Faulting and fluid transport in the subsurface are highly coupled processes, which may manifest seismically as earthquake swarms. A swarm in February 2014 beneath densely monitored Mammoth Mountain, California, provides an opportunity to witness these interactions in high resolution. Toward this goal, we employ massive waveform-correlation-based event detection and relative relocation, which quadruples the swarm catalog to more than 6000 earthquakes and produces high-precision locations even for very small events. The swarm's main seismic zone forms a distributed fracture mesh, with individual faults activated in short earthquake bursts. The largest event of the sequence, M 3.1, apparently acted as a fault valve and was followed by a distinct wave of earthquakes propagating ~1 km westward from the updip edge of rupture, 1–2 h later. Late in the swarm, multiple small, shallower subsidiary faults activated with pronounced hypocenter migration, suggesting that a broader fluid pressure pulse propagated through the subsurface.
|Title||Fluid-faulting interactions: Fracture-mesh and fault-valve behavior in the February 2014 Mammoth Mountain, California, earthquake swarm|
|Authors||David R. Shelly, Taka’aki Taira, Stephanie Prejean, David P. Hill, Douglas S. Dreger|
|Publication Subtype||Journal Article|
|Series Title||Geophysical Research Letters|
|Record Source||USGS Publications Warehouse|
|USGS Organization||Volcano Science Center|