Quantifying the Partition Between Seismic and Aseismic Deformation Along Creeping and Locked Sections of the North Anatolian Fault, Turkey

Kaduri M., Gratier J., Lasserre C., Çakır Z., Renard F.

PURE AND APPLIED GEOPHYSICS, vol.176, pp.1293-1321, 2019 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 176
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s00024-018-2027-2
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.1293-1321
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Shallow aseismic creep is a key deformation component along plate boundaries that contributes to the energy budget during the seismic cycle. Several major active continental faults show spatial alternation of creeping and locked sections. The present study focuses on the evaluation of the aseismic part of the total displacement along the North Anatolian Fault in Turkey. Detailed microstructural analyses of finite strain were performed using various methods, based on change of length or angle, on six representative samples collected over 32 outcrops along locked and creeping sections of the fault. Chemical analyses were used to map mineral composition of fault rocks and to calculate relative volume changes associated with creep. The relationship between finite strain and volume change allowed quantifying the evolution of the penetrative pressure solution cleavage mechanism of creep. In volcanic and analogous creeping rocks, finite strain measurements revealed two spatial scales of strain that correspond to the alternation of two types of shear zones, with cleavages either oblique or sub-parallel to the fault displacement. Using geodetic and geologic data, cumulative aseismic displacement was calculated in the range 9-49% of the total 80-km displacement in the creping sections and was negligible in locked sections. The large uncertainty in the kilometer-width creeping sections was related to the difficulty of quantifying the high strain values associated with high shear displacement and for which measurement uncertainties are large. A promising way to improve such quantification would be to develop reliable statistical analysis of cleavage orientation in the field.