The May 29 2008 earthquake aftershock sequence within the South Iceland Seismic Zone: Fault locations and source parameters of aftershocks

Brandsdóttir, B. and Parsons, M. and White, R. S. and Guðmundsson, O. and Drew, J. and Thorbjarnadóttir, B. (2010) The May 29 2008 earthquake aftershock sequence within the South Iceland Seismic Zone: Fault locations and source parameters of aftershocks. Jokull: journal of the glaciological and geological societies of Iceland, 60. pp. 23-46. ISSN 0449-0576

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Abstract

The mid-Atlantic plate boundary breaks up into a series of segments across Iceland. The South Iceland Seismic Zone (SISZ) is a complex transform zone where left-lateral E-W shear between the Reykjanes Peninsula Rift Zone and the Eastern Volcanic Zone is accommodated by bookshelf faulting along N-S lateral strike-slip faults. The SISZ is also a transient feature, migrating sideways in response to the southward propagation of the Eastern Volcanic Zone. Sequences of large earthquakes (M > 6) lasting from days to years and affecting most of the seismic zone have occurred repeatedly in historical time (last 1100 years), separated by intervals of relative quiescence lasting decades to more than a century. On May 29 2008, a Mw 6.1 earthquake struck the western part of the South Iceland Seismic Zone, followed within seconds by a slightly smaller event on a second fault ~5 km further west. Aftershocks, detected by a temporal array of 11 seismometers and three permanent Icelandic Meteorological Office stations were located using an automated Coalescence Microseismic Mapping technique. The epicenters delineate two major and several smaller N-S faults as well as an E-W zone of activity stretching further west into the Reykjanes Peninsula Rift Zone. Fault plane solutions show both right lateral and oblique strike slip mechanisms along the two major N-S faults. The aftershocks deepen from 3-5 km in the north to 8-9 km in the south, suggesting that the main faults dip southwards. The faulting is interpreted to be driven by the local stress due to transform motion between two parallel segments of the divergent plate boundary crossing Iceland.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 2010AREP; IA62;
Subjects: 02 - Geodynamics, Geophysics and Tectonics
Divisions: 02 - Geodynamics, Geophysics and Tectonics
Journal or Publication Title: Jokull: journal of the glaciological and geological societies of Iceland
Volume: 60
Page Range: pp. 23-46
Depositing User: Sarah Humbert
Date Deposited: 10 Dec 2010 18:02
Last Modified: 23 Jul 2013 10:00
URI: http://eprints.esc.cam.ac.uk/id/eprint/1973

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