismically active. As the previous study, the study area is located in the mature zone of a tectonic collision that occurred between Philippine sea Plate and Eurasia continental Plate. The associated surface ruptures of 1935 earthquake daylighted Tungtsichiao Fault, a tear fault trending NE in the south and Chihhu Fault, a back thrust trending N-S in the north, but no ruptures occurred in between. Strike-slip component was identified by the horizontal offset observed along Tungtsichiao Fault; however, there are still disputes on the reported field evidence. Our purposes are (1) to identify the structural behaviors of these two faults, (2) to find out what the seismogenic structure is, and (3) to reconstruct the regional geology by information given by this earthquake. By DEM interpretation and field survey, we can clearly recognize a lot of the 1935 associated features. In the west of Chihhu Fault, a series of N-S higher terraces can be identified with eastward tilted surfaces and nearly 200 m relative height. Another lower terrace is also believed being created during the 1935 earthquake, showing an east-facing scarp with a height of ca. 1.5~2 m. Outcrop investigation reveals that the late-Miocene bedrock has been easterly thrusted over the Holocene conglomerates, indicating a west-dipping fault plane. The Tungtsichiao Fault cuts through a lateritic terrace at Holi, which is supposed developed in Pleistocene. The fault scarp is only discernible in the northeastern ending. Other noticeable features are the fault related antiforms that line up along the surface rupture. There is no outcrop to show the fault geometry among bedrocks. We re-interpret the northern Chihhu Fault as the back thrust generated from a main subsurface detachment, which may be the actual seismogenic fault

  5. Neotectonic deformation in Tunisia (North of the African plate)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soumaya, Abdelkader; Ben Ayed, Noureddine; Kadri, Ali; Delvaux, Damien; Khayati Ammar, Hayet; Braham, Ahmed

    2017-04-01

    In Tunisia, at the extreme North of the African plate, the neotectonic context is largely influenced by the Eurasia-Africa convergence. The aim of this work is to characterize the neotectonic regime that affected this region during Quaternary. Field work investigations integrated with published data allowed to evidence a spatial-temporal variation of the tectonic stress regime during this period. The spatial repartition of the different types of Quaternary to historical deformation shows a North-South neotectonic zoning in Tunisia. After lower Pleistocene, the Tellian domain (Maghrebides) in the North and its Atlassic foreland in central Tunisia are affected by NNW-SSE compression. It generated E-W to NE-SW folds and reverse faults, well developed in the Plio-Quaternary molassic basins of Kechabta and Jendouba (Northern Tunisia). In the Atlas, the major E-W and N-S pre-existing faults have been reactivated with dextral and sinistral strike-slip kinematic respectively, associated to en-echelon folds (Kasserine, N-S Axis, Northern Chott belt...). After the Tyrrhenian, a submeridian compressional regime affected Northern Tunisia (e.g., Bizerte region) and was responsible for the E-W folding of marine strata. More to the South, in the Tunisian Sahel, transtensional tectonics with a NW-SE horizontal maximal compression (SHmax) deformed the Tyrrhenian marine series (Khénis, Skanès, Monastir…). During the Holocene and up to present-day times, N-S compressional tectonics reactivated the E-W pre-existing faults with a reverse movement in Northern Tunisia (Bulla Regia, Utica …), generating historical earthquakes. In Central Tunisia, the Aqueduct of Cherichira (built around AD 850) is displaced by a N-S normal fault. Similarly, a mosaic of a roman house is shifted by 10 cm, along a N-S sinistral normal fault. These deformations evidence a transtensional tectonic regime. During the Quaternary, all the NW-SE oriented grabens are subsiding (e.g., Bizerte Lake, Grombalia

  6. Analog earthquakes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hofmann, R.B.

    1995-01-01

    Analogs are used to understand complex or poorly understood phenomena for which little data may be available at the actual repository site. Earthquakes are complex phenomena, and they can have a large number of effects on the natural system, as well as on engineered structures. Instrumental data close to the source of large earthquakes are rarely obtained. The rare events for which measurements are available may be used, with modfications, as analogs for potential large earthquakes at sites where no earthquake data are available. In the following, several examples of nuclear reactor and liquified natural gas facility siting are discussed. A potential use of analog earthquakes is proposed for a high-level nuclear waste (HLW) repository

  7. Focal mechanisms and tidal modulation for tectonic tremors in Taiwan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ide, S.; Yabe, S.; Tai, H. J.; Chen, K. H.

    2015-12-01

    Tectonic tremors in Taiwan have been discovered beneath the southern Central Range, but their hosting structure has been unknown. Here we constrain the focal mechanism of underground deformation related to tremors, using moment tensor inversion in the very low frequency band and tidal stress analysis. Three types of seismic data are used for two analysis steps: detection of tremors and the moment tensor inversion. Short-period seismograms from CWBSN are used for tremor detection. Broadband seismograms from BATS and the TAIGER project are used for both steps. About 1000 tremors were detected using an envelope correlation method in the high frequency band (2-8 Hz). Broadband seismograms are stacked relative to the tremor timing, and inverted for a moment tensor in the low frequency band (0.02-0.05 Hz). The best solution was obtained at 32 km depth, as a double-couple consistent with a low-angle thrust fault dipping to the east-southeast, or a high-angle thrust with a south-southwest strike. Almost all tremors occur when tidal shear stress is positive and normal stress is negative (clamping). Since the clamping stress is high for a high-angle thrust fault, the low-angle thrust fault is more likely to be the fault plane. Tremor rate increases non-linearly with increasing shear stress, suggesting a velocity strengthening friction law. The high tidal sensitivity is inconsistent with horizontal slip motion suggested by previous studies, and normal faults that dominates regional shallow earthquakes. Our results favor thrust slip on a low-angle fault dipping to the east-southeast, consistent with the subduction of the Eurasian plate. The tremor region is characterized by a deep thermal anomaly with decrease normal stress. This region has also experienced enough subduction to produce metamorphic fluids. A large amount of fluid and low vertical stress may explain the high tidal sensitivity.

  8. Tectonic stability and expected ground motion at Yucca Mountain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1984-10-02

    A workshop was convened on August 7-8, 1984 at the direction of DOE to discuss effects of natural and artificial earthquakes and associated ground motion as related to siting of a high-level radioactive waste (HLW) repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. A panel of experts in seismology and tectonics was assembled to review available data and analyses and to assess conflicting opinions on geological and seismologic data. The objective of the meeting was to advise the Nevada Nuclear Waste Storage Investigations (NNWSI) Project about how to present a technically balanced and scientifically credible evaluation of Yucca Mountain for the NNWSI Project EA. The group considered two central issues: the magnitude of ground motion at Yucca Mountain due to the largest expected earthquake, and the overall tectonic stability of the site given the current geologic and seismologic data base. 44 refs.

  9. Tectonic stability and expected ground motion at Yucca Mountain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1984-01-01

    A workshop was convened on August 7-8, 1984 at the direction of DOE to discuss effects of natural and artificial earthquakes and associated ground motion as related to siting of a high-level radioactive waste (HLW) repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. A panel of experts in seismology and tectonics was assembled to review available data and analyses and to assess conflicting opinions on geological and seismologic data. The objective of the meeting was to advise the Nevada Nuclear Waste Storage Investigations (NNWSI) Project about how to present a technically balanced and scientifically credible evaluation of Yucca Mountain for the NNWSI Project EA. The group considered two central issues: the magnitude of ground motion at Yucca Mountain due to the largest expected earthquake, and the overall tectonic stability of the site given the current geologic and seismologic data base. 44 refs

  10. Earthquakes, gravity, and the origin of the Bali Basin: An example of a Nascent Continental Fold-and-Thrust Belt

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCaffrey, Robert; Nabelek, John

    1987-01-01

    We infer from the bathymetry and gravity field and from the source mechanisms and depths of the eight largest earthquakes in the Bali region that the Bali Basin is a downwarp in the crust of the Sunda Shelf produced and maintained by thrusting along the Flores back arc thrust zone. Earthquake source mechanisms and focal depths are inferred from the inversion of long-period P and SH waves for all events and short-period P waves for two of the events. Centroidal depths that give the best fit to the seismograms range from 10 to 18 km, but uncertainties in depth allow a range from 7 to 24 km. The P wave nodal planes that dip south at 13° to 35° (±7°) strike roughly parallel to the volcanic arc and are consistent with thrusting of crust of the Bali Basin beneath it. The positions of the earthquakes with respect to crustal features inferred from seismic and gravity data suggest that the earthquakes occur in the basement along the western end of the Flores thrust zone. The slip direction for the back arc thrust zone inferred from the orientation of the earthquake slip vectors indicates that the thrusting in the Bali Basin is probably part of the overall plate convergence, as it roughly coincides with the convergence direction between the Sunda arc and the Indian Ocean plate. Summation of seismic moments of earthquakes between 1960 and 1985 suggests a minimum rate of convergence across the thrust zone of 4 ± 2 mm/a. The presence of back arc thrusting suggests that some coupling between the Indian Ocean plate and the Sunda arc occurs but mechanisms such as continental collision or a shallow subduction of the Indian Ocean plate probably can be ruled out. The present tectonic setting and structure of the Bali Basin is comparable to the early forelands of the Andes or western North America in that a fold-and-thrust belt is forming on the continental side of an arc-trench system at which oceanic lithosphere is being subducted. The Bali Basin is flanked by the Tertiary Java

  11. Morphological expression of active tectonics in the Southern Alps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robl, Jörg; Heberer, Bianca; Neubauer, Franz; Hergarten, Stefan

    2015-04-01

    Evolving drainage pattern and corresponding metrics of the channels (e.g. normalized steepness index) are sensitive indicators for tectonic or climatic events punctuating the evolution of mountain belts and their associated foreland basins. The analysis of drainage systems and their characteristic properties represents a well-established approach to constrain the impact of tectonic and climatic drivers on mountainous landscapes in the recent past. The Southern Alps (SA) are one of the seismically most active zones in the periphery of northern Adria. Recent deformation is caused by the ongoing convergence of the Adriatic and European plate and is recorded by numerous earthquakes in the domain of the SA. Deformation in the SA is characterized by back-thrusting causing crustal thickening and should therefore result in uplift and topography formation. The vertical velocity field determined by GPS-data clearly indicates a belt of significant uplift in the south South alpine indenter between Lake Garda in the west and the Triglav in the east and strong subsidence of the foreland basin surrounding the Mediterranean Sea near Venice, although subsidence is often related to ongoing subduction of the Adriatic microplate underneath Appennines. Despite of these short term time series, timing, rates and drivers of alpine landscape evolution are not well constrained and the linkage between crustal deformation and topographic evolution of this highly active alpine segment remains unclear for the following reasons: (1) The eastern Southern Alps were heavily overprinted by the Pleistocene glaciations and tectonic signals in the alpine landscape are blurred. Only the transition zone to the southern foreland basin remained unaffected and allows an analysis of a glacially undisturbed topography. (2) The major part of this domain is covered by lithology (carbonatic rocks) which is unsuitable for low temperature geochronology and cosmogenic isotope dating so that exhumation and erosion

  12. 16 Years, 16 Cruises, 1.6 Billion Soundings: a Compilation of High-Resolution Multibeam Bathymetry of the Active Plate Boundary Along the Chilean Continental Margin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinrebe, W.; Flueh, E. R.; Hasert, M.; Behrmann, J. H.; Voelker, D.; Geersen, J.; Ranero, C. R.; Diaz-Naveas, J. L.

    2011-12-01

    Chile, a country stranding the active plate boundary between the South-American and the Nazca Plate is afflicted by recurrent earthquakes and hazardous volcanic eruptions. The strongest earthquake ever recorded occurred here, and volcanic hazards are frequent. Consequently, this area has been studied by geoscientists for many years to improve the understanding of subduction zone processes. Swath bathymetry mapping of the ocean floor has proven to bear a large potential for the interpretation of subduction-related processes, such as tectonic deformation of the marine forearc, release and migration of fluids as well as earthquake-triggered mass wasting. Multibeam bathymetry data of 16 major cruises of German, British, and Chilean research vessels recorded between 1995 and December 2010, in total more than 10,000 data files comprising about 1.6 billion soundings, have now been carefully reprocessed, compiled and merged into a unifying set of high-resolution bathymetric maps of the Chilean continental margin from latitude 40°S to 20°S. The imprint of subsurface processes on the surface morphology is well displayed in the case of the Chilean continental margin. The 3,500 km long Chilean convergent margin is not uniform, as various segments with different tectonic characteristics can be distinguished. Major factors that control margin morphology and thus the style of subduction are (1) relief and structure of the incoming oceanic plate, (2) supply of trench sediment, (3) turbidite transport within the trench, and (4) the input of terrigeneous sediments down the continental slope. A major segment boundary occurs at latitude 32°-33° S where the hotspot-related volcanic chain of Juan Fernandez is presently subducting. South of the area of ridge subduction the trench is filled with turbidites, and accretionary ridges develop across the base of the slope along most of the segment, whereas north of this boundary the turbiditic infill is reduced and subduction erosion is

  13. An Alternative view of Earth's Tectonics : The Moon's explosive origin out of SE Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coleman, P. F.

    2017-12-01

    insufficient time has elapsed, to break up the scar, by "plate" movement, or erosion. The present tectonic/ volcanic activity, (eg earthquakes/eruptions along the Pacific Ring of Fire) is further evidence of this "smoking gun". Coleman P.F., 2015, Alternative Models of the Moon, Physics Today, 68,4,8.

  14. Active Tectonics Around Almaty and along the Zailisky Alatau Rangefront

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grützner, C.; Walker, R. T.; Abdrakhmatov, K. E.; Mukambaev, A.; Elliott, A. J.; Elliott, J. R.

    2017-10-01

    The Zailisky Alatau is a >250 km long mountain range in Southern Kazakhstan. Its northern rangefront around the major city of Almaty has more than 4 km topographic relief, yet in contrast to other large mountain fronts in the Tien Shan, little is known about its Late Quaternary tectonic activity despite several destructive earthquakes in the historical record. We analyze the tectonic geomorphology of the rangefront fault using field observations, differential GPS measurements of fault scarps, historical and recent satellite imagery, meter-scale topography derived from stereo satellite images, and decimeter-scale elevation models from unmanned aerial vehicle surveys. Fault scarps ranging in height from 2 m to >20 m in alluvial fans indicate that surface rupturing earthquakes occurred along the rangefront fault since the Last Glacial Maximum. Minimum estimated magnitudes for those earthquakes are M6.8-7. Radiocarbon dating results from charcoal layers in uplifted river terraces indicate a Holocene slip rate of 1.2-2.2 mm/a. We find additional evidence for active tectonic deformation all along the Almaty rangefront, basinward in the Kazakh platform, and in the interior of the Zailisky mountain range. Our data indicate that the seismic hazard faced by Almaty comes from a variety of sources, and we emphasize the problems related to urban growth into the loess-covered foothills and secondary earthquake effects. With our structural and geochronologic framework, we present a schematic evolution of the Almaty rangefront that may be applicable to similar settings of tectonic shortening in the mountain ranges of Central Asia.

  15. Providing Hands on Experiences to Museum Visitors to Explore and Learn about Earthquakes and their Impacts in the Pacific Northwest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olds, S. E.; Schiffman, C. R.; Butler, R. F.; Farley, M.; Frankel, S.; Hunter, N.; Lillie, R. J.

    2013-12-01

    Over the past ten years, UNAVCO has developed a suite of learning materials for formal undergraduate and grades 6-12 classroom environments, integrating GPS data from the EarthScope Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO) to explore Earth science processes. To make complex Earth processes accessible to general audiences, UNAVCO has designed a multi-component visiting museum exhibit that explores the tectonic setting of the United States Pacific Northwest, hazards of living on a plate boundary, and the technologies being used to study the plate motion and in the future, help communities become more resilient to the impacts of earthquakes. This exhibit was installed in Fall 2013 at the Oregon State University (OSU) Hatfield Marine Science Center (HMSC) in Newport, Oregon. Through multiple hands-on elements, visitors to the HMSC exhibit explore and experience the build up and release of strain in the region, along with some of the technologies used to measure these changes. In one component, visitors compress a model of the Pacific Northwest to feel the build up of strain in the landscape and observe the movement of land over time. Supporting panels connect this movement to the measurements currently being observed by the network of PBO and other GPS stations in the Pacific Northwest. In another component, visitors learn about the recurrence interval for earthquakes at the Juan De Fuca - North America plate boundary by turning a handle to slowly move and compress plates until a simulated earthquake occurs. A related component explores how an earthquake early warning system (EEWS) of the future might combine seismic data collected by both seismometers and real time GPS to allow people and communities time to prepare for oncoming ground shaking and tsunami after an earthquake. Several technologies are also highlighted throughout the exhibit, including information panels that compare the accuracy of high precision GPS with smartphone technologies. Additionally, models of a full

  16. Earthquake forewarning in the Cascadia region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomberg, Joan S.; Atwater, Brian F.; Beeler, Nicholas M.; Bodin, Paul; Davis, Earl; Frankel, Arthur; Hayes, Gavin P.; McConnell, Laura; Melbourne, Tim; Oppenheimer, David H.; Parrish, John G.; Roeloffs, Evelyn A.; Rogers, Gary D.; Sherrod, Brian; Vidale, John; Walsh, Timothy J.; Weaver, Craig S.; Whitmore, Paul M.

    2015-08-10

    This report, prepared for the National Earthquake Prediction Evaluation Council (NEPEC), is intended as a step toward improving communications about earthquake hazards between information providers and users who coordinate emergency-response activities in the Cascadia region of the Pacific Northwest. NEPEC charged a subcommittee of scientists with writing this report about forewarnings of increased probabilities of a damaging earthquake. We begin by clarifying some terminology; a “prediction” refers to a deterministic statement that a particular future earthquake will or will not occur. In contrast to the 0- or 100-percent likelihood of a deterministic prediction, a “forecast” describes the probability of an earthquake occurring, which may range from >0 to processes or conditions, which may include Increased rates of M>4 earthquakes on the plate interface north of the Mendocino region 

  17. Elasto-plastic deformation and plate weakening due to normal faulting in the subducting plate along the Mariana Trench

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Zhiyuan; Lin, Jian

    2018-06-01

    We investigated variations in the elasto-plastic deformation of the subducting plate along the Mariana Trench through an analysis of flexural bending and normal fault characteristics together with geodynamic modeling. Most normal faults were initiated at the outer-rise region and grew toward the trench axis with strikes mostly subparallel to the local trench axis. The average trench relief and maximum fault throws were measured to be significantly greater in the southern region (5 km and 320 m, respectively) than the northern and central regions (2 km and 200 m). The subducting plate was modeled as an elasto-plastic slab subjected to tectonic loading at the trench axis. The calculated strain rates and velocities revealed an array of normal fault-like shear zones in the upper plate, resulting in significant faulting-induced reduction in the deviatoric stresses. We then inverted for solutions that best fit the observed flexural bending and normal faulting characteristics, revealing normal fault penetration to depths of 21, 20, and 32 km beneath the seafloor for the northern, central, and southern regions, respectively, which is consistent with the observed depths of the relocated normal faulting earthquakes in the central Mariana Trench. The calculated deeper normal faults of the southern region might lead to about twice as much water being carried into the mantle per unit trench length than the northern and central regions. We further calculated that normal faulting has reduced the effective elastic plate thickness Te by up to 52% locally in the southern region and 33% in both the northern and central regions. The best-fitting solutions revealed a greater apparent angle of the pulling force in the southern region (51-64°) than in the northern (22-35°) and central (20-34°) regions, which correlates with a general southward increase in the seismically-determined dip angle of the subducting slab along the Mariana Trench.

  18. Tectonic design strategies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Beim, Anne

    2000-01-01

    as the poetics of construction, thus it may be considered as an essential activity in the development of the architectural design process.  Similar to the complex nature of the tectonic, the design process is an ongoing movement of interpretation, mediation, and decision making where the skills of the architect...

  19. Tectonic vision in architecture

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Beim, Anne

    1999-01-01

    By introducing the concept; Tectonic Visions, The Dissertation discusses the interrelationship between the basic idea, the form principles, the choice of building technology and constructive structures within a given building. Includes Mies van der Rohe, Le Corbusier, Eames, Jorn Utzon, Louis Kahn...

  20. Cretacic tectonics in Uruguay

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gomez Rifas, C.

    2012-01-01

    This work is about Cretacic tectonics in Uruguay, this formation is characterized by high level cortex because the basament is cratonized since Middle Devonian. There were formed two main grabens such as Santa Lucia and Mirim-Pelotas which are filled with basalt and sediments.