The 2003 magnitude 6.5 San Simeon and the 2004 magnitude 6.0 Parkfield earthquakes induced small, but significant, static stress changes in the lower crust on the central San Andreas fault, where recently detected tectonic tremor sources provide new constraints on deep fault creep processes. We find that these earthquakes affect tremor rates very differently, consistent with their differing transferred static shear stresses. The San Simeon event appears to have cast a "stress shadow" north of Parkfield, where tremor activity was stifled for 3-6 weeks. In contrast, the 2004 Parkfield earthquake dramatically increased tremor activity rates both north and south of Parkfield, allowing us to track deep postseismic slip. Following this event, rates initially increased by up to two orders of magnitude for the relatively shallow tremor sources closest to the rupture, with activity in some sources persisting above background rates for more than a year. We also observe strong depth dependence in tremor recurrence patterns, with shallower sources generally exhibiting larger, less-frequent bursts, possibly signaling a transition toward steady creep with increasing temperature and depth. Copyright 2011 by the American Geophysical Union.
Additional publication details
Tremor reveals stress shadowing, deep postseismic creep, and depth-dependent slip recurrence on the lower-crustal San Andreas fault near Parkfield