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A 15-year catalog of more than 1 million low-frequency earthquakes: Tracking tremor and slip along the deep San Andreas Fault

May 1, 2017

Low-frequency earthquakes (LFEs) are small, rapidly recurring slip events that occur on the deep extensions of some major faults. Their collective activation is often observed as a semi-continuous signal known as tectonic (or non-volcanic) tremor. This manuscript presents a catalog of more than 1 million LFEs detected along the central San Andreas Fault from 2001-2016. These events have been detected via a multi-channel matched-filter search, cross-correlating waveform templates representing 88 different LFE families with continuous seismic data. Together, these source locations span nearly 150 km along the central San Andreas Fault, ranging in depth from ~16-30 km.
This accumulating catalog has been the source of numerous studies examining the behavior of these LFE sources and the inferred slip behavior of the deep fault. The relatively high temporal and spatial resolution of the catalog has provided new insights into properties such as tremor migration, recurrence, and triggering by static and dynamic stress perturbations. Collectively, these characteristics are inferred to reflect a very weak fault likely under near-lithostatic fluid pressure, yet the physical processes controlling the stuttering rupture observed as tremor and LFE signals remain poorly understood. This paper aims to document the LFE catalog assembly process and associated caveats, while also updating earlier observations and inferred physical constraints. The catalog itself accompanies this manuscript as part of the electronic supplement, with the goal of providing a useful resource for continued future investigations.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2019
Title A 15-year catalog of more than 1 million low-frequency earthquakes: Tracking tremor and slip along the deep San Andreas Fault
DOI 10.1002/2017JB014047
Authors David R. Shelly
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Journal of Geophysical Research
Series Number
Index ID 70204784
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Volcano Science Center

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