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Correlating earthquake static stress drop values with fault complexity in the 2016 Amatrice-Norcia earthquake sequence, Central Italy
  • Kilian Kemna,
  • Alessandro Verdecchia,
  • Rebecca Harrington
Kilian Kemna
Ruhr University Bochum, Ruhr University Bochum

Corresponding Author:kilian.kemna@rub.de

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Alessandro Verdecchia
McGill University, McGill University
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Rebecca Harrington
Ruhr University Bochum, Ruhr University Bochum
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The 2016 Amatrice-Norcia seismic sequence in central Italy activated a system of normal faults in the central Apennines and ruptured the surface along the Monte Vettore normal fault. Due to the complex rupture behavior, including antithetic faults and the proposed reactivation of an old thrust front, the Amatrice-Norcia seismic sequence offers a unique opportunity to study the relationship between fault complexity, surface ruptures, and earthquake source properties. Here, we focus on the first two months of the Amatrice-Norcia seismic sequence, including the 30 October 2016 Mw 6.5 mainshock near Norcia and more than 25000 aftershocks. Using continuous waveform data from 94 seismic stations with epicentral distances of up to ~100 km, we estimate source parameters of all cataloged earthquakes that exceed specific quality control criteria in a time period ranging from 24 October – 29 November 2016. Displacement spectral corner frequency and seismic moment values are fit using individual earthquake spectra, and corner frequency estimates are refined using spectral ratios. Constrained spectral parameters then provide input for static stress drop estimates based on a circular crack model. Preliminary results suggest the majority of earthquakes have static stress drop values between 1 and 10 MPa and self-similar scaling. Due to the high quality and quantity of available data, including precise earthquake locations, manually reviewed phase arrivals, and detailed mapping of surface ruptures, the Amatrice-Norcia earthquake sequence represents an opportunity to link earthquake source parameters to geological structures and surface rupture complexity. Preliminary results show correlations between high stress drop values and areas with increasing fault complexity, such as fault intersections at depth (inferred from precise earthquake hypocenters) or the mapped tip of the Monte Vettore normal fault, relative to other fault patches with fewer intersections or mapped surface trace terminations. Future work will examine whether the correlation of stress drop and fault complexity holds using refined stress drop estimates obtained using spectral ratio approaches.