The 7.8Mw Kaikoura earthquake that occurred in New Zealand on November 14th 2016 has no similar analogue on earth since the beginning of instrumental measurements. It is a dual epicentre, two minute-long rupture that involved slip on >20 individual faults rooted at different crustal depths. In principle, this earthquake links deep thrust faulting with upper-crust faulting through an ongoing composite rupture. Interestingly, our research over the last 5 years has highlighted the importance of such an interaction on subduction margins globally and how crucial this interaction may be for the estimation of the repeat times of mega-earthquakes. Here we have a unique opportunity to elaborate this concept further as this is the first known earthquake to record such fault interaction through a single rupture. Therefore, with this project we seek to explore how thrust-faulting and upper-plate faulting interact to accommodate large-magnitude earthquakes near subduction terminations globally. During fieldwork in the broader Kaikoura region we mapped ca. 55 km of coastline to record the coseismic deformation using tape and Real Time Kinematics GPS measurements of the uplifted intertidal rocky shore biota. We performed drone-mapping of key uplifted shorelines. We analyzing instrumentally recorded InSAR, LiDAR and GPS measurements. We also studied and sampled for OSL dating the Pleistocene marine terraces along the Kaikoura coastline to capture long-term deformation.
By focusing on the Kaikoura earthquake we will:
Team members: Vasiliki Mouslopoulou, Onno Oncken, Sofia Kufner all sec. 4.1), Simone Cesca, Torsten Dahm (both sec. 2.1), Andy Nicol (Canterbury University, NZ), John Begg (GNS Science, NZ)
Funding: HART GFZ
Publications: Cesca, S., Zhang, Y., Mouslopoulou, V., Wang, R., Saul, J., Savage, M., Heimann, S., Kufner, S.-K., Oncken, O., Dahm, T., 2017. Complex rupture process of the Mw 7.8, 2016, Kaikoura earthquake, New Zealand, and its aftershock sequence. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 478, 110-120, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.epsl.2017.08.024.
Spectacular slip during the earthquake in New Zealand (Photo: John Begg, GNS Science, NZ).
Survey of the uplifted coastline after the Kaikoura Earthquake in New Zealand (Photo: Vasiliki Mouslopoulou, GFZ).
Survey of the inaccessible section of the fault rupture using boat (Photo: Dick Beetham, GHD, NZ).