Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2122/11644
Authors: Tonini, Roberto* 
Maesano, Francesco Emanuele* 
Tiberti, Mara Monica* 
Romano, Fabrizio* 
Scala, Antonio* 
Lorito, Stefano* 
Volpe, Manuela* 
Basili, Roberto* 
Title: How much does geometry of seismic sources matter in tsunami modeling? A sensitivity analysis for the Calabrian subduction interface
Issue Date: 11-Dec-2017
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2122/11644
Keywords: tsunami
seismic source geometry
Subject Classification03.03. Physical 
04.07. Tectonophysics 
Abstract: The geometry of seismogenic sources could be one of the most important factors concurring to control the generation and the propagation of earthquake-generated tsunamis and their effects on the coasts. Since the majority of potentially tsunamigenic earthquakes occur offshore, the corresponding faults are generally poorly constrained and, consequently, their geometry is often oversimplified as a planar fault. The rupture area of mega-thrust earthquakes in subduction zones, where most of the greatest tsunamis have occurred, extends for tens to hundreds of kilometers both down dip and along strike, and generally deviates from the planar geometry. Therefore, the larger the earthquake size is, the weaker the planar fault assumption become. In this work, we present a sensitivity analysis aimed to explore the effects on modeled tsunamis generated by seismic sources with different degrees of geometric complexities. We focused on the Calabrian subduction zone, located in the Mediterranean Sea, which is characterized by the convergence between the African and European plates, with rates of up to 5 mm/yr. This subduction zone has been considered to have generated some past large earthquakes and tsunamis, despite it shows only in-slab significant seismic activity below 40 km depth and no relevant seismicity in the shallower portion of the interface. Our analysis is performed by defining and modeling an exhaustive set of tsunami scenarios located in the Calabrian subduction and using different models of the subduction interface with increasing geometrical complexity, from a planar surface to a highly detailed 3D surface. The latter was obtained from the interpretation of a dense network of seismic reflection profiles coupled with the analysis of the seismicity distribution. The more relevant effects due to the inclusion of 3D complexities in the seismic source geometry are finally highlighted in terms of the resulting tsunami impact.
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