Earthquake Report: Ridgecrest Update #2

Well Well Well

Here is a commercial from Sony for Sony Discman following the 1995-96 Ridgecrest Earthquake (from which we have usurped this name for this July 2019 sequence).

The story continues to unfold.

My original Earthquake Report for this widely felt sequence is here.

My update #1 Earthquake Report for this widely felt sequence is here.

My update #3 Earthquake Report for this widely felt sequence is here.

  • Here is a graphic from the USGS that summarizes our observations as of 16 July.

Field Work Narrative

Last week I was lucky enough to spend a week in the field with my coworkers (California Geological Survey) and colleagues (U.S. Geological Survey) making observations of surface rupture from the Ridgecrest Earthquake Sequence (RES). It was initially termed the Searles Valley Earthquake Sequence, but we have since changed the name. Just check out #RidgecrestEarthquake on social media. Our work will be presented in several publications in the coming future. Stay tuned.

Many of us were granted rare access to the Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake. This emergency earthquake response effort was an unprecedented collaborative effort between the Navy, the CGS, and the USGS. We worked together as a team and accomplished our mission goals with due diligence. The CGS/USGS team is out in the field again this week, working off base. We plan to continue doing additional field work for weeks to come. (Though I need to get back to my tsunami stuff as we have deadlines to prepare new tsunami hazard products in the next few weeks to months.)

These collaborative efforts were based on a mutual respect between team agencies and team members. The field team members all appreciated the very special access we were granted. The commanding officer, Captain Paul Dale, is very supportive of scientific research and his support of our mission was evidence of this.

We were granted permission to take photos of the geologic evidence of the earthquake and ground shaking. We reviewed our images with the Public Affairs Officer to ensure that we did not take photos of any facilities or equipment that was on the base. This was important and we were very careful about this. We even double checked the images after we got back from the field.

I will add some photos to this page tomorrow.

Remote Sensing Narrative

There has also been a large number of Earth scientists using remote sensing data to evaluate the RES. These data are primarily from satellite images of different types (spectral imagery (another word for what we used to call air photos), RADAR, Global Positioning Systems (GPS), seismometer observations, etc.).

For most of these methods, pre-earthquake data are compared with post-earthquake data for a comparison. The methods used for these comparisons is advancing at a lightning pace. Every year, these models get better and better.

These remote sensing methods allow us to infer how the ground moved and slipped during and after the earthquake. We can get estimates of the slip on the fault from this type of analysis.

Combining different sources of remote sensing data also allows us to make estimates of the faults, where they moved, and how much they moved (in the subsurface).

I will present some of these observations below.

USGS Data Products

I prepared some interpretive posters for the M 7.1 earthquake shortly after it happened. The USGS earthquake pages are a source of great information as evidenced by how hard they are hit by web visitors following events as significant as the M 7.1. The website was unusable for periods of time. This demonstrates that the USGS is doing something right.

Last weekend, I spent Saturday preparing the same types of interpretive posters that I presented here, but as comparisons between the M 6.4 and M 7.1 temblors.

  • Here is an updated seismicity map. There are two main types of earthquakes on this map. I present this map both with aerial imagery and with a topographic (“hillshade”) basemap. I outline the general area of Ridgecrest in purple.
    1. First, there are an abundance of aftershocks aligned with the two main faults that ruptured during this sequence (the northwest trending M 7.1 fault and the northeast trending M 6.4 fault). Part of the northwest striking fault ruptured during the M 6.4 event.
    2. Second, there are several areas that show earthquakes that were triggered by this sequence. There are some triggered earthquakes along the Coso Range (where the Coso Geothermal Field is located), some events along the Garlock fault, and some temblors along the Ash Hill fault (in Panamint Valley, to the north of Searles Valley).



  • This is a seismicity comparison for the two earthquakes. on the left are earthquakes (USGS) from prior to the M 7.1 earthquake and on the right are quakes after and including the M 7.1 temblor. I plot the USGS Quaternary fault and fold database on the left as black lines.

  • Here is a map with landslide probability on it. Please head over to that report for more information about the USGS Ground Failure products (landslides and liquefaction). Basically, earthquakes shake the ground and this ground shaking can cause landslides. We can see that there is a low probability for landslides. However, we have already seen photographic evidence for landslides and the lower limit for earthquake triggered landslides is magnitude M 5.5 (from Keefer 1984-ish).

  • Here is a map showing liquefaction susceptibility. I explain more about this type of map in my original report for the M 6.4 earthquake. Scroll down a bit to find the landslide and liquefaction maps for that event.

  • Finally, here is a map that shows the shaking intensity for the M 6.4 and M 7.1 earthquakes. As I mention in my original report, this is based on a model that relates earthquake shaking intensity with earthquake magnitude and distance from the earthquake. Note that there was violent shaking from the M 7.1 event (MMI IX).

NASA JPL ARIA Data Products

  • NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) prepares Advanced Rapid Imaging and Analysis (ARIA) data products for major events worldwide. Their data are presented online here. I used the data from this event in a GIS computer program, but the data are prepared in Google Earth files too (so everyone can use them if they have a modern computer with an internet connection). This is a valuable government service.
  • This first map shows the results of modeling Synthetic Aperature Radar Interferometry data. Basically, Radar satellite imagery data from before and from after the earthquake are compared to model the amount of ground deformation that occurred between the satellite acquisitions. Each color band represents a certain amount of motion. This is referred to as the wrapped image.
  • Here are a series of sources of background information about InSAR analysis.

  • This map is made using the same basic data, though it has been processed in a way to show the overall ground motion with just two colors, instead of color bands. This is called the unwrapped image.

  • Below is the first in a series of videos that explains more about SAR and InSAR analyses.

Dr. Sotiris Valkaniotis

  • Dr. Valkaniotis is a Greek geologist who has a great set of remote sensing skills who studies earthquake geology and paleoseismology. I include lots of social media posts below where people share their analyses. However, I select two images from Dr. Valkaniotis for this earthquake. Contact him for more information about his processing. As embedded below in the social media section, here is the tweet that is the source of these two maps.
  • These images are similar to the NASA JPL ARIA unwrapped maps above. I include his description below in blockquote.

  • Gradient render from unwrapped LOS displacement map (higher quality 20m from SNAP). Surface ruptures (major & minor) are easily visible as dark linear features (high displacement gradient). Processing in @esa_gep. Descending pair from #Sentinel1, #Ridgecrestearthquake


    And the ascending pair from #Sentinel1, #Ridgecrestearthquake. Gradient render from unwrapped LOS displacement map (higher quality 20m from SNAP). Processing in @esa_gep.

  • Here is a map that Dr. Valkaniotis prepared showing fault lines he has interpreted from his model results.

  • Complex and detailed pattern of co-seismic ruptures for the #RidgecrestEarthquake sequence. Red lines are primary & secondary surface ruptures, together with small triggered ruptures away from main faults. Previously mapped Quaternary Faults with yellow, for comparison.

PBS News Hour: 2019.07.08

Death Valley at Devil’s Hole

The clip shows water violently sloshing around, rising and falling 10 to 15 feet, according to a park estimate. The video captures two angles, one looking into the cave and the other underwater inside it.

Devils Hole is a part of the desert uplands and spring-fed oases that make up the Ash Meadows complex, a national wildlife refuge.

Temblor Articles

Ross Stein (Ph.D.), Volkan Sevilgan (M.Sc.), Tiegan Hobbs (Ph.D.), Chris Rollins (Ph.D.), Geoffrey Ely, (Ph.D.), and Shinji Toda (Ph.D.) are coauthors to a suite of 5 articles presented on Temblor.net. Temblor is a National Science Foundation funded organization that promotes earthquake insurance and seismic retrofits for people in earthquake country. I wrote several articles for Temblor prior to starting work at the California Geological Survey. (My efforts at earthjay.com are purely volunteer and do not reflect endorsement nor review from or by CGS.)

These reports are excellent sources of interpretive information at the detail for non experts (sometimes my reports are at a detail more aimed towards undergraduate geology students, though I attempt to make them available to a broad audience as well). I include a few figures from their reports that I find most interesting, but please check out their articles for more information!

  • Dr. Stein begins by presenting an hypothesis that these earthquakes are in a region of increased tectonic stress following the 1872 Owens Valley Earthquake, estimated to have a magnitude of M 7.6 (though it happened prior to modern seismometer instrumentation, so magnitude estimates have considerable uncertainty).
  • When earthquake faults slip, the surrounding crust is squished and squashed. This deformation changes the tectonic stresses in the crust. In some places this change causes an increase in the amount of stress on earthquake faults and in some places it decreases the tectonic stress. In places where the stress increases, the fault is brought closer to having an earthquake, and vice versa for places where the stress is diminished.
  • These stress changes are very small, so for a fault to be triggered by these changes in “static coulomb stress,” the fault had to be almost ready to slip before these changes happened. More can be found in Stein (2003) and Toda et al. (2005) linked below in the references.
  • In the map below, warm colors represent areas with an increase in (static coulomb stress) and cool colors represent a decrease in stress. I include their figure caption in blockquote below the figure (as for all their figures).

  • he site of the July 4th shock was likely brought closer to failure in the 1872 M~7.6 shock. Notice that the (red) stress trigger zones of the this 148-year-old quake are all seismically active today, whereas the (blue) stress shadows are generally devoid of shocks.

  • The Owens Valley fault triggering is speculative of course, since that earthquake was so long ago. However, there are other cases where aftershocks or triggered earthquakes are happening a long time after the main event. For example, there are ongoing aftershocks following an 1872 earthquake near Lake Chelan (Bakun et al., 2002; Brocher et al., 2018).
  • Stein and his colleagues calculated “static coulomb” stress changes imparted by the Ridgecrest Earthquake Sequence onto a series of other faults in the area. Read more about their analyses here.

  • Here we calculate stress transferred to the principal mapped faults, using the USGS slip model for the 7.1 and a model based on University of Nevada Reno GPS displacements for the 6.4 (not shown here for simplicity, but included). Most of the stress change is from the 7.1: it was several times larger than the 6.4 and torqued the surrounding crust far more. This fault inventory might be woefully incomplete, of course: the 7.1 itself struck on an unmapped fault. Nevertheless, the most striking result is the >2-bar stress increase on a 30-km (20-mile) section of the Garlock Fault. An end-to-end rupture on the Garlock, if (still) possible, would be in the magnitude 7.6-7.8 range.

  • In my interpretive posters above, I mention the areas where there have been triggered earthquakes (e.g. the Coso Geothermal Field, the Garlock fault, the Ash Hill fault). Turns out, Stein and his colleagues were thinking the same thing.
  • They prepared a figure in their report here where they show changes in “static coulomb” stress. They label the same areas I mention (except the Ash Hill fault in Panamint Valley). Take a look at the areas of increased stress compared to these three regions (even the Ash Hill fault is in an area of increased stress).

  • Faults in the red lobes are calculated to be brought closer to failure; those in the blue ‘stress shadows’ are inhibited from failure. The calculation estimates what the dominant fault orientations are around the earthquakes by interpolating between major mapped faults (shown in red lines). So, we would expect strong stressing in the Coso Volcanic Field to the north (where the aftershocks lie), and along the Garlock Fault to the south (but not where most of them lie).

  • Hobbs and Rollins speculate that the San Andreas fault may also have changes in (static coulomb) stress imparted by the Garlock fault if that were to slip. Read more in their article here.

  • If the western and central Garlock were to rupture, it would load the section of the San Andreas just north of Los Angeles. The jog in the San Andreas under the S in “Source” is at Palmdale. Figure from McAuliffe et al. [2013].

Below are all the Temblor articles to read


2019.07.04 Southern California M 6.4 earthquake stressed by two large historic ruptures
2019.07.05 Earthquake early warning system challenged by the largest SoCal shock in 20 years
2019.07.06 Magnitude 7.1 earthquake rips northwest from the M6.4 just 34 hours later
2019.07.06 M 7.1 SoCal earthquake triggers aftershocks up to 100 mi away: What’s next?
2019.07.09 The Ridgecrest earthquakes: Torn ground, nested foreshocks, Garlock shocks, and Temblor’s forecast
  • Here are the references for these Temblor articles.
    • Stein, R. S., and Sevilgen, V., (2019), Southern California M 6.4 earthquake stressed by two large historic ruptures, Temblor, http://doi.org/10.32858/temblor.034
    • Hobbs, T.E. and Rollins, C., (2019), Earthquake early warning system challenged by the largest SoCal shock in 20 years, Temblor, http://doi.org/10.32858/temblor.035
    • Ross S. Stein, Tiegan Hobbs, Chris Rollins, Geoffrey Ely, Volkan Sevilgen, and Shinji Toda, (2019), Magnitude 7.1 earthquake rips northwest from the M6.4 just 34 hours later, Temblor, http://doi.org/10.32858/temblor.037
    • Ross S. Stein, Chris Rollins, Volkan Sevilgen, and Tiegan Hobbs, (2019), M 7.1 SoCal earthquake triggers aftershocks up to 100 mi away: What’s next?, Temblor, http://doi.org/10.32858/temblor.038
    • Chris Rollins, Ross S. Stein, Guoqing Lin, and Deborah Kilb (2019), The Ridgecrest earthquakes: Torn ground, nested foreshocks, Garlock shocks, and Temblor’s forecast, Temblor, http://doi.org/10.32858/temblor.039

Field Photos

  • Below are some field photos I took. I cannot tell anyone where they were taken (at least not yet) as we don’t have clearance. I may post more later, but wanted to post some to show people the type of observations we were making.
  • This is Dr. Chris DuRoss (USGS) as we walked across the scarp at our first site working together.

  • Here is a great one of Dr. Jessie T. Jobe (USGS, soon to be USBR) taking notes at that same scarp (DuRoss’ boots for scale).

  • This is a portion of a road where the fault crossed. There were several dm of lateral offset on either side of the road, but the road itself had an imperceptible amount of lateral offset (i.e. 1 ± 1 cm offset). There was some amount of compression here.

  • Here we were projecting the ground surface across the fault to estimate the amount of vertical displacement. Dr. Ryan Gold (USGS) is measuring while a Navy Base geologist is holding the profile stick along the ground surface.

  • Here is a photo very similar to Mr. Brian Olson’s tweeted photo, but I took this one instead. Dr. Belle Philibosian (USGS) is on the left and Kelly (NAWCL geologist) is on the right. This shows right-lateral strike-slip displacement of 420 cm. We thought nobody would believe us, so we made another measurement nearby to confirm.

  • I located some beautiful slickenlines (grooves in the fault surface created when the fault slips) and this is Dr. Beth Haddon (USGS) collecting strike, dip and rake data for these lines. We collected many photos of this site so that we can create a 3-D model (using structure from motion).

  • Here is Dr. Belle Philibosian looking spectacular as usual, providing scale to help us understand the amount of vertical separation across the fault in this location.

  • We located some evidence for liquefaction too. Here is a sand volcano, where lots of the sediment got washed away by the fluid that possibly shot up through this hole.

  • This was a great opportunity to show the compass orientation of these conjugate fault offsets in the road. The road material properties probably controlled the location of the faults here (there were pre-existing planes of weakness as evidenced by the tar patches, but some of the pavement faulting was new).

    References:

  • Amos, C.B., Bwonlee, S.J., Hood, D.H., Fisher, G.B., Bürgmann, R., Renne, P.R., and Jayko, A.S., 2013. Chronology of tectonic, geomorphic, and volcanic interactions and the tempo of fault slip near Little Lake, California in GSA Bulletin, v. 125, no. 7-8, https://doi.org/10.1130/B30803.1
  • Bakun, W.H., Ralph A. Haugerud, Margaret G. Hopper, Ruth S. Ludwin, 2002. The December 1872 Washington State Earthquake in BSSA, v. 92, no. 8., https://doi.org/10.1785/0120010274
  • Brocher, T., Margaret G. Hopper, S.T. Ted Algermissen, David M. Perkins, Stanley R. Brockman, and Edouard P. Arnold, 2048. Aftershocks, Earthquake Effects, and the Location of the Large 14 December 1872 Earthquake near Entiat, Central Washington in BSSA, v. 108, no. 1., https://doi.org/10.1785/0120170224
  • Frankel, K.L., Glazner, A.F., Kirby, E., Monastero, F.C., Strane, M.D., Oskin, M.E., Unruh, J.R., Walker, J.D., Anandakrishnan, S., Bartley, J.M., Coleman, D.S., Dolan, J.F., Finkel, R.C., Greene, D., Kylander-Clark, A., Morrero, S., Owen, L.A., and Phillips, F., 2008, Active tectonics of the eastern California shear zone, in Duebendorfer, E.M., and Smith, E.I., eds., Field Guide to Plutons, Volcanoes, Faults, Reefs, Dinosaurs, and Possible Glaciation in Selected Areas of Arizona, California, and Nevada: Geological Society of America Field Guide 11, p. 43–81, doi: 10.1130/2008.fl d011(03).
  • Frisch, W., Meschede, M., Blakey, R., 2011. Plate Tectonics, Springer-Verlag, London, 213 pp.
  • Hayes, G., 2018, Slab2 – A Comprehensive Subduction Zone Geometry Model: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://doi.org/10.5066/F7PV6JNV.
  • Holt, W. E., C. Kreemer, A. J. Haines, L. Estey, C. Meertens, G. Blewitt, and D. Lavallee (2005), Project helps constrain continental dynamics and seismic hazards, Eos Trans. AGU, 86(41), 383–387, , https://doi.org/10.1029/2005EO410002. /li>
  • Kreemer, C., J. Haines, W. Holt, G. Blewitt, and D. Lavallee (2000), On the determination of a global strain rate model, Geophys. J. Int., 52(10), 765–770.
  • Kreemer, C., W. E. Holt, and A. J. Haines (2003), An integrated global model of present-day plate motions and plate boundary deformation, Geophys. J. Int., 154(1), 8–34, , https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-246X.2003.01917.x.
  • Kreemer, C., G. Blewitt, E.C. Klein, 2014. A geodetic plate motion and Global Strain Rate Model in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, v. 15, p. 3849-3889, https://doi.org/10.1002/2014GC005407.
  • McAuliffe, L. J., Dolan, J. F., Kirby, E., Rollins, C., Haravitch, B., Alm, S., & Rittenour, T. M., 2013. Paleoseismology of the southern Panamint Valley fault: Implications for regional earthquake occurrence and seismic hazard in southern California. Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, 118, 5126-5146, https://doi.org/10.1029/jgrb.50359.
  • Meyer, B., Saltus, R., Chulliat, a., 2017. EMAG2: Earth Magnetic Anomaly Grid (2-arc-minute resolution) Version 3. National Centers for Environmental Information, NOAA. Model. https://doi.org/10.7289/V5H70CVX
  • Müller, R.D., Sdrolias, M., Gaina, C. and Roest, W.R., 2008, Age spreading rates and spreading asymmetry of the world’s ocean crust in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 9, Q04006, https://doi.org/10.1029/2007GC001743
  • Stein, R.S., Earthquake Conversations, Scientific American, vol. 288, 72-79, January issue, 2003. Republished in: Our Ever Changing Earth, Scientific American, Special Edition, v. 15 (2), 82-89, 2005.
  • Toda, S., Stein, R. S., Richards-Dinger, K. & Bozkurt, S. Forecasting the evolution of seismicity in southern California: Animations built on earthquake stress transfer. J. Geophys. Res. 110, B05S16 (2005) https://doi.org/10.1029/2004JB003415

Return to the Earthquake Reports page.

Posted in earthquake, education, geology, plate tectonics, San Andreas, strike-slip

Earthquake Report: Halmahera, Indonesia

Well, yesterday I was preparing some updates to the Ridgecrest Earthquake following my field work with my colleagues at the California Geological Survey (where I work) and the U.S. Geological Survey. We spent the week documenting surface ruptures associated with the M 6.4 and M 7.1 Ridgecrest Earthquake Sequence. (it is currently named the Searles Valley Earthquake Sequence, but I am calling it the Ridgecrest Earthquake)

I was just about done with these new maps and getting ready to start writing them up in an updated earthquake report when I noticed that there was an interesting earthquake, with few historic analogues, along the Western Australia Shear Zone offshore of northwestern Australia. I probably won’t get to that earthquake, but I started downloading some material and reviewing my literature for the region. I considered doing both of these tasks on Sunday (today). That was not to be as I awakened to an email about this magnitude M 7.3 earthquake in Halmahera, Indonesia. I have several earthquake reports for the Molucca Strait, west of Halmahera. So, I have some background literature and knowledge about this region already.

There was an earthquake along Molucca Strait that I could not work on due to my field work. So I will briefly mention that quake here. There was also a recent earthquake to the south, in the Banda Sea (here is my earthquake report for that event). The June earthquake had the same magnitude as today’s shaker, M = 7.3. However, the earlier quake was too deep to cause a tsunami (unlike today’s temblor). Earthquakes along the Molucca Strait have generated tsunami with wave heights of over 9 meters (30 feet) according toe Harris and Major, 2016.

The Molucca Strait is a north-south oriented seaway formed by opposing subduction zone / thrust faults (convergent plate boundaries). See the “Geologic Fundamentals” section below for an explanation of different fault types. On the west of the Molucca Strait is a thrust fault that dips downwards to the west. On the east, there is a thrust fault that dips down to the east (beneath the island of Halmahera).

There is a major east-west trending (striking) strike-slip fault that comes into the region from the east, called the Sorong fault. There are multiple strands of this system. A splay of this Sorong fault splays northwards through the island of Halmahera. There may be additional details about how this splay relates to the Sorong fault, but I was unable to locate any references (or read the details) today. According to BMKG, the fault that is associated with this earthquake is the Sorong-Bacan fault.

Today’s M 7.3 Halmahera earthquake is a strike-slip earthquake (the plates move side-by-side, like the San Andreas or North Anatolia faults). Often people don’t think of tsunami when a strike-slip earthquake happens because there is often little vertical ground motion. Many people are otherwise familiar with thrust or subduction zone earthquakes, which can produce significant uplift and subsidence (vertical land motion), that can lead to significant tsunami.

However, there is abundant evidence that strike-slip earthquakes do cause tsunami, though often of much smaller size than their thrust/subduction siblings. The main difference is that these strike-slip generated tsunami are much smaller in size.

For example, the 1999 Izmit and 2012 Wharton Basin earthquakes provided empirical evidence of strike-slip earthquake triggered tsunami. More recently, the 28 September 2018 magnitude M 7.5 Dongalla-Palu earthquake caused a tsunami in Palu Bay, Sulawesi, Indonesia that exceeded 10 meters (33 feet) in wave height (wave run up elevation)!!! I just got an email from Dr. Lori Dengler who is an a conference where people claim that the earthquake is possibly singlehandedly responsible for this large wave. Previously people thought that there may have been submarine landslides that contributed to the size.

Here is the tide gage record from a gage near today’s M 7.3 earthquake. The earthquake epicenter appears to be on land, so the tsunami is possibly smaller because of this. Indonesia operates a network of tide gages throughout the region here. The gage data below are from the island of Gebe, about 50 miles to the east of the M 7.3 epicenter.


Here is a quote from the Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) website:

Impact of Earthquake

Based on community reports, it was shown that shocks were felt in Bitung and Manado with the intensity of IV-V MMI (felt by almost all residents, many people built), and in Ternate III-IV MMI (felt by many people in the house). Until now there have been no reports of damage due to a strong earthquake shock in northern Maluku last night. The impact of the North Maluku earthquake only caused a tremendous panic among the people. In the city of Manado, some of the houses of the walls had cracks in the building walls of the building with very light categories.

Now I can get back to working on a Ridgecrest update… stay tuned. (the maps are already made)

Below is my interpretive poster for this earthquake


I plot the seismicity from the past month, with color representing depth and diameter representing magnitude (see legend).

I plot the USGS fault plane solutions (moment tensors in blue and focal mechanisms in orange). Due to the high rate of seismicity in this region, I do not have an historic seismicity poster for this event.

  • I placed a moment tensor / focal mechanism legend on the poster. There is more material from the USGS web sites about moment tensors and focal mechanisms (the beach ball symbols). Both moment tensors and focal mechanisms are solutions to seismologic data that reveal two possible interpretations for fault orientation and sense of motion. One must use other information, like the regional tectonics, to interpret which of the two possibilities is more likely.
  • I also include the shaking intensity contours transparently on the map. These use the Modified Mercalli Intensity Scale (MMI; see the legend on the map). This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations. The MMI is a qualitative measure of shaking intensity. More on the MMI scale can be found here and here. This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations.
  • I include the slab 2.0 contours plotted transparently (Hayes, 2018), which are contours that represent the depth to the subduction zone fault. These are mostly based upon seismicity. The depths of the earthquakes have considerable error and do not all occur along the subduction zone faults, so these slab contours are simply the best estimate for the location of the fault.

    Magnetic Anomalies

  • In the map below, I include a transparent overlay of the magnetic anomaly data from EMAG2 (Meyer et al., 2017). As oceanic crust is formed, it inherits the magnetic field at the time. At different points through time, the magnetic polarity (north vs. south) flips, the North Pole becomes the South Pole. These changes in polarity can be seen when measuring the magnetic field above oceanic plates. This is one of the fundamental evidences for plate spreading at oceanic spreading ridges (like the Gorda rise).
  • Regions with magnetic fields aligned like today’s magnetic polarity are colored red in the EMAG2 data, while reversed polarity regions are colored blue. Regions of intermediate magnetic field are colored light purple.

    I include some inset figures. Some of the same figures are located in different places on the larger scale map below.

  • In the upper left corner is a plate tectonic map showing major fault lines for the Molucca Strait and Halmahera region (Waltham et al., 2008). I place a blue star in the general location of today’s M 7.3 earthquake.
  • In the lower left corner is a low angle oblique view of the tectonic plates in this region (Hall, 2011). The view is from the southeast looking into the Earth towards the northwest.
  • In the lower right corner are the tide gage data from the tide gage at Pulau Gebe. These data were provided by the Indonesian Government here. These appear to be tsunami waves, they lasted over 5 hours and had a small wave height of 12 centimeters..
  • In the upper right corner is a part of the Global Earthquake Model (GEM) seismic hazard map that uses cool colors to represent a lower level of shaking intensity than warm colors (Silva et al., 2018). The units are in g (gravitational acceleration). 1 g = Earth’s gravity, so hypothetically, “rocks can get thrown in the air at 1g.” This map is prepared based on the chance an area will have earthquakes of a given size based on a combination of many different seismic hazard models. The region where today’s earthquake happened is colored yellow and has a 10% chance of shaking that 0.2g to 0.35 g (or stronger) over the next 50 years.
  • Below the hazard map is the GEM seismic risk map presents the geographic distribution of average annual loss (USD) due to ground shaking in the residential, commercial and industrial building stock, considering contents, structural and non-structural components. Warmer colors represent larger loss over time. Risk is the overlap of hazard and population. If there are no people, but there is seismic hazard, there is no seismic risk.
  • To the left of the GEM maps is a map of Halmahera and some surrounding islands. The color shows the level of seismic hazard for these islands (Zulkifli et al.,l 2017). The color shows the estimated Peak level of ground shaking for a period of 500 years (i.e. 10% probability of exceedance in 50 years). The units are the same (g). The M 7.3 earthquake generated up to ~.25 g, which is higher than the model would suggest (between 0.03 and 0.06 g).
  • Here is the map with a month’s seismicity plotted.

  • Here is the map with a century’s seismicity plotted. In the future I hope to get around to plotting earthquake mechanisms on this map. Yellow fault lines are from the Coordinating Committee Geoscience East-Southeast Asia consortium (CCOF). Red fault lines are from the Global Earthquake Model (GEM) Foundation.

Other Report Pages

Shaking Intensity and Potential for Ground Failure

  • Below are a series of maps that show the shaking intensity and potential for landslides and liquefaction. These are all USGS data products.
  • There are many different ways in which a landslide can be triggered. The first order relations behind slope failure (landslides) is that the “resisting” forces that are preventing slope failure (e.g. the strength of the bedrock or soil) are overcome by the “driving” forces that are pushing this land downwards (e.g. gravity). The ratio of resisting forces to driving forces is called the Factor of Safety (FOS). We can write this ratio like this:

    FOS = Resisting Force / Driving Force

    When FOS > 1, the slope is stable and when FOS < 1, the slope fails and we get a landslide. The illustration below shows these relations. Note how the slope angle α can take part in this ratio (the steeper the slope, the greater impact of the mass of the slope can contribute to driving forces). The real world is more complicated than the simplified illustration below.


    Landslide ground shaking can change the Factor of Safety in several ways that might increase the driving force or decrease the resisting force. Keefer (1984) studied a global data set of earthquake triggered landslides and found that larger earthquakes trigger larger and more numerous landslides across a larger area than do smaller earthquakes. Earthquakes can cause landslides because the seismic waves can cause the driving force to increase (the earthquake motions can “push” the land downwards), leading to a landslide. In addition, ground shaking can change the strength of these earth materials (a form of resisting force) with a process called liquefaction.

    Sediment or soil strength is based upon the ability for sediment particles to push against each other without moving. This is a combination of friction and the forces exerted between these particles. This is loosely what we call the “angle of internal friction.” Liquefaction is a process by which pore pressure increases cause water to push out against the sediment particles so that they are no longer touching.

    An analogy that some may be familiar with relates to a visit to the beach. When one is walking on the wet sand near the shoreline, the sand may hold the weight of our body generally pretty well. However, if we stop and vibrate our feet back and forth, this causes pore pressure to increase and we sink into the sand as the sand liquefies. Or, at least our feet sink into the sand.

    Below is a diagram showing how an increase in pore pressure can push against the sediment particles so that they are not touching any more. This allows the particles to move around and this is why our feet sink in the sand in the analogy above. This is also what changes the strength of earth materials such that a landslide can be triggered.


    Below is a diagram based upon a publication designed to educate the public about landslides and the processes that trigger them (USGS, 2004). Additional background information about landslide types can be found in Highland et al. (2008). There was a variety of landslide types that can be observed surrounding the earthquake region. So, this illustration can help people when they observing the landscape response to the earthquake whether they are using aerial imagery, photos in newspaper or website articles, or videos on social media. Will you be able to locate a landslide scarp or the toe of a landslide? This figure shows a rotational landslide, one where the land rotates along a curvilinear failure surface.


    Here is a map with landslide probability on it (Jessee et al., 2017). Please head over to that report for more information about the USGS Ground Failure products (landslides and liquefaction). Basically, earthquakes shake the ground and this ground shaking can cause landslides. We can see that there is a low probability for landslides. However, we have already seen photographic evidence for landslides and the lower limit for earthquake triggered landslides is magnitude M 5.5 (from Keefer 1984)


    Nowicki Jessee and others (2018) is the preferred model for earthquake-triggered landslide hazard. Our primary landslide model is the empirical model of Nowicki Jessee and others (2018). The model was developed by relating 23 inventories of landslides triggered by past earthquakes with different combinations of predictor variables using logistic regression. The output resolution is ~250 m. The model inputs are described below. More details about the model can be found in the original publication. We modify the published model by excluding areas with slopes <5° and changing the coefficient for the lithology layer "unconsolidated sediments" from -3.22 to -1.36, the coefficient for "mixed sedimentary rocks" to better reflect that this unit is expected to be weak (more negative coefficient indicates stronger rock).To exclude areas of insignificantly small probabilities in the computation of aggregate statistics for this model, we use a probability threshold of 0.002.

    Here is an excellent educational video from IRIS and a variety of organizations. The video helps us learn about how earthquake intensity gets smaller with distance from an earthquake. The concept of liquefaction is reviewed and we learn how different types of bedrock and underlying earth materials can affect the severity of ground shaking in a given location. The intensity map above is based on a model that relates intensity with distance to the earthquake, but does not incorporate changes in material properties as the video below mentions is an important factor that can increase intensity in places.

    Here is a map showing liquefaction susceptibility (Zhu et al., 2017).


    Zhu and others (2017) is the preferred model for liquefaction hazard. The model was developed by relating 27 inventories of liquefaction triggered by past earthquakes to globally-available geospatial proxies (summarized below) using logistic regression. We have implemented the global version of the model and have added additional modifications proposed by Baise and Rashidian (2017), including a peak ground acceleration (PGA) threshold of 0.1 g and linear interpolation of the input layers. We also exclude areas with slopes >5°. We linearly interpolate the original input layers of ~1 km resolution to 500 m resolution. The model inputs are described below. More details about the model can be found in the original publication.

Here is a map that shows a comparison of modeled shaking intensity for both the M 6.9 Molucca Strait (the left panel) and M 7.3 Halmahera (the right panel) earthquakes. The legend shows the MMI scale, which I discuss above.


Seismic Hazard and Seismic Risk

  • These are the two maps shown in the map above, the GEM Seismic Hazard and the GEM Seismic Risk maps from Pagani et al. (2018) and Silva et al. (2018).
    • The GEM Seismic Hazard Map:


    • The Global Earthquake Model (GEM) Global Seismic Hazard Map (version 2018.1) depicts the geographic distribution of the Peak Ground Acceleration (PGA) with a 10% probability of being exceeded in 50 years, computed for reference rock conditions (shear wave velocity, VS30, of 760-800 m/s). The map was created by collating maps computed using national and regional probabilistic seismic hazard models developed by various institutions and projects, and by GEM Foundation scientists. The OpenQuake engine, an open-source seismic hazard and risk calculation software developed principally by the GEM Foundation, was used to calculate the hazard values. A smoothing methodology was applied to homogenise hazard values along the model borders. The map is based on a database of hazard models described using the OpenQuake engine data format (NRML); those models originally implemented in other software formats were converted into NRML. While translating these models, various checks were performed to test the compatibility between the original results and the new results computed using the OpenQuake engine. Overall the differences between the original and translated model results are small, notwithstanding some diversity in modelling methodologies implemented in different hazard modelling software. The hashed areas in the map (e.g. Greenland) are currently not covered by a hazard model. The map and the underlying database of models are a dynamic framework, capable to incorporate newly released open models. Due to possible model limitations, regions portrayed with low hazard may still experience potentially damaging earthquakes.

    • The GEM Seismic Risk Map:


    • The Global Seismic Risk Map (v2018.1) presents the geographic distribution of average annual loss (USD) normalised by the average construction costs of the respective country (USD/m2) due to ground shaking in the residential, commercial and industrial building stock, considering contents, structural and non-structural components. The normalised metric allows a direct comparison of the risk between countries with widely different construction costs. It does not consider the effects of tsunamis, liquefaction, landslides, and fires following earthquakes. The loss estimates are from direct physical damage to buildings due to shaking, and thus damage to infrastructure or indirect losses due to business interruption are not included. The average annual losses are presented on a hexagonal grid, with a spacing of 0.30 x 0.34 decimal degrees (approximately 1,000 km2 at the equator). The average annual losses were computed using the event-based calculator of the OpenQuake engine, an open-source software for seismic hazard and risk analysis developed by the GEM Foundation. The seismic hazard, exposure and vulnerability models employed in these calculations were provided by national institutions, or developed within the scope of regional programs or bilateral collaborations. This global map and the underlying databases are based on best available and publicly accessible datasets and models. Due to possible model limitations, regions portrayed with low risk may still experience potentially damaging earthquakes.

Tsunami Hazard

  • Here are two maps that show the results of probabilistic tsunami modeling for the nation of Indonesia (Horspool et al., 2014). These results are similar to results from seismic hazards analysis and maps. The color represents the chance that a given area will experience a certain size tsunami (or larger).
  • The first map shows the annual chance of a tsunami with a height of at least 0.5 m (1.5 feet). The second map shows the chance that there will be a tsunami at least 3 meters (10 feet) high at the coast.

  • Annual probability of experiencing a tsunami with a height at the coast of (a) 0.5m (a tsunami warning) and (b) 3m (a major tsunami warning).

Some Relevant Discussion and Figures

  • Here is a tectonic map for this part of the world from Zahirovic et al., 2014. They show a fracture zone where the M 7.3 earthquake happened. I left out all the acronym definitions (you’re welcome), but they are listed in the paper.

  • Regional tectonic setting with plate boundaries (MORs/transforms = black, subduction zones = teethed red) from Bird (2003) and ophiolite belts representing sutures modified from Hutchison (1975) and Baldwin et al. (2012). West Sulawesi basalts are from Polvé et al. (1997), fracture zones are from Matthews et al. (2011) and basin outlines are from Hearn et al. (2003).

  • Here are maps showing the regional tectonics (Smoczyk et al., 2013).

  • Along its western margin, the Philippine Sea plate is associated with a zone of oblique convergence with the Sunda plate. This highly active convergent plate boundary extends along both sides the Philippine Islands, from Luzon in the north to Sulawesi in the south. The tectonic setting of the Philippines is unusual in several respects: it is characterized by opposite-facing subduction systems on its east and west sides; the archipelago is cut by a major transform fault, the Philippine Fault; and the arc complex itself is marked by volcanism, faulting, and high seismic activity. Subduction of the Philippine Sea plate occurs at the eastern margin of the archipelago along the Philippine Trench and its northern extension, the East Luzon Trough. The East Luzon Trough is thought to be an unusual example of a subduction zone in the process of formation, as the Philippine Trench system gradually extends northward (Hamburger and others, 1983).

  • This shows Global Positioning System (GPS) velocities at various locations. These plate motions are represented as vectors in mm/yr. (see legend) Here note how the vector labeled phil/eura (for the motion of the PSP relative to the Eurasia plate) is oblique to the plate margin along the Philippine trench (i.e. the PSP is not subducting perpendicular to the megathrust fault). The oblique relative motion seems to lead to strain partitioning, leading to a forearc sliver fault (the Philippine fault, shown in maps above). Below I include the text from the original figure caption in blockquote.

  • Topographic and tectonic map of the Indonesian archipelago and surrounding region. Labeled, shaded arrows show motion (NUVEL-1A model) of the first-named tectonic plate relative to the second. Solid arrows are velocity vectors derived from GPS surveys from 1991 through 2001, in ITRF2000. For clarity, only a few of the vectors for Sumatra are included. The detailed velocity field for Sumatra is shown in Figure 5. Velocity vector ellipses indicate 2-D 95% confidence levels based on the formal (white noise only) uncertainty estimates. NGT, ew Guinea Trench; NST, North Sulawesi Trench; SF, Sumatran Fault; TAF, Tarera-Aiduna Fault. Bathymetry [Smith and Sandwell, 1997] in this and all subsequent figures contoured at 2 km intervals

  • This is one of my favorite figures of all time (Hall, 2011). Read below for more details.

  • 3D cartoon of plate boundaries in the Molucca Sea region modified from Hall et al. (1995). Although seismicity identifies a number of plates there are no continuous boundaries, and the Cotobato, North Sulawesi and Philippine Trenches are all intraplate features. The apparent distinction between different crust types, such as Australian continental crust and oceanic crust of the Philippine and Molucca Sea, is partly a boundary inactive since the Early Miocene (east Sulawesi) and partly a younger but now probably inactive boundary of the Sorong Fault. The upper crust of this entire region is deforming in a much more continuous way than suggested by this cartoon.

  • Here is a map and cross section presented by Waltham et al. (2008). They use a variety of data sources as a basis for their interpretations (seismic reflection data, gravity data). Note how the Molucca Sea plate subducts both to the west and to the east. Below I include the text from the original figure caption in blockquote.

  • (A) Location and major tectonic features of the Molucca Sea region. Small, black-fi lled triangles are modern volcanoes. Bathymetric contours are at 200, 2000, 4000, and 6000 m. Large barbed lines are subduction zones, and small barbed lines are thrusts. (B) Cross section across the Halmahera and Sangihe Arcs on section line B. Thrusts on each side of the Molucca Sea are directed outward toward the adjacent arcs, although the subducting Molucca Sea plate dips east beneath Halmahera and west below the Sangihe Arc. (C) Inset is the restored cross section of the Miocene–Pliocene Weda Bay Basin of SW Halmahera on section line C, fl attened to the Pliocene unconformity, showing estimated thickness of the section

  • Early work done in the region was presented by McCaffrey et al. (1980). Here is a map showing seismic refraction lines that they used to constrain the structures in this region. Below I include the text from the original figure caption in blockquote.

  • Map of the Molucca Sea, eastern Indonesia, showing I~tions of seismic refraction lines (solid straight lines) and gravity traverses (duhed-dotted lines). Thrust faults are shown with teeth on hanging wall. Triangles represent active volcanoes defining the Sangihe and Halmahera magmatic arcs. Isobath interval is 1 km from Mammericks et al. [1976].

  • Here is a cross section that shows the gravity model they used to interpret this region.

  • Gravity model for the central Molucca Sea. (II) Crustal model with layers designated by their density contrasts and refraction control points by open circles and vertical bars. (b) Mantle structure used in modeling the gravity profiles in the central Molucca Sea. Figure 124 fits into the small box at the apex of the inverted-V-ehaped lithosphere. Slab dimensions are controlled by earthquake foci (dots) from Hlltherton 11M Dickinaon [1969J, and mantle densities are taken from Grow 11M Rowin [1975J. The column at the left shows assumed densities for the range of depths between the tick marks. The small v pattern represents oceanic crust, and island arc crust is designated by a short parallel line pattern. East is to the right of the figure.

  • Here is another tectonic map showing the Sorong fault and some splay faults (dashed lines running along Halmahera), one of which may be involved in today’s earthquake.

  • Location map and active faults of the Molucca Sea region. Fault colours: blue, convergence; red, transvergence; yellow, divergence; grey, uncertain motion. Fault abbreviations: CF, Catabato Fault; GF, Gorontalo Fault; NST, North Sulawesi Trench; PKF, Palu-Koro Fault; SF, Sorong Fault.

  • This is a geologic map for the islands in the region (Hall et al., 1988).

  • Sketch geological map of Halmahera based on Apandi & Sudana (1980), Silitonga et al. (1981), Supriatna (1980) & Yasin (1980) and modified after our own observations. Note in particular the absence of thrusting in the NE arm and the major NE-SW fault (the Subaim Fault) running parallel to the south side of Kau Bay.

Geologic Fundamentals

  • For more on the graphical representation of moment tensors and focal mechanisms, check this IRIS video out:
  • Here is a fantastic infographic from Frisch et al. (2011). This figure shows some examples of earthquakes in different plate tectonic settings, and what their fault plane solutions are. There is a cross section showing these focal mechanisms for a thrust or reverse earthquake. The upper right corner includes my favorite figure of all time. This shows the first motion (up or down) for each of the four quadrants. This figure also shows how the amplitude of the seismic waves are greatest (generally) in the middle of the quadrant and decrease to zero at the nodal planes (the boundary of each quadrant).

  • Here is another way to look at these beach balls.
  • There are three types of earthquakes, strike-slip, compressional (reverse or thrust, depending upon the dip of the fault), and extensional (normal). Here is are some animations of these three types of earthquake faults. The following three animations are from IRIS.
  • Strike Slip:

    Compressional:

    Extensional:

  • This is an image from the USGS that shows how, when an oceanic plate moves over a hotspot, the volcanoes formed over the hotspot form a series of volcanoes that increase in age in the direction of plate motion. The presumption is that the hotspot is stable and stays in one location. Torsvik et al. (2017) use various methods to evaluate why this is a false presumption for the Hawaii Hotspot.

  • A cutaway view along the Hawaiian island chain showing the inferred mantle plume that has fed the Hawaiian hot spot on the overriding Pacific Plate. The geologic ages of the oldest volcano on each island (Ma = millions of years ago) are progressively older to the northwest, consistent with the hot spot model for the origin of the Hawaiian Ridge-Emperor Seamount Chain. (Modified from image of Joel E. Robinson, USGS, in “This Dynamic Planet” map of Simkin and others, 2006.)

  • Here is a map from Torsvik et al. (2017) that shows the age of volcanic rocks at different locations along the Hawaii-Emperor Seamount Chain.

  • Hawaiian-Emperor Chain. White dots are the locations of radiometrically dated seamounts, atolls and islands, based on compilations of Doubrovine et al. and O’Connor et al. Features encircled with larger white circles are discussed in the text and Fig. 2. Marine gravity anomaly map is from Sandwell and Smith.

  • Here is a great tweet that discusses the different parts of a seismogram and how the internal structures of the Earth help control seismic waves as they propagate in the Earth.

    References:

  • Frisch, W., Meschede, M., Blakey, R., 2011. Plate Tectonics, Springer-Verlag, London, 213 pp.
  • Hall, R., 2011. Australia-SE Asia collision: plate tectonics and crustal flow in Geological Society, London, Special Publications 2011; v. 355; p. 75-109 doi: 10.1144/SP355.5
  • Hall., R., Audley-Charles, M.G., Banner, F.T., Hidayat, S., Tobing, S.L., 1988. Basement rocks of the Halmahera region, eastern Indonesia: a Late Cretaceous-early Tertiary arc and fore-arc in Journal of the Geological Society, v. 145, p. 65-84
  • Harris, R. and Major, J., 2016. Waves of destruction in the East Indies: the Wichmann catalogue of earthquakes and tsunami in the Indonesian region from 1538 to 1877 in Cummins, P. R. & Meilano, I. (eds) Geohazards in Indonesia: Earth Science for Disaster Risk Reduction. Geological Society, London, Special Publications, 441, http://doi.org/10.1144/SP441.2
  • Hayes, G., 2018, Slab2 – A Comprehensive Subduction Zone Geometry Model: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://doi.org/10.5066/F7PV6JNV.
  • Highland, L.M., and Bobrowsky, P., 2008. The landslide handbook—A guide to understanding landslides, Reston, Virginia, U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1325, 129 p.
  • Holt, W. E., C. Kreemer, A. J. Haines, L. Estey, C. Meertens, G. Blewitt, and D. Lavallee (2005), Project helps constrain continental dynamics and seismic hazards, Eos Trans. AGU, 86(41), 383–387, , https://doi.org/10.1029/2005EO410002. /li>
  • Horspool, N., Pranantyo, I., Griffin, J., Latief, H., Natawidjaja, D. H., Kongko, W., Cipta, A., Bustaman, B., Anugrah, S. D., and Thio, H. K., 2014. A probabilistic tsunami hazard assessment for Indonesia, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 14, 3105-3122, https://doi.org/10.5194/nhess-14-3105-2014, 2014.
  • Jessee, M.A.N., Hamburger, M. W., Allstadt, K., Wald, D. J., Robeson, S. M., Tanyas, H., et al. (2018). A global empirical model for near-real-time assessment of seismically induced landslides. Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface, 123, 1835–1859. https://doi.org/10.1029/2017JF004494
  • Keefer, D.K., 1984. Landslides Caused by Earthquakes in GSA Bulletin, v. 95, p. 406-421
  • Kreemer, C., J. Haines, W. Holt, G. Blewitt, and D. Lavallee (2000), On the determination of a global strain rate model, Geophys. J. Int., 52(10), 765–770.
  • Kreemer, C., W. E. Holt, and A. J. Haines (2003), An integrated global model of present-day plate motions and plate boundary deformation, Geophys. J. Int., 154(1), 8–34, , https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-246X.2003.01917.x.
  • Kreemer, C., G. Blewitt, E.C. Klein, 2014. A geodetic plate motion and Global Strain Rate Model in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, v. 15, p. 3849-3889, https://doi.org/10.1002/2014GC005407.
  • McCaffrey, R., Silver, E.A., and Raitt, R.W., 1980. Crustal Structure of the Molucca Sea Collision Zone, Indonesia in The Tectonic and Geologic Evolution of Southeast Asian Seas and Islands-Geophysical Monograph 23, p. 161-177.
  • Meyer, B., Saltus, R., Chulliat, a., 2017. EMAG2: Earth Magnetic Anomaly Grid (2-arc-minute resolution) Version 3. National Centers for Environmental Information, NOAA. Model. https://doi.org/10.7289/V5H70CVX
  • Müller, R.D., Sdrolias, M., Gaina, C. and Roest, W.R., 2008, Age spreading rates and spreading asymmetry of the world’s ocean crust in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 9, Q04006, https://doi.org/10.1029/2007GC001743
  • Pagani,M. , J. Garcia-Pelaez, R. Gee, K. Johnson, V. Poggi, R. Styron, G. Weatherill, M. Simionato, D. Viganò, L. Danciu, D. Monelli (2018). Global Earthquake Model (GEM) Seismic Hazard Map (version 2018.1 – December 2018), DOI: 10.13117/GEM-GLOBAL-SEISMIC-HAZARD-MAP-2018.1
  • Silva, V ., D Amo-Oduro, A Calderon, J Dabbeek, V Despotaki, L Martins, A Rao, M Simionato, D Viganò, C Yepes, A Acevedo, N Horspool, H Crowley, K Jaiswal, M Journeay, M Pittore, 2018. Global Earthquake Model (GEM) Seismic Risk Map (version 2018.1). https://doi.org/10.13117/GEM-GLOBAL-SEISMIC-RISK-MAP-2018.1
  • Smoczyk, G.M., Hayes, G.P., Hamburger, M.W., Benz, H.M., Villaseñor, Antonio, and Furlong, K.P., 2013. Seismicity of the Earth 1900–2012 Philippine Sea plate and vicinity: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2010–1083-M, 1 sheet, scale 1:10,000,000.
  • Waltham et al., 2008. Basin formation by volcanic arc loading in GSA Special Papers 2008, v. 436, p. 11-26.
  • Zahirovic et al., 2014. The Cretaceous and Cenozoic tectonic evolution of Southeast Asia in Solid Earth, v. 5, p. 227-273, doi:10.5194/se-5-227-2014.
  • Zulkifli, M., Rudyanto, A., and Sakti, A.P., 2016. The View of Seismic Hazard in The Halmahera Region in proceedings from International Symposium on Earth Hazard and Disaster Mitigation (ISEDM) 2016 AIP Conf. Proc. 1857, 050004-1–050004-7; doi:10.1063/1.4987082

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Posted in collision, earthquake, education, geology, Indonesia, plate tectonics, tsunami

Earthquake Report: Ridgecrest Update #1

My original Earthquake Report for this widely felt sequence is here.

There have been well over 1000 aftershocks with magnitudes M ≥ 0.5.

Last night there was the largest aftershock (so far) a magnitude M 5.4 earthquake.

It is clear that this sequence has involved at least 2 main faults. I interpret the mainshock (the M 6.4) to be on a northeast trending (striking) left-lateral strike-slip fault. This is largely because (1) the longer of the 2 aftershock trends is has this orientation and (2) the majority of field observations of surface rupture are along this orientation. The M 5.4 aftershock is located along the right-lateral northwest trending fault. The M 6.4 could be on the nw striking fault.

Lots of information about the regional tectonics is in my original report, so I won’t rehash that here.

  • I present two summaries below:
    1. A video showing seismicity for the past day or two.
    2. An updated seismicity map.

Seismicity Visualization

  • I use the USGS earthquake website to query for earthquakes for a given time range, spatial extent, and minimum magnitude. Using the query results, I export these data as a text file (for the GIS based maps) and as Google Earth kmz files.
  • I use the animated version of the kmz, use computer software to capture the animation, and then do some video editing with this software. The music is copyright free.

Updated Seismicity Map

  • I plot the seismicity from the past month, with color representing depth and diameter representing magnitude (see legend). I include earthquake epicenters from 1919-2019 with magnitudes M ≥ 5.0 in one version.
  • I plot the USGS fault plane solutions (moment tensors in blue and focal mechanisms in orange) for the earthquakes for which the USGS has prepared earthquake mechanism plots. Read more about these plots in my original report under “Geologic Fundamentals” at the bottom of the report.
  • I label these earthquakes relative to the date and time of their ocurrence. I also label them in red in order of appearance. There was a M 4.0 foreshock to the M 6.4 mainshock.
  • It is not clear, for some quakes, which fault they are on, so i include both nodal plane solutions (purple and green arrows). Obviously, these are just my interpretations based on a simple overlay with the faults. Upon more rigorous analysis, we will learn more about how these earthquakes relate to each other.
  • I place red dashed lines in the general location of the proposed faults involved in this sequence. They are not well constrained, though the northeast striking fault is somewhat located where the surface rupture is located crossing Highway 178 (the major road that traverses Ridgecrest).
  • Note that there are 3 normal faulting events (#5, 6, 7) and they happen at about the same time. As I mention in my original report, there are lots of normal faults mapped in this region.
  • The northeast striking fault is about 22 km long and the northwest striking fault is about 17 km long (if the most westerly eqs are not included as they appear to be on a separate fault based on the gap in seismicity). Using Wells and Coppersmith (1995), I calculate that a 22 km long fault could produce a M 6.6 earthquake. This is pretty close to M 6.4 given the uncertainty in those fault magnitude : fault lenth relations.


LATE BREAKING NEWS

USGS


Berkeley Seismology Lab


UPDATE

  • Here is a photo taken Dr. Mark Hemphill-Haley. This shows the Humboldt State University Baby Benioff seismograph for the M 7.1 earthquake. As Hemphill-Haley states, the gain is turned up so people can see smaller quakes. This is why the record maxes out. The beginning of the earthquake is on the bottom.

  • Here is an updated map. Please see previous maps and reports for more information about what is on this map.
  • I have plotted epicenters from the past few days for magnitudes M > 0.5 in green and earthquakes for the past century for magnitudes M > 5.0.
  • As I have discussed earlier and here, there are 2 major faults that are participating in this sequence. One fault is a northeast striking (oriented) left-lateral strike-slip fault (analog = Garlock fault). The other fault is a northwest striking (oriented) right-lateral strike-slip fault (analog = San Andreas, Owens Valley faults). There are also many other smaller faults too.
  • Earlier I interpreted the M 6.4 to have been on the northeast striking left-lateral strike-slip fault. This is still my favored interpretation as (1) using the empirical fault scaling relations from Wells and Coppersmith (1995), the 23 km length could produce a magnitude M 6.6 earthquake (close enough to > 6.4), (2) this is where the aftershocks were following the M 6.4, and (3) the surface rupture was identified along the northeast striking region. However, it may be on the northwest striking fault.
  • The M 7.1 earthquake is clearly on the nw striking right-lateral strike-slip fault. The aftershocks are filling in, showing us the spatial extent (the length) of this fault rupture. At first, there were several M 4+ aftershocks at the northwestern end of the aftershocks. As I was preparing the map below, some starting ripping off to the southeast of the ne striking fault. The nw fault appears to be about 60 km long. Using Wells and Coppersmith, a 56 km long rupture would produce a M 7.0 magnitude earthquake. Imagine that!

  • In the above map, there is an inset map showing the eastern California Shear Zone, the San Andreas fault, and the Garlock fault. I highlight several key historic earthquakes. The 1872 M 7.6+- Owens Valley, the 1992 M 7.4 Landers, and the 1999 M 7.1 Hector Mine earthquakes (the faults that ruptured are shown as red lines in the inset map).
  • In Dr. Ross Stein’s article on Temblor from late yesterday, Stein suggested that these Ridgecrest earthquakes are in a region of increased static coulomb stress from the 1872, 1992, and 1999 earthquakes. Below is one of his figures that shows regions that have an increased (in red) and decreased stress following the 1872 earthquake. Of particular interest is that there is a region of faults that lie between this ongoing Ridgecrest sequence and the 1872 rupture.

  • Here is their analysis that shows an expected increase in rates of seismicity follwing earthquakes from 1992-2005 (Toda et al., 2005). This is also from the Temblor report.

  • The reason I bring all this up is that there is a possibility that other faults in the region may rupture as a large earthquake. Of course, this could happen tomorrow or months or years from now. Recall that the last earthquake this size was in 1999 and the one prior to that was in 1992. Regardless, there is a stretch of the plate boundary faults (e.g. Owens Valley) that are between the 1872 and this 2019 slip.
  • My cousin (a famous blues guitarist, Barry Levenson) just asked me on social media about the “Big One.” (I am paraphrasing.). I wrote to him this: as far as the San Andreas fault (SAF), this Ridgecrest sequence probably does not affect the chance that the SAF might rupture. The SAF is getting ready to go every day, but this Ridgecrest sequence is probably not affecting that… the Ridgecrest sequence is just too far away from the SAF to affect it.
  • Here is the intensity map from the CISN/California Geological Survey. The color represents the shaking intensity from the M 7.1 earthquake.

  • The map above is based on an empirical relation between earthquake shaking intensity, earthquake magnitude, and distance to the earthquake. These relations depend also on other factors, like the type of earthquake and the type of Earth materials.
  • Here is a plot showing the empirical plot (blue lines) based on the attenuation relations of Boore and Atkinson (2008). The black dots represent observations from seismometers operated by the California Geological Survey. Note the limitation that there are few observations less than 100 km from the earthquake.

UPDATE: 2019.07.06 afternoon

  • Here are some updated maps. I am heading to the field tomorrow, so probably won’t be providing more updates, but we will see.
  • Here is an updated seismicity map. The aftershock zone is now extending all the way to the Garlock fault. Also, there are some triggered events far to the northwest of the aftershock zone. These are probably not part of the main northwest trending fault, which appears to end near where the aftershocks are. The pdf version of this map is 167 MB.
  • Stay Tuned

  • Here is a map with landslide probability on it. I prepared one like this for the M 6.4 earthquake. Please head over to that report for more information about the USGS Ground Failure products (landslides and liquefaction). Basically, earthquakes shake the ground and this ground shaking can cause landslides. We can see that there is a low probability for landslides. However, we have already seen photographic evidence for landslides and the lower limit for earthquake triggered landslides is magnitude M 5.5 (from Keefer 1984-ish).

  • Here is a map showing liquefaction susceptibility. I explain more about this type of map in my original report for the M 6.4 earthquake. Scroll down a bit to find the landslide and liquefaction maps for that event.

  • Finally, here is a map that shows the shaking intensity for the M 7.1 earthquake. As I mention in my original report, this is based on a model that relates earthquake shaking intensity with earthquake magnitude and distance from the earthquake. Note that there was violent shaking from the M 7.1 event (MMI IX).

    USGS Earthquake Forecast (UPDATED 5 July 2019)

  • The USGS has been increasing the list of products that are produced in association with their earthquake pages. One of these products is an earthquake forecast (not a prediction as nobody can predict earthquakes yet) that lists the chance of an earthquake with a given magnitude over a certain period of time. The forecast for the M 6.4 earthquake is found here. These forecasts are updated periodically, so the information will change with time. Below is a table where I present the forecast as it was when I checked the page this morning (would be nice if the USGS would produce an easy to read table).
  • Thanks to Dr. Harold Tobin for reviewing these tables (I reformat them) as he noticed a mistake. They are now fixed.
  • From the USGS:

    Be ready for more earthquakes

    • More earthquakes than usual (called aftershocks) will continue to occur near the mainshock.
    • When there are more earthquakes, the chance of a large earthquake is greater which means that the chance of damage is greater.
    • The USGS advises everyone to be aware of the possibility of aftershocks, especially when in or around vulnerable structures such as unreinforced masonry buildings.
    • This earthquake could be part of a sequence. An earthquake sequence may have larger and potentially damaging earthquakes in the future, so remember to: Drop, Cover, and Hold on.

    About this earthquake and related aftershocks

    • So far in this sequence there have been 97 magnitude 3 or higher earthquakes, which are strong enough to be felt, and 1 magnitude 5 or higher earthquakes, which are large enough to do damage.

    What we think will happen next

    • According to our forecast, over the next 1 Week there is a 3 % chance of one or more aftershocks that are larger than magnitude 6.4. It is likely that there will be smaller earthquakes over the next 1 Week, with 47 to 88 magnitude 3 or higher aftershocks. Magnitude 3 and above are large enough to be felt near the epicenter. The number of aftershocks will drop off over time, but a large aftershock can increase the numbers again, temporarily.

    About our earthquake forecasts

    • No one can predict the exact time or place of any earthquake, including aftershocks. Our earthquake forecasts give us an understanding of the chances of having more earthquakes within a given time period in the affected area. We calculate this earthquake forecast using a statistical analysis based on past earthquakes.
    • Our forecast changes as time passes due to decline in the frequency of aftershocks, larger aftershocks that may trigger further earthquakes, and changes in forecast modeling based on the data collected for this earthquake sequence.
    • The first table presents this forecast in terms of percent chance and the second table presents the forecast in terms of number of earthquakes.



    References:

  • Amos, C.B., Bwonlee, S.J., Hood, D.H., Fisher, G.B., Bürgmann, R., Renne, P.R., and Jayko, A.S., 2013. Chronology of tectonic, geomorphic, and volcanic interactions and the tempo of fault slip near Little Lake, California in GSA Bulletin, v. 125, no. 7-8, https://doi.org/10.1130/B30803.1
  • Frankel, K.L., Glazner, A.F., Kirby, E., Monastero, F.C., Strane, M.D., Oskin, M.E., Unruh, J.R., Walker, J.D., Anandakrishnan, S., Bartley, J.M., Coleman, D.S., Dolan, J.F., Finkel, R.C., Greene, D., Kylander-Clark, A., Morrero, S., Owen, L.A., and Phillips, F., 2008, Active tectonics of the eastern California shear zone, in Duebendorfer, E.M., and Smith, E.I., eds., Field Guide to Plutons, Volcanoes, Faults, Reefs, Dinosaurs, and Possible Glaciation in Selected Areas of Arizona, California, and Nevada: Geological Society of America Field Guide 11, p. 43–81, doi: 10.1130/2008.fl d011(03).
  • Frisch, W., Meschede, M., Blakey, R., 2011. Plate Tectonics, Springer-Verlag, London, 213 pp.
  • Hayes, G., 2018, Slab2 – A Comprehensive Subduction Zone Geometry Model: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://doi.org/10.5066/F7PV6JNV.
  • Holt, W. E., C. Kreemer, A. J. Haines, L. Estey, C. Meertens, G. Blewitt, and D. Lavallee (2005), Project helps constrain continental dynamics and seismic hazards, Eos Trans. AGU, 86(41), 383–387, , https://doi.org/10.1029/2005EO410002. /li>
  • Kreemer, C., J. Haines, W. Holt, G. Blewitt, and D. Lavallee (2000), On the determination of a global strain rate model, Geophys. J. Int., 52(10), 765–770.
  • Kreemer, C., W. E. Holt, and A. J. Haines (2003), An integrated global model of present-day plate motions and plate boundary deformation, Geophys. J. Int., 154(1), 8–34, , https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-246X.2003.01917.x.
  • Kreemer, C., G. Blewitt, E.C. Klein, 2014. A geodetic plate motion and Global Strain Rate Model in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, v. 15, p. 3849-3889, https://doi.org/10.1002/2014GC005407.
  • Meyer, B., Saltus, R., Chulliat, a., 2017. EMAG2: Earth Magnetic Anomaly Grid (2-arc-minute resolution) Version 3. National Centers for Environmental Information, NOAA. Model. https://doi.org/10.7289/V5H70CVX
  • Müller, R.D., Sdrolias, M., Gaina, C. and Roest, W.R., 2008, Age spreading rates and spreading asymmetry of the world’s ocean crust in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 9, Q04006, https://doi.org/10.1029/2007GC001743

Return to the Earthquake Reports page.

Posted in earthquake, education, geology, San Andreas, strike-slip

Earthquake Report: Ridgecrest, CA

Well, happy fourth of July!

There was a good sized earthquake in southern California today. The largest earthquake since the 1999 M 7.1 Hector Mine earthquake. (The 2003 San Simeon earthquake was larger, but much farther to the west, at about the same latitude.)

Today’s earthquake sequence has a mainshock (so far) with a magnitude M = 6.4. If you live in southern California or southern Nevada, please visit this website to describe your observations.

This region is at the intersection of several different fault systems. The Pacific-North America plate boundary, which most people associate with the San Andreas fault, includes the South Sierra Nevada fault zone and other right-lateral strike-slip faults that trend along the eastern side of the Sierra Nevada Mountains (including the Eastern California Shear Zone). There is also an interesting conjugate fault, the Garlock fault, which is a left-lateral strike-slip fault.

If we zoom into the area where this earthquake sequence is happening, we can locate some mapped faults. Some are parallel to the S. Sierra Nevada system and some are parallel to the Garlock fault. The faults parallel to the Sierra Nevada system are right-lateral and the faults parallel to the Garlock are left-lateral.

The sequence today appears to involve faults with both orientations. Looking at the aftershocks, it looks like the main shock is left-lateral (more aftershocks along the northeast trend).

These strike-slip faults also have normal motion on them (so they are both strike-slip and normal, i.e. “oblique”).

There are photographic reports of surface rupture (where the earthquake fault breaks the ground surface) across Highway 178.

This earthquake will be studied over the coming weeks, so I will be preparing updates in the near and far future.

The USGS earthquake products I review below include (1) the probability (“chance for”) landslides and liquefaction and (2) an earthquake forecast (the chance of future earthquakes for given time ranges).

Below, check out the social media links. There are field observations and a link to a Temblor report where they suggest this earthquake was possibly triggered by earthquakes in the 20th century.

Here is the Baby Benioff Seismograph from Humboldt State University, Department of Geology (photo credit Dr. Mark Hemphill-Haley).


This is in a tweet below, but the figure is so telling, I am placing it up here. Some may need to read more background material (below) to understand this figure.

This figure shows earthquake mechanisms (focal mechanisms) for seismicity associated with this ongoing sequence in Ridgecrest.


There are lots of great field photos in tweets below. Here is one of them. The reason I show this here is to mention one of the principles of geologic time. Relative time is based on several principles (e.g. law of superposition, principle of original horizontality). The principle demonstrated here is cross cutting relations.

The spectacular example spans different time scales. First the road was built, then the paint stripes were painted (superposed above the road, so are younger than the road). Then the driver of the Jeep felt the earthquake (inferred by the black rubber skid marks). The skid marks were then offset by the earthquake (the skid marks are cross-cut by the earthquake fault).

This objective information tells us several things about the earthquake. I already mentioned that the driver may have felt the earthquake, leading them to skid to a stop. The cool thing is that we can tell that the fault slipped in this area after the person skid across the fault. This is really cool… at this location, the shaking started prior to the fault slip.

UPDATE: Ian Pierce tells us that the black mark is not a skid mark, but road tar. So, I was incorrect.


UPDATE (2019.07.05): Here is my first Earthquake Report Update

Below is my interpretive poster for this earthquake


I plot the seismicity from the past month, with color representing depth and diameter representing magnitude (see legend). I include earthquake epicenters from 1919-2019 with magnitudes M ≥ 5.0 in one version.

I plot the USGS fault plane solutions (moment tensors in blue and focal mechanisms in orange), possibly in addition to some relevant historic earthquakes.

  • I placed a moment tensor / focal mechanism legend on the poster. There is more material from the USGS web sites about moment tensors and focal mechanisms (the beach ball symbols). Both moment tensors and focal mechanisms are solutions to seismologic data that reveal two possible interpretations for fault orientation and sense of motion. One must use other information, like the regional tectonics, to interpret which of the two possibilities is more likely.
  • I also include the shaking intensity contours on the map. These use the Modified Mercalli Intensity Scale (MMI; see the legend on the map). This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations. The MMI is a qualitative measure of shaking intensity. More on the MMI scale can be found here and here. This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations.
  • I include the slab 2.0 contours plotted (Hayes, 2018), which are contours that represent the depth to the subduction zone fault. These are mostly based upon seismicity. The depths of the earthquakes have considerable error and do not all occur along the subduction zone faults, so these slab contours are simply the best estimate for the location of the fault.

    Global Strain

  • In a map below, I include a transparent overlay of the Global Strain Rate Map (Kreemer et al., 2014).
  • The mission of the Global Strain Rate Map (GSRM) project is to determine a globally self-consistent strain rate and velocity field model, consistent with geodetic and geologic field observations. The overall mission also includes:
    1. contributions of global, regional, and local models by individual researchers
    2. archive existing data sets of geologic, geodetic, and seismic information that can contribute toward a greater understanding of strain phenomena
    3. archive existing methods for modeling strain rates and strain transients
  • The completed global strain rate map will provide a large amount of information that is vital for our understanding of continental dynamics and for the quantification of seismic hazards.
  • The version used in the poster(s) below is an update to the original 2004 map (Kreemer et al., 2000, 2003; Holt et al., 2005).

    I include some inset figures. Some of the same figures are located in different places on the larger scale map below.

  • In the upper right corner is a regional plate tectonic map (Amos et al., 2013). Earthquake faults are shown and labeled. I place a blue star in the location of today’s sequence. I label the Eastern California Shear zone. This map shows the locations of the historic major surface rupturing earthquakes (1872 Owen’s Valley, 1992 Landers, and 1999 Hector Mine).
  • In the lower left corner is a screen shot of the USGS website showing earthquakes from this sequence for M > 0.5.
  • In the upper left corner are two maps.
    • The one on the left shows the thickness of sedimentary deposits (Stevens et al., 2013). As these faults move, they create space for sediments to deposit. The faster the faults move (the slip rate) and the more time that passes, the thicker the sedimentary deposits can be. The thickest deposits are warmer in color. There is a cross section labeled (A-A’).
    • The one on the right shows how these authors interpret how the North America plate is broken up into “blocks.” These blocks are bounded by the different fault systems. The Indian Wells Valley is bisected by the Airport Lane/Little Lake fault.
  • In the lower right corner is cross section A-A’ through the Indian Wells Valley (Stevens et al., 2013). The gray areas represent the sedimentary deposits. The faults curring across and bounding this valley are shown (with arrows showing relative motion). The Little Lake fault is shown as a right-lateral strike-slip fault.
  • Here is the map with a month’s seismicity plotted. I include transparent colors that are based on the USGS “Did You Feel It?” (DYFI) felt reports database. This way we can compare the computer model based intensity data (the MMI contours) with the reports provided by real people. The comparison is decent.

  • This is a plot that allows us to take a closer look at the comparison between the modeled data relative to the reported data.
  • The vertical axis is shaking intensity (MMI). The horizontal axis is distance from the fault that slipped.
  • The orange line shows the result from the USGS application of a model from Atkinson and Wald (2007) called an “Attenuation Relation” model. This is an empirical model that relates shaking intensity with earthquake magnitude and distance.
  • These attenuation relations also take into account earthquake type, material properties, and other parameters that affect shaking intensity.
  • The blue dots are the actual reported values of intensity from people who used the USGS website to report their direct observations. As I write this, over 42,800 people reported what they experienced and observed. The bigger dots represent the meand and median intensity from the DYFI reports.

  • Here is the map with a century’s seismicity plotted, for quakes M ≥ 5.0.

  • Here is the map with a century’s seismicity plotted, for quakes M ≥ 5.0 with the Global Strain Map as an overlay.

    Landslide, Liquefaction, and Shaking Intensity

  • Here is a suite of maps that use USGS earthquake products to help us learn about how earthquakes may affect the landscape: landslide probability and liquefaction susceptibility (a.k.a. the Ground Failure data products)..
  • First I present the landslide probability model. This is a GIS data product that relates a variety of factors to the probability (the chance of) landslides as triggered by this earthquake. There are a number of assumptions that are made in order to be able to produce this model across such a large region, though this is still of great value (like other aspects from the USGS, e.g. the PAGER alert). Learn more about all of these Ground Failure products here.
  • There are many different ways in which a landslide can be triggered. The first order relations behind slope failure (landslides) is that the “resisting” forces that are preventing slope failure (e.g. the strength of the bedrock or soil) are overcome by the “driving” forces that are pushing this land downwards (e.g. gravity). I spend more time discussing landslides and liquefaction in this recent earthquake report.
  • This model, like all landslide computer models, uses similar inputs. I review these here:
    1. Some information about ground shaking. Often, people use Peak Ground Acceleration, though in the past decade+, it has been recognized that the parameter “Arias Intensity” is a better measure of the energy imparted by the earthquake across the land and seascape. Instead of simply accounting for the peak accelerations, AI integrates the entire energy (duration) during the earthquake. That being said, PGA is a more common parameter that is available for people to use. For example, when I was modeling slope stability for the 2004 Sumatra-Andaman subduction zone earthquake, the only model that was calibrated to observational data were in units of PGA. The first order control to shaking intensity (energy observed at any particular location) is distance to the earthquake fault that slipped.
    2. Some information about the strength of the materials (e.g. angle of internal friction (the strength) and cohesion (the resistance).
    3. Information about the slope. Steeper slopes, with all other things being equal, are more likely to fail than are shallower slopes. Think about skiing. Beginners (like me) often choose shallower slopes to ski because they will go down the slope slower, while experts choose steeper slopes.
  • I use the same color scheme that is presented by the USGS on their website. Note that the majority of areas that may have experienced earthquake triggered landslides are cream in color (0.3-1%). There are a few places with a slightly higher chance that there were triggered landslides. It is possible that there were no significant landslides from this earthquake. The lower bounds for earthquake triggered landslides on land is about M 5.5 and a M 6.4 releases much more energy than that.

  • Landslide ground shaking can change the Factor of Safety in several ways that might increase the driving force or decrease the resisting force. Keefer (1984) studied a global data set of earthquake triggered landslides and found that larger earthquakes trigger larger and more numerous landslides across a larger area than do smaller earthquakes. Earthquakes can cause landslides because the seismic waves can cause the driving force to increase (the earthquake motions can “push” the land downwards), leading to a landslide. In addition, ground shaking can change the strength of these earth materials (a form of resisting force) with a process called liquefaction.
  • Sediment or soil strength is based upon the ability for sediment particles to push against each other without moving. This is a combination of friction and the forces exerted between these particles. This is loosely what we call the “angle of internal friction.” Liquefaction is a process by which pore pressure increases cause water to push out against the sediment particles so that they are no longer touching.
  • An analogy that some may be familiar with relates to a visit to the beach. When one is walking on the wet sand near the shoreline, the sand may hold the weight of our body generally pretty well. However, if we stop and vibrate our feet back and forth, this causes pore pressure to increase and we sink into the sand as the sand liquefies. Or, at least our feet sink into the sand.
  • Below is the liquefaction susceptibility map. I discuss liquefaction more in my earthquake report on the 28 September 20018 Sulawesi, Indonesia earthquake, landslide, and tsunami here.
  • I use the same color scheme that the USGS uses on their website. Note how the areas that are more likely to have experienced earthquake induced liquefaction are in the valleys. The fact that this earthquake happened in the summer time suggests that there may not have been any liquefaction from this earthquake.

  • Finally, here is a map showing the earthquake shaking intensity. The scale is the Modified Mercalli Intensity scale (explained above).
  • I also include two inset maps (also in the landslide and liquefaction maps). These are seismic hazard and seismic risk maps. Read more about these maps here.
    • On the right is the Global Earthquake Model Seismic Hazard map. Color represents the amount of shaking that an area may experience over the next 50 years. The units are “g” (which stands for gravity, where g= 1 is the gravity at the Earth’s surface). If g > 1, objects can be thrown into the air.
    • On the left is the GEM Seismic Risk map. Risk is the combination of hazard and people. If there is seismic hazard where there are no people, then there is no seismic risk. If there are people where there is no seismic hazard, there is no seismic risk. Seismic risk happens when there are people exposed to seismic hazard. The color represents the financial expense due to seismic hazards.


    USGS Earthquake Forecast (UPDATED 5 July 2019)

  • The USGS has been increasing the list of products that are produced in association with their earthquake pages. One of these products is an earthquake forecast (not a prediction as nobody can predict earthquakes yet) that lists the chance of an earthquake with a given magnitude over a certain period of time. The forecast for the M 6.4 earthquake is found here. These forecasts are updated periodically, so the information will change with time. Below is a table where I present the forecast as it was when I checked the page this morning (would be nice if the USGS would produce an easy to read table).
  • Thanks to Dr. Harold Tobin for reviewing these tables (I reformat them) as he noticed a mistake. They are now fixed.
  • From the USGS:

    Be ready for more earthquakes

    • More earthquakes than usual (called aftershocks) will continue to occur near the mainshock.
    • When there are more earthquakes, the chance of a large earthquake is greater which means that the chance of damage is greater.
    • The USGS advises everyone to be aware of the possibility of aftershocks, especially when in or around vulnerable structures such as unreinforced masonry buildings.
    • This earthquake could be part of a sequence. An earthquake sequence may have larger and potentially damaging earthquakes in the future, so remember to: Drop, Cover, and Hold on.

    About this earthquake and related aftershocks

    • So far in this sequence there have been 97 magnitude 3 or higher earthquakes, which are strong enough to be felt, and 1 magnitude 5 or higher earthquakes, which are large enough to do damage.

    What we think will happen next

    • According to our forecast, over the next 1 Week there is a 3 % chance of one or more aftershocks that are larger than magnitude 6.4. It is likely that there will be smaller earthquakes over the next 1 Week, with 47 to 88 magnitude 3 or higher aftershocks. Magnitude 3 and above are large enough to be felt near the epicenter. The number of aftershocks will drop off over time, but a large aftershock can increase the numbers again, temporarily.

    About our earthquake forecasts

    • No one can predict the exact time or place of any earthquake, including aftershocks. Our earthquake forecasts give us an understanding of the chances of having more earthquakes within a given time period in the affected area. We calculate this earthquake forecast using a statistical analysis based on past earthquakes.
    • Our forecast changes as time passes due to decline in the frequency of aftershocks, larger aftershocks that may trigger further earthquakes, and changes in forecast modeling based on the data collected for this earthquake sequence.
    • The first table presents this forecast in terms of percent chance and the second table presents the forecast in terms of number of earthquakes.



Other Reports for this Earthquake

  • Temblor: Southern California M 6.4 earthquake stressed by two large historic ruptures
  • Some Relevant Discussion and Figures

    • Here is the Amos et al. (2013) plate tectonic map. Check out the location of the historic surface rupturing earthquakes. Their figure caption is below (as for other figures here).

    • Overview of active faults and regional topography of the Eastern California shear zone (ECSZ) and southern Walker Lane belt. Labeled faults are abbreviated as follows: ALF—Airport Lake fault, BF—Blackwater fault, GF—Garlock fault, KCF—Kern Canyon fault, LLF—Little Lake fault, OVF—Owens Valley fault, SNFF—Sierra Nevada frontal fault. OL—Owens Lake, IWV—Indian Wells Valley. Major historical earthquake surface ruptures in the Eastern California shear zone and Walker Lane belt are outlined in white, with stars denoting epicentral locations: OV—1872 Owens Valley, L—Landers 1992, HM—1999 Hector Mine. Active fault traces are taken from the U.S. Geological Survey Quaternary fault and fold database, with the exception of the Kern Canyon fault, taken from Brossy et al. (2012).

    • This map extends a little farther to the east (Frankel et al., 2008). This map shows nicely how the Sierra Nevada and Owens Valley faults (the Pacific-North America plate boundary) and Eastern California Shear Zone, aka ECSZ (the maps south of the Garlock fault, 35.5N°) interact with east-west trending left-lateral strike-slip faults like the Garlock fault. The ’92 Landers and ’99 Hector Mine Earthquakes are on faults in the ECSZ.

    • Shaded relief index map of Quaternary faults, roads, towns, and fi eld trip stops in the eastern California shear zone. Most faults are from the U.S. Geological Survey Quaternary fault and fold database (http://earthquake.usgs.gov/regional/qfaults). Arrows indicate relative fault motion for strike slip faults. Bar and circle indicates the hanging wall of normal faults. Field trip stop location numbers are tied to site descriptions in the fi eld guide section. AHF—Ash Hill fault; ALF—Airport Lake fault; B—Bishop; BF—Blackwater fault; BLF—Bicycle Lake fault; BM—Black Mountains; BP—Big Pine; Br—Baker; Bw—Barstow; By—Beatty; CA—California; CF—Cady fault; CLF—Coyote Lake fault; CoF—Calico fault; CRF—Camp Rock fault; DSF—Deep Springs fault; DV-FLVF—Death Valley–Fish Lake Valley fault; EPF—Emigrant Peak fault; EV— Eureka Valley; FIF—Fort Irwin fault; FM—Funeral Mountains; GF—Garlock fault; GFL—Goldstone Lake fault; GM—Grapevine Mountains; HF—Helendale fault; HLF—Harper Lake fault; HMSVF—Hunter Mountain–Saline Valley fault; I—Independence; LF—Lenwood fault; LLF— Lavic Lake fault; LoF—Lockhart fault; LP—Lone Pine; LuF—Ludlow fault; LV—Las Vegas; M—Mojave; MF—Manix fault; NV—Nevada; O—Olancha; OL—Owens Lake; OVF—Owens Valley fault; P—Pahrump; PF—Pisgah fault; PV—Panamint Valley; PVF—Panamint Valley fault; R—Ridgecrest; S—Shoshone; SAF—San Andreas fault; SDVF—southern Death Valley fault; SLF—Stateline fault; SPLM—Silver Peak–Lone Mountain extensional complex; SNF—Sierra Nevada frontal fault; SP—Silver Peak Range; T—Tonopah; TF—Tiefort Mountain fault; TMF—Tin Mountain fault; TPF—Towne Pass fault; WMF—White Mountains fault; YM—Yucca Mountain.

    • This is also from Amos et al. (2013) that shows how some northeast striking normal faults are related to the Little Lake fault, in the northern part of Indian Wells Valley. The Little Lake fault connects to the Sierra Nevada frontal fault.

    • Simplified geologic map of the Little Lake fault, highlighting Quaternary volcanic and alluvial deposits bearing on the Pleistocene drainage of Owens River through the Little Lake area. Map units are named and modified from Duffield and Bacon (1981). The 30 m elevation contours are taken from the National Elevation Database (NED). The 40Ar/39Ar dates are labeled as in Table 1. SNFF—Sierra Nevada frontal fault.

    • Here is the Frankel et al. (2008) larger scale fault map, also focusing on the northern Indian Wells Valley.

    • Northward branching of the Holocene-active Airport Lake fault zone in northern Indian Wells Valley, Rose Valley, the Coso Range, and Wild Horse Mesa. AL—Airport Lake playa; BR— basement ridge; CB—Central branch; CWF—Coso Wash fault; EB—Eastern branch; GF—geothermal field; HS— Haiwee Spring; LCF—Lower Cactus Flat; MF—McCloud Flat; UCF—Upper Centennial Flat; WB—Western branch; WHA—White Hills anticline; WHM—Wild Horse Mesa; WHMFZ— Wild Horse Mesa fault zone. Faults with especially prominent scarps in Wild Horse Mesa are highlighted in bold. Late Quaternary faults modified from Duffield and Bacon (1981) and Whitmarsh (1998), with additional original mapping. A and B indicate two faults that display evidence for late Quaternary dextral offset.

    • In 1995-1996 there was a sequence in Ridgecrest that had a mainshock of M 5.8. This sequence is also in the same forecast area suggested by Toda et al. (2005) to have a higher chance of earthquakes following the ECSZ temblors.
    • This figure from Dreger et al. (2008) show some earthquake mechanisms from the Ridgecrest sequence. Note that most of the quakes are strike slip, but there are some normal (extensional) earthquakes too. This matches the fault configuration, which represents longer term strain.

    • Map showing the locations of events from the SCSN Earthquake Catalog and seismic moment tensors obtained by inverting low-frequency waveforms recorded at BDSN stations CMB, PKD1, and SAO.

    • Speaking of earthquake triggering and aftershocks, this figure shows some triggered earthquakes following the 1992 Landers earthquake Rouqemore and Simila (1994). They extend to and beyond the Indian Wells Valley. One aftershock near the Little Lake fault zone has a strike-slip mechanism and is located nearby today’s M 6.4.

    • Seismicity (M 4 or greater) for 28 June 1992 to 1 June 1993. See Figure 1 legend for definitions of abbreviations. The 28 June 1992 Landers rupture is shown as shaded fault lines. Faults are from Jennings (1992).

    • Here is a figure that Dr. Ross Stein prepared in the Temblor article linked and tweeted below.
    • When earthquake faults slip, the surrounding crust deforms like jello. This deformation and the fault slip lead to changes in the forces within the Earth. These changes can increase or decrease the stress on faults in these areas.
    • The map below shows regions that have an increase in fault stress as red and areas that have a decrease in stress as blue.
    • Note that there are sections of faults that experience both increases and decreases in stress. Take note that these changes in stress are tiny compared to the amount of stress that it takes for a fault to create an earthquake. So, for this type of stress change to lead to an earthquake, the fault would need to already be highly stressed. If the fault is just about ready to slip before this M 6.4, it probably would not be triggered.
    • Read more in Dr. Stein’s article here.

    • Coulomb 3.3 calculation of stress transferred by the 4th July shock to the surrounding region and major faults. Here we use a simple source based on the moment tensor (geometry, sense of slip, and size) of the earthquake, as determined by the USGS.

    • Here is a low-angle oblique image from Roquemore (1980) that shows some normal faults (the Airport Lake fault). North is up in this case.

    • Aerial view of a 2 km wide tension graben located along the south end of the right slip Airport Lake fault.

    • Here is a map I put together showing the faulting in the area where the above aerial image was taken Guess which faults are more strike-slip in nature, compared to extensional (normal). North isn’t always up.

    • This is the Stevens et al. (2013) map that shows the sedimentary basins in the region.

    • Map showing interpreted thickness of Cenozoic deposits and major faults outlining the deep basins, based on inversion of gravity data [56]. Connection between West Inyo and Southwest Argus faults from Pluhar et al. [58]. ALFZ = Airport Lake Fault Zone; CWF = Coso Wash Fault; EIF = East Inyo Fault; LLF = Little Lake Fault. A-A’ to H-H’ indicate lines of cross sections and gravity profiles shown in Figure 10.

    • Here are the fault blocks presented by Stevens et al. (2013).

    • Map showing deep basins, relatively shallow down-dropped blocks, extended mountain blocks, and structural zones in the ESVS, which is bounded by largely unextended mountain blocks. CB = Chalfant Basin; NBB = North Bishop Block; RVB = Round Valley Basin

    • This is cross section A-A’ showing the normal and normal oblique faults that cross the Indian Wells Valley (Stevens et al., 2013).

    • Structural cross sections across the East Sierra Valley System (ESVS), with corresponding gravity profiles. Locations of sections are shown in Figure 5. No vertical exaggeration. Shading represents Quaternary sedimentary and volcanic deposits, with thicknesses based on inversion of gravity data [53].

    Geologic Fundamentals

    • For more on the graphical representation of moment tensors and focal mechanisms, check this IRIS video out:
    • Here is a fantastic infographic from Frisch et al. (2011). This figure shows some examples of earthquakes in different plate tectonic settings, and what their fault plane solutions are. There is a cross section showing these focal mechanisms for a thrust or reverse earthquake. The upper right corner includes my favorite figure of all time. This shows the first motion (up or down) for each of the four quadrants. This figure also shows how the amplitude of the seismic waves are greatest (generally) in the middle of the quadrant and decrease to zero at the nodal planes (the boundary of each quadrant).

    • Here is another way to look at these beach balls.
    • There are three types of earthquakes, strike-slip, compressional (reverse or thrust, depending upon the dip of the fault), and extensional (normal). Here is are some animations of these three types of earthquake faults. The following three animations are from IRIS.
    • Strike Slip:

      Compressional:

      Extensional:

    • This is an image from the USGS that shows how, when an oceanic plate moves over a hotspot, the volcanoes formed over the hotspot form a series of volcanoes that increase in age in the direction of plate motion. The presumption is that the hotspot is stable and stays in one location. Torsvik et al. (2017) use various methods to evaluate why this is a false presumption for the Hawaii Hotspot.

    • A cutaway view along the Hawaiian island chain showing the inferred mantle plume that has fed the Hawaiian hot spot on the overriding Pacific Plate. The geologic ages of the oldest volcano on each island (Ma = millions of years ago) are progressively older to the northwest, consistent with the hot spot model for the origin of the Hawaiian Ridge-Emperor Seamount Chain. (Modified from image of Joel E. Robinson, USGS, in “This Dynamic Planet” map of Simkin and others, 2006.)

    • Here is a map from Torsvik et al. (2017) that shows the age of volcanic rocks at different locations along the Hawaii-Emperor Seamount Chain.

    • Hawaiian-Emperor Chain. White dots are the locations of radiometrically dated seamounts, atolls and islands, based on compilations of Doubrovine et al. and O’Connor et al. Features encircled with larger white circles are discussed in the text and Fig. 2. Marine gravity anomaly map is from Sandwell and Smith.

    • Here is a great tweet that discusses the different parts of a seismogram and how the internal structures of the Earth help control seismic waves as they propagate in the Earth.

      References:

    • Amos, C.B., Bwonlee, S.J., Hood, D.H., Fisher, G.B., Bürgmann, R., Renne, P.R., and Jayko, A.S., 2013. Chronology of tectonic, geomorphic, and volcanic interactions and the tempo of fault slip near Little Lake, California in GSA Bulletin, v. 125, no. 7-8, https://doi.org/10.1130/B30803.1
    • Frankel, K.L., Glazner, A.F., Kirby, E., Monastero, F.C., Strane, M.D., Oskin, M.E., Unruh, J.R., Walker, J.D., Anandakrishnan, S., Bartley, J.M., Coleman, D.S., Dolan, J.F., Finkel, R.C., Greene, D., Kylander-Clark, A., Morrero, S., Owen, L.A., and Phillips, F., 2008, Active tectonics of the eastern California shear zone, in Duebendorfer, E.M., and Smith, E.I., eds., Field Guide to Plutons, Volcanoes, Faults, Reefs, Dinosaurs, and Possible Glaciation in Selected Areas of Arizona, California, and Nevada: Geological Society of America Field Guide 11, p. 43–81, doi: 10.1130/2008.fl d011(03).
    • Frisch, W., Meschede, M., Blakey, R., 2011. Plate Tectonics, Springer-Verlag, London, 213 pp.
    • Hayes, G., 2018, Slab2 – A Comprehensive Subduction Zone Geometry Model: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://doi.org/10.5066/F7PV6JNV.
    • Holt, W. E., C. Kreemer, A. J. Haines, L. Estey, C. Meertens, G. Blewitt, and D. Lavallee (2005), Project helps constrain continental dynamics and seismic hazards, Eos Trans. AGU, 86(41), 383–387, , https://doi.org/10.1029/2005EO410002. /li>
    • Kreemer, C., J. Haines, W. Holt, G. Blewitt, and D. Lavallee (2000), On the determination of a global strain rate model, Geophys. J. Int., 52(10), 765–770.
    • Kreemer, C., W. E. Holt, and A. J. Haines (2003), An integrated global model of present-day plate motions and plate boundary deformation, Geophys. J. Int., 154(1), 8–34, , https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-246X.2003.01917.x.
    • Kreemer, C., G. Blewitt, E.C. Klein, 2014. A geodetic plate motion and Global Strain Rate Model in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, v. 15, p. 3849-3889, https://doi.org/10.1002/2014GC005407.
    • Meyer, B., Saltus, R., Chulliat, a., 2017. EMAG2: Earth Magnetic Anomaly Grid (2-arc-minute resolution) Version 3. National Centers for Environmental Information, NOAA. Model. https://doi.org/10.7289/V5H70CVX
    • Müller, R.D., Sdrolias, M., Gaina, C. and Roest, W.R., 2008, Age spreading rates and spreading asymmetry of the world’s ocean crust in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 9, Q04006, https://doi.org/10.1029/2007GC001743

    Return to the Earthquake Reports page.

    Posted in earthquake, education, geology, plate tectonics, strike-slip

    Earthquake Report: Indonesia

    I had been making an update to an earthquake report on a regionally experienced M 5.6 earthquake from coastal northern California when I noticed that there was a M 7.3 earthquake in eastern Indonesia.

    This earthquake is in a region of strike-slip faulting (if in downgoing plate for example) or subduction thrusting, so I thought it may or may not produce a tsunami. There are also intermediate depth quakes here (deeper than subduction zone megathrust events), like this earthquake (which reduces the chance of a tsunami). While we often don’t think of strike-slip earthquakes as those that could cause a tsunami, they can trigger tsunami, albeit smaller in size than those from subduction zone earthquakes or locally for landslides. But, I checked tsunami.gov just in case (result = no tsunami locally nor regionally). I also took a look at the tide gages in the region here and here (result = no observations).

    South of this earthquake is a convergent plate boundary, where the Australia plate dives northwards beneath a part of the Sunda plate (Eurasia) forming the Java and Timor trenches (subduction zones). Far to the west, on 2 June 1994 there was a subduction zone megathrust earthquake along the Java Trench. Earlier, on 19 August 1977 there was an M 8.3 earthquake, but it was not a subduction zone thrust event, but an extensional earthquake in the downgoing Australia plate (Given and Kanamori, 19080). Both 1977 and 1994 events are shown on one of the maps below. The 1977 earthquake was tsunamigenic, creating a wave observed on tide gages at Damier, Hampton, and Port Hedland in Australia (Gusman et al., 2009).

    To the north of the subduction zone, there is a parallel fault system that dips in the opposite direction as the subduction zone. This is referred to as a backthrust fault (it is a thrust fault and “backwards” to the main fault). The Wetar and Flores faults are both part of this backthrust system. In JUly and August of 2018 there was a series of earthquakes near the Island of Flores associated with this backthrust. Here is my final of 3 reports on those earthquakes.

    The Timor trough wraps around to the north on its eastern end and eventually forms the Seram Trench, which dips to the south. The shape of these linked trenches forms a “U” shape with the open part of the U pointing to the west. Recently it has been published that the basin formed by these fault systems is the deepest forearc basin on Earth (Pownall et al., 2016). There was a subduction zone earthquake in 1938, called the Great Banda Sea Earthquake. Okal and Reymond (2003) prepared an earthquake mechanism for this M 8.5 earthquake.

    To complicate matters, there is a large strike-slip system that comes into the area from the east (Papua New Guinea) and bisects the crest of the “U” shape. This strike slip system feeds into the backthrust so that the backthrust is both a thrust fault and a strike-slip fault. There are probably separate faults that accommodate these different senses of motion. There have been a series of strike-slip earthquakes in the 20th century associated with the strike-slip motion along this boundary. For example, Osada and Abe (1981) uses seismologic records (e.g. from seismometers) to prepare an earthquake mechanism for this M 8.1 earthquake. They found that it was an oblique strike-slip earthquake. The depth was pretty shallow compared to the M 7.3 earthquake I am reporting about today.

    On 17 June 1987 there was another relatively shallow M 7.1 strike-slip earthquake on this strike-slip fault system.

    However, there is also a deeper strike-slip fault within the Australia plate. This fault is probably what ruptured on 2 March 2005 (M 7.1) and 10 December 2012 (M 7.1). The M 7.3 earthquake from a day ago had a similar magnitude, depth, mechanism, and location as these earlier quakes. These may have all ruptured the same fault (or not).

    Below is my interpretive poster for this earthquake


    I plot the seismicity from the past month, with color representing depth and diameter representing magnitude (see legend). I include earthquake epicenters from 1919-2019 with magnitudes M ≥ 7.0 in one version.

    I plot the USGS fault plane solutions (moment tensors in blue and focal mechanisms in orange), possibly in addition to some relevant historic earthquakes. Some earthquakes have older focal mechanisms plotted in black and white.

    • I placed a moment tensor / focal mechanism legend on the poster. There is more material from the USGS web sites about moment tensors and focal mechanisms (the beach ball symbols). Both moment tensors and focal mechanisms are solutions to seismologic data that reveal two possible interpretations for fault orientation and sense of motion. One must use other information, like the regional tectonics, to interpret which of the two possibilities is more likely.
    • I also include the shaking intensity contours on the map. These use the Modified Mercalli Intensity Scale (MMI; see the legend on the map). This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations. The MMI is a qualitative measure of shaking intensity. More on the MMI scale can be found here and here. This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations.
    • I include the slab 2.0 contours plotted (Hayes, 2018), which are contours that represent the depth to the subduction zone fault. These are mostly based upon seismicity. The depths of the earthquakes have considerable error and do not all occur along the subduction zone faults, so these slab contours are simply the best estimate for the location of the fault.

      Magnetic Anomalies

    • In the map below, I include a transparent overlay of the magnetic anomaly data from EMAG2 (Meyer et al., 2017). As oceanic crust is formed, it inherits the magnetic field at the time. At different points through time, the magnetic polarity (north vs. south) flips, the North Pole becomes the South Pole. These changes in polarity can be seen when measuring the magnetic field above oceanic plates. This is one of the fundamental evidences for plate spreading at oceanic spreading ridges (like the Gorda rise).
    • Regions with magnetic fields aligned like today’s magnetic polarity are colored red in the EMAG2 data, while reversed polarity regions are colored blue. Regions of intermediate magnetic field are colored light purple.
    • We can see the roughly east-west trends of these red and blue stripes in the Caroline and Australia plates. These lines are parallel to the ocean spreading ridges from where they were formed. The stripes disappear at the subduction zone because the oceanic crust with these anomalies is diving deep beneath the Sunda plate (part of Eurasia), so the magnetic anomalies from the overlying Sunda plate mask the evidence for the Australia plate.

      Global Strain

    • In a map below, I include a transparent overlay of the Global Strain Rate Map (Kreemer et al., 2014).
    • The mission of the Global Strain Rate Map (GSRM) project is to determine a globally self-consistent strain rate and velocity field model, consistent with geodetic and geologic field observations. The overall mission also includes:
      1. contributions of global, regional, and local models by individual researchers
      2. archive existing data sets of geologic, geodetic, and seismic information that can contribute toward a greater understanding of strain phenomena
      3. archive existing methods for modeling strain rates and strain transients
    • The completed global strain rate map will provide a large amount of information that is vital for our understanding of continental dynamics and for the quantification of seismic hazards.
    • The version used in the poster(s) below is an update to the original 2004 map (Kreemer et al., 2000, 2003; Holt et al., 2005).

      I include some inset figures. Some of the same figures are located in different places on the larger scale map below.

    • In the upper left corner, I include a map from Benz et al. (2011) that shows historic earthquake locations (epicenters) along with some of the plate boundary faults. Note the strike slip fault (with the opposing black arrows) that cross the location of the 1938 earthquake (labeled in yellow on that map). I placed a blue star in the location of the M 7.3 quake. There is a cross section to the right of the map that shows how earthquakes dive down with a westward trend (following the plate down the subduction zone). The cross section location is shown on the map (B-B’).
    • In the upper right corner is a larger scale tectonic map from Audley (2011) showing the major thrust faults and the large forearc basin is labeled “Weber Deep.”
    • Hangesh and Whitney (2016) did lots of work on the faulting in the region to the south of the M 7.3. They show block boundaries and relative plate motion arrows in white. Note how they extend strike-slip motion along the Timor trough. This may be in addition to the strike-slip along the backthrust.
    • Here is the map with a month’s seismicity plotted. I included MMI contours from a recent M 6.3 earthquake in PNG, which led to a sequence of additional M~6 quakes to the southeast of that main shock. I won’t be writing a report for those quakes, even though it is interesting (check it out!). Sorry to have misspelled Hengesh as Hangesh.

    • Here is the map with a century’s seismicity (M ≥ 7.0) plotted.

    • Here is the map with a month’s seismicity (M ≥ 0.5) plotted with the Global Strain data plotted. We can see the 2018 Flores swarm show up here.

    Other Report Pages

    Some Relevant Discussion and Figures

    • Here is a tectonic map for this part of the world from Zahirovic et al., 2014. They show a fracture zone where the M 7.3 earthquake happened. I left out all the acronym definitions (you’re welcome), but they are listed in the paper.

    • Regional tectonic setting with plate boundaries (MORs/transforms = black, subduction zones = teethed red) from Bird (2003) and ophiolite belts representing sutures modified from Hutchison (1975) and Baldwin et al. (2012). West Sulawesi basalts are from Polvé et al. (1997), fracture zones are from Matthews et al. (2011) and basin outlines are from Hearn et al. (2003).

    • This is a great visualization showing the Australia plate and how it formed the largest forearc basin on Earth (Pownall et al., 2014).
    • The maps on the left show a time history of the tectonics. The low angle oblique view on the right shows the dipping crust (north is not always up, as in this figure).
    • In the lower right, they show how there is strike-slip faulting along the Seram trough also (I left out the figure caption for E).

    • Reconstructions of eastern Indonesia, adapted from Hall (2012), depict collision of Australia with Southeast Asia and slab rollback into Banda Embayment. Yellow star indicates Seram. Oceanic crust is shown in purple (older than 120 Ma) and blue (younger than 120 Ma); submarine arcs and oceanic plateaus are shown in cyan; volcanic island arcs, ophiolites, and material accreted along plate margins are shown in green. A: Reconstruction at 15 Ma. B: Reconstruction at 7 Ma. C: Reconstruction at 2 Ma. D: Visualization of present-day slab morphology of proto–Banda Sea based on earthquake hypocenter distribution and tomographic models

    • Here is a map and some cross sections showing seismic tomography (like C-T scans into the Earth using seismic waves instead of X-Rays). The map shows the location of the cross sections (Spakman et al., 2010).

    • The Banda arc and surrounding region. 200 m and 4,000 m bathymetric contours are indicated. The numbered black lines are Benioff zone contours in kilometres. The red triangles are Holocene volcanoes (http://www.volcano.si.edu/world/). Ar=Aru, Ar Tr=Aru trough, Ba=Banggai Islands, Bu=Buru, SBS=South Banda Sea, Se=Seram, Sm=Sumba, Su=Sula Islands, Ta=Tanimbar, Ta Tr=Tanimbar trough, Ti=Timor, W=Weber Deep.


      Tomographic images of the Banda slab. Vertical sections through the tomography model along the lines shown in Fig. 1. Colours: P-wave anomalies with reference to velocity model ak135 (ref. 30). Dots: earthquake hypocentres within 12 km of the section. The dashed lines are phase changes at ~410 km and ~660 km. The sections are plotted without vertical exaggeration; the horizontal axis is in degrees. The labelled positive anomalies are the Sunda (Su) and Banda (Ba) slabs: BuDdetached slab under Buru, FlDslab under Flores, SDslab under Seram, TDslab under Timor. a, The Sunda slab enters the lower mantle whereas the Banda embayment slab is entirely in the upper mantle with the change under Sulawesi. b–e, Banda slab morphology in sections parallel to Australia plate motion shows a transition from a steep slab with a flat section (fs) (b) to a spoon shape shallowing eastward (c–e).

    • Here is the tectonic map from Hengesh and Whitney (2016)

    • Illustration of major tectonic elements in triple junction geometry: tectonic features labeled per Figure 1; seismicity from ISC-GEM catalog [Storchak et al., 2013]; faults in Savu basin from Rigg and Hall [2011] and Harris et al. [2009]. Purple line is edge of Australian continental basement and fore arc [Rigg and Hall, 2011]. Abbreviations: AR = Ashmore Reef; SR = Scott Reef; RS = Rowley Shoals; TCZ = Timor Collision Zone; ST = Savu thrust; SB = Savu Basin; TT = Timor thrust; WT =Wetar thrust; WASZ = Western Australia Shear Zone. Open arrows indicate relative direction of motion; solid arrows direction of vergence.

    • Here is the Audley (2011) cross section showing how the backthrust relates to the subduction zone beneath Timor. I include their figure caption in blockquote below.

    • Cartoon cross section of Timor today, (cf. Richardson & Blundell 1996, their BIRPS figs 3b, 4b & 7; and their fig. 6 gravity model 2 after Woodside et al. 1989; and Snyder et al. 1996 their fig. 6a). Dimensions of the filled 40 km deep present-day Timor Tectonic Collision Zone are based on BIRPS seismic, earthquake seismicity and gravity data all re-interpreted here from Richardson & Blundell (1996) and from Snyder et al. (1996). NB. The Bobonaro Melange, its broken formation and other facies are not indicated, but they are included with the Gondwana mega-sequence. Note defunct Banda Trench, now the Timor TCZ, filled with Australian continental crust and Asian nappes that occupy all space between Wetar Suture and the 2–3 km deep deformation front north of the axis of the Timor Trough. Note the much younger decollement D5 used exactly the same part of the Jurassic lithology of the Gondwana mega-sequence in the older D1 decollement that produced what appears to be much stronger deformation.

    • Here is a figure showing the regional geodetic motions (Bock et al., 2003). I include their figure caption below as a blockquote.

    • Topographic and tectonic map of the Indonesian archipelago and surrounding region. Labeled, shaded arrows show motion (NUVEL-1A model) of the first-named tectonic plate relative to the second. Solid arrows are velocity vectors derived from GPS surveys from 1991 through 2001, in ITRF2000. For clarity, only a few of the vectors for Sumatra are included. The detailed velocity field for Sumatra is shown in Figure 5. Velocity vector ellipses indicate 2-D 95% confidence levels based on the formal (white noise only) uncertainty estimates. NGT, New Guinea Trench; NST, North Sulawesi Trench; SF, Sumatran Fault; TAF, Tarera-Aiduna Fault. Bathymetry [Smith and Sandwell, 1997] in this and all subsequent figures contoured at 2 km intervals.

    • Whitney and Hengesh (2015) used GPS modeling to suggest a model of plate blocks. Below are their model results.

    • Plate boundary segments in the Banda Arc region from Nugroho et al (2009). Numbers inside rectangles show possible micro-plate blocks near the Sumba Triple Junction (colored) based on GPS velocities (black arrows) with in a stable Eurasian reference frame.

    • Here is the conceptual model from Whitney and Hengesh (2015) that shows how left-lateral strike-slip faulting can come into the region.

    • Schematic map views of kinematic relations between major crustal elements in the Sumba Triple Junction region. CTZ= collisional tectonic zone. Red arrow size designates schematic plate motion relations based on geological data relative to a fixed Sunda shelf reference frame (pin).

    Geologic Fundamentals

    • For more on the graphical representation of moment tensors and focal mechanisms, check this IRIS video out:
    • Here is a fantastic infographic from Frisch et al. (2011). This figure shows some examples of earthquakes in different plate tectonic settings, and what their fault plane solutions are. There is a cross section showing these focal mechanisms for a thrust or reverse earthquake. The upper right corner includes my favorite figure of all time. This shows the first motion (up or down) for each of the four quadrants. This figure also shows how the amplitude of the seismic waves are greatest (generally) in the middle of the quadrant and decrease to zero at the nodal planes (the boundary of each quadrant).

    • Here is another way to look at these beach balls.
    • There are three types of earthquakes, strike-slip, compressional (reverse or thrust, depending upon the dip of the fault), and extensional (normal). Here is are some animations of these three types of earthquake faults. The following three animations are from IRIS.
    • Strike Slip:

      Compressional:

      Extensional:

    • This is an image from the USGS that shows how, when an oceanic plate moves over a hotspot, the volcanoes formed over the hotspot form a series of volcanoes that increase in age in the direction of plate motion. The presumption is that the hotspot is stable and stays in one location. Torsvik et al. (2017) use various methods to evaluate why this is a false presumption for the Hawaii Hotspot.

    • A cutaway view along the Hawaiian island chain showing the inferred mantle plume that has fed the Hawaiian hot spot on the overriding Pacific Plate. The geologic ages of the oldest volcano on each island (Ma = millions of years ago) are progressively older to the northwest, consistent with the hot spot model for the origin of the Hawaiian Ridge-Emperor Seamount Chain. (Modified from image of Joel E. Robinson, USGS, in “This Dynamic Planet” map of Simkin and others, 2006.)

    • Here is a map from Torsvik et al. (2017) that shows the age of volcanic rocks at different locations along the Hawaii-Emperor Seamount Chain.

    • Hawaiian-Emperor Chain. White dots are the locations of radiometrically dated seamounts, atolls and islands, based on compilations of Doubrovine et al. and O’Connor et al. Features encircled with larger white circles are discussed in the text and Fig. 2. Marine gravity anomaly map is from Sandwell and Smith.

    • Here is a great tweet that discusses the different parts of a seismogram and how the internal structures of the Earth help control seismic waves as they propagate in the Earth.

      Social Media

      References:

    • Audley-Charles, M.G., 1986. Rates of Neogene and Quaternary tectonic movements in the Southern Banda Arc based on micropalaeontology in: Journal of fhe Geological Society, London, Vol. 143, 1986, pp. 161-175.
    • Audley-Charles, M.G., 2011. Tectonic post-collision processes in Timor, Hall, R., Cottam, M. A. &Wilson, M. E. J. (eds) The SE Asian Gateway: History and Tectonics of the Australia–Asia Collision. Geological Society, London, Special Publications, 355, 241–266.
    • Baldwin, S.L., Fitzgerald, P.G., and Webb, L.E., 2012. Tectonics of the New Guinea Region in Annu. Rev. Earth Planet. Sci., v. 41, p. 485-520.
    • Benz, H.M., Herman, Matthew, Tarr, A.C., Hayes, G.P., Furlong, K.P., Villaseñor, Antonio, Dart, R.L., and Rhea, Susan, 2011. Seismicity of the Earth 1900–2010 New Guinea and vicinity: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2010–1083-H, scale 1:8,000,000.
    • Given, J. W., and H. Kanamori (1980). The depth extent of the 1977 Sumbawa, Indonesia, earthquake, in EOS Trans. AGU., v. 61, p. 1044.
    • Gusnman, A.R., Tanioka, Y., Matsumoto, H., and Iwasakai, S.-I., 2009. Analysis of the Tsunami Generated by the Great 1977 Sumba Earthquake that Occurred in Indonesia in BSSA, v. 99, no. 4, p. 2169-2179, https://doi.org/10.1785/0120080324
    • Hall, R., 2011. Australia-SE Asia collision: plate tectonics and crustal flow in Geological Society, London, Special Publications 2011; v. 355; p. 75-109 doi: 10.1144/SP355.5
    • Hangesh, J. and Whitney, B., 2014. Quaternary Reactivation of Australia’s Western Passive Margin: Inception of a New Plate Boundary? in: 5th International INQUA Meeting on Paleoseismology, Active Tectonics and Archeoseismology (PATA), 21-27 September 2014, Busan, Korea, 4 pp.
    • Frisch, W., Meschede, M., Blakey, R., 2011. Plate Tectonics, Springer-Verlag, London, 213 pp.
    • Hayes, G., 2018, Slab2 – A Comprehensive Subduction Zone Geometry Model: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://doi.org/10.5066/F7PV6JNV.
    • Holt, W. E., C. Kreemer, A. J. Haines, L. Estey, C. Meertens, G. Blewitt, and D. Lavallee (2005), Project helps constrain continental dynamics and seismic hazards, Eos Trans. AGU, 86(41), 383–387, , https://doi.org/10.1029/2005EO410002. /li>
    • Kreemer, C., J. Haines, W. Holt, G. Blewitt, and D. Lavallee (2000), On the determination of a global strain rate model, Geophys. J. Int., 52(10), 765–770.
    • Kreemer, C., W. E. Holt, and A. J. Haines (2003), An integrated global model of present-day plate motions and plate boundary deformation, Geophys. J. Int., 154(1), 8–34, , https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-246X.2003.01917.x.
    • Kreemer, C., G. Blewitt, E.C. Klein, 2014. A geodetic plate motion and Global Strain Rate Model in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, v. 15, p. 3849-3889, https://doi.org/10.1002/2014GC005407.
    • Meyer, B., Saltus, R., Chulliat, a., 2017. EMAG2: Earth Magnetic Anomaly Grid (2-arc-minute resolution) Version 3. National Centers for Environmental Information, NOAA. Model. https://doi.org/10.7289/V5H70CVX
    • Müller, R.D., Sdrolias, M., Gaina, C. and Roest, W.R., 2008, Age spreading rates and spreading asymmetry of the world’s ocean crust in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 9, Q04006, https://doi.org/10.1029/2007GC001743
    • Okal, E. A., & Reymond, D., 2003. The mechanism of great Banda Sea earthquake of 1 February 1938: applying the method of preliminary determination of focal mechanism to a historical event in EPSL, v. 216, p. 1-15.
    • Osada, M. and Abe, K., 1981. Mechanism and tectonic implications of the great Banda Sea earthquake of November 4, 1963 in Physics of the Earth and Plentary Interiors, v. 25, p. 129-139
    • Pownall, J.M., Hall, R., Armstrong,, R.A., and Forster, M.A., 2014. Earth’s youngest known ultrahigh-temperature granulites discovered on Seram, eastern Indonesia in Geology, v. 42, no. 4, p. 379-282, https://doi.org/10.1130/G35230.1
    • Spakman, W. and Hall, R., 2010. Surface deformation and slab–mantle interaction during Banda arc subduction rollback in Nature Geosceince, v. 3, p. 562-566, https://doi.org/10.1038/NGEO917
    • Whitney, B.B. and Hengesh, J.V., 2015. A new model for active intraplate tectonics in western Australia in Proceedings of the Tenth Pacific Conference on Earthquake Engineering Building an Earthquake-Resilient Pacific 6-8 November 2015, Sydney, Australia, paper number 82
    • Zahirovic, S., Seton, M., and Müller, R.D., 2014. The Cretaceous and Cenozoic tectonic evolution of Southeast Asia in Solid Earth, v. 5, p. 227-273, doi:10.5194/se-5-227-2014

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    Posted in earthquake, education, Indonesia, New Zealand, pacific, plate tectonics, strike-slip, Transform

    Earthquake Report: Mendocino triple junction

    Well, I was on the road for 1.5 days (work party for the Community Village at the Oregon Country Fair). As I was driving home, there was a magnitude M 5.6 earthquake in coastal northern California.

    I didn’t realize this until I was almost home (finally hit the sack around 4 am).

    This earthquake follows a sequence of quakes further to the northwest, however their timing is merely a coincidence. Let me repeat this. The M 5.6 earthquake is not related to the sequence of earthquakes along the Blanco fracture zone.

    Contrary to what people have posted on social media, there was but a single earthquake. This earthquake happened beneath the area of Petrolia, nearby the 1991 Honeydew Earthquake. More about the Honeydew Earthquake can be found here.

    This region also had a good sized shaker in 1992, the Cape Mendocino Earthquake, which led to the development of the National Tsunami Hazard Mitigation Program. More about the Cape Mendocino Earthquake can be found on the 25th anniversary page here and in my earthquake report here.

    The regional tectonics in coastal northern California are dominated by the Pacific-North America plate boundary. North of Cape Mendocino, this plate boundary is convergent and forms the Cascadia subduction zone (CSZ). To the south of Cape Mendocino, the plate boundary is the right-lateral (dextral) San Andreas fault (SAF). Where these 2 fault systems meet, there is another plate boundary system, the right-lateral strike-slip Mendocino fault (don’t write Mendocino fracture zone on your maps!). Where these 3 systems meet is called the Mendocino triple junction (MTJ).

    The MTJ is a complicated region as these plate boundaries overlap in ways that we still do not fully understand. Geologic mapping in the mid- to late-20th century provides some basic understanding of the long term history. However, recent discoveries have proven that this early work needs to be revisited as there are many unanswered questions (and some of this early work has been demonstrated to be incorrect). Long live science!

    Last night’s M 5.6 temblor happened where one strand of the MF trends onshore (another strand bends towards the south). But, it also is where the SAF trends onshore. At this point, I am associating this earthquake with the MF (so, a right-lateral strike-slip earthquake). The mechanism suggest that this is not a SAF related earthquake. However, it is oriented in a way that it could be in the Gorda plate (making it a left-lateral strike-slip earthquake). However, this quake is at the southern edge of the Gorda plate (sedge), so it is unlikely this is a Gorda plate event.

    Below is my interpretive poster for this earthquake


    I plot the seismicity from the past month, with color representing depth and diameter representing magnitude (see legend). I include earthquake epicenters from 1918-2018 with magnitudes M ≥ 5.0 in one version.

    I plot the USGS fault plane solutions (moment tensors in blue and focal mechanisms in orange), possibly in addition to some relevant historic earthquakes.

    • I placed a moment tensor / focal mechanism legend on the poster. There is more material from the USGS web sites about moment tensors and focal mechanisms (the beach ball symbols). Both moment tensors and focal mechanisms are solutions to seismologic data that reveal two possible interpretations for fault orientation and sense of motion. One must use other information, like the regional tectonics, to interpret which of the two possibilities is more likely.
    • I also include the shaking intensity contours on the map. These use the Modified Mercalli Intensity Scale (MMI; see the legend on the map). This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations. The MMI is a qualitative measure of shaking intensity. More on the MMI scale can be found here and here. This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations.
    • I include the slab 2.0 contours plotted (Hayes, 2018), which are contours that represent the depth to the subduction zone fault. These are mostly based upon seismicity. The depths of the earthquakes have considerable error and do not all occur along the subduction zone faults, so these slab contours are simply the best estimate for the location of the fault.

      Magnetic Anomalies

    • In the map below, I include a transparent overlay of the magnetic anomaly data from EMAG2 (Meyer et al., 2017). As oceanic crust is formed, it inherits the magnetic field at the time. At different points through time, the magnetic polarity (north vs. south) flips, the North Pole becomes the South Pole. These changes in polarity can be seen when measuring the magnetic field above oceanic plates. This is one of the fundamental evidences for plate spreading at oceanic spreading ridges (like the Gorda rise).
    • Regions with magnetic fields aligned like today’s magnetic polarity are colored red in the EMAG2 data, while reversed polarity regions are colored blue. Regions of intermediate magnetic field are colored light purple.
    • We can see the roughly ~north-south trends of these red and blue stripes in the Pacific plate. These lines are parallel to the ocean spreading ridges from where they were formed. The stripes disappear at the subduction zone because the oceanic crust with these anomalies is diving deep beneath the North America plate, so the magnetic anomalies from the overlying Sunda plate mask the evidence for the Juan de Fuca and Gorda plates.

      Global Strain

    • In a map below, I include a transparent overlay of the Global Strain Rate Map (Kreemer et al., 2014).
    • The mission of the Global Strain Rate Map (GSRM) project is to determine a globally self-consistent strain rate and velocity field model, consistent with geodetic and geologic field observations. The overall mission also includes:
      1. contributions of global, regional, and local models by individual researchers
      2. archive existing data sets of geologic, geodetic, and seismic information that can contribute toward a greater understanding of strain phenomena
      3. archive existing methods for modeling strain rates and strain transients
    • The completed global strain rate map will provide a large amount of information that is vital for our understanding of continental dynamics and for the quantification of seismic hazards.
    • The version used in the poster(s) below is an update to the original 2004 map (Kreemer et al., 2000, 2003; Holt et al., 2005).

      I include some inset figures. Some of the same figures are located in different places on the larger scale map below.

    • n the upper left corner is a map of the Cascadia subduction zone (CSZ) and regional tectonic plate boundary faults. This is modified from several sources (Chaytor et al., 2004; Nelson et al., 2004)
      Below the CSZ map is an illustration modified from Plafker (1972). This figure shows how a subduction zone deforms between (interseismic) and during (coseismic) earthquakes.
    • In the lower right corner is a map that shows a comparison between the USGS Did You Feel It? reports and the USGS Modified Mercalli Intensity shakemap model. This comparison shows that the model is a decent fit for the reports from real people. If you felt the earthquake, please submit a report to the USGS here.
    • In the upper right corner I include a larger scale view of seismicity for this area. I highlight the important historic events (e.g. the 1991 Honeydew Earthquake and the 1992 Cape Mendocino Earthquake sequence.
    • Here is the map with a month’s seismicity plotted.

    • Here is the map with a century’s seismicity plotted.

    • Here is the map with a century’s seismicity plotted along with the Global Strain Map with a 30% transparency.

    • Here is the educational interpretive poster from the 1992 Cape Mendocino Earthquake (report here).

    • The USGS has been increasing the list of products that are produced in association with their earthquake pages. One of these products is an earthquake forecast (not a prediction as nobody can predict earthquakes yet) that lists the chance of an earthquake with a given magnitude over a certain period of time. The forecast for the M 5.6 earthquake is found here. These forecasts are updated periodically, so the information will change with time. Below is a table where I present the forecast as it was when I checked the page this morning (would be nice if the USGS would produce an easy to read table).
    • From the USGS:

      Be ready for more earthquakes

      • More earthquakes than usual (called aftershocks) will continue to occur near the mainshock.
      • When there are more earthquakes, the chance of a large earthquake is greater which means that the chance of damage is greater.
      • The USGS advises everyone to be aware of the possibility of aftershocks, especially when in or around vulnerable structures such as unreinforced masonry buildings.
      • This earthquake could be part of a sequence. An earthquake sequence may have larger and potentially damaging earthquakes in the future, so remember to: Drop, Cover, and Hold on.

      What we think will happen next

      • According to our forecast, over the next 1 Week there is a < 1 % chance of one or more aftershocks that are larger than magnitude 5.6. It is likely that there will be smaller earthquakes over the next 1 Week, with 0 to 11 magnitude 3 or higher aftershocks. Magnitude 3 and above are large enough to be felt near the epicenter. The number of aftershocks will drop off over time, but a large aftershock can increase the numbers again, temporarily.

      About our earthquake forecasts

      • No one can predict the exact time or place of any earthquake, including aftershocks. Our earthquake forecasts give us an understanding of the chances of having more earthquakes within a given time period in the affected area. We calculate this earthquake forecast using a statistical analysis based on past earthquakes.
      • Our forecast changes as time passes due to decline in the frequency of aftershocks, larger aftershocks that may trigger further earthquakes, and changes in forecast modeling based on the data collected for this earthquake sequence.


    • Gosh, almost forgot to include this photo of the seismic waves recorded on the Humboldt State University Department of Geology Baby Benioff seismometer. Photo Credit: Amanda Admire.

    USGS Landslide and Liquefaction Ground Failure data products

    • Below I present a series of maps that are intended to address the excellent ‘new’ products included in the USGS earthquake pages: landslide probability and liquefaction susceptibility (a.k.a. the Ground Failure data products).
    • First I present the landslide probability model. This is a GIS data product that relates a variety of factors to the probability (the chance of) landslides as triggered by this earthquake. There are a number of assumptions that are made in order to be able to produce this model across such a large region, though this is still of great value (like other aspects from teh USGS, e.g. the PAGER alert). Learn more about all of these Ground Failure products here.
    • There are many different ways in which a landslide can be triggered. The first order relations behind slope failure (landslides) is that the “resisting” forces that are preventing slope failure (e.g. the strength of the bedrock or soil) are overcome by the “driving” forces that are pushing this land downwards (e.g. gravity). I spend more time discussing landslides and liquefaction in this recent earthquake report.
    • This model, like all landslide computer models, uses similar inputs. I review these here:
      1. Some information about ground shaking. Often, people use Peak Ground Acceleration, though in the past decade+, it has been recognized that the parameter “Arias Intensity” is a better measure of the energy imparted by the earthquake across the land and seascape. Instead of simply accounting for the peak accelerations, AI integrates the entire energy (duration) during the earthquake. That being said, PGA is a more common parameter that is available for people to use. For example, when I was modeling slope stability for the 2004 Sumatra-Andaman subduction zone earthquake, the only model that was calibrated to observational data were in units of PGA. The first order control to shaking intensity (energy observed at any particular location) is distance to the earthquake fault that slipped.
      2. Some information about the strength of the materials (e.g. angle of internal friction (the strength) and cohesion (the resistance).
      3. Information about the slope. Steeper slopes, with all other things being equal, are more likely to fail than are shallower slopes. Think about skiing. Beginners (like me) often choose shallower slopes to ski because they will go down the slope slower, while experts choose steeper slopes.
    • Areas that are red are more likely to experience landslides than areas that are colored blue. I include a coarse resolution topographic/bathymetric dataset to help us identify where the mountains are relative to the coastal plain and continental shelf (submarine).

    • Landslide ground shaking can change the Factor of Safety in several ways that might increase the driving force or decrease the resisting force. Keefer (1984) studied a global data set of earthquake triggered landslides and found that larger earthquakes trigger larger and more numerous landslides across a larger area than do smaller earthquakes. Earthquakes can cause landslides because the seismic waves can cause the driving force to increase (the earthquake motions can “push” the land downwards), leading to a landslide. In addition, ground shaking can change the strength of these earth materials (a form of resisting force) with a process called liquefaction.
    • Sediment or soil strength is based upon the ability for sediment particles to push against each other without moving. This is a combination of friction and the forces exerted between these particles. This is loosely what we call the “angle of internal friction.” Liquefaction is a process by which pore pressure increases cause water to push out against the sediment particles so that they are no longer touching.
    • An analogy that some may be familiar with relates to a visit to the beach. When one is walking on the wet sand near the shoreline, the sand may hold the weight of our body generally pretty well. However, if we stop and vibrate our feet back and forth, this causes pore pressure to increase and we sink into the sand as the sand liquefies. Or, at least our feet sink into the sand.
    • The liquefaction susceptibility map for the M 5.6 earthquake did not suggest that there would be possibly much liquefaction from this earthquake (probably due to the small magnitude). I discuss liquefaction more in my earthquake report on the 28 September 20018 Sulawesi, Indonesia earthquake, landslide, and tsunami here.
    • Here is a map that shows shaking intensity using the MMI scale (mentioned and plotted in the main earthquake poster maps). I present this here in the same format as the ground failure model maps so we can compare these other maps with the ground shaking model (which is a first order control on slope failure).

    Other Report Pages

    Some Relevant Discussion and Figures

    • Here is a map of the Cascadia subduction zone, modified from Nelson et al. (2006). The Juan de Fuca and Gorda plates subduct norteastwardly beneath the North America plate at rates ranging from 29- to 45-mm/yr. Sites where evidence of past earthquakes (paleoseismology) are denoted by white dots. Where there is also evidence for past CSZ tsunami, there are black dots. These paleoseismology sites are labeled (e.g. Humboldt Bay). Some submarine paleoseismology core sites are also shown as grey dots. The two main spreading ridges are not labeled, but the northern one is the Juan de Fuca ridge (where oceanic crust is formed for the Juan de Fuca plate) and the southern one is the Gorda rise (where the oceanic crust is formed for the Gorda plate).

    • This figure shows how a subduction zone deforms between (interseismic) and during (coseismic) earthquakes.

    • This figure shows how a subduction zone deforms between (interseismic) and during (coseismic) earthquakes. We also can see how a subduction zone generates a tsunami. Atwater et al., 2005.

    • Here is an animation produced by the folks at Cal Tech following the 2004 Sumatra-Andaman subduction zone earthquake. I have several posts about that earthquake here and here. One may learn more about this animation, as well as download this animation here.
    • Here is a link to the embedded video below, showing the week-long seismicity in April 1992.
    • This is the map used in the animation below. Earthquake epicenters are plotted (some with USGS moment tensors) for this region from 1917-2017 with M ≥ 6.5. I labeled the plates and shaded their general location in different colors.
    • I include some inset maps.
      • In the upper right corner is a map of the Cascadia subduction zone (Chaytor et al., 2004; Nelson et al., 2004).
      • In the upper left corner is a map from Rollins and Stein (2010). They plot epicenters and fault lines involved in earthquakes between 1976 and 2010.


    • Here is a link to the embedded video below, showing these earthquakes.

    Geologic Fundamentals

    • For more on the graphical representation of moment tensors and focal mechanisms, check this IRIS video out:
    • Here is a fantastic infographic from Frisch et al. (2011). This figure shows some examples of earthquakes in different plate tectonic settings, and what their fault plane solutions are. There is a cross section showing these focal mechanisms for a thrust or reverse earthquake. The upper right corner includes my favorite figure of all time. This shows the first motion (up or down) for each of the four quadrants. This figure also shows how the amplitude of the seismic waves are greatest (generally) in the middle of the quadrant and decrease to zero at the nodal planes (the boundary of each quadrant).

    • Here is another way to look at these beach balls.
    • There are three types of earthquakes, strike-slip, compressional (reverse or thrust, depending upon the dip of the fault), and extensional (normal). Here is are some animations of these three types of earthquake faults. The following three animations are from IRIS.
    • Strike Slip:

      Compressional:

      Extensional:

    • This is an image from the USGS that shows how, when an oceanic plate moves over a hotspot, the volcanoes formed over the hotspot form a series of volcanoes that increase in age in the direction of plate motion. The presumption is that the hotspot is stable and stays in one location. Torsvik et al. (2017) use various methods to evaluate why this is a false presumption for the Hawaii Hotspot.

    • A cutaway view along the Hawaiian island chain showing the inferred mantle plume that has fed the Hawaiian hot spot on the overriding Pacific Plate. The geologic ages of the oldest volcano on each island (Ma = millions of years ago) are progressively older to the northwest, consistent with the hot spot model for the origin of the Hawaiian Ridge-Emperor Seamount Chain. (Modified from image of Joel E. Robinson, USGS, in “This Dynamic Planet” map of Simkin and others, 2006.)

    • Here is a map from Torsvik et al. (2017) that shows the age of volcanic rocks at different locations along the Hawaii-Emperor Seamount Chain.

    • Hawaiian-Emperor Chain. White dots are the locations of radiometrically dated seamounts, atolls and islands, based on compilations of Doubrovine et al. and O’Connor et al. Features encircled with larger white circles are discussed in the text and Fig. 2. Marine gravity anomaly map is from Sandwell and Smith.

    • Here is a great tweet that discusses the different parts of a seismogram and how the internal structures of the Earth help control seismic waves as they propagate in the Earth.

      Social Media

      References:

    • Atwater, B.F., Musumi-Rokkaku, S., Satake, K., Tsuju, Y., Eueda, K., and Yamaguchi, D.K., 2005. The Orphan Tsunami of 1700—Japanese Clues to a Parent Earthquake in North America, USGS Professional Paper 1707, USGS, Reston, VA, 144 pp.
    • Goldfinger, C., Nelson, C.H., Morey, A., Johnson, J.E., Gutierrez-Pastor, J., Eriksson, A.T., Karabanov, E., Patton, J., Gràcia, E., Enkin, R., Dallimore, A., Dunhill, G., and Vallier, T., 2012 a. Turbidite Event History: Methods and Implications for Holocene Paleoseismicity of the Cascadia Subduction Zone, USGS Professional Paper # 1661F. U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, VA, 184 pp.
    • Dengler, L.A., and McPherson, R.C., 1993. The 17 August 1991 Honeydew Earthquake, North Coast California: A Case for Revising the Modified Mercalli Scale in Sparsely Populated Areas in BSSA, v. 83, no. 4, pp. 1081-1094
    • Frisch, W., Meschede, M., Blakey, R., 2011. Plate Tectonics, Springer-Verlag, London, 213 pp.
    • Hayes, G., 2018, Slab2 – A Comprehensive Subduction Zone Geometry Model: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://doi.org/10.5066/F7PV6JNV.
    • Holt, W. E., C. Kreemer, A. J. Haines, L. Estey, C. Meertens, G. Blewitt, and D. Lavallee (2005), Project helps constrain continental dynamics and seismic hazards, Eos Trans. AGU, 86(41), 383–387, , https://doi.org/10.1029/2005EO410002. /li>
    • Kreemer, C., J. Haines, W. Holt, G. Blewitt, and D. Lavallee (2000), On the determination of a global strain rate model, Geophys. J. Int., 52(10), 765–770.
    • Kreemer, C., W. E. Holt, and A. J. Haines (2003), An integrated global model of present-day plate motions and plate boundary deformation, Geophys. J. Int., 154(1), 8–34, , https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-246X.2003.01917.x.
    • Kreemer, C., G. Blewitt, E.C. Klein, 2014. A geodetic plate motion and Global Strain Rate Model in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, v. 15, p. 3849-3889, https://doi.org/10.1002/2014GC005407.
    • McCrory, P.A., 2000, Upper plate contraction north of the migrating Mendocino triple junction, northern California: Implications for partitioning of strain: Tectonics, v. 19, p. 11441160.
    • McCrory, P. A., Blair, J. L., Oppenheimer, D. H., and Walter, S. R., 2006, Depth to the Juan de Fuca slab beneath the Cascadia subduction margin; a 3-D model for sorting earthquakes U. S. Geological Survey
    • Meyer, B., Saltus, R., Chulliat, a., 2017. EMAG2: Earth Magnetic Anomaly Grid (2-arc-minute resolution) Version 3. National Centers for Environmental Information, NOAA. Model. https://doi.org/10.7289/V5H70CVX
    • Müller, R.D., Sdrolias, M., Gaina, C. and Roest, W.R., 2008, Age spreading rates and spreading asymmetry of the world’s ocean crust in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 9, Q04006, https://doi.org/10.1029/2007GC001743
    • Nelson, A.R., Kelsey, H.M., Witter, R.C., 2006. Great earthquakes of variable magnitude at the Cascadia subduction zone. Quaternary Research 65, 354-365.
    • Oppenheimer, D., Beroza, G., Carver, G., Dengler, L., Eaton, J., Gee, L., Gonzalez, F., Jayko, A., Ki., W.H., Lisowski, M., Magee, M., Marshall, G., Murray, M., McPherson, R., Romanowicz, B., Satake, K., Simpson, R., Somerille, P., Stein, R., and Valentine, D., The Cape Mendocino, California, Earthquakes of April, 1992: Subduction at the Triple Junction in Science, v. 261, no. 5120, p. 433-438.
    • Patton, J. R., Goldfinger, C., Morey, A. E., Romsos, C., Black, B., Djadjadihardja, Y., and Udrekh, 2013. Seismoturbidite record as preserved at core sites at the Cascadia and Sumatra–Andaman subduction zones, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 13, 833-867, doi:10.5194/nhess-13-833-2013, 2013.
    • Plafker, G., 1972. Alaskan earthquake of 1964 and Chilean earthquake of 1960: Implications for arc tectonics in Journal of Geophysical Research, v. 77, p. 901-925.
    • Rollins, J.C. and Stein, R.S., 2010. Coulomb stress interactions among M ≥ 5.9 earthquakes in the Gorda deformation zone and on the Mendocino Fault Zone, Cascadia subduction zone, and northern San Andreas Fault: Journal of Geophysical Research, v. 115, B12306, doi:10.1029/2009JB007117, 2010.
    • Stein, R.S., Marshall, G.A., Murray, M.H., Balazs, E., Carver, G.A., Dunklin, T.A>, McLaughlin, R.J., Cyr, K., and Jayko, A., 1993. Permanent Ground Movement Associate with the 1992 M=7 Cape Mendocino, California, Earthquake: Implications for Damage to Infrastructure and Hazards to navigation, U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 93-383.
    • Wang, K., Wells, R., Mazzotti, S., Hyndman, R. D., and Sagiya, T., 2003, A revised dislocation model of interseismic deformation of the Cascadia subduction zone Journal of Geophysical Research, B, Solid Earth and Planets v. 108, no. 1.

    Return to the Earthquake Reports page.

    Posted in cascadia, College Redwoods, earthquake, education, geology, gorda, HSU, humboldt, mendocino, mendocino, pacific, plate tectonics, San Andreas, strike-slip, subduction, Transform

    Earthquake Report: Kermadec Trench

    There was just an earthquake associated with the plate boundary that forms the Kermadec Trench, a deep oceanic trench that extends north from New Zealand, towards the Fiji Islands.

    A minor tsunami (~25 cm in size) has been recorded at Raoul Island, due west of the earthquake, the closest gage to the temblor. Tide gages in New Zealand just began recording a small tsunami the moments I started writing this report (about an hour ± after the earthquake).

    This tsunami is small enough that it probably won’t cause much damage. However, tidal inlets and harbors can have currents that are higher in response to even small tsunami, if the shape of the seafloor/harbor is optimal for this. However, further away from the earthquake, the tsunami will be even smaller; so small that it may not be observable in tide gage data.

    • These are the tide gage data from Raoul Island.
    • These are data from 15 Jun 22:30 UTC until 16 Jun 02:48 UTC.

    In this part of the world, there is a convergent plate boundary where the Pacific plate dives westward beneath the Australia plate forming the Kermadec megathrust subduction zone fault. This fault has a history of earthquakes with magnitudes commonly exceeding M 7 and some exceeding M 8.

    There was recently an M 6.9 earthquake in this same area and here is my earthquake report for that shaker.

    While we cannot predict earthquakes, based on the historic record, this earthquake may be all that happens right now. But our historic record is incredibly short, so people must remain vigilant at all times.

    Below is my interpretive poster for this earthquake


    I plot the seismicity from the past month, with color representing depth and diameter representing magnitude (see legend). I include earthquake epicenters from 1919-2019 with magnitudes M ≥ 6.0 and 7.0 in two versions.

    I plot the USGS fault plane solutions (moment tensors in blue and focal mechanisms in orange), possibly in addition to some relevant historic earthquakes (including a M 6.1 earthquake that happened about an hour prior to the M 7.2. This is very close in time. The M 6.1 is too small of a magnitude to change the static coulomb stress significantly. It seems possible that there was dynamic triggering though (???). I will need to think about this a little more (check out the literature on dynamic triggering, to see what time window that may be a relevant trigger).

    • I placed a moment tensor / focal mechanism legend on the poster. There is more material from the USGS web sites about moment tensors and focal mechanisms (the beach ball symbols). Both moment tensors and focal mechanisms are solutions to seismologic data that reveal two possible interpretations for fault orientation and sense of motion. One must use other information, like the regional tectonics, to interpret which of the two possibilities is more likely.
    • I also include the shaking intensity contours on the map. These use the Modified Mercalli Intensity Scale (MMI; see the legend on the map). This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations. The MMI is a qualitative measure of shaking intensity. More on the MMI scale can be found here and here. This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations.
    • I include the slab 2.0 contours plotted (Hayes, 2018), which are contours that represent the depth to the subduction zone fault. These are mostly based upon seismicity. The depths of the earthquakes have considerable error and do not all occur along the subduction zone faults, so these slab contours are simply the best estimate for the location of the fault.

      Magnetic Anomalies

    • In the map below, I include a transparent overlay of the magnetic anomaly data from EMAG2 (Meyer et al., 2017). As oceanic crust is formed, it inherits the magnetic field at the time. At different points through time, the magnetic polarity (north vs. south) flips, the North Pole becomes the South Pole. These changes in polarity can be seen when measuring the magnetic field above oceanic plates. This is one of the fundamental evidences for plate spreading at oceanic spreading ridges (like the Gorda rise).
    • Regions with magnetic fields aligned like today’s magnetic polarity are colored red in the EMAG2 data, while reversed polarity regions are colored blue. Regions of intermediate magnetic field are colored light purple.
    • We can see the roughly east-west trends of these red and blue stripes. These lines are parallel to the ocean spreading ridges from where they were formed. The stripes disappear at the subduction zone because the oceanic crust with these anomalies is diving deep beneath the Sunda plate (part of Eurasia), so the magnetic anomalies from the overlying Sunda plate mask the evidence for the Australia plate.

      Global Strain

    • In a map below, I include a transparent overlay of the Global Strain Rate Map (Kreemer et al., 2014).
    • The mission of the Global Strain Rate Map (GSRM) project is to determine a globally self-consistent strain rate and velocity field model, consistent with geodetic and geologic field observations. The overall mission also includes:
      1. contributions of global, regional, and local models by individual researchers
      2. archive existing data sets of geologic, geodetic, and seismic information that can contribute toward a greater understanding of strain phenomena
      3. archive existing methods for modeling strain rates and strain transients
    • The completed global strain rate map will provide a large amount of information that is vital for our understanding of continental dynamics and for the quantification of seismic hazards.
    • The version used in the poster(s) below is an update to the original 2004 map (Kreemer et al., 2000, 2003; Holt et al., 2005).

      I include some inset figures. Some of the same figures are located in different places on the larger scale map below.

    • In the lower right corner is a map that shows the major islands, the major plate tectonic boundaries (the faults, the volcanoes), and the location of two profiles shown above (Ballance et al., 1999. I place a blue star in the general location of the earthquake.
    • In the upper right corner are these two profiles (17-1 & 17-2). These profiles show how the elevation changes (solid line) and how the geomagnetic properties intensity, declination, inclination (dashed) vary across the plate boundary.
    • In the lower left corner is a map from Benz et al. (2010) that shows earthquakes with circles that represent magnitude (diameter) and depth (color). Deeper = blue & shallower = red. There is a cross section (cut into the earth) profile through this seismicity that uses a source area as shown by a rectangle (the green line J-J’).
    • In the upper left corner is cross section J-J’ that shows earthquake hypocenters (3-D locations) in the region of the M 7.2 earthquake.
    • there is a cross section of the Kermadec trench that includes bathymetry of the region (topography of the sea floor). This graphic was created by scientists at Woods Hole. I label the Louisville Seamount Chain for reference to compare with the main map.
    • Here is the map with a month’s seismicity M ≥ 0.5 plotted (and magnetic anomalies).

    • Here is the map with a years’s seismicity M ≥ 2.0 plotted (and magnetic anomalies).

    • Here is the map with a century’s seismicity M ≥ 6.0 plotted (and strain).

    • Here is the map with a century’s seismicity M ≥ 7.0 plotted (and strain).

    Other Report Pages

    Tide Gage Data

    • First I present a tide gage summary map with the earthquakes from the past month shown transparently. Below are some of the tide gage data plots. These are all available from the International Oceanographic Commission.





    Some Relevant Discussion and Figures

    • Here is the tectonic map from Ballance et al., 1999.

    • Map of the Southwest Pacific Ocean showing the regional tectonic setting and location of the two dredged profiles. Depth contours in kilometres. The presently active arcs comprise New Zealand–Kermadec Ridge–Tonga Ridge, linked with Vanuatu by transforms associated with the North Fiji Basin. Colville Ridge–Lau Ridge is the remnant arc. Havre Trough–Lau Basin is the active backarc basin. Kermadec–Tonga Trench marks the site of subduction of Pacific lithosphere westward beneath Australian plate lithosphere. North and South Fiji Basins are marginal basins of late Neogene and probable Oligocene age, respectively. 5.4sK–Ar date of dredged basalt sample (Adams et al., 1994).

    • Here is a great visualization of the Kermadec Trench from Woods Hole.

    Kermadec Trench from Woods Hole Oceanographic Inst. on Vimeo.

    • Here is another map of the bathymetry in this region of the Kermadec trench. This was produced by Jack Cook at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. The Lousiville Seamount Chain is clearly visible in this graphic.

    • I put together an animation of seismicity from 1965 – 2015 Sept. 7. Here is a map that shows the entire seismicity for this period. I plot the slab contours for the subduction zone here. These were created by the USGS (Hayes et al., 2012).

    • Here is the animation. Download the mp4 file here. This animation includes earthquakes with magnitudes greater than M 6.5 and this is the kml file that I used to make this animation.

    Geologic Fundamentals

    • For more on the graphical representation of moment tensors and focal mechanisms, check this IRIS video out:
    • Here is a fantastic infographic from Frisch et al. (2011). This figure shows some examples of earthquakes in different plate tectonic settings, and what their fault plane solutions are. There is a cross section showing these focal mechanisms for a thrust or reverse earthquake. The upper right corner includes my favorite figure of all time. This shows the first motion (up or down) for each of the four quadrants. This figure also shows how the amplitude of the seismic waves are greatest (generally) in the middle of the quadrant and decrease to zero at the nodal planes (the boundary of each quadrant).

    • Here is another way to look at these beach balls.
    • There are three types of earthquakes, strike-slip, compressional (reverse or thrust, depending upon the dip of the fault), and extensional (normal). Here is are some animations of these three types of earthquake faults. The following three animations are from IRIS.
    • Strike Slip:

      Compressional:

      Extensional:

    • This is an image from the USGS that shows how, when an oceanic plate moves over a hotspot, the volcanoes formed over the hotspot form a series of volcanoes that increase in age in the direction of plate motion. The presumption is that the hotspot is stable and stays in one location. Torsvik et al. (2017) use various methods to evaluate why this is a false presumption for the Hawaii Hotspot.

    • A cutaway view along the Hawaiian island chain showing the inferred mantle plume that has fed the Hawaiian hot spot on the overriding Pacific Plate. The geologic ages of the oldest volcano on each island (Ma = millions of years ago) are progressively older to the northwest, consistent with the hot spot model for the origin of the Hawaiian Ridge-Emperor Seamount Chain. (Modified from image of Joel E. Robinson, USGS, in “This Dynamic Planet” map of Simkin and others, 2006.)

    • Here is a map from Torsvik et al. (2017) that shows the age of volcanic rocks at different locations along the Hawaii-Emperor Seamount Chain.

    • Hawaiian-Emperor Chain. White dots are the locations of radiometrically dated seamounts, atolls and islands, based on compilations of Doubrovine et al. and O’Connor et al. Features encircled with larger white circles are discussed in the text and Fig. 2. Marine gravity anomaly map is from Sandwell and Smith.

    • Here is a great tweet that discusses the different parts of a seismogram and how the internal structures of the Earth help control seismic waves as they propagate in the Earth.

    Return to the Earthquake Reports page.

    Posted in earthquake, education, geology, New Zealand, pacific, plate tectonics, subduction, tsunami

    Earthquake Report: Chile

    This morning (my time) there was a magnitude M 6.4 earthquake offshore of Chile. While it was in the correct location to possibly cause a tsunami, the magnitude was too small.

    The major plate boundary here is the megathrust subduction zone that forms the Peru-Chile trench. Here, the Nazca plate dives eastwards beneath the South America plate.

    Many people are familiar with subduction zone earthquakes which are responsible for the largest size temblors possible, as well as tsunami capable of travelling across the entire Pacific Ocean. The largest earthquake recorded on modern instruments is the 22 May 1960 M 9.5 Chile earthquake. There have been 2 large transoceanic tsunami caused by subduction zone earthquakes in 2010 and 2015. At the bottom of this report is a list of other earthquakes in this region.

    A few months ago, there was an earthquake with a magnitude of M 6.7. However, this earthquake was an extensional earthquake, instead of a compressional earthquake that we typically associate with subduction zones.

    This M 6.7 was down-dip (east) of today’s quake. It is possible that the M 6.7 terremoto caused “static coulomb” stress changes in the surrounding region that may have led to today’s earthquake. Someone would need to conduct some numerical analyses to test this hypothesis (I don’t currently have a matlab license, so cannot run Coulomb software to do this analysis myself). I wrote about the M 6.7 earthquake in an earthquake report, as well as for a Temblor article.

    There have been several sequences in this same area of the subduction zone that people have used to suggest other types of stress changes from earlier quakes that led to later quakes (e.g. a sequence in 1997, e.g. Leyton et al., 2009 and Gardi et al., 2006).

    There are a number of examples at other subduction zones where extensional and compressional earthquakes in different regions can trigger earthquakes of the opposite type. In 2009 earthquakes along the Kuril subduction zone and in 2011 earthquakes east of Japan are good examples.

    Below is my interpretive poster for this earthquake


    I plot the seismicity from the past year, with color representing depth and diameter representing magnitude (see legend), for earthquakes M ≥ 4.0. I include earthquake epicenters from some specific historic earthquakes with magnitudes M ≥ 4.0 in one version.

    I plot the USGS fault plane solutions (moment tensors in blue and focal mechanisms in orange), possibly in addition to some relevant historic earthquakes.

    • I placed a moment tensor / focal mechanism legend on the poster. There is more material from the USGS web sites about moment tensors and focal mechanisms (the beach ball symbols). Both moment tensors and focal mechanisms are solutions to seismologic data that reveal two possible interpretations for fault orientation and sense of motion. One must use other information, like the regional tectonics, to interpret which of the two possibilities is more likely.
    • I also include the shaking intensity contours on the map. These use the Modified Mercalli Intensity Scale (MMI; see the legend on the map). This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations. The MMI is a qualitative measure of shaking intensity. More on the MMI scale can be found here and here. This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations.
    • I include the slab 2.0 contours plotted (Hayes, 2018), which are contours that represent the depth to the subduction zone fault. These are mostly based upon seismicity. The depths of the earthquakes have considerable error and do not all occur along the subduction zone faults, so these slab contours are simply the best estimate for the location of the fault.

      Magnetic Anomalies

    • In one map below, I include a transparent overlay of the magnetic anomaly data from EMAG2 (Meyer et al., 2017). As oceanic crust is formed, it inherits the magnetic field at the time. At different points through time, the magnetic polarity (north vs. south) flips, the North Pole becomes the South Pole. These changes in polarity can be seen when measuring the magnetic field above oceanic plates. This is one of the fundamental evidences for plate spreading at oceanic spreading ridges (like the Gorda rise).
    • Regions with magnetic fields aligned like today’s magnetic polarity are colored red in the EMAG2 data, while reversed polarity regions are colored blue. Regions of intermediate magnetic field are colored light purple.
    • We can see the roughly northwest-southeast trends of these red and blue stripes. These lines are parallel to the ocean spreading ridges from where they were formed. The stripes disappear at the subduction zone because the oceanic crust with these anomalies is diving deep beneath the South America plate, so the magnetic anomalies from the overlying Sunda plate mask the evidence for the Nazca plate.

      I include some inset figures. Some of the same figures are located in different places on the larger scale map below.

    • In the upper right corner I include a figure that includes a variety of interesting information (Horton, 2018). From left to right are (a) the tectonic features, (b) the topography, and (c) features the South America plate that reflect the response to changes in the subduction zone over time. I include a blue star in the general location of today’s earthquake.
    • In the lower right corner is a map that shows the relative seismic hazard for this plate boundary (Rhea et al., 2010). I plot both 2019 earthquakes.< The numbers (“80”) indicate the rate at which the Nazca Plate is subducting beneath South America. 80 mm/yr = 3 in/yr./li>
    • In the upper left corner is a profile slicing into the Earth showing earthquakes as they get deeper as the Nazca plate dives deeper beneath the South America plate (Leyton et al., 2009). This cross section is located just to the south of today’s earthquake. I plot both M 6.7 and M 6.4 earthquakes on this section.
    • This is an illustration showing some locations where earthquakes may happen along subduction zones in general. The M 6.4 earthquake is probably a megathrust subduction zone earthquake, while the M 6.7 is probably in the downgoing oceanic crust of the Nazca plate.
    • This is a composite figure from several figures from Metois et al., 2016. On the left is a panel that shows the latitudinal range of earthquake ruptures (I fixed it in places as the original figure did not extend the 2010 rupture sufficiently to the north). The panel on the right shows how much the subduction zone fault is “locked” (or, seismically coupled). Darker colors represent parts of the fault that are storing more energy over time and are possibly places where the fault will slip (compared to parts of the fault that are white or yellow, which may be places where the fault is currently slipping and would not generate earthquakes in the future). This is simply a model and there is not way to really know where an earthquake will happen until there is an earthquake.
    • Here is the map with a years’s seismicity plotted.

    • Here is the map with a seismicity plotted that is associated with specific earthquakes. I plot earthquakes for the 3 months following the mainshock listed for these example earthquakes (e.g. 1960, 1985, 2007, 2014, and 2015.

    Other Report Pages

    Some Relevant Discussion and Figures

    • Here is the overview figure from Horton, 2018.

    • Maps of (A) tectonic framework, (B) topography, and (C) sedimentary basin configuration of South America. (A) Map of plate boundaries, Andean magmatic arc (including the northern, central, and southern volcanic zones), regions of flat slab subduction, modern stress orientations from earthquake focal mechanisms, eastern front of Andean fold-thrust belt, and key segments of the retroarc foreland basin system. Plate velocities are shown relative to stable South American plate (DeMets et al., 2010). (B) DEM topographic map showing the Andes mountains and adjacent foreland region, including the Amazon, Parana, Orinoco, and Magdalena (Mag) river systems. (C) Map of Andean retroarc basins, showing isopach thicknesses (in km) of Cretaceous-Cenozoic basin fill, forebulge axis (from Chase et al., 2009), and locations of 13 sites (8 foreland basins, 5 hinterland basins) considered in this synthesis

    • Here is the seismic hazard map is from Rhea et al. (2010).

    • Here is the seismicity map and space time diagram from Métois et al. (2016). The subduction zone fault in the region of Coquimbo, Chile changes geometry, probably because of the Juan Fernandez Ridge (this structure controls the shape of the subduction zone). This figure shows a map and cross section for two parts of the subduction zone (Marot et al., 2014). The example on the left is the in the region of both the M 6.7 and M 6.4 earthquakes. Note how the subduction zone flattens out with depth here. The M=6.7 quake was shallower than this, but the shape of the downgoing slab does affect the amount of slab pull (tension in the down-dip direction) is exerted along the plate.

    • Left estimated extent of large historical or instrumental ruptures along the Chilean margin adapted from ME´ TOIS et al. (2012). Gray stars mark major intra-slab events. The recent Mw[8 earthquakes are indicated in red. Gray shaded areas correspond to LCZs defined in Fig. 3. Right seismicity recorded by the Centro Sismologico Nacional (CSN) during
      interseismic period, color-coded depending on the event’s depth. Three zones have been defined to avoid including aftershocks and preshocks associated with major events: (1) in North Chile, we plot the seismicity from 2008 to january 2014, i.e., between the Tocopilla and Iquique earthquakes; (2) in Central Chile, we plot the seismicity on the entire 2000–2014 period; (3) in South-Central Chile, we selected events that occurred between 2000 and 2010, i.e., before the Maule earthquake.

    • This figure is the 3 panel figure in the interpretive poster showing how seismicity is distributed along the margin, how historic earthquake slip was distributed, and how the fault may be locked (or slipping) along the megathrust fault.

    • a Histogram depicts the rate of Mw>3 earthquakes registered by the CSN catalog during the interseismic period defined for each zone (see Fig. 2) on the subduction interface, on 0.2° of latitude sliding windows. Stars are swarm-like sequences detected by HOLTKAMP et al. (2011) depending on their occurrence date. Swarms located in the Iquique LCZ and Camarones segment are from RUIZ et al. (2014). Empty squares are significant intraplate earthquakes. b Red curve variations of the average coupling coefficient on the first 60 km of depth calculated on 0.2° of latitude sliding windows for our best model including an Andean sliver motion. Dashed pink curves are alternative models with different smoothing options that fit the data with nRMS better than 2 (see supplementary figure 6): the pink shaded envelope around our best model stands for the variability of the coupling along strike. Green curves coseismic distribution for Maule (VIGNY et al. 2011), Iquique (LAY et al. 2014) and Illapel earthquakes (RUIZ et al. 2016). Gray shaded areas stand for the identified low coupling zones (LCZs). LCZs and high coupling segments are named on the left. The apparent decrease in the average coupling North of 30°S is considered as an artifact of the Andean sliver motion (see Sect. 5.2). c Best coupling distribution obtained inverting for Andean sliver motion and coupling amount simultaneously. The rupture zones for the three major earthquakes are indicated as green ellipses. White shaded areas are zones where we lack resolution.

    • This is a figure that shows details about the coupling compared to some slip models for the 201, 2014, and 2015 earthquakes. Today’s M=6.4 earthquake happened near the city of La Serena. Notice the location of this city compared to the slip on the subduction zone during the 20015 M=8.4 [8.43] earthquake.

    • Left coupling maps (color coded) versus coseismic slip distributions (gray shaded contours in cm) for the last three major Chilean earthquakes (epicenters are marked by white stars). From top to bottom Iquique area, white squares are pre-seismic swarm event in the month before the main shock, green star is the 2005, Tarapaca´ intraslab earthquake epicenter, blue star is the Mw 6.7 Iquique aftershock; Illapel area, green squares show the seismicity associated with the 1997 swarm following the Punitaqui intraslab earthquake (green star); Maule area, green star is the epicenter of the 1939 Chillan intraslab earthquake. Right interseismic background seismicity in the shallow part of the subduction zone (shallower than 60 km depth) for each region (red dots) together with 80 and 90 % coupling contours. White dots are events identified as mainshock after a declustering procedure following GARDNER and KNOPOFF (1974). Yellow areas extent of swarm sequences identified by HOLTKAMP et al. (2011) for South and Central Chile, and RUIZ et al. (2014) for North Chile.

    • This is the fault locking figure from Saillard et al. (2017), showing the percent coupling (how much of the plate convergence contributes to deformation of the plate boundary, which may tell us places on the fault that might slip during an earthquake. We are still learning about why this is important and what it means.

    • Comparison between the uplift rates, interseismic coupling, major bathymetric features, and peninsulas along the Andean margin (10°S–40°S). (a) Uplift rates of marine terraces reported in the literature (we present the average rate since terrace abandonment; Table S1 in the supporting information [Jara-Muñoz et al., 2015]). Each color corresponds to a marine terrace assigned to a marine isotopic stage (MIS). Gray dots are the uplift rates of the central Andean rasa estimated from a numerical model of landscape evolution [Melnick, 2016]. (b) Major bathymetric features and peninsulas and pattern of interseismic coupling of the Andean margin from GPS data inversion (this study). Gray shaded areas correspond to the areas where the spatial resolution of inversion is low due to the poor density of GPS observations (see text and supporting information for more details). The Peru-Chile trench (thick black line), the coastline (thin black line), and the convergence direction (black arrows) are indicated. We superimposed the curve obtained by shifting the trench geometry eastward by 110 km (trench-coast distance of 110 km; blue line) with the curve reflecting the 40 km isodepth of the subducting slab (red line; Slab1.0 from Hayes and Wald [2009]), a depth which corresponds approximately with the downdip end of the locked portion of the Andean seismogenic zone (±10 km) [Ruff and Tichelaar, 1996; Khazaradze and Klotz, 2003; Chlieh et al., 2011; Ruegg et al., 2009; Moreno et al., 2011; Métois et al., 2012]. The two curves are spatially similar in the erosive part of the Chile margin (north of 34°S), whereas they diverge along the shallower slab geometry in the accretionary part of the Chile margin (south of 34°S), where the downdip end of the locked zone may be shallower (Figure 4b). Red arrows indicate the low interseismic coupling associated with peninsulas and marine terraces and evidence of aseismic afterslip (after Perfettini et al. [2010] below the Pisco-Nazca Peninsula; Pritchard and Simons [2006], Victor et al. [2011], Shirzaei et al. [2012], Bejar-Pizarro et al. [2013], and Métois et al. [2013] for the Mejillones Peninsula; Métois et al. [2012, 2014] below the Tongoy Peninsula; and Métois et al. [2012] and Lin et al. [2013] for the Arauco Peninsula). FZ: Fracture zone. Horizontal blue bands are the areas where coastline is less than 110 km (light blue) or 90 km (dark blue) from the trench (see Figure 1).

    • The following figures from Leyton et al. (2009) are great analogies, showing examples of interplate earthquakes (e.g. subduction zone megathrust events) and intraplate earthquakes (e.g. slab quakes, or events within the downgoing plate). The first figures are maps showing these earthquakes, then there are some seismicity cross sections.

    • Maps showing the location of the study and the events used ((a)–(c)). In red we present interplate earthquakes, while in blue, the intermediate depth, intraplate ones. We used beach balls to plot those events with known focal and circles for those without. White triangles mark the position of the Chilean Seismological Network used to locate the events; those with names represent stations used in the waveform analysis (either accelerometers or broadbands with known instrumental response). Labels over beach balls correspond to CMT codes.

    • Here are 2 cross sections showing the earthquakes plotted in the maps above (Leyton et al., 2009).

    • Cross-section at (a) 33.5◦S and (b) 36.5◦S showing the events used in this study. In red we present interplate earthquakes, while in blue, the intermediate depth, intraplate ones.We used beach balls (vertical projection) to plot those events with knownfocal and circles for those without. In light gray is shown the background seismicity recorded from 2000 to 2006 by the Chilean Seismological Service

    Geologic Fundamentals

    • For more on the graphical representation of moment tensors and focal mechanisms, check this IRIS video out:
    • Here is a fantastic infographic from Frisch et al. (2011). This figure shows some examples of earthquakes in different plate tectonic settings, and what their fault plane solutions are. There is a cross section showing these focal mechanisms for a thrust or reverse earthquake. The upper right corner includes my favorite figure of all time. This shows the first motion (up or down) for each of the four quadrants. This figure also shows how the amplitude of the seismic waves are greatest (generally) in the middle of the quadrant and decrease to zero at the nodal planes (the boundary of each quadrant).

    • Here is another way to look at these beach balls.
    • There are three types of earthquakes, strike-slip, compressional (reverse or thrust, depending upon the dip of the fault), and extensional (normal). Here is are some animations of these three types of earthquake faults. The following three animations are from IRIS.
    • Strike Slip:

      Compressional:

      Extensional:

    • This is an image from the USGS that shows how, when an oceanic plate moves over a hotspot, the volcanoes formed over the hotspot form a series of volcanoes that increase in age in the direction of plate motion. The presumption is that the hotspot is stable and stays in one location. Torsvik et al. (2017) use various methods to evaluate why this is a false presumption for the Hawaii Hotspot.

    • A cutaway view along the Hawaiian island chain showing the inferred mantle plume that has fed the Hawaiian hot spot on the overriding Pacific Plate. The geologic ages of the oldest volcano on each island (Ma = millions of years ago) are progressively older to the northwest, consistent with the hot spot model for the origin of the Hawaiian Ridge-Emperor Seamount Chain. (Modified from image of Joel E. Robinson, USGS, in “This Dynamic Planet” map of Simkin and others, 2006.)

    • Here is a map from Torsvik et al. (2017) that shows the age of volcanic rocks at different locations along the Hawaii-Emperor Seamount Chain.

    • Hawaiian-Emperor Chain. White dots are the locations of radiometrically dated seamounts, atolls and islands, based on compilations of Doubrovine et al. and O’Connor et al. Features encircled with larger white circles are discussed in the text and Fig. 2. Marine gravity anomaly map is from Sandwell and Smith.

    • Here is a great tweet that discusses the different parts of a seismogram and how the internal structures of the Earth help control seismic waves as they propagate in the Earth.

      Social Media

      References:

    • Beck, S., Barrientos, S., Kausel, E., and Reyes, M., 1998. Source Characteristics of Historic Earthquakes along the Central Chile Subduction Zone in Journal of South American Earth Sciences, v. 11, no. 2, p. 115-129, https://doi.org/10.1016/S0895-9811(98)00005-4
    • Frisch, W., Meschede, M., Blakey, R., 2011. Plate Tectonics, Springer-Verlag, London, 213 pp.
    • Gardi, A., A. Lemoine, R. Madariaga, and J. Campos (2006), Modeling of stress transfer in the Coquimbo region of central Chile, J. Geophys. Res., 111, B04307, https://doi.org/10.1029/2004JB003440
    • Hayes, G., 2018, Slab2 – A Comprehensive Subduction Zone Geometry Model: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://doi.org/10.5066/F7PV6JNV.
    • Horton, B.K., 2018. Sedimentary record of Andean mountain building< in Earth-Science Reviews, v. 178, p. 279-309, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earscirev.2017.11.025
    • Kreemer, C., G. Blewitt, E.C. Klein, 2014. A geodetic plate motion and Global Strain Rate Model in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, v. 15, p. 3849-3889, https://doi.org/10.1002/2014GC005407.
    • Leyton, F., Ruiz, J., Campos, J., and Kausel, E., 2009. Intraplate and interplate earthquakes in Chilean subduction zone:
      A theoretical and observational comparison in Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors, v. 175, p. 37-46, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pepi.2008.03.017
    • Marot, M., Monfret, T., Gerbault, M.,. Nolet, G., Ranalli, G., and Pardo, M., 2014. Flat versus normal subduction zones: a comparison based on 3-D regional traveltime tomography and petrological modelling of central Chile and western Argentina (29◦–35◦S) in GJI, v. 199, p. 1633-164, https://doi.org/10.1093/gji/ggu355
    • Métois, M., Vigny, C., and Socquet, A., 2016. Interseismic Coupling, Megathrust Earthquakes and Seismic Swarms Along the Chilean Subduction Zone (38°–18°S) in Pure Applied Geophysics, https://doi.org/10.1007/s00024-016-1280-5
    • Meyer, B., Saltus, R., Chulliat, a., 2017. EMAG2: Earth Magnetic Anomaly Grid (2-arc-minute resolution) Version 3. National Centers for Environmental Information, NOAA. Model. https://doi:10.7289/V5H70CVX
    • Müller, R.D., Sdrolias, M., Gaina, C. and Roest, W.R., 2008, Age spreading rates and spreading asymmetry of the world’s ocean crust in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 9, Q04006, https://doi.org/10.1029/2007GC001743
    • Rhea, S., Hayes, G., Villaseñor, A., Furlong, K.P., Tarr, A.C., and Benz, H.M., 2010. Seismicity of the earth 1900–2007, Nazca Plate and South America: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2010–1083-E, 1 sheet, scale 1:12,000,000.
    • Ruiz, S. and Madariaga, R., 2018. Historical and recent large megathrust earthquakes in Chile in Tectonophysics, v. 733, p. 37-56, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tecto.2018.01.015
    • Saillard, M., L. Audin, B. Rousset, J.-P. Avouac, M. Chlieh, S. R. Hall, L. Husson, and D. L. Farber, 2017. From the seismic cycle to long-term deformation: linking seismic coupling and Quaternary coastal geomorphology along the Andean megathrust in Tectonics, 36, https://doi:10.1002/2016TC004156.

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    Posted in earthquake, education, geology, pacific, plate tectonics, subduction

    Earthquake Report: San Clemente Island

    Well, yesterday was the start of a sequence of earthquakes offshore of San Clemente Island, about 100 km west of San Diego, California. The primary tectonic player in southern CA is the Pacific – North America plate boundary fault, the San Andreas (SAF).

      Here are the earthquakes in this sequence:

    • 2019.06.05 10:47:18 (UTC)M 4.3
    • 2019.06.05 14:32:09 (UTC)M 4.3
    • 2019.06.05 14:37:35 (UTC)M 4.3
    • 2019.06.05 16:13:43 (UTC)M 4.3
    • 2019.06.05 22:33:25 (UTC)M 3.3
    • 2019.06.06 01:44:33 (UTC)M 2.4
    • 2019.06.06 02:21:17 (UTC)M 2.3
    • 2019.06.06 11:18:09 (UTC)M 2.8
    • 2019.06.06 11:25:36 (UTC)M 3.5
    • 2019.06.06 17:19:10 (UTC)M 1.6

    The region offshore where this ongoing sequence is called the California Continental Borderlands (CCB). There exists an excellent record of how the North America – Pacific plate margin boundary has evolved through time (remember, prior to about 29 million years ago, this plate boundary in southern CA was a subduction zone).

    There was an earthquake offshore of Los Angeles last year. Check out my earthquake report and report update.

    In places the SAF is a single thoroughgoing fault (e.g. in the southern San Joaquin Valley), in others it splays into multiple strands (in Orange County between the Santa Ana Mtns and Lake Elsinore), and in other places it bends to create regions of uplift (like in Ventura or the Santa Monica Mtns). The active faulting in the CCB is basically a series of right-lateral faults that step and bend to form uplifted islands and terraces, along with pull-apart sedimentary basins.

    San Clemente Island is a region of uplifted non-marine Tertiary volcanic rocks (andesite and dacite) with ages ranging from 14.8 – 16.5 million years ago (Yeats, 1968; Merifield et al., 1971; Ward and Valenise, 1996). These rocks are overlain by Tertiary (Miocene) sediments (limestone, siltstone, shale, and diatomite; correlates to the Monterey Formation) and Plio-Pleistocene sediments (sandstones and conglomerates; correlates to the Fernando Formation found onshore; Stadum & Susuki, 1976; Ward and Valenise, 1996).

    The bedrock is folded into a northwest trending anticline (rocks are folded upwards with the crest in the center of the island, forming a convex upward fold). Moore (1969) use regional compilations of seismic reflection data to show that this type of tectonic folding is ubiquitous throughout the CCB.

    Ward and Velensise (1996) suggest that the San Clemente island formed via uplift during progressive slip on two, southeast striking, southwest dipping, blind thrust faults. These faults initiated movement between 3 and 5 Ma. There are a suite of Pleistocene marine terraces (2.56 Ma and younger) that provide evidence that uplift is continuing. Using fossil age determinations and correlation of marine terrace elevations with global eustatic sea level curves, the island is currently uplifting at rates between 0.2 and .5 mm/year. So, the underlying thrust faults are slipping at about 0.6-1.5 mm/yr (Ward and Velensise, 1996).

    Muhs et al. (2014) used numerical ages (uranium-series analysis of corrals and amino acid geochronology of mollusks) to calculate marine terrace uplift rates in the CCB. When compared to uplift rates from different tectonic regimes, the terrace uplift rates in CCB is comparable to regions where strike-slip tectonics are dominant. These authors suggest that uplift like that found at the Big Bend (e.g. Ventura and Santa Monica Mtns) is not influencing terrace uplift rates in the CCB.

    Along with this compression, there is a right-lateral (dextral) strike-slip fault on the east side of the island, the San Clemente fault, which has a slip rate of about 1 – 4 mm.yr (Ward and Valensise, 1996). The Southern California Earthquake Center suggests the slip rate is about 1.5 mm/yr for the SCF.

    The ongoing sequence of earthquakes near the San Clemente Island are small in magnitude. If these were foreshocks to a larger earthquake, this would be felt across the southland, possibly cause damage on the island (where there is a U.S. Naval base), could possibly trigger submarine landslides or a small tsunami. Strike-slip earthquakes are not always considered a significant source for large tsunami, but there is abundant evidence that they do, though often much smaller than tsunami generated from thrust or subduction zone earthquakes. It is possible, if not probable, that this sequence will fizzle out.

    Below is my interpretive poster for this earthquake


    I plot the seismicity from the past month, with color representing depth and diameter representing magnitude (see legend). I include earthquake epicenters from 1918-2018 with magnitudes M ≥ 3.0 in one version.

    I plot the USGS fault plane solutions (moment tensors in blue and focal mechanisms in orange), possibly in addition to some relevant historic earthquakes.

    • I placed a moment tensor / focal mechanism legend on the poster. There is more material from the USGS web sites about moment tensors and focal mechanisms (the beach ball symbols). Both moment tensors and focal mechanisms are solutions to seismologic data that reveal two possible interpretations for fault orientation and sense of motion. One must use other information, like the regional tectonics, to interpret which of the two possibilities is more likely.
    • I also include the shaking intensity contours on the map. These use the Modified Mercalli Intensity Scale (MMI; see the legend on the map). This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations. The MMI is a qualitative measure of shaking intensity. More on the MMI scale can be found here and here. This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations.

      I include some inset figures. Some of the same figures are located in different places on the larger scale map below.

    • In the lower right corner is a map from Wallace (1990) that shows the plate boundary and major faults overlain upon a topographic/bathymetric map. Check out the patterns made by the uplifted regions and the faulting (e.g. pull-apart basins). I placed a blue star in the general location of this ongoing sequence.
    • In the upper right corner there is a map that shows more detailed fault mapping and bathymetric contours (Chaytor et al., 2008).
    • In the upper left corner, there is a map from Legg et al. (2015) that shows how the strike-slip faults transect the CCB. Select earthquake mechanisms are shown (use legend at the top of the poster to help interpret these symbols) for some historic earthquakes. These authors collected and interpreted a number of seismic reflection profiles, including C-C.’
    • Below the Chaytor et al. (2008) map is seismic reflection profile C-C’ which shows how the basins are filled with sediment, the islands and terraces are also constructed of sedimentary rocks, and there are some steeply dipping faults. This profile is not travel time corrected, so depth is in two-way-travel-time (in seconds), not in depth. The faults probably dip more shallowly than is shown on the figure. The faults in this figure are aligned with the San Clemente fault system labeled on the map. Note that there are some faults that bound the Santa Nicolas Basin.
    • In the lower left corner is a figure that shows how a right-lateral strike-slip fault can create a geometry (e.g. in a step over) where there is extension that forms a pull-apart basin. This is one way to explain the formation of the Santa Cruz, Santa Nicolas, and Catalina basins shown on the maps.
    • Here is the map with a month’s seismicity plotted.

    • Here is the map with a century’s seismicity plotted.

    • Here is a map that shows detailed bathymetry data for the region (Dartnell et al., 2016, 2017) overlain on GEBCO coarser bathymetry data downloaded from GMRT. The land data are at 10 m resolution from The National Map (NED).
    • I plot USGS Quaternary Fault and Fold Database faults as faint white lines. Earthquakes include the past month for magnitudes M ≥ 0.5 and events since 1919 for M ≥ 4.0.
    • Look at the bathymetry surrounding the island. We can clearly see the SCF to the east of the island. There is evidence for a north-south striking fault to the west of the island. In the area just southeast of the earthquakes, there appears bedrock sticking up out of the continental shelf. This bedrock aligns with a ridge in the slop to the south of the island. This ridge may just be sediment, but it may also be tectonic in origin.

    • This map has the USGS MMI contours. The two M 4.3 temblors were felt across the southland.

    • Here is a larger scale map so that we can look at the bathymetry surrounding San Clemente Island in greater detail. I updated the USGS seismicity for 2019.06.06 at 20:00 Pacific time.

    Other Report Pages

    Some Relevant Discussion and Figures

    • Here is the figure showing the evolution of the SAF since its inception about 29 Ma. I include the USGS figure caption below as a blockquote.

    • EVOLUTION OF THE SAN ANDREAS FAULT.

      This series of block diagrams shows how the subduction zone along the west coast of North America transformed into the San Andreas Fault from 30 million years ago to the present. Starting at 30 million years ago, the westward- moving North American Plate began to override the spreading ridge between the Farallon Plate and the Pacific Plate. This action divided the Farallon Plate into two smaller plates, the northern Juan de Fuca Plate (JdFP) and the southern Cocos Plate (CP). By 20 million years ago, two triple junctions began to migrate north and south along the western margin of the West Coast. (Triple junctions are intersections between three tectonic plates; shown as red triangles in the diagrams.) The change in plate configuration as the North American Plate began to encounter the Pacific Plate resulted in the formation of the San Andreas Fault. The northern Mendicino Triple Junction (M) migrated through the San Francisco Bay region roughly 12 to 5 million years ago and is presently located off the coast of northern California, roughly midway between San Francisco (SF) and Seattle (S). The Mendicino Triple Junction represents the intersection of the North American, Pacific, and Juan de Fuca Plates. The southern Rivera Triple Junction (R) is presently located in the Pacific Ocean between Baja California (BC) and Manzanillo, Mexico (MZ). Evidence of the migration of the Mendicino Triple Junction northward through the San Francisco Bay region is preserved as a series of volcanic centers that grow progressively younger toward the north. Volcanic rocks in the Hollister region are roughly 12 million years old whereas the volcanic rocks in the Sonoma-Clear Lake region north of San Francisco Bay range from only few million to as little as 10,000 years old. Both of these volcanic areas and older volcanic rocks in the region are offset by the modern regional fault system. (Image modified after original illustration by Irwin, 1990 and Stoffer, 2006.)

    • Here is a map that shows the tectonic provides in this region (Legg et al. (2015). While the region inherits topography and geologic structures from past tectonic regimes, the dominant tectonic control here is currently the North America – Pacific plate boundary.

    • Map of the California Continental Borderland showing major tectonic features and moderate earthquake locations (M >5.5). The dashed box shows area of this study. The large arrows show relative plate motions for the Pacific-North America transform fault boundary (~N40° ± 2°W; RM2 and PA-1 [Plattner et al., 2007]). BP = Banning Pass, CH = Chino Hills, CP = Cajon Pass, LA = Los Angeles, PS = Palm Springs, V = Ventura, ESC = Santa Cruz Basin, ESCBZ = East Santa Cruz Basin fault zone, SCI = Santa Catalina Island, SCL = San Clemente Island, SMB = Santa Monica Basin, and SNI = San Nicolas Island. Base map from GeoMapApp/Global Multi-Resolution Topography (GMRT) [Ryan et al., 2009].

    • This map (Legg et al., 2007) shows an interpretation of the tectonics in this area. Note the location of the seismic reflection profile 116. San Clemente Island is on the southern edge of this map.

    • Shaded relief map of Santa Catalina Island and vicinity, where several restraining-bend pop-ups and releasing-bend basins exist along major fault zones. Epicentres for two moderate earthquakes (1981 Santa Barbara Island, M 6.0; 1986 Oceanside, M 5.8) and aftershocks bound the Santa Catalina Island restraining bend (locations by Astiz & Shearer 2000; focal mechanism from Corbett 1984). Other restraining-bend pop-ups include the Palos Verdes Hills (PVH) and Lasuen knoll along the Palos Verdes fault zone, and Signal Hill (SH) and possibly the San Joaquin Hills (SJH) along the Newport–Inglewood fault zone. Small pop-ups and pull-apart basins in the vicinity of Crespi knoll are shown in Figure 14. Total relief across the Catalina Fault is almost 2000 m, from Catalina Basin to Mt Orizaba. From 60 to 72 km of right-slip on San Clemente Fault is inferred from offset of Emery Knoll crater rim (Legg et al. 2004b).

    • Here is the USGS seismic reflection profile 116 (Legg et al., 2007). The San Clemente fault zone and the Catalina fault are shown. Check out the pull-apart basin.

    • Seismic-reflection profile USGS-116 across the Catalina basin (see Fig. 12 for profile location). Note the thin sediment cover over an irregular basement surface. A pull-apart basin exists where the San Clemente Fault steps to the NE to eventually merge with the Catalina Fault. The major faults have subvertical dips, typical of strike-slip faults. Convergence across the Catalina Fault has elevated Santa Catalina Island, and uplift occurs on both sides of the PDZ. Seismic data from USGS (J. Childs 2005, pers. comm.) FK migration at 4800 fps velocity was applied to 22-fold USGS stacked data.

    • Here is the figure with more details about the tectonic interpretation of the area (Legg et al., 2015)

    • Map showing bathymetry, Quaternary faults, and recent seismicity in the Outer Borderland. Fault locations are based on the high-resolution bathymetry, available high-resolution seismic reflection profiles, and published fault maps [cf. California Geological Survey (CGS), 2010]. The red symbols show magnitude-scaled (M>4) epicenters for seismicity recorded for the period of 1932 to 2013. Seismicity data and focal mechanisms are derived from the Southern California Seismograph Network catalogs, National Earthquake Information Center [2012–2013], and Legg [1980]. Focal mechanism event numbers correspond to Table S2 in the supporting information. The black rectangle shows location of Figure 10. The light blue lines show tracklines of multichannel seismic profiles—the labeled white profiles are shown in Figures 12 (124) and 13 (108 and 126).

    • Here is the summary figure from Legg et al. (2015). This helps us put these faults systems into context. Seismic reflection profiles from their publication are shown here (profile C-C’ is located in the rectangle labeled Fig 6 and plotted below).

    • Map showing major active tectonic elements of the northern part of the California Continental Borderland. Major active (Quaternary) faults are shown in red (SAF = San Andreas fault, ABF = Agua Blanca fault, SCF = San Clemente fault, and SCCR = Santa Cruz-Catalina Ridge, Ferrelo). Major strike-slip offsets are shown by shaded areas with estimated displacement (EK = Emery Knoll crater; Tanner Basin near DB = Dall Bank; and SDT = San Diego Trough, small pull-apart near Catalina). Other symbols show oblique fault character including transpressional restraining bends (CAT = Santa Catalina Island, CB = Cortes Bank, and TB = Tanner Bank), uplifts (SRI = Santa Rosa Island, SCz = Santa Cruz Island, SNI = San Nicolas Island, CB = Cortes Bank, TB = Tanner Bank, and SBM = San Bernardino Mountains), and transtensional pull-apart basins (SD = San Diego, ENS = Ensenada, SCB = San Clemente Basin, and SIB = San Isidro Basin). The large arrows show Pacific-North America relative plate motions with the blue dashed line (PAC-NAM) along a small circle for the RM2 [Minster and Jordan, 1978] plate motions model through San Clemente Island (SCL). Boundary between the Inner and Outer Borderland follows the East Santa Cruz Basin fault zone (dotted line; modified from Schindler [2010] and De Hoogh [2012]). Holocene volcanoes exist along the coast (SQ= San Quintín) and within the Gulf of California Rift (CP = Cerro Prieto and Obsidian Buttes, Salton Trough). Dates show year of earthquakes with mapped focal mechanisms (see Table S2 in the supporting information). SB = Santa Barbara, LA = Los Angeles, and PS = Palm Springs.

    • Here is the seismic reflection profile C-C’ shown on the poster (Legg et al., 2015).

    • High-resolution 24-channel 4 kJ sparker seismic profiles along the Santa Cruz-Catalina Ridge (C. Goldfinger, personal communications, 2001). The profiles are arranged from north to south along the southern part of the ridge (see Figure 6a for profile locations). Profile OSU-128 located near the bifurcation of the Santa Cruz-Catalina Ridge east of Santa Barbara Island. The colored horizons are correlated to stratigraphy mapped by Sorlien et al. [2013] (see Figure 6 for profile location). The East San Clemente fault zone merges with the Catalina Ridge fault zone within the eastern valley (Figure 5a). Reverse slip is evident on several steep faults that bound blocks of sedimentary rocks that were squeezed up in this transpressional fault system.

    • Here is a map from Maier et al. (2018) that shows how the faults are configured, as well as the sedimentary distribution systems (the focus of their paper). I grew up on the [concrete] banks of the San Gabriel River and this is where the submarine canyon and channels send their sediment loads.

    • Color-contoured slope-shaded multibeam bathymetry gridded at 10 meters. A) The Catalina Basin and the San Gabriel Canyon–Channel depositional system. Dashed line in the Catalina Basin indicates approximate extent of channels resolved on the seafloor.

    • Below are seismic reflection profiles plotted on the above map (Maier et al., 2018)

    • Northwest channels and lobes. See Figure 1A for profile locations. Gray lines represent profile intersections. A) Chirp profile across the northwestern Catalina Basin shows the stacking of lobes that do not reach the Kimki Fault (KF). B) An obliquely oriented chirp profile shows that the lobe deposits originate from the northwest channels, end before reaching the San Clemente Fault (SCF), and do not overlap in extent with lobe b.

    • This shows the timeline of what has controlled the tectonics in this region (Legg et al., 2015).

    • Chronology of major Cenozoic events in the Southern California region (after Wright [1991] and Legg and Kamerling [2012]). Intensity of tectonic deformation is represented by the curve. Local (Los Angeles Basin) biostratigraphic zonation is shown. The slanted labels for Neogene stages represent the time-transgressive nature of these boundaries.

    Pleistocene Marine Terraces

      • Schematic cartoon illustrating the cutting and abandonment of marine terraces in an actively uplifting landscape in relation to sea level fluctuation. (a) Marine terrace cut during a relative sea level high stand. (b) Sea level drops and the marine terrace is uplifted. (c) During the next relative sea level high stand a new marine terrace is cut into the landscape below the older terrace. Modified after Nalin et al., (2007).

      • Here is a figure that shows the geomorphic features of a marine terrace (Wikipedia).

      • Here is a beautiful low angle oblique photo of the marine terraces on San Clemente Island (Yatsko, 2000). These authors studied the archaeological deposits on this island.

      • Emergent Pleistocene marine terraces on the west side of the island between Norton and Box canyons.

      • Here are some views of the terraces on San Clemente Island as photographed by Daniel Muhs (USGS).


      • Here is a map I prepared using the 2016 USGS Topobathy data (LiDAR and historic bathymetry mosaic).
      • I present these data as a shaded relief (hillshade) beneath an elevation raster with color representing height or depth. I also use a slopeshade raster to help highlight the changes in slope.
      • The 100 meter topographic contours are labeled. The inset shows the location of the main map in relation to the CCB with a pink polygon.

      • UPDATE: 2019.06.07
      • I prepared a couple maps that show the entire island. These are below, with 2 different color ramps.


      • Below is a fantastic summary showing the uplift rates for Pleistocene marine terraces along the North America – Pacific plate boundary system(Legg et al., 2015). Note the high uplift rates at the Big Bend and the Mendocino triple junction (another plate where there is a major change in SAF tectonics).

      • Map showing the plate tectonic setting of western North America (simplified from Drummond (1981) and Simkin et al. (2006)). SAF, San Andreas Fault; MTJ, Mendocino Triple Junction; CSZ, Cascadia subduction zone. Also shown are marine terrace localities with reliably dated ~120 ka, ~80 ka, or ~49 ka corals, or amino acid ratios in mollusks that permit correlation to ~120 ka, ~80 ka, or ~49 ka terrace localities, and elevation data that allow calculations of late Quaternary uplift rates. Paleo-sea levels, relative to present, used for uplift rate calculations are þ6 m (~120 ka), 11 m (~80 ka), and 62 m (~49 ka), derived from data in Muhs et al. (2012). Abbreviations and sources of data, south to north: CP, Cabo Pulmo (Muhs et al., 2002a); LP, La Paz (Sirkin et al., 1990); BH, Bahía Magdalena (Omura et al., 1979); IC, Isla Coronados and PC, Punta Chivato (Johnson et al., 2007; see also Table 2); MU, Mulege (Ashby et al., 1987); BT, Bahía de Tortugas (Emerson et al., 1981); PB, Punta Banda (Rockwell et al., 1989; Muhs et al., 2002a); PL, Point Loma (Kern, 1977; Muhs et al., 2002a); SCI, San Clemente Island (Muhs et al., 2002a, 2014); NB, Newport Bay (Grant et al., 1999); SNI, San Nicolas Island (Muhs et al., 2012); PV, Palos Verdes Hills (Muhs et al., 2006); NCI, Northern Channel Islands (this study); V, Ventura (Lajoie et al., 1979; Kennedy et al., 1982;Wehmiller, 1982); IV, Isla Vista (Gurrola et al., 2014; see also Table 2); SB, Shell Beach (Stein et al., 1991; Hanson et al., 1994); PSL, Point San Luis (Hanson et al., 1994; Muhs et al., 1994); C, Cayucos (Stein et al., 1991; Muhs et al., 2002a); AN, A~no Nuevo (Muhs et al., 2006); PA, Point Arena (Muhs et al., 2006); PD, Point Delgada (McLaughlin et al., 1983a, 1983b; Merritts and Bull, 1989); CC, Crescent City (Kennedy et al., 1982; Polenz and Kelsey, 1999); CB, Cape Blanco (Kelsey, 1990; Muhs et al., 1990); B, Bandon (McInelly and Kelsey, 1990; Muhs et al., 1990, 2006); YB, Yaquina Bay (Kennedy et al., 1982; Kelsey et al., 1996).

    Geologic Fundamentals

    • For more on the graphical representation of moment tensors and focal mechanisms, check this IRIS video out:
    • Here is a fantastic infographic from Frisch et al. (2011). This figure shows some examples of earthquakes in different plate tectonic settings, and what their fault plane solutions are. There is a cross section showing these focal mechanisms for a thrust or reverse earthquake. The upper right corner includes my favorite figure of all time. This shows the first motion (up or down) for each of the four quadrants. This figure also shows how the amplitude of the seismic waves are greatest (generally) in the middle of the quadrant and decrease to zero at the nodal planes (the boundary of each quadrant).

    • Here is another way to look at these beach balls.
    • There are three types of earthquakes, strike-slip, compressional (reverse or thrust, depending upon the dip of the fault), and extensional (normal). Here is are some animations of these three types of earthquake faults. The following three animations are from IRIS.
    • Strike Slip:

      Compressional:

      Extensional:

    • This is an image from the USGS that shows how, when an oceanic plate moves over a hotspot, the volcanoes formed over the hotspot form a series of volcanoes that increase in age in the direction of plate motion. The presumption is that the hotspot is stable and stays in one location. Torsvik et al. (2017) use various methods to evaluate why this is a false presumption for the Hawaii Hotspot.

    • A cutaway view along the Hawaiian island chain showing the inferred mantle plume that has fed the Hawaiian hot spot on the overriding Pacific Plate. The geologic ages of the oldest volcano on each island (Ma = millions of years ago) are progressively older to the northwest, consistent with the hot spot model for the origin of the Hawaiian Ridge-Emperor Seamount Chain. (Modified from image of Joel E. Robinson, USGS, in “This Dynamic Planet” map of Simkin and others, 2006.)

    • Here is a map from Torsvik et al. (2017) that shows the age of volcanic rocks at different locations along the Hawaii-Emperor Seamount Chain.

    • Hawaiian-Emperor Chain. White dots are the locations of radiometrically dated seamounts, atolls and islands, based on compilations of Doubrovine et al. and O’Connor et al. Features encircled with larger white circles are discussed in the text and Fig. 2. Marine gravity anomaly map is from Sandwell and Smith.

    • Here is a great tweet that discusses the different parts of a seismogram and how the internal structures of the Earth help control seismic waves as they propagate in the Earth.

      Social Media

      References:

    • Chaytor, J.D., Goldfinger, C., Meiner, M.A., Huftile, G.J., Romsost, C.G., Legg, M.R., 2008. Measuring vertical tectonic motion at the intersection of the Santa Cruz–Catalina Ridge and Northern Channel Islands platform, California Continental Borderland, using submerged paleoshorelines in GSA Bulletin, v. 120, no. 7/8, p. 1053-1071, https://dx.doi.org/10.1130/B26316.1
    • Dartnell, P., Driscoll, N.W., Brothers, D., Conrad, J.E., Kluesner, J., Kent, G., and Andrews, B., 2015, Colored shaded-relief bathymetry, acoustic backscatter, and selected perspective views of the inner continental borderland, Southern California, U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 3324, 3 sheets, https://dx.doi.org/10.3133/sim3324.
    • Dartnell, P., Roland, E.C., Raineault, N.A., Castillo, C.M., Conrad, J.E., Kane, R.R., Brothers, D.S., Kluesner, J.W., Walton, M.A.L., 2017, Multibeam bathymetry and acoustic-backscatter data collected in 2016 in Catalina Basin, southern California and merged multibeam bathymetry datasets of the northern portion of the Southern California Continental Borderland: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://doi.org/10.5066/F7DV1H3W.
    • Du, X., Hendy, I., Schimmelmann, 2018. A 9000-year flood history for Southern California: A revised stratigraphy of varved sediments in Santa Barbara Basin in Marine Geology, v. 397, p. 29-42, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.margeo.2017.11.014
    • Frisch, W., Meschede, M., Blakey, R., 2011. Plate Tectonics, Springer-Verlag, London, 213 pp.
    • Fuis, G.S., Ryberg, T., Godfrey, N.J., Okaya, D.A., Murphy, J.M., 2001. Crustal structure and tectonics from the Los Angeles basin to the Mojave Desert, southern California in Geology, v. 29, no. 1, p. 15-18
    • Hayes, G., 2018, Slab2 – A Comprehensive Subduction Zone Geometry Model: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://doi.org/10.5066/F7PV6JNV.
    • Kreemer, C., G. Blewitt, E.C. Klein, 2014. A geodetic plate motion and Global Strain Rate Model in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, v. 15, p. 3849-3889, https://doi.org/10.1002/2014GC005407.
    • Legg., <.R., Goldfinger, C., Kamerling, M.J., Chaytor, J.D., and Einstein, D.E., 2007. Morphology, structure and evolution of California Continental Borderland restraining bends in W. D. & Mann, P. (Eds) Tectonics of Strike-Slip Restraining And Releasing Bends. Geological Society, London, Special Publications, v. 290, p. 143–168
    • Legg, M. R., M. D. Kohler, N. Shintaku, and D. S. Weeraratne, 2015. Highresolution mapping of two large-scale transpressional fault zones in the California Continental Borderland: Santa Cruz-Catalina Ridge and Ferrelo faults, J. Geophys. Res. Earth Surf., 120, 915–942, doi:10.1002/2014JF003322.
    • Merifield, P.M., Lamar, D.L., and Stout, M.L., 1971. Geology of Central San Clemente Island, California in GSA Bulletin, v. 82, p. 1989-1994
    • Maier, K.L., Roland, E.C., Walton., A.L., Conrad,m J.E., Brothers, D.S., Bartnell, P., and Kleusner, J.W., 2018. The Tectonically Controlled San Gabriel Channel–Lobe Transition Zone, Catalina Basin, Southern California Borderland in Journal of Sedimentary Research, v. 88, p. 942-959, http://dx.doi.org/10.2110/jsr.2018.50
    • Meyer, B., Saltus, R., Chulliat, a., 2017. EMAG2: Earth Magnetic Anomaly Grid (2-arc-minute resolution) Version 3. National Centers for Environmental Information, NOAA. Model. https://doi.org/10.7289/V5H70CVX
    • Muhs, Daniel R.; Simmons, Kathleen R.; Schumann, R. Randall; Groves, Lindsey T.; DeVogel, Stephen B.; Minor, Scott A.; and Laurel, DeAnna, “Coastal tectonics on the eastern margin of the Pacific Rim: late Quaternary sea-level history and uplift rates, Channel Islands National Park, California, USA” (2014). USGS Staff — Published Research. 932.
      http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/usgsstaffpub/932
    • Müller, R.D., Sdrolias, M., Gaina, C. and Roest, W.R., 2008, Age spreading rates and spreading asymmetry of the world’s ocean crust in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 9, Q04006, https://doi.org/10.1029/2007GC001743
    • Nalin, R., Massari, F., and Zecchin, M., 2007, Superimposed Cycles of Composite Marine Terraces: The Example of Cutro Terrace (Calabria, Southern Italy): Journal of Sedimentary Research, v. 77, no. 4, p. 340-354.
    • Pinter, N., Lueddecke, S.B., Keller, E.A., Simmons, K.R., 1998. Late Quaternary slip on the Santa Cruz Island fault, California in GSA Bulletin, v. 110, no. 6, p. 711-722
    • Pinter, N., Johns, B., Little, B., Vestal, W.D., 2001. Fault-Related Folding in California’s Northern Channel Islands Documented by Rapid-Static GPS Positioning in GSA Today, May, 2001
    • Schindler, C.S., 2010. 3D Fault Geometry and Basin Evolution in the Northern Continental Borderland Offshore Southern California Catherine Sarah Schindler, B.S. A Thesis Submitted to the Department of Physics and Geology California State University Bakersfield In Partial Fulfillment for the Degree of Masters of Science in Geology
    • Shaw, J.H., Suppe, J., 1994. Active faulting and growth folding in the eastern Santa Barbara Channel, California in GSA Bulletin, v. 106, p. 607-626
    • Wallace, Robert E., ed., 1990, The San Andreas fault system, California: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1515, 283 p. [https://pubs.er.usgs.gov/publication/pp1515].
    • Yeats, R. S., 1968. Southern California structure, sea-floor spreading, and history of the Pacific Basin in Geol. Soc. America Bull., v. 79, p. 1693-1702

    Return to the Earthquake Reports page.

    Posted in earthquake, education, geology, pacific, plate tectonics, San Andreas, strike-slip

    Earthquake Report: Peru

    Just a moment ago, there was an intermediate depth Great Earthquake (magnitude M≥8.0) beneath Peru. I was heading to bed at about 1:10 local time (Sacramento, CA) when I noticed a tweet from Dr. Anthony Lomax (presenting his first motion mechanism for this earthquake). I realized that I was no longer heading to bed. I put together the interpretive posters and tweeted out to social media, but put off completing the report until today.

    The major plate boundary in this region of the world is the subduction zone that forms the Peru-Chile Trench, where the Nazca plate dives eastwards beneath the South America plate.

    This magnitude M = 8.0 Great earthquake is extensional (normal) and in the downgoing Nazca plate at a depth of about 110 km. Earthquakes M ≥ 8 are generally considered “Great” earthquakes.

    In the past few years, there have been some good examples of deep earthquakes, depths ≥ 300 km or so. For example an M 7.6 on 2015.11.24, an M 6.8 on 2018.04.02, an M 7.1 on 2018.08.24, an M 7.5 on 2019.02.22, and a M 7.0 on 2019.03.01. Today’s temblor happened ~500 km from the 2 February 2019 M 7.5 quake. It seems that the M 8 may be related to this earlier M 7.5, though someone would need to conduct coulomb modeling to get a better gauge of this possibility.

    At first take, this event was deep, so some would consider this to lead to lesser damage had the quake been closer to the surface. While this is true, the size of the quake and the fact that it was not deep (but intermediate in depth, at about 110 km), the damage has shown to be quite extensive. The USGS PAGER alert, along with the USGS liquefaction and landslide probability maps, also suggested that this event would be deadly and damaging (unfortunately). Luckily, the areas hardest hit have low population exposure. Though Iquitos is still pretty close. The MMI contours show MMI VII (very strong shaking) near the epicenter.

    Below I present the standard interpretive posters, as well as maps that show the USGS Ground Failure products.

    Today’s earthquake appears to have occurred where the downgoing Nazca plate is changing the steepness of dip (the angle measured from the horizontal plane). To the west of the quake, the subducting slab is less steeply dipping (flat slab subduction), and to the east, the slab is dipping more steeply. As the plate bends downwards, there is extension in the upper part of the subducting slab (like when one bends a finger, the wrinkles in their knuckles stretch out and disappear due to the extension in the upper part of the finger).

    Below is my interpretive poster for this earthquake


    I plot the seismicity from the past month, with color representing depth and diameter representing magnitude (see legend). I include earthquake epicenters from 1918-2018 with magnitudes M ≥ 3.0 in one version.

    I plot the USGS fault plane solutions (moment tensors in blue and focal mechanisms in orange), possibly in addition to some relevant historic earthquakes.

    • I placed a moment tensor / focal mechanism legend on the poster. There is more material from the USGS web sites about moment tensors and focal mechanisms (the beach ball symbols). Both moment tensors and focal mechanisms are solutions to seismologic data that reveal two possible interpretations for fault orientation and sense of motion. One must use other information, like the regional tectonics, to interpret which of the two possibilities is more likely.
    • I also include the shaking intensity contours on the map. These use the Modified Mercalli Intensity Scale (MMI; see the legend on the map). This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations. The MMI is a qualitative measure of shaking intensity. More on the MMI scale can be found here and here. This is based upon a computer model estimate of ground motions, different from the “Did You Feel It?” estimate of ground motions that is actually based on real observations.
    • I include the slab 2.0 contours plotted (Hayes, 2018), which are contours that represent the depth to the subduction zone fault. These are mostly based upon seismicity. The depths of the earthquakes have considerable error and do not all occur along the subduction zone faults, so these slab contours are simply the best estimate for the location of the fault.

      Magnetic Anomalies

    • In the map below, I include a transparent overlay of the magnetic anomaly data from EMAG2 (Meyer et al., 2017). As oceanic crust is formed, it inherits the magnetic field at the time. At different points through time, the magnetic polarity (north vs. south) flips, the north pole becomes the south pole. These changes in polarity can be seen when measuring the magnetic field above oceanic plates. This is one of the fundamental evidences for plate spreading at oceanic spreading ridges (like the Gorda rise).
    • Regions with magnetic fields aligned like today’s magnetic polarity are colored red in the EMAG2 data, while reversed polarity regions are colored blue. Regions of intermediate magnetic field are colored light purple.
    • We can see the roughly east-west trends of these red and blue stripes. These lines are parallel to the ocean spreading ridges from where they were formed. The stripes disappear at the subduction zone because the oceanic crust with these anomalies is diving deep beneath the Sunda plate (part of Eurasia), so the magnetic anomalies from the overlying Sunda plate mask the evidence for the Australia plate.

      I include some inset figures. Some of the same figures are located in different places on the larger scale map below.

    • In the upper right corner is a generalized plate tectonic map showing the major plate boundaries (Hu et al., 2016).
    • In the lower right corner is a larger scale map with more details about how the relative plate motions and crustal structures in the South America plate relate to each other (Hu et al., 2016).
    • In the upper right corner is a low angle oblique view of the subducting slab beneath South America (Wagner and Okal, 2019). I place a blue star in the general location of the M 8.0 temblor both on the map and on the 3-D view of the slab.
    • In the lower left corner is a map and seismicity cross sections from Wagner and Okal (2019). Note how the M 8.0 is at the edge of the flat slab, where the slab starts to dip more steeply to the east..
    • Here is the map with a month’s seismicity plotted.

    • Here is the map with a century’s seismicity plotted. Note that I include 2 thrust earthquakes. What are the depths for these temblors? (use the color of the circle to help)

    • Here is the map with a century’s seismicity plotted, but also includes the GEM strain data.

    • While today’s M 8.0 was extensional and along this plate boundary system, there are some good examples of subduction zone earthquakes in the region as well. Here is a poster that has a summary of subduction zone earthquakes presented in this report for an earthquake on 2018.01.18.

    • Below are some key posters that show additional recent and additional historic earthquakes in the region.
    • 2018.04.02 M 6.8 Bolivia

    • 2018.08.24 M 7.1 Peru

    • 2019.02.23 M 7.5 Ecuador. This earthquake was only a couple months ago and was at a similar depth.
    • This M 7.5 quake was also near the bend in the subduction zone, so possibly caused by the tension in the upper plate (just like today’s eq). If one looks closely, the strike of the slab near the M 7.5 is oriented counterclockwise compared to the slab near today’s M 8, The M 7.5 earthquake mechanism (e.g. moment tensor) is also rotated counterclockwise (northwest strike). It may not be possible to know if either (or both) of these quakes are due to bending moment extension, or down-dip slab tension.
    • Also, these two earthquakes are separated by 500 km. Earthquakes this size can slip large amounts of the fault. For example, the USGS slip model suggests a fault length of about 250 km or so, with a width of 120 km or so. Given the high rate of large earthquakes (an earthquake magnitude M 7 or greater every 7 years for the past 36 years), it is reasonable to link these earthquakes using our knowledge of static triggering of earthquakes.

    USGS Landslide and Liquefaction Ground Failure data products

    • Below I present a series of maps that are intended to address the excellent ‘new’ products included in the USGS earthquake pages: landslide probability and liquefaction susceptibility (a.k.a. the Ground Failure data products).
    • First I present the landslide probability model. This is a GIS data product that relates a variety of factors to the probability (the chance of) landslides as triggered by this earthquake. There are a number of assumptions that are made in order to be able to produce this model across such a large region, though this is still of great value (like other aspects from teh USGS, e.g. the PAGER alert). Learn more about all of these Ground Failure products here.
    • There are many different ways in which a landslide can be triggered. The first order relations behind slope failure (landslides) is that the “resisting” forces that are preventing slope failure (e.g. the strength of the bedrock or soil) are overcome by the “driving” forces that are pushing this land downwards (e.g. gravity). I spend more time discussing landslides and liquefaction in this recent earthquake report.
    • This model, like all landslide computer models, uses similar inputs. I review these here:
      1. Some information about ground shaking. Often, people use Peak Ground Acceleration, though in the past decade+, it has been recognized that the parameter “Arias Intensity” is a better measure of the energy imparted by the earthquake across the land and seascape. Instead of simply accounting for the peak accelerations, AI integrates the entire energy (duration) during the earthquake. That being said, PGA is a more common parameter that is available for people to use. For example, when I was modeling slope stability for the 2004 Sumatra-Andaman subduction zone earthquake, the only model that was calibrated to observational data were in units of PGA. The first order control to shaking intensity (energy observed at any particular location) is distance to the earthquake fault that slipped.
      2. Some information about the strength of the materials (e.g. angle of internal friction (the strength) and cohesion (the resistance).
      3. Information about the slope. Steeper slopes, with all other things being equal, are more likely to fail than are shallower slopes. Think about skiing. Beginners (like me) often choose shallower slopes to ski because they will go down the slope slower, while experts choose steeper slopes.
    • Areas that are red are more likely to experience landslides than areas that are colored blue. I include a coarse resolution topographic/bathymetric dataset to help us identify where the mountains are relative to the coastal plain and continental shelf (submarine). Note the blue line is the shoreline and that North is to the left. The M=7.5 epicenter is the green dot to the east of the mountains.

    • Landslide ground shaking can change the Factor of Safety in several ways that might increase the driving force or decrease the resisting force. Keefer (1984) studied a global data set of earthquake triggered landslides and found that larger earthquakes trigger larger and more numerous landslides across a larger area than do smaller earthquakes. Earthquakes can cause landslides because the seismic waves can cause the driving force to increase (the earthquake motions can “push” the land downwards), leading to a landslide. In addition, ground shaking can change the strength of these earth materials (a form of resisting force) with a process called liquefaction.
    • Sediment or soil strength is based upon the ability for sediment particles to push against each other without moving. This is a combination of friction and the forces exerted between these particles. This is loosely what we call the “angle of internal friction.” Liquefaction is a process by which pore pressure increases cause water to push out against the sediment particles so that they are no longer touching.
    • An analogy that some may be familiar with relates to a visit to the beach. When one is walking on the wet sand near the shoreline, the sand may hold the weight of our body generally pretty well. However, if we stop and vibrate our feet back and forth, this causes pore pressure to increase and we sink into the sand as the sand liquefies. Or, at least our feet sink into the sand.
    • Below is the liquefaction susceptibility map. I discuss liquefaction more in my earthquake report on the 28 September 20018 Sulawesi, Indonesia earthquake, landslide, and tsunami here.
    • Something else that is cool about the liquefaction map is we can see where the river valleys are. These regions have a higher liq. susc. because they are (1) closer to the earthquake and (2) they are composed of materials that are more susceptible to liquefaction (e.g. sediment rather than bedrock).

    • Here is a map that shows shaking intensity using the MMI scale (mentioned and plotted in the main earthquake poster maps). I present this here in the same format as the ground failure model maps so we can compare these other maps with the ground shaking model (which is a first order control on slope failure).
    • Let’s compare the MMI map below with the liquefaction susc. map. What might we conclude may be the largest factor for the landscape being susceptible to liquefaction?
    • Check out how the liquefaction map more directly resembles this MMI map, than the landslide map. In this case, my interpretation is that for the landslide model, slope is a larger controlling factor than ground shaking (though still a major factor).
    • And to answer my question, you were correct, liquefaction appears to be more highly controlled by ground shaking intensity.

    UPDATE: 2019.05.27

    • I prepared an interpretive poster that shows a comparison of the impact for two similar and different earthquakes in the region. I compare the ground shaking from the 2019.02.22 M 7.5 and the 2019.05.26 M 8.0 earthquakes.
    • Both quakes are in a similar position along the Nazca plate, with extensional mechanisms near the hingeline between flat subduction and steeper dipping subduction.
    • The M 7.5 temblor is deeper at 145 km, compared tot he M 8.0 with a depth of 110 km.
    • I provide map and attenuation relation comparisons on the left and map view comparisons on the right.
      • The maps on the left show the results of intensity modeling done by the USGS, called shakemaps. These models are based on the knowledge we have about how shaking intensity decreases with distance from the earthquake. These attenuation relations are often called “Ground Motion Prediction Equations” (GMPE for short).
      • Below the maps are the plots that show these GMPE models used to make the shakemaps above. The orange and green lines are the predictive lines for ground shaking in sedimentary bedrock (e.g. California, green) and crystalline bedrock (e.g. central and eastern USA, orange).
      • The dots are intensity values as reported by people who submitted their observations via the USGS “did you feel it?” website. Green dots are individual values, and teh larger dots and whisker bars are the average values, with 1 sigma uncertainty (the error bars).
      • I placed a gray rectangle showing the range of MMI reported for the M 7.5 to allow us to easily compare with the M 8.
      • The maps on the right include DYFI reported data (the circles, with diameters representing the number of reports) as well as the USGS model of shaking intensity (the transparent polygons and lines, labeled relative to their MMI value).
      • Note how much farther DYFI reports were sourced (both on the maps and the plots on the left). The M 8.0 was felt over 2,000 km away from teh quake.


    • Here is a map that shows the impact from this event. This is from Copernicus at the European Union. This map was tweeted in a tweet linked below.

    • IRIS prepares excellent visualizations for earthquakes such as this M 8.0.
    • Below is a visualization that shows how seismic waves were transmitted through the Earth following the M 8.0 earthquake.
    • Here is an updated interpretive poster, still with a century’s seismicity plotted. However, I added more historic earthquakes (including 2 notable megathrust quakes in 2001 and 2007). I added different inset figures, listed below.
      • In the upper right corner is a map that shows an interpretation of different subducting slabs beneath the South America plate (Ramos & Folguera, 2009).
      • In the lower right corner is a map that shows the age of the oceanic lithosphere for the Nazca plate (Capitanio et al., 2011).
      • On the left margin is a series of figures from Kirby et al., 1995. The upper panel is a map showing historic seismicity and some representative earthquake mechanisms. Their paper focused on the deep earthquakes in the northern, western jog, and southern groups. Yesterday’s M 8.0 was up-dip of the northern group.
      • In the two lower panels are plots of seismicity in cross-sectional view (east-west on top and north-south on bottom). I label the locations for different types of earthquakes (megathrust subduction zone, crustal, intermediate depth, and deep earthquakes). The 1921-22 and 1970 quakes are labeled here (as well as the 1994 M 8.2).
    • There have been a series of couplets, large magnitude earthquakes closely spaced in place and time, in this region. About a month spanned a doublet in 1921-22, and less than a day for quakes in 2015. One might consider a pair of M~7 quakes in 1989/90. It seems possible that either yesterday’s M 8.0 was in a region of increased static stress (??) following the 2019.02.22 M 7.5. It also seems possible that there may be an additional earthquake in this region. We won’t know until it happens.
    • I also included the USGS slip models for these 2 2019 temblors. These are placed roughly relative to the online USGS maps for these slip models. Note the large difference in fault size for these 2 quakes; the M 8 slipped a much larger fault than the M 7.5 slipped.

    Some Relevant Discussion and Figures

    • This is the Hu et al. (2016) tectonic map. Note the slab contours and how they help us understand the shape of the downgoing Nazca plate.

    • Geological setting of South America with depth contours of slab 1.0 (Hayes et al., 2012)indicated by thin black lines, subducting oceanic plateaus translucent gray and continental cratons translucent white. The major flat slabs in South America are outlined with thick black lines. The locations of oceanic plateaus, cratons and flat slabs are modified from Gutscher et al.(2000), Loewy et al.(2004)and Ramos and Folguera (2009), respectively. The present-day plate motion is shown as black arrows. Tooth-shaped line represents the South American trench. Seafloor ages to the west of South America are shown with colorful lines with numbers indicating the age in Ma.

    • Here is a more detailed tectonic map from Wagner and Okal (2019) that shows seismicity plotted relative to depth (color). The slab contours are also plotted.

    • Map of South American seismicity and Holocene volcanism. Red triangles indicate Holocene volcanism from the Global Volcanism Project (2013). Circles indicate earthquakes from Jan 1990 to Jan 2015 listed in the Reviewed International Seismological Centre On-line Bulletin (2015) with magnitudes > 4 and depths > 70 km. Orange box shows Pucallpa nest described in this study. Yellow boxes show other nests: the Bucaramanga nest in Colombia and the Pipanaco nest in Argentina. The faded black lines show slab contours from Slab 2.0 (Hayes et al., 2018). The faded blue lines show slab contours from Cahill and Isacks (1992). The black arrow offshore shows relative Nazca-South America plate motion from Altamimi et al. (2016).

    • Here is an animation from IRIS that reviews the tectonics of the Peru-Chile subduction zone. For the animation, first is a screen shot and below that is the embedded video. This animation is from IRIS. Written and directed by Robert F. Butler, University of Portland. Animation and Graphics: Jenda Johnson, geologist. Consultant: Susan Beck, University or Arizona. Narration: Elayne Shapiro, University of Portland.

    • Here is a download link for the embedded video below (34 MB mp4)
    • The Rhea et al. (2016) document is excellent and can be downloaded here. The USGS prepared another cool poster that shows the seismicity for this region (though there does not seem to be a reference for this).

    • This is a great visualization from Dr. Laura Wagner. This shows how the downgoing Nazca plate is shaped, based upon their modeling.

    • Here are some cross sections that show the geometry of the slab, as modeled by Hu et al. (2016). Cross section C is almost exactly where the 01 March 2019 M 7.0 and 9 June 1994 M 8.2 earthquakes are.

    • Cross sections of the best-fit model from 5◦to 30◦S at an interval of 5◦. Orange arrows mark the location of these cross sections. In each cross section, background color represents the temperature field with the yellow lines indicating the interpolated Benioff zone from slab 1.0(Hayes et al., 2012). Gray circles represent the locations of earthquakes with magnitude >4.0 from IRIS earthquake catalog for years from 1970 to 2015. Black lines above each cross section delineate the topography, with the vertical scale amplified by 20 times. Note the overall match of the slab geometry to both individual seismicity and slab 1.0 contour.

    • Here is an alternate view of the Nazca slab from Yepes et al. (2016).

    • Slab bending depicted as a hypothetical contorted surface. The drawings represent the subduction and bending of Farallon and Nazca plates from three different perspectives. The margin convexity (concavity from the perspective of the continental plate) forces the slab to flex and shorten at depth which accumulates stresses in most strained areas. Present-day position of the Grijalva rifted margin at the trench coincides with a noticeable inflection point of the trench axis (in red). A horizontal grid has been added to help visualize the plates dipping angles. A transparent 100 km thick volume has been added below the contorted surface to simulate the plate, but at intermediate depths the depicted surface should be representing the plate inner section. (a) South to north perspective showing the different dipping angles of Farallon and Nazca plates. The slab depth color scale is valid for the three drawings. (b) West to east oblique perspective at approximately the same angle as Nazca plate’s dip. The contortion of the Farallon plate at depth south of the Grijalva rifted margin is clearly noticeable from this perspective. (c) East to west perspective. Intermediate depth seismicity (50–300 km) from the instrumental catalog [Beauval et al., 2013] is drawn at the reported hypocentral depth. Two areas of maximum strain in the Farallon plate are shown (hachured): the El Puyo seismic cluster (SC) and the 100–130 km depth stretch of high moment release seismicity related to a potential hinge in the subducting plate. Lack of seismicity in the Nazca plate is explained due to the fact that this young plate, even though it is also strained, is too hot for brittle rupture.

    • Here are the seismicity cross sections from Wagner and Okal (2019). Today’s M 8.0 (as plotted in the interpretive posters) is at the location in the Nazca slab where it bends. The M 8 is in the upper slab, where there would be extension from this bending.

    • Map of Pucallpa Nest with focal mechanisms and cross sections. Top: map view: circles show seismicity (same as Fig. 2) along with focal mechanisms from the Global CMT catalog (Dziewonski et al., 1981; Ekström et al., 2012). The red contours are our proposed slab geometry in 50 km increments. Teal outlined shape is the projected location of the subducted Nazca Ridge based on its conjugate Tuamotu Plateau on the Pacific plate (Hampel, 2002). The dark blue outlined shape is the subducted Inca Plateau based on the location of its conjugate, the Marquesas Plateau (Rosenbaum et al., 2005). The pink shaded region shows the location of the Shira Mountains (Hermoza et al., 2006). Cross sections have earthquakes and focal mechanisms projected onto the transect from within the boxes outlined on the map. For all cross sections, the red line is the proposed slab geometry shown in red contours and in Fig. 7 – the solid red line indicates the slab geometry determined from PULSE studies (e.g. Antonijevic et al., 2015, 2016; Kumar et al., 2016; Bishop et al., 2017) and the dashed red line indicates the slab geometry inferred in the present study. The dashed black line is the slab from Cahill and Isacks (1992). The blue line is the slab from Slab2.0 (Hayes et al., 2018). The black line above the depth profiles on each cross section shows topography/bathymetry in km. Middle: Cross-section A–A′ through the NNW-SSE trending arm of the Pucallpa Nest. T-axes are uniformly down-dip, roughly parallel to the dip of the proposed slab geometry. Bottom: Cross-section B–B′ is parallel to the WSW-ENE arm of the Pucallpa Nest. Focal mechanisms on this segment are more variable. The inverted red triangle on the topography profile shows the location of the Agua Caliente Oil Field and Boiling River. Cross-section C–C′ is parallel to the NNW-SSE arm of the Pucallpa Nest.

    • This is the updated 3-D view of the slab from Wagner and Okal (2019).

    • 3D image of slab seismicity and possible slab geometry surrounding the Pucallpa Nest. Cubes show event location for seismicity>70 km depth from the RISC 1990–2015. Squares on underlying and overlying topographic maps show projections of the same events. Slab geometry south of ~9°S is constrained by seismic stations of the PULSE deployment (see Fig. 2). Slab geometry proposed here for areas further north is based on RISC event locations and focal mechanisms.

    Geologic Fundamentals

    • For more on the graphical representation of moment tensors and focal mechnisms, check this IRIS video out:
    • Here is a fantastic infographic from Frisch et al. (2011). This figure shows some examples of earthquakes in different plate tectonic settings, and what their fault plane solutions are. There is a cross section showing these focal mechanisms for a thrust or reverse earthquake. The upper right corner includes my favorite figure of all time. This shows the first motion (up or down) for each of the four quadrants. This figure also shows how the amplitude of the seismic waves are greatest (generally) in the middle of the quadrant and decrease to zero at the nodal planes (the boundary of each quadrant).

    • Here is another way to look at these beach balls.
    • There are three types of earthquakes, strike-slip, compressional (reverse or thrust, depending upon the dip of the fault), and extensional (normal). Here is are some animations of these three types of earthquake faults. The following three animations are from IRIS.
    • Strike Slip:

      Compressional:

      Extensional:

    • This is an image from the USGS that shows how, when an oceanic plate moves over a hotspot, the volcanoes formed over the hotspot form a series of volcanoes that increase in age in the direction of plate motion. The presumption is that the hotspot is stable and stays in one location. Torsvik et al. (2017) use various methods to evaluate why this is a false presumption for the Hawaii Hotspot.

    • A cutaway view along the Hawaiian island chain showing the inferred mantle plume that has fed the Hawaiian hot spot on the overriding Pacific Plate. The geologic ages of the oldest volcano on each island (Ma = millions of years ago) are progressively older to the northwest, consistent with the hot spot model for the origin of the Hawaiian Ridge-Emperor Seamount Chain. (Modified from image of Joel E. Robinson, USGS, in “This Dynamic Planet” map of Simkin and others, 2006.)

    • Here is a map from Torsvik et al. (2017) that shows the age of volcanic rocks at different locations along the Hawaii-Emperor Seamount Chain.

    • Hawaiian-Emperor Chain. White dots are the locations of radiometrically dated seamounts, atolls and islands, based on compilations of Doubrovine et al. and O’Connor et al. Features encircled with larger white circles are discussed in the text and Fig. 2. Marine gravity anomaly map is from Sandwell and Smith.

    • Here is a great tweet that discusses the different parts of a seismogram and how the internal structures of the Earth help control seismic waves as they propagate in the Earth.

      References:

    • Antonijevic, S.K., et a;l., 2015. The role of ridges in the formation and longevity of flat slabs in Nature, v. 524, p. 212-215, doi:10.1038/nature14648
    • Bishop, B.T., Beck, S.L., Zandt, G., Wagner, L., Long, M., Knezevic Antonijevic, S., Kumar, A., and Tavera, H., 2017, Causes and consequences of flat-slab subduction in southern Peru: Geosphere, v. 13, no. 5, p. 1392–1407, doi:10.1130/GES01440.1.
    • Chlieh, M. Mothes, P.A>, Nocquet, J-M., Jarrin, P., Charvis, P., Cisneros, D., Font, Y., Color, J-Y., Villegas-Lanza, J-C., Rolandone, F., Vallée, M., Regnier, M., Sogovia, M., Martin, X., and Yepes, H., 2014. Distribution of discrete seismic asperities and aseismic slip along the Ecuadorian megathrust in Earth and Planetary Science Letters, v. 400, p. 292–301
    • Frisch, W., Meschede, M., Blakey, R., 2011. Plate Tectonics, Springer-Verlag, London, 213 pp.
    • Hayes, G., 2018, Slab2 – A Comprehensive Subduction Zone Geometry Model: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://doi.org/10.5066/F7PV6JNV.
    • Kumar, A., et al., 2016. Seismicity and state of stress in the central and southern Peruvian flat slab in EPSL, v. 441, p. 71-80. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.epsl.2016.02.023
    • Meyer, B., Saltus, R., Chulliat, a., 2017. EMAG2: Earth Magnetic Anomaly Grid (2-arc-minute resolution) Version 3. National Centers for Environmental Information, NOAA. Model. doi:10.7289/V5H70CVX
    • Meyer, B., Saltus, R., Chulliat, a., 2017. EMAG2: Earth Magnetic Anomaly Grid (2-arc-minute resolution) Version 3. National Centers for Environmental Information, NOAA. Model. doi:10.7289/V5H70CVX
    • Müller, R.D., Sdrolias, M., Gaina, C. and Roest, W.R., 2008, Age spreading rates and spreading asymmetry of the world’s ocean crust in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 9, Q04006, doi:10.1029/2007GC001743
    • Rhea, S., Hayes, G., Villaseñor, A., Furlong, K.P., Tarr, A.C., and Benz, H.M., 2010. Seismicity of the earth 1900–2007, Nazca Plate and South America: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2010–1083-E, 1 sheet, scale 1:12,000,000.
    • Villegas-Lanza, J. C., M. Chlieh, O. Cavalié, H. Tavera, P. Baby, J. Chire-Chira, and J.-M. Nocquet (2016), Active tectonics of Peru: Heterogeneous interseismic coupling along the Nazca megathrust, rigid motion of the Peruvian Sliver, and Subandean shortening accommodation, J. Geophys. Res. Solid Earth, 121, 7371–7394, https://doi.org/10.1002/2016JB013080.
    • Wagner, L.S., and Okal, E.A., 2019. The Pucallpa Nest and its constraints on the geometry of the Peruvian Flat Slab in Tectonophysics, v. 762, p. 97-108, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tecto.2019.04.021
    • Yepes,H., L. Audin, A. Alvarado, C. Beauval, J. Aguilar, Y. Font, and F. Cotton (2016), A new view for the geodynamics of Ecuador: Implication in seismogenic source definition and seismic hazard assessment, Tectonics, 35, 1249–1279, https://doi.org/10.1002/2015TC003941.

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