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Earth Planets Space, Vol. 57 (No. 5), pp. 435-440, 2005

LETTER

Aftershock distribution and 3D seismic velocity structure in and around the focal area of the 2004 mid Niigata prefecture earthquake obtained by applying double-difference tomography to dense temporary seismic network data

T. Okada1, N. Umino1, T. Matsuzawa1, J. Nakajima1, N. Uchida1, T. Nakayama1, S. Hirahara1, T. Sato1, S. Hori1, T.Kono1, Y. Yabe1, K. Ariyoshi1, S. Gamage1, J. Shimizu1, J. Suganomata1, S. Kita1, S.Yui1, M. Arao1, S. Hondo1, T. Mizukami1, H. Tsushima1, T. Yaginuma1, A. Hasegawa1, Y. Asano2, H. Zhang3, and C. Thurber3

1Research Center for Prediction of Earthquakes and Volcanic Eruptions, Graduate School of Science, Tohoku University, Japan
2National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention, Japan
3Department of Geology and Geophysics, University of Wisconsin-Madison, U.S.A.

(Received February 15, 2005; Revised April 15, 2005; Accepted April 16, 2005)

Abstract: A destructive large earthquake (the 2004 mid Niigata prefecture earthquake) sequence occurred in the central part (Chuetsu district) of Niigata prefecture, central Japan on October 23, 2004. We have deployed a temporary seismic network composed of 54 stations for aftershock observation just above and around the focal area of the earthquake for about a month. Using travel time data from the temporary seismic network and surrounding routine stations, we obtained precise aftershock distribution and 3D seismic velocity structure in and around the fault planes of the earthquake and four major (M 6) aftershocks by double-difference tomography. The results clearly show three major aftershock alignments. Two of them are almost parallel and dipping toward the WNW. The shallow and deep aftershock alignments correspond to the fault plane of the mainshock and that of the largest aftershock (M6.4), respectively. The third alignment is almost perpendicular to the WNW-ward dipping planes and perhaps corresponds to the fault plane of the M6 aftershock on October 27. General feature of the obtained velocity structure is that the hanging wall (western part of the focal area) has lower velocity and the footwall (eastern part of the focal area) has higher velocity. Major velocity boundary seems to shift westward in comparison to in northern and southern parts at a location near the central part of the focal area, where the main shock rupture started. Some parts of the fault planes were imaged as low velocity zones. This complex crustal structure would be one of possible causes of the multi-fault rupture of the 2004 mid Niigata prefecture earthquake sequence.
Key words: Fault plane, aftershock, seismic velocity structure, double difference tomography.


Corresponding author E-mail: okada@aob.geophys.tohoku.ac.jp


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