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Variations in rupture process with recurrence interval in a repeated small earthquake

Nature

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, , ,
DOI: 10.1038/368624a0

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Abstract

In theory and in laboratory experiments, friction on sliding surfaces such as rock, glass and metal increases with time since the previous episode of slip. This time dependence is a central pillar of the friction laws widely used to model earthquake phenomena. On natural faults, other properties, such as rupture velocity, porosity and fluid pressure, may also vary with the recurrence interval. Eighteen repetitions of the same small earthquake, separated by intervals ranging from a few days to several years, allow us to test these laboratory predictions in situ. The events with the longest time since the previous earthquake tend to have about 15% larger seismic moment than those with the shortest intervals, although this trend is weak. In addition, the rupture durations of the events with the longest recurrence intervals are more than a factor of two shorter than for the events with the shortest intervals. Both decreased duration and increased friction are consistent with progressive fault healing during the time of stationary contact.In theory and in laboratory experiments, friction on sliding surfaces such as rock, glass and metal increases with time since the previous episode of slip. This time dependence is a central pillar of the friction laws widely used to model earthquake phenomena. On natural faults, other properties, such as rupture velocity, porosity and fluid pressure, may also vary with the recurrence interval. Eighteen repetitions of the same small earthquake, separated by intervals ranging from a few days to several years, allow us to test these laboratory predictions in situ. The events with the longest time since the previous earthquake tend to have about 15% larger seismic moment than those with the shortest intervals, although this trend is weak. In addition, the rupture durations of the events with the longest recurrence intervals are more than a factor of two shorter than for the events with the shortest intervals. Both decreased duration and increased friction are consistent with progressive fault healing during the time of stationary contact.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Variations in rupture process with recurrence interval in a repeated small earthquake
Series title:
Nature
DOI:
10.1038/368624a0
Volume
368
Issue:
6472
Year Published:
1994
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
First page:
624
Last page:
626
Number of Pages:
3