Tsunami potential source in the eastern Sea of Marmara (NW Turkey), along the North Anatolian Fault system

Creative Commons License

Gasperini L., Zaniboni F., Armigliato A., Tinti S., Pagnoni G., Özeren M. S., ...More

LANDSLIDES, vol.19, no.10, pp.2295-2310, 2022 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 19 Issue: 10
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s10346-022-01929-0
  • Journal Name: LANDSLIDES
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Aquatic Science & Fisheries Abstracts (ASFA), CAB Abstracts, Compendex, Geobase, INSPEC, Civil Engineering Abstracts
  • Page Numbers: pp.2295-2310
  • Keywords: Landslide, Tsunamis, Sea of Marmara, Risk, Assessment, North Anatolian Fault, Earthquakes, IZMIT BAY TURKEY, SUBMARINE LANDSLIDE, AUGUST 17, EARTHQUAKE, MODEL, HAZARD, WAVES, SLIDE, GENERATION, TURBIDITES
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Based on morphobathymetric and seismic reflection data, we studied a large landslide body from the eastern Sea of Marmara (NW Turkey), along the main strand of the North Anatolian Fault, one of the most seismically active geological structures on Earth. Due to its location and dimensions, the sliding body may cause tsunamis in case of failure possibly induced by an earthquake. This could affect heavily the coasts of the Sea of Marmara and the densely populated Istanbul Metropolitan area, with its exposed cultural heritage assets. After a geological and geometrical description of the landslide, thanks to high-resolution marine geophysical data, we simulated numerically possible effects of its massive mobilization along a basal displacement surface. Results, within significant uncertainties linked to dimensions and kinematics of the sliding mass, suggest generation of tsunamis exceeding 15-20 m along a broad coastal sector of the eastern Sea of Marmara. Although creeping processes or partial collapse of the landslide body could lower the associated tsunami risk, its detection stresses the need for collecting more marine geological/geophysical data in the region to better constrain hazards and feasibility of specific emergency plans.