Recording subduction processes in the near field: the case of the Nicoya seismic gap

Speaker: Marino Protti
Seismic and Continuous GPS data is being recorded in a multinational joint effort along the Nicoya, Costa Rica, seismic gap. This initiative is aimed to take advantage of the existence of the Nicoya peninsula which sits right over the seismogenic zone, allowing recording subduction processes in the near field. Recorded slow seismic activity is occurring along this portion of the subduction zone in NW Costa Rica, under and around the Nicoya peninsula. The Nicoya segment of the Middle America Trench has been recognized as a mature seismic gap with potential to generate an Mw>7.5 earthquake in the near future (it ruptured with large earthquakes in 1853, 1900 and 1950). These large events together with GPS results from campaigns in the region indicate around 50% of seismic coupling for large fast rupturing events, leaving about half of the potential slip from convergence to slide by means of slow earthquakes.