Fault Coalescence, Slip Distribution, and Stress Drop of the February 2023 Southeast Türkiye Earthquakes from Joint Inversion of SAR, GNSS, and Burst Overlap Interferometry

Yohai Magen*, Gidon Baer, Alon Ziv, Asaf Inbal, Ran N. Nof, Yariv Hamiel, Oksana Piatibratova, Gökhan Gürbüz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Two devastating earthquakes struck southeastern Türkiye and northwestern Syria on 6 February 2023: an Mw 7.8 mainshock, followed 9 hr later by an Mw 7.6 aftershock. To recover and separate the subsurface geometry and slip distributions along the two earthquake faults, we jointly invert Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar, Synthetic Aperture Radar pixel offset tracking, burst overlap interferometry (BOI), Global Navigation Satellite System, and aftershock datasets. We introduce a new Kalman filter-based approach for merging spatially dense azimuth offset (AZO) data with the more precise yet spatially sparse BOI data. This procedure yields improved measurements of the displacements parallel to the near north-south satellite tracks, which are critical for resolving slip along most of the Mw 7.8 fault segments. We optimize the inversion using a new metric for assessing the degree of spatial correlation between the coseismic slip gradients and early aftershocks, resulting in a stable solution honoring the complementarity between the geodetic and aftershock datasets. The analysis suggests that the Mw 7.8 rupture consisted of three large segments and two short fault branches, covering about 300 km along the East Anatolian fault (EAF), whereas the Mw 7.6 rupture consisted of three segments extending for about 160 km along the nearby Sürgü fault (SF). On the basis of moment-to-stress-drop scaling relations, we show that the Mw 7.6 stress drop is four times larger than the Mw 7.8 stress drop, consistent with the larger recurrence intervals for Mw > 7 earthquakes on the SF than on the EAF. The moment released during the 2023 Mw 7.8 earthquake is 2–4 times larger than the sum of the moments released during individual historical Mw > 7 earthquakes along the three segments of the 2023 Mw 7.8 earthquake. Thus, when considering moment release for multisegment earthquakes, one should note that the final moment of fault coalescence is likely larger than the arithmetic sum of individual segment ruptures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)680-696
Number of pages17
JournalSeismological Research Letters
Volume95
Issue number2 A
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2024

Funding

FundersFunder number
Israel earthquake preparedness committee
National Science Foundation)/EAR-U
United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation1801720
Israel Science Foundation1802/22, 2091/20

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