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Title: Dominant Controls of Downdip Afterslip and Viscous Relaxation on the Postseismic Displacements Following the M w7.9 Gorkha, Nepal, Earthquake

Abstract

Here, we analyze three-dimensional GPS coordinate time series from continuously operating stations in Nepal and South Tibet and calculate the initial 1 year postseismic displacements. We first investigate models of poroelastic rebound, afterslip, and viscoelastic relaxation individually and then attempt to resolve the trade-offs between their contributions by evaluating the misfit between observed and simulated displacements. We compare kinematic inversions for distributed afterslip with stress-driven afterslip models. The modeling results show that no single mechanism satisfactorily explains near- and far-field postseismic deformation following the Gorkha earthquake. When considering contributions from all three mechanisms, we favor a combination of viscoelastic relaxation and afterslip alone, as poroelastic rebound always worsens the misfit. The combined model does not improve the data misfit significantly, but the inverted afterslip distribution is more physically plausible. The inverted afterslip favors slip within the brittle-ductile transition zone downdip of the coseismic rupture and fills the small gap between the mainshock and largest aftershock slip zone, releasing only 7% of the coseismic moment. Our preferred model also illuminates the laterally heterogeneous rheological structure between India and the South Tibet. The transient and steady state viscosities of the upper mantle beneath Tibet are constrained to be greater than 10 18 Pa s andmore » 10 19 Pa s, whereas the Indian upper mantle has a high viscosity ≥10 20 Pa s. The viscosity in the lower crust of southern Tibet shows a clear trade-off with its southward extent and thickness, suggesting an upper bound value of ~8 × 10 19 Pa s for its steady state viscosity.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [2];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [3]
  1. China Earthquake Administration, Wuhan (China)
  2. Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA (United States)
  3. National Earthquake Infrastructure Service, Beijing (China)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC)
OSTI Identifier:
1479332
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC02-05CH11231
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Journal of Geophysical Research. Solid Earth
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 122; Journal Issue: 10; Journal ID: ISSN 2169-9313
Publisher:
American Geophysical Union
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
58 GEOSCIENCES; postseismic deformation; downdip afterslip; viscoelastic relaxation; lateral heterogeneous rheological structure; Gorkha, Nepal, earthquake

Citation Formats

Zhao, Bin, Bürgmann, Roland, Wang, Dongzhen, Tan, Kai, Du, Ruilin, and Zhang, Rui. Dominant Controls of Downdip Afterslip and Viscous Relaxation on the Postseismic Displacements Following the Mw7.9 Gorkha, Nepal, Earthquake. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1002/2017JB014366.
Zhao, Bin, Bürgmann, Roland, Wang, Dongzhen, Tan, Kai, Du, Ruilin, & Zhang, Rui. Dominant Controls of Downdip Afterslip and Viscous Relaxation on the Postseismic Displacements Following the Mw7.9 Gorkha, Nepal, Earthquake. United States. doi:10.1002/2017JB014366.
Zhao, Bin, Bürgmann, Roland, Wang, Dongzhen, Tan, Kai, Du, Ruilin, and Zhang, Rui. Mon . "Dominant Controls of Downdip Afterslip and Viscous Relaxation on the Postseismic Displacements Following the Mw7.9 Gorkha, Nepal, Earthquake". United States. doi:10.1002/2017JB014366. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1479332.
@article{osti_1479332,
title = {Dominant Controls of Downdip Afterslip and Viscous Relaxation on the Postseismic Displacements Following the Mw7.9 Gorkha, Nepal, Earthquake},
author = {Zhao, Bin and Bürgmann, Roland and Wang, Dongzhen and Tan, Kai and Du, Ruilin and Zhang, Rui},
abstractNote = {Here, we analyze three-dimensional GPS coordinate time series from continuously operating stations in Nepal and South Tibet and calculate the initial 1 year postseismic displacements. We first investigate models of poroelastic rebound, afterslip, and viscoelastic relaxation individually and then attempt to resolve the trade-offs between their contributions by evaluating the misfit between observed and simulated displacements. We compare kinematic inversions for distributed afterslip with stress-driven afterslip models. The modeling results show that no single mechanism satisfactorily explains near- and far-field postseismic deformation following the Gorkha earthquake. When considering contributions from all three mechanisms, we favor a combination of viscoelastic relaxation and afterslip alone, as poroelastic rebound always worsens the misfit. The combined model does not improve the data misfit significantly, but the inverted afterslip distribution is more physically plausible. The inverted afterslip favors slip within the brittle-ductile transition zone downdip of the coseismic rupture and fills the small gap between the mainshock and largest aftershock slip zone, releasing only 7% of the coseismic moment. Our preferred model also illuminates the laterally heterogeneous rheological structure between India and the South Tibet. The transient and steady state viscosities of the upper mantle beneath Tibet are constrained to be greater than 1018 Pa s and 1019 Pa s, whereas the Indian upper mantle has a high viscosity ≥1020 Pa s. The viscosity in the lower crust of southern Tibet shows a clear trade-off with its southward extent and thickness, suggesting an upper bound value of ~8 × 1019 Pa s for its steady state viscosity.},
doi = {10.1002/2017JB014366},
journal = {Journal of Geophysical Research. Solid Earth},
number = 10,
volume = 122,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {9}
}

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Cited by: 18 works
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Figures / Tables:

Figure 1 Figure 1: Tectonic context of central Nepal and South Tibet. Active faults illustrated in blue lines are from Taylor and Yin (2009). The red stars are epicenters of the 25 April 2015 mainshock and 12 May 2015 aftershock from U.S. Geological Survey. The blue beach ball shows the mainshock focalmore » mechanism from GCMT. The blue arrow shows the velocity of the Indian Plate relative to Eurasia. Continuous GPS stations used in this study are denoted with magenta circles.« less

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