skip to main content

Attention:

The NSF Public Access Repository (NSF-PAR) system and access will be unavailable from 5:00 PM ET until 11:00 PM ET on Friday, June 21 due to maintenance. We apologize for the inconvenience.


Title: The 12 November 2017 M w 7.3 Ezgeleh‐Sarpolzahab (Iran) Earthquake and Active Tectonics of the Lurestan Arc
Abstract

The 12 November 2017Mw 7.3 Ezgeleh‐Sarpolzahab earthquake is the largest instrumentally recorded earthquake in the Zagros Simply Folded Belt by a factor of ∼10 in seismic moment. Exploiting local, regional, and teleseismic data and synthetic aperture radar interferometry imagery, we characterize the rupture, its aftershock sequence, background seismicity, and regional tectonics. The mainshock ruptured slowly (∼2 km/s), unilaterally southward, for ∼40 km along an oblique (dextral‐thrust) fault that dips ∼14°E beneath the northwestern Lurestan arc. Slip is confined to basement depths of ∼12–18 km, resolvably beneath the sedimentary cover which is ∼8 km thick in this area. The gentle dip angle and basement location allow for a broad slip area, explaining the large magnitude relative to earthquakes in the main Fars arc of the Zagros, where shallower, steeper faults are limited in rupture extent by weak sedimentary layers. Early aftershocks concentrate around the southern and western edges of the mainshock slip area and therefore cluster in the direction of rupture propagation, implying a contribution from dynamic triggering. A cluster of events ∼100 km to the south near Mandali (Iraq) reactivated the ∼50° dipping Zagros Foredeep Fault. The basement fault responsible for the Ezgeleh‐Sarpolzahab earthquake probably accounts for the ∼1 km elevation contrast between the Lurestan arc and the Kirkuk embayment but is distinct from sections of the Mountain Front Fault that define frontal escarpments elsewhere in the Zagros. It may be related to a seismic interface underlying the central and southern Lurestan arc, and a key concern is whether or not the more extensive regional structure is also seismogenic.

 
more » « less
NSF-PAR ID:
10375706
Author(s) / Creator(s):
 ;  ;  ;  ;  ;  ;  ;  ;  ;  ;  ;  ;  ;  ;  
Publisher / Repository:
DOI PREFIX: 10.1029
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth
Volume:
124
Issue:
2
ISSN:
2169-9313
Page Range / eLocation ID:
p. 2124-2152
Format(s):
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Abstract

    The 2021MW6.0 Yangbi, Yunnan strike‐slip earthquake occurred on an unmapped crustal fault near the Weixi‐Qiaoho‐Weishan Fault along the southeast margin of the Tibetan Plateau. Using near‐source broadband seismic data from ChinArray, we investigate the spatial and temporal rupture evolution of the mainshock using apparent moment‐rate functions (AMRFs) determined by the empirical Green's function (EGF) method. Assuming a 1D line source on the fault plane, the rupture propagated unilaterally southeastward (∼144°) over a rupture length of ∼8.0 km with an estimated rupture speed of 2.1 km/s to 2.4 km/s. A 2D coseismic slip distribution for an assumed maximum rupture propagation speed of 2.2 km/s indicates that the rupture propagated to the southeast ∼8.0 km along strike and ∼5.0 km downdip with a peak slip of ∼2.1 m before stopping near the largest foreshock, where three bifurcating subfaults intersect. Using the AMRFs, the radiated energy of the mainshock is estimated as ∼. The relatively low moment scaled radiated energyof 1.5 × 10−5and intense foreshock and aftershock activity might indicate reactivation of an immature fault. The earthquake sequence is mainly distributed along a northwest‐southeast trend, and aftershocks and foreshocks are distributed near the periphery of the mainshock large‐slip area, suggesting that the stress in the mainshock slip zone is significantly reduced to below the level for more than a few overlapping aftershock to occur.

     
    more » « less
  2. Abstract

    The eastern portion of the Shumagin gap along the Alaska Peninsula ruptured in anMW7.8 thrust earthquake on 22 July 2020. The megathrust fault space‐time slip history is determined by joint inversion of regional and teleseismic waveform data along with co‐seismic static Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) displacements. The rupture expanded westward and along‐dip from the hypocenter, located adjacent to the 1938MW8.2 Alaska earthquake, with slip and aftershocks extending into the gap about 180 to 205 km, respectively, at depths from 15 to 40 km. The deeper half of ~75% of the Shumagin gap experienced faulting. However, the patchy slip is significantly less than possible accumulated slip since the region's last major rupture in 1917, compatible with geodetic seismic‐coupling estimates of 10‐40% beneath the Shumagin Islands. The rupture terminated in the western region of very low seismic coupling. There was a regional decade‐scale decrease in b‐value prior to the 2020 event.

     
    more » « less
  3. Abstract

    We conduct a detailed study of the foreshock sequence preceding the 2010Mw6.7 Yushu, Qinghai earthquake in the Tibetan plateau by examining continuous waveforms recorded at a seismic station near the mainshock rupture zone. By using a deep learning phase picker—EQTransformer and a matched‐filter technique, we identify 120 foreshocks with magnitude ranging from −0.7 to 1.6, starting with aMw4.6 foreshock approximately 2 hr before theMw6.7 Yushu mainshock. Our analyses show that the foreshock sequence follows a typical Omori's law decay with ap‐value of 0.73 and the Gutenberg‐Richer frequency‐magnitudeb‐value of 0.66. We do not find any evidence of accelerating events leading up to the Yushu mainshock. Hence, they could be considered as aftershocks of theMw4.6 earthquake. We further invert for the focal mechanisms and rupture directions for both the largest foreshock and the mainshock. TheMw4.6 foreshock likely occurred on a NE‐SW trending fault conjugating to the NW‐SE trending fault of the mainshock. Coulomb stress analysis suggests theMw4.6 foreshock induces negative stress on the mainshock source area. These observations do not support either the pre‐slip or the cascade triggering model for foreshock generation. The occurrence of the foreshock, mainshock and large aftershocks appear to be modulated by the Earth's tidal forces, likely reflecting the role of high pore‐fluid pressures. Our observations, together with other recent studies, suggest that extensional step‐overs and conjugate faults along major strike‐slip faults play an important role in generating short‐term foreshock sequences.

     
    more » « less
  4. Abstract

    A great earthquake struck the Semidi segment of the plate boundary along the Alaska Peninsula on 29 July 2021, re‐rupturing part of the 1938 rupture zone. The 2021MW8.2 Chignik earthquake occurred just northeast of the 22 July 2020MW7.8 Simeonof earthquake, with little slip overlap. Analysis of teleseismicPandSHwaves, regional Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) displacements, and near‐field and far‐field tsunami observations provides a good resolution of the 2021 rupture process. During ∼60‐s long faulting, the slip was nonuniformly distributed along the megathrust over depths from 32 to 40 km, with up to ∼12.9‐m slip in an ∼170‐km‐long patch. The 40–45 km down‐dip limit of slip is well constrained by GNSS observations along the Alaska Peninsula. Tsunami observations preclude significant slip from extending to depths <25 km, confining all coseismic slip to beneath the shallow continental shelf. Most aftershocks locate seaward of the large‐slip zones, with a concentration of activity up‐dip of the deeper southwestern slip zone. Some localized aftershock patches locate beneath the continental slope. The surface‐wave magnitudeMSof 8.1 for the 2021 earthquake is smaller thanMS = 8.3–8.4 for the 1938 event. Seismic and tsunami data indicate that slip in 1938 was concentrated in the eastern region of its aftershock zone, extending beyond the Semidi Islands, where the 2021 event did not rupture.

     
    more » « less
  5. Abstract

    The Shumagin seismic gap along the Alaska Peninsula experienced a major,MW7.8, interplate thrust earthquake on 22 July 2020. Several available finite‐fault inversions indicate patchy slip of up to 4 m at 8–48 km depth. There are differences among the models in peak slip and absolute placement of slip on the plate boundary, resulting from differences in data distributions, model parameterizations, and inversion algorithms. Two representative slip models obtained from inversions of large seismic and geodetic data sets produce very different tsunami predictions at tide gauges and deep‐water pressure sensors (DART stations), despite having only secondary differences in slip distribution. This is found to be the result of the acute sensitivity of the tsunami excitation for rupture below the continental shelf in proximity to an abrupt shelf break. Iteratively perturbing seismic and geodetic inversions by constraining fault model extent along dip and strike, we obtain an optimal rupture model compatible with teleseismicPandSHwaves, regional three‐component broadband and strong‐motion seismic recordings, hr‐GNSS time series and static offsets, as well as tsunami recordings at DART stations and regional and remote tide gauges. Slip is tightly bounded between 25 and 40 km depth, the up‐dip limit of slip in the earthquake is resolved to be well‐inland of the shelf break, and the rupture extent along strike is well‐constrained. The coseismic slip increased Coulomb stress on the shallow plate boundary extending to the trench, but the frictional behavior of the megathrust below the continental slope remains uncertain.

     
    more » « less