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Volcano-earthquake interaction at Mauna Loa volcano, Hawaii Thomas R. Walter1,2
 

Summary: Volcano-earthquake interaction at Mauna Loa volcano, Hawaii
Thomas R. Walter1,2
and Falk Amelung1
Received 2 June 2005; revised 25 November 2005; accepted 10 January 2006; published 27 May 2006.
[1] The activity at Mauna Loa volcano, Hawaii, is characterized by eruptive fissures that
propagate into the Southwest Rift Zone (SWRZ) or into the Northeast Rift Zone (NERZ)
and by large earthquakes at the basal decollement fault. In this paper we examine the
historic eruption and earthquake catalogues, and we test the hypothesis that the events are
interconnected in time and space. Earthquakes in the Kaoiki area occur in sequence
with eruptions from the NERZ, and earthquakes in the Kona and Hilea areas occur in
sequence with eruptions from the SWRZ. Using three-dimensional numerical models, we
demonstrate that elastic stress transfer can explain the observed volcano-earthquake
interaction. We examine stress changes due to typical intrusions and earthquakes. We find
that intrusions change the Coulomb failure stress along the decollement fault so that
NERZ intrusions encourage Kaoiki earthquakes and SWRZ intrusions encourage Kona
and Hilea earthquakes. On the other hand, earthquakes decompress the magma chamber
and unclamp part of the Mauna Loa rift zone, i.e., Kaoiki earthquakes encourage NERZ
intrusions, whereas Kona and Hilea earthquakes encourage SWRZ intrusions. We discuss
how changes of the static stress field affect the occurrence of earthquakes as well as the
occurrence, location, and volume of dikes and of associated eruptions and also the lava

  

Source: Amelung, Falk - Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Miami
Miami, University of - Geodesy Laboratory

 

Collections: Geosciences