On a mechanical approach to the prediction of earthquakes during horizontal motion of lithospheric plates
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The block element method is used to study a static boundary value problem for semi-infinite lithospheric plates interacting with a deformable basement along Conrad boundary. It is assumed that the lithospheric plates have straight line boundaries parallel to each other and are considered in two positions. In the first case, the distance between the ends of the plates does not vanish, whereas in the second case the distance is absent, although the plates do not interact. It is assumed that horizontal action on the plates, which are known to move extremely slowly, is so strong that vertical components of contact stresses can be neglected. Only shift stresses remain in the contact zone. The paper addresses the comparison of numerical simulation and block element approach to investigate this problem. In the first case, appearance of a concentration of contact stresses in the zone of contact of lithospheric plates is found, while in the second case the stress concentration turns out to be singular and leads to destruction of the base or edges of the lithospheric plates. In the second case, it is possible to determine the influence of various parameters of the problem on the magnitude of the coefficients for singularities in the contact stress concentrations. The numerical method does not have this capability. The obtained result allows one to predict the starting earthquakes based on monitoring of horizontal motions of the lithospheric plates.
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This work was supported by Ministry of education and science Russian Federation, project (9.8753.2017/8.9), UNC RAS, project Nos 01201354241, and supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research, projects Nos (16-41-230214), (16-41-230216), (16-48-230218), (17-08-00323) (18-01-00384), (18-05-80008).
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