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Authors: Bianco, F.* 
Castellano, M.* 
Milano, G.* 
Ventura, G.* 
Vilardo, G.* 
Title: The Somma-Vesuvius stress field induced by regional tectonics: evidences from seismological and mesostructural data
Journal: Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal research 
Series/Report no.: / 82 (1998)
Publisher: Elsevier
Issue Date: 1998
Keywords: structure of volcanoes
stress field
Subject Classification04. Solid Earth::04.06. Seismology::04.06.08. Volcano seismology 
Abstract: A detailed structural and geophysical study of the Somma–Vesuvius volcanic complex was carried out by integrating mesostructural measurements, focal mechanisms and shear-wave splitting analysis. Fault-slip and focal mechanism analysis indicate that the volcano is affected by NW–SE-, NE–SW-trending oblique-slip faults and by E–W-trending normal faults. Magma chamber s. responsible for plinianrsub-plinian eruptions i.e. A.D. 79 and 1631. formed inside the area bounded by E–W-trending normal faults. The post-1631 fissural eruptions i.e. 1794 and 1861.occurred along the main oblique-slip fault segments. The movements of the Vesuvius faults are mainly related to the regional stress field. A local stress field superposed to the regional one is also present but evidences of magma or gravity induced stresses are lacking. The local stress field acts inside the caldera area being related to fault reactivation processes. The present-day Vesuvius seismic activity is due to both regional and local stress fields. Shear-wave splitting analysis reveals an anisotropic volume due to stress induced cracks NW–SE aligned by faulting processes. Since the depth extent of the anisotropic volume is at least 6 km b.s.l., we deduce the NW–SE-trending oblique-slip fault system represents the main discontinuity on which lies the volcano. This discontinuity is responsible for the morphological lowering of the edifice in its southwestern side.
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