Characteristics of a tsunamigenic megasplay fault in the Nankai Trough

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    Abstract

    Slip on the shallow part of a megasplay fault that is an out-of-sequence thrust and branch of the main subduction plate boundary can cause devastating tsunamis after earthquakes. We analyzed the three-dimensional geometry, including dip amount and azimuths, roughness distributions, and thickness variations, of the shallow part of a megasplay fault in the Nankai Trough using a three-dimensional seismic data set. The fault is divided into three zones based on its geometry: thick, smooth, and simply convex in the east; complexly curved in the middle; and thin and kinked in the west. Results of scientific drilling indicate that the eastern region of the fault is most active, and local heterogeneities in fault geometry, including roughness and thickness, may control the slip on this part of the fault. The present findings can be used to evaluate the risk of future tsunamis arising from movement on shallow thrust faults at subduction margins. Key Points Slip on the shallow part of a fault is responsible for devastating tsunamis A smooth geometry of a shallow fault may result in higher tsunami potential The detailed geometry of shallow fault can be used to assess tsunami hazard

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)4594-4598
    Number of pages5
    JournalGeophysical Research Letters
    Volume40
    Issue number17
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Sep 16 2013

    All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

    • Geophysics
    • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

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