Microearthquake--array studies of the seismicity in Southeast Missouri

Earthquake Information Bulletin (USGS)


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In 1811-12, a series of disastrous earthquakes struck the southeast Missouri region (see "The Mississippi Valley earthquakes of 1811 and 1812" by Otto W. Nuttli in the Earthquake Information Bulletin, March-April 1974). Earthquake activity continues in the area at present, showing that the seismic hazard is still there.

We know little about the relationship between seismicity and the tectonic character of this region. The hypocenters of earthquakes are scattered. The near-surface features themselves are obscured by the several hundred feet alluvium and other quaternary sediments of the Mississippi embayment. No active faults have been mapped in the area.

Supported by the U.S Geological Survey, my colleagues Mark Kramer, Gerard Fischer, Stephen Schaefer, Sean Morrissey, and I have recently established a microearthquake network in the New Madrid seismic zone. The network has been in operation for only 21 months, yet we have already been able to show, from the hypocenters located so far, that earthquakes in this region occur along linear zones, which we believe corespond to seismically active faults. 

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Microearthquake--array studies of the seismicity in Southeast Missouri
Series title Earthquake Information Bulletin (USGS)
Volume 9
Issue 1
Year Published 1977
Language English
Publisher U.S Geological Survey
Description 6 p.
First page 8
Last page 13
Country United States
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N