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  • 1
    Electronic Resource
    Electronic Resource
    [s.l.] : Nature Publishing Group
    Nature 380 (1996), S. 518-520 
    ISSN: 1476-4687
    Source: Nature Archives 1869 - 2009
    Topics: Biology , Chemistry and Pharmacology , Medicine , Natural Sciences in General , Physics
    Notes: [Auszug] The geology of the equatorial Atlantic is characterized by an east-west megashear belt where large transform faults offset the Mid-Atlantic Ridge (MAR). The largest is the Romanche fracture zone (FZ) that offsets the MAR by about 900 km for an estimated age offset of about 50 Myr (refs 4-6). It can ...
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  • 2
    Publication Date: 2014-03-11
    Description: We carried out a combined geophysical and gas-geochemical survey on an active fault strand along the North Anatolian Fault (NAF) system in the Gulf of İzmit (eastern Sea of Marmara), providing for the first time in this area data on the distribution of methane (CH4) and other gases dissolved in the bottom seawater, as well as the CH4isotopic composition. Based on high-resolution morphobathymetric data and chirp-sonar seismic reflection profiles we selected three areas with different tectonic features associated to the NAF system, where we performed visual and instrumental seafloor inspections, including in situ measurements of dissolved CH4, and sampling of the bottom water. Starting from background values of 2–10 nM, methane concentration in the bottom seawater increases abruptly up to 20 nM over the main NAF trace. CH4 concentration peaks up to ∼120 nM were detected above mounds related probably to gas and fluids expulsion. Methane is microbial (δ13CCH4: −67.3 and −76‰ versus VPDB), and was found mainly associated with pre-Holocene deposits topped by a 10–20 m thick draping of marine mud. The correlation between tectonic structures and gas-seepages at the seafloor suggests that the NAF in the Gulf of İzmit could represent a key site for long-term combined monitoring of fluid exhalations and seismicity to assess their potential as earthquake precursors.
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  • 3
    Publication Date: 2015-07-24
    Description: Episodic gas seepage occurs at the seafloor in the Gulf of Izmit (Sea of Marmara, NW Turkey) along the submerged segment of the North Anatolian Fault (NAF), which ruptured during the 1999 Mw7.4 Izmit earthquake, and caused tectonic loading of the fault segment in front of the Istanbul metropolitan area. In order to study gas seepage and seismic energy release along the NAF, a multiparametric benthic observatory (SN-4) was deployed in the gulf at the western end of the 1999 Izmit earthquake rupture, and operated for about 1 yr at 166 m water depth. The SN-4 payload included a three-component broad-band seismometer, as well as gas and oceanographic sensors. We analysed data collected continuously for 161 d in the first part of the experiment, from 2009 October to 2010 March. The main objective of our work was to verify whether tectonic deformation along the NAF could trigger methane seepage. For this reason, we considered only local seismicity, that is, within 100 km from the station. No significant (ML ≥ 3.6) local earthquakes occurred during this period; on the other hand, the seismometer recorded high-frequency SDEs (short duration events), which are not related to seismicity but to abrupt increases of dissolved methane concentration in the sea water that we called MPEs (methane peak events). Acquisition of current velocity, dissolved oxygen, turbidity, temperature and salinity, allowed us to analyse the local oceanographic setting during each event, and correlate SDEs to episodic gas discharges from the seabed. We noted that MPEs are the result of such gas releases, but are detected only under favourable oceanographic conditions. This stresses the importance of collecting long-term multiparametric time-series to address complex phenomena such as gas and seismic energy release at the seafloor. Results from the SN-4 experiment in the Sea of Marmara suggest that neither low-magnitude local seismicity, nor regional events affect intensity and frequency of gas flows from the seafloor.
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  • 4
    Publication Date: 2014-03-11
    Description: The Calabrian Arc (CA) subduction system is part of the Africa-Eurasia plate boundary, is one of the most seismically active regions in the Mediterranean Sea, and has been struck repeatedly by destructive historical earthquakes. In this study we investigate the effects of historical earthquakes on abyssal marine sedimentation through the analysis of the turbidite record. We collected gravity cores in tectonically controlled basins where the eastern Mediterranean pelagic sequence is interbedded with re-sedimented units. Textural, micropaleontological, geochemical and mineralogical signatures reveal three turbidite events in the last Millennium. We dated the turbidite sequences from two different cores using different radiometric methods, while the average time interval between successive turbidite beds was estimated from pelagic sediment thickness and sedimentation rates; chronologies were refined through age modelling that provided age ranges (2σ) of each turbidite bed. The results suggest that turbidite emplacement was triggered by three historical earthquakes recorded in the area (i.e. the 1908, 1693 and 1169 events); their magnitude, epicentral location and associated tsunamis support causative faults located in the Ionian Sea. The source for all the turbidites, as inferred from their mineralogy, is the metamorphic basement outcropping in southern Calabria and/or North-Eastern Sicily. Turbidite composition and cable breaks for the 1908 event have been used to infer likely travelling paths and seismogenic faults in the subduction system. Our findings suggest that Ionian Sea turbidites represent more than 80% of sedimentation and may be seabed archives of paleo-earthquakes capable of reconstructing seismicity back in time, during several earthquake cycles. Key Points We examine interplay between historical seismicity, mass failures and turbidites We reconstruct chronology of earthquake triggered turbidites in the Ionian Sea Turbidite composition has been used to reconstruct sediment source
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  • 5
    Publication Date: 2019-02-01
    Description: Highlights • Plate boundary re-organization in the central Mediterranean Sea • Segmentation of the subduction complex along lithospheric transverse faults • STEP faults in the Ionian Sea • Pleistocene active faulting and Mt. Etna formation Abstract The Calabrian Arc is a narrow subduction-rollback system resulting from Africa/Eurasia plate convergence. While crustal shortening is taken up in the accretionary wedge, transtensive deformation accounts for margin segmentation along transverse lithospheric faults. One of these structures is the NNW-SSE transtensive fault system connecting the Alfeo seamount and the Etna volcano (Alfeo-Etna Fault, AEF). A second, NW-SE crustal discontinuity, the Ionian Fault (IF), separates two lobes of the CA subduction complex (Western and Eastern Lobes) and impinges on the Sicilian coasts south of the Messina Straits. Analysis of multichannel seismic reflection profiles shows that: 1) the IF and the AEF are transfer crustal tectonic features bounding a complex deformation zone, which produces the downthrown of the Western lobe along a set of transtensive fault strands; 2) during Pleistocene times, transtensive faulting reactivated structural boundaries inherited from the Mesozoic Tethyan domain which acted as thrust faults during the Messinian and Pliocene; 3) the IF and the AEF, and locally the Malta escarpment, accommodate a recent tectonic event coeval and possibly linked to the Mt. Etna formation. Regional geodynamic models show that, whereas AEF and IF are neighboring fault systems, their individual roles are different. Faulting primarily resulting from the ESE retreat of the Ionian slab is expressed in the northwestern part of the IF. The AEF, on the other hand, is part of the overall dextral shear deformation, resulting from differences in Africa-Eurasia motion between the western and eastern sectors of the Tyrrhenian margin of northern Sicily, and accommodating diverging motions in the adjacent compartments, which results in rifting processes within the Western Lobe of the Calabrian Arc accretionary wedge. As such, it is primarily associated with Africa-Eurasia relative motion.
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  • 6
    Publication Date: 2017-05-12
    Description: We analyzed the structure and evolution of the external Calabrian Arc (CA) subduction complex through an integrated geophysical approach involving multichannel and single‐channel seismic data at different scales. Pre‐stack depth migrated crustal‐scale seismic profiles have been used to reconstruct the overall geometry of the subduction complex, i.e., depth of the basal detachment, geometry and structural style of different tectonic domains, and location and geometry of major faults. High‐resolution multichannel seismic (MCS) and sub‐bottom CHIRP profiles acquired in key areas during a recent cruise, as well as multibeam data, integrate deep data and constrain the fine structure of the accretionary wedge as well as the activity of individual fault strands. We identified four main morpho‐structural domains in the subduction complex: 1) the post‐Messinian accretionary wedge; 2) a slope terrace; 3) the pre‐Messinian accretionary wedge and 4) the inner plateau. Variation of structural style and seafloor morphology in these domains are related to different tectonic processes, such as frontal accretion, out‐of-sequence thrusting, underplating and complex faulting. The CA subduction complex is segmented longitudinally into two different lobes characterized by different structural style, deformation rates and basal detachment depths. They are delimited by a NW/SE deformation zone that accommodates differential movements of the Calabrian and the Peloritan portions of CA and represent a recent phase of plate re‐organization in the central Mediterranean. Although shallow thrust‐type seismicity along the CA is lacking, we identified active deformation of the shallowest sedimentary units at the wedge front and in the inner portions of the subduction complex. This implies that subduction could be active but aseismic or with a locked fault plane. On the other hand, if underthrusting of the African plate has stopped recently, active shortening may be accommodated through more distributed deformation. Our findings have consequences on seismic hazard, since we identified tectonic structures likely to have caused large earthquakes in the past and to be the source regions for future events.
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  • 7
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    Istituto Nazionale di Oceanografia e di Geofisica Sperimentale - OGS
    In:  Bolletino di Geofisica Teorica ed Applicata, 53 (4). pp. 371-384.
    Publication Date: 2014-03-11
    Description: After the 1999 I . zmit earthquake (Mw7.4), along the North-Anatolian Fault (NAF), an increase in gas emissions from the seafloor of the Sea of Marmara was observed. Using a multidisciplinary approach, that includes a combined analysis of high-resolution marine geophysical and gas-geochemical data, we determined the character of gas/fluid emissions and their spatial relationship with tectonic structures in the Darıca Basin (Gulf of Izmit), close to the western termination of the 1999 earthquake surface rupture. Data collected during several oceanographic expeditions allowed us to investigate the fine structure of active fault branches, as well as the geochemical signature of the cold seeps. We observed that gas emissions at the seafloor of the Darıca Basin are mostly constituted by biogenic CH4, and are aligned along strike-slip and transtensional fault segments. Although maximum CH4 concentrations were measured in correspondence of transtensional strands, we suggest that the biogenic CH4 emissions found along strike-slip segments, showing a relatively low gas background noise and a potential to increase during seismic events, are more suitable to study relationships between gas expulsion and the earthquake cycle.
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  • 8
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    Copernicus Publications
    In:  Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences, 12 (7). pp. 2311-2328.
    Publication Date: 2017-01-18
    Description: The Calabrian Arc (CA) subduction complex is located at the toe of the Eurasian Plate in the Ionian Sea, where sediments resting on the lower plate have been scraped off and piled up in the accretionary wedge due to the African/Eurasian plate convergence and back arc extension. The CA has been struck repeatedly by destructive historical earthquakes, but knowledge of active faults and source parameters is relatively poor, particularly for seismogenic structures extending offshore. We analysed the fine structure of major tectonic features likely to have been sources of past earthquakes: (i) the NNW–SSE trending Malta STEP (Slab Transfer Edge Propagator) fault system, representing a lateral tear of the subduction system; (ii) the out-of-sequence thrusts (splay faults) at the rear of the salt-bearing Messinian accretionary wedge; and (iii) the Messina Straits fault system, part of the wide deformation zone separating the western and eastern lobes of the accretionary wedge. Our findings have implications for seismic hazard in southern Italy, as we compile an inventory of first order active faults that may have produced past seismic events such as the 1908, 1693 and 1169 earthquakes. These faults are likely to be source regions for future large magnitude events as they are long, deep and bound sectors of the margin characterized by different deformation and coupling rates on the plate interface.
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  • 9
    Publication Date: 2018-04-27
    Description: Highlights • We examine interplay between historical seismicity, mass failures and turbidites during sapropel S1 deposition; • We reconstruct chronology of earthquake triggered turbidites in the Ionian Sea during sapropel depostion; • We reconstruct the age of sapropel S1 in our core (6.0-10.2 kyr cal. BP) through Oxcal age modeling; • Turbidite emplacement time was deduced through age modeling. • We compiled a catalogue of mass flow events during several earthquake cycles. Abstract The recurrence of mass-flow units within sapropel S1, an organic carbon-rich lower Holocene marker bed in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea, was used to study the interplay between earthquakes and sedimentation along the seismically active Calabrian Arc (Ionian Sea). Nine turbidite beds interrupt anoxic conditions during the deposition of sapropel S1. Each of these turbidites is associated with sharp grain size and geochemical elemental anomalies (high Al and Si, low Ca and coarse-grained basal part marked by Zr peaks), and with displaced foraminiferal species from different bathymetric ranges. We used these proxies to identify turbidite beds also above and below the sapropel, where turbidite signature is less clear due to the absence of major color changes. Turbidite structure and composition, as well as comparison with historical seismoturbidites, suggest a seismic triggering for such mass flow events. The peculiar color, well-known composition, geochemistry and age of sapropel S1, make this unit a key bed within which turbidites may be considered a sort of sedimentary “bar code” recording high-energy events within the background pelagic sedimentation; deciphering this code will reconstruct paleo-seismicity in this well-defined stratigraphic interval. The pelagic units bracketing turbidite beds were radiometrically dated, and the age of the sapropel S1, deduced through age modeling, is between 6.0 and 10.2 kyr cal BP. The emplacement age of each turbidite was estimated considering the average time-interval between successive turbidite beds (from pelagic sediment thickness and sedimentation rate). Subsequently these ages were further refined through age modeling. In this way, we compiled a catalogue of mass flow events during sapropel S1 deposition, a time span long enough to include several earthquake cycles and allow reliable seismic and tsunami hazard assessment in this area.
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  • 10
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    In:  [Invited talk] In: IMS-IAS 33. International Meeting of Sedimentology, 10.-12.10.2017, Toulouse, France .
    Publication Date: 2018-05-09
    Type: Conference or Workshop Item , NonPeerReviewed
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