Can slip heterogeneity be linked to earthquake recurrence?

Kate Huihsuan Chen, Iyin Chen, Ahyi Kim*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


The rupture process of two M4 repeating earthquake sequences in eastern Taiwan with contrasting recurrence behavior is investigated to demonstrate a link between slip heterogeneity and earthquake recurrence. The M3.6–3.8 quasiperiodic repeating earthquakes characterized by 3 years recurrence interval reveal overlapped slip concentrations. Inferred slip distribution for each event illustrates two asperities with peak slip of 47.7 cm and peak stress drop of 151.1 MPa. Under the influence of nearby M6.9 event, the M4.3–4.8 repeating earthquakes separated only by 6–87 min, however, reveal an aperiodic manner. There is a distinct rupture characteristic without overlap in the slip areas, suggesting that shortening of the recurrence interval by the nearby large earthquake may change the slip heterogeneity in a repeatedly ruptured asperity. We conclude that the inherent heterogeneity of stress and strength could influence the distribution of coseismic slip, which is strongly tied to the recurrence behavior.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6916-6923
Number of pages8
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Jul 16


  • asperity
  • earthquake recurrence
  • empirical Green's function
  • moment rate inversion
  • stress drop

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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