Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Micro-earthquakes preceding a 4.2 earthquake near Istanbul as early warning signs?

01.11.2018

One of the high-risk geological structures lies near Istanbul, a megacity of 15 million people. The North Anatolian fault, separating the Eurasian and Anatolian tectonic plates, is a 1.200 kilometer-long fault zone running between eastern Turkey and the northern Aegean Sea. Since the beginning of the 20th century its seismic activity has caused more than 20.000 deaths. A large (Mw > 7) earthquake is overdue in the Marmara section of the fault, just south of Istanbul.

In a new study, led by Peter Malin and Marco Bohnhoff of the GFZ German Research Center for Geosciences, the authors report on the observation of foreshocks that, if analyzed accordingly and in real-time, may possibly increase the early-warning time before a large earthquake from just a few seconds up to several hours.


Istanbul and the Prince Islands in the background, on which the borehole observatory GONAF is located.

(photo: M.Bohnhoff, GFZ)

However, the authors caution: „The results are so far based on only one - yet encouraging - field example for an ,earthquake preparation sequence' typically known from repeated rock-deformation laboratory experiments under controlled conditions", says Marco Bohnhoff.

The study from Peter Malin and Marco Bohnhoff, together with colleagues from the AFAD Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency in Turkey, uses waveform data from the recently implemented GONAF borehole seismic network. GONAF operates at low-magnitude detection. It allowed identifying a series of micro-earthquakes prior to an earthquake of magnitude 4.2 which occurred in June 2016 south of Istanbul and which was the largest event in the region in several years.

In the latest issue of Scientific Reports, seismic data from the GONAF network, set up by GFZ in collaboration with AFAD along the Marmara Sea near Istanbul, is processed and analyzed with novel processing techniques. The high resolution borehole seismic array allowed for the detection of tens of seismic events prior to the mainshock. These small events would have been below the detection threshold of most seismic networks worldwide.

By means of the new processing technique, clustering and similarity of the seismic signals was shown to substantially increase in the hours prior to the Mw 4.2 earthquake. If this so-called emergent failure process would be a persistent feature of seismicity there, implementing real-time processing of the novel technique could extend the warning time for future earthquakes in the Istanbul region and lead to a major improvement in the early-warning system for the densely populated area of the Turkish megacity.

"Our study shows a substantial increase in self-similarity of the micro-quakes during the hours before the mainshock," says Professor Bohnhoff of the GFZ; "while the current early-warning system in place in Istanbul relies on the arrival times of seismic waves emitted from the hypocentre to the city and is therefore restricted to a couple of seconds at maximum".

While similar precursory activity has been detected for recent large earthquakes in Japan (2011 Mw9 Tohoku-Oki) and Chile (2014 Mw8.1 Iquique), this is at present by no means a ubiquitous observation and needs further testing before its implementation.

###

Original study: Malin, E.P., Bohnhoff, M., Blümle, F., Dresen, G., Martínez-Garzón, P., Nurlu, M., Ceken, U., Kadirioglu, F.T., Kartal, R.F., Kilic, T., Yanik, K., 2018. Microearthquakes preceding a M4.2 Earthquake Offshore Istanbul. Nature Scientific Reports. DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-34563-9

Figures:

BU_de: Istanbul und im Hintergrund die Prinzeninseln, auf denen sich das Bohrlochobservatorium GONAF befindet (Foto: M. Bohnhoff, GFZ).

BU_en: Istanbul and the Prince Islands in the background, on which the borehole observatory GONAF is located (photo: M. Bohnhoff, GFZ).

Link: https://media.gfz-potsdam.de/gfz/wv/pm/18/10809_Istanbul_M-Bohnhoff-GFZ.jpg

BU_de:

Darstellung der Nordanatolischen Verwerfungszone (CCBY 3.0: Bohnhoff et.al., Scientific Drilling, 5, 1-10, 2017, doi:10.5194/sd-5-1-2017)

BU_en:

Illustration of the North Anatolian fault zone (CCBY 3.0: Bohnhoff et.al., Scientific Drilling, 5, 1-10, 2017, doi:10.5194/sd-5-1-2017).

Link: https://media.gfz-potsdam.de/gfz/wv/pm/18/10810_ScientificDrilling-GONAF_Bohnhoff-et-al.jpg

Media Contact

Josef Zens
Josef.Zens@gfz-potsdam.de
49-331-288-1040

 @GFZ_Potsdam

http://www.gfz-potsdam.de 

Josef Zens | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-34563-9

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht Geomagnetic jerks finally reproduced and explained
23.04.2019 | CNRS

nachricht "Flight recorder" of rocks within the Earth’s crust
16.04.2019 | Universität Bern

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Energy-saving new LED phosphor

The human eye is particularly sensitive to green, but less sensitive to blue and red. Chemists led by Hubert Huppertz at the University of Innsbruck have now developed a new red phosphor whose light is well perceived by the eye. This increases the light yield of white LEDs by around one sixth, which can significantly improve the energy efficiency of lighting systems.

Light emitting diodes or LEDs are only able to produce light of a certain colour. However, white light can be created using different colour mixing processes.

Im Focus: Quantum gas turns supersolid

Researchers led by Francesca Ferlaino from the University of Innsbruck and the Austrian Academy of Sciences report in Physical Review X on the observation of supersolid behavior in dipolar quantum gases of erbium and dysprosium. In the dysprosium gas these properties are unprecedentedly long-lived. This sets the stage for future investigations into the nature of this exotic phase of matter.

Supersolidity is a paradoxical state where the matter is both crystallized and superfluid. Predicted 50 years ago, such a counter-intuitive phase, featuring...

Im Focus: Explosion on Jupiter-sized star 10 times more powerful than ever seen on our sun

A stellar flare 10 times more powerful than anything seen on our sun has burst from an ultracool star almost the same size as Jupiter

  • Coolest and smallest star to produce a superflare found
  • Star is a tenth of the radius of our Sun
  • Researchers led by University of Warwick could only see...

Im Focus: Quantum simulation more stable than expected

A localization phenomenon boosts the accuracy of solving quantum many-body problems with quantum computers which are otherwise challenging for conventional computers. This brings such digital quantum simulation within reach on quantum devices available today.

Quantum computers promise to solve certain computational problems exponentially faster than any classical machine. “A particularly promising application is the...

Im Focus: Largest, fastest array of microscopic 'traffic cops' for optical communications

The technology could revolutionize how information travels through data centers and artificial intelligence networks

Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley have built a new photonic switch that can control the direction of light passing through optical fibers...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Revered mathematicians and computer scientists converge with 200 young researchers in Heidelberg!

17.04.2019 | Event News

First dust conference in the Central Asian part of the earth’s dust belt

15.04.2019 | Event News

Fraunhofer FHR at the IEEE Radar Conference 2019 in Boston, USA

09.04.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Proteins stand up to nerve cell regression

24.04.2019 | Life Sciences

New sensor detects rare metals used in smartphones

24.04.2019 | Life Sciences

Controlling instabilities gives closer look at chemistry from hypersonic vehicles

24.04.2019 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>