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Authors: Vuan, A.* 
Sugan, M.* 
Chiaraluce, Lauro* 
Di Stefano, Raffaele* 
Title: Loading Rate Variations Along a Midcrustal Shear Zone Preceding the M w 6.0 Earthquake of 24 August 2016 in Central Italy
Issue Date: 2017
Series/Report no.: /44 (2017)
DOI: 10.1002/2017GL076223
Abstract: To identify greater detail in the seismicity pattern preceding the 24 August 2016 Mw6.0 earthquake in Central Italy, we apply waveform matching using 1,028 events as templates. In the 8 months before the mainshock, we find ~2,000 additional earthquakes mostly located along a subhorizontal shear zone (SZ) bounding at depth the extensional fault system. Asynchrony is observed in the occurrence of events nucleating along the SZ compared to the ones on fault portions embedded in the shallower upper crust, with the former anticipating the latter. Within the SZ, we also observe along-strike seismic migration episodes with earthquakes pointing toward the Mw6.0 mainshock nucleation zone. These episodes are followed by an apparent quiescence within the main fault area. We suggest that the variations in the seismic activity along the SZ represent the brittle signature of the tectonic loading process enabling portions of the overlaying normal faults to become unlocked.
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