Istanbul's earthquake hot spots: Geodetic constraints on strain accumulation along faults in the Marmara seismic gap

S. Ergintav*, R. E. Reilinger, R. Çakmak, M. Floyd, Z. Cakir, U. Doʇan, R. W. King, S. McClusky, H. Özener

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    138 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    During the past century, a series of predominantly westward migrating M>7 earthquakes broke an ~1000 km section of the North Anatolian Fault (NAF). The only major remaining "seismic gap" along the fault is under the Sea of Marmara (Main Marmara Fault (MMF)). We use 20 years of GPS observations to estimate strain accumulation on fault segments in the Marmara Sea seismic gap. We report the first direct observations of strain accumulation on the Princes' Islands segment of the MMF, constraining the slip deficit rate to 10-15 mm/yr. In contrast, the central segment of the MMF that was thought to be the most likely location for the anticipated gap-filling earthquakes shows no evidence of strain accumulation, suggesting that fault motion is accommodated by fault creep. We conclude that the Princes' Islands segment is most likely to generate the next M>7 earthquake along the Sea of Marmara segment of the NAF.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)5783-5788
    Number of pages6
    JournalGeophysical Research Letters
    Volume41
    Issue number16
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 28 Aug 2014

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