Plate interaction in the NE Caribbean subduction zone from continuous GPS observations


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dc.contributor.author ten Brink, Uri S.
dc.contributor.author Lopez-Venegas, Alberto M.
dc.date.accessioned 2012-06-20T17:48:07Z
dc.date.available 2012-06-20T17:48:07Z
dc.date.issued 2012-05-19
dc.identifier.citation Geophysical Research Letters 39 (2012): L10304 en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1912/5234
dc.description This paper is not subject to U.S. copyright. The definitive version was published in Geophysical Research Letters 39 (2012): L10304, doi:10.1029/2012GL051485. en_US
dc.description.abstract Kinematic similarities between the Sumatra and Puerto Rico Trenches highlight the potential for a mega-earthquake along the Puerto Rico Trench and the generation of local and trans-Atlantic tsunamis. We used the horizontal components of continuous GPS (cGPS) measurements from 10 sites on NE Caribbean islands to evaluate strain accumulation along the North American (NA) – Caribbean (CA) plate boundary. These sites move westward and slightly northward relative to CA interior at rates ≤2.5 mm/y. Provided this motion originates in the subduction interface, the northward motion suggests little or no trench-perpendicular thrust accumulation and may in fact indicate divergence north of Puerto Rico, where abnormal subsidence, bathymetry, and gravity are observed. The Puerto Rico Trench, thus, appears unable to generate mega-earthquakes, but damaging smaller earthquakes cannot be discounted. The westward motion, characterized by decreasing rate with distance from the trench, is probably due to eastward motion of CA plate impeded at the plate boundary by the Bahamas platform. Two additional cGPS sites in Mona Passage and SW Puerto Rico move to the SW similar to Hispaniola and unlike the other 10 sites. That motion relative to the rest of Puerto Rico may have given rise to seismicity and normal faults in Mona Rift, Mona Passage, and SW Puerto Rico. en_US
dc.format.mimetype text/plain
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.publisher American Geophysical Union en_US
dc.relation.uri http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2012GL051485
dc.subject Lesser Antilles en_US
dc.subject Puerto Rico trench en_US
dc.subject Virgin Islands en_US
dc.subject Earthquake hazard en_US
dc.subject Subduction zone coupling en_US
dc.subject Tsunami hazard en_US
dc.title Plate interaction in the NE Caribbean subduction zone from continuous GPS observations en_US
dc.type Article en_US
dc.identifier.doi 10.1029/2012GL051485

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