Figure from the paper.
Models of various phases of the slow slip cycle on the Guerrero subduction interface. The red box ("Inter-SSE") corresponds to the interseismic slow slip event (SSE) period prior to the M7.5 slow slip event from January 2005 to April 2007. The green box ("Co-SSE") represents the duration of the M7.5 2006 slow slip event. Credit: Mouchon et al. [2023], Figure 6
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Source: AGU Advances

Despite substantial scientific attention directed towards slow slip events (SSEs) in the past decade, uncertainty persists regarding whether their behavior is purely aseismic, involves low-frequency earthquake (LFE) swarms, or represents a blend of both phenomena.

Mouchon et al. [2023] use high-resolution time histories of LFEs and global navigation satellite system (GNSS) data to image the subdaily slow-slip seismic cycle of the Guerrero subduction interface. They show that the slow slip cycle is driven by subdaily variations in aseismic slip rates. As the magnitude of fault slip increases, low-frequency earthquake rates reach saturation. Consequently, seismicity remains confined to down-dip locations of the subduction fault, while slip is free to propagate up-dip. This highlights the dominance of aseismic slip in larger magnitude SSEs.

These results highlight the importance of using subdaily GNSS time series along with high quality LFE catalogs to characterize the slip behavior in SSEs, and underscore the ongoing need to improve the accuracy of high-rate GNSS surface positioning.

Citation: Mouchon, C.,  Frank, W. B.,  Radiguet, M.,  Poli, P., &  Cotte, N. [2023].  Subdaily slow fault slip dynamics captured by low-frequency earthquakes. AGU Advances, 4, e2022AV000848.

—Marcos Moreno, Editor, AGU Advances

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