Natural Hazards

, Volume 42, Issue 3, pp 493–514 | Cite as

Tectonic stress, seismicity, and seismic hazard in the southeastern Carpathians

  • Alik Ismail-Zadeh
  • Vladimir Sokolov
  • Klaus-Peter Bonjer
Original Paper

Abstract

Intermediate-depth earthquakes in the Vrancea region occur in response to stress generation due to descending lithosphere beneath the southeastern Carpathians. In this article, tectonic stress and seismicity are analyzed in the region on the basis of a vast body of observations. We show a correlation between the location of intermediate-depth earthquakes and the predicted localization of maximum shear stress in the lithosphere. A probabilistic seismic hazard assessment (PSHA) for the region is presented in terms of various ground motion parameters on the utilization of Fourier amplitude spectra used in engineering practice and risk assessment (peak ground acceleration, response spectra amplitude, and seismic intensity). We review the PSHA carried out in the region, and present new PSHA results for the eastern and southern parts of Romania. Our seismic hazard assessment is based on the information about the features of earthquake ground motion excitation, seismic wave propagation (attenuation), and site effect in the region. Spectral models and characteristics of site-response on earthquake ground motions are obtained from the regional ground motion data including several hundred records of small and large earthquakes. Results of the probabilistic seismic hazard assessment are consistent with the features of observed earthquake effects in the southeastern Carpathians and show that geological factors play an important part in the distribution of the earthquake ground motion parameters.

Keywords

Intermediate-depth earthquake Vrancea Seismic intensity Peak ground acceleration Probabilistic seismic hazard assessment 

Abbreviations

CALIXTO

Carpathian Arc Lithospheric X-Tomography

FAS

Fourier amplitude spectra

HVSR

Horizontal-to-vertical Fourier spectral ratio

MSK

Intensity scale

PGA

Peak ground acceleration

PSHA

Probabilistic seismic hazard assessment

RSA

Response spectra amplitude

VHR

Very hard rock

References

  1. Anderson J, Hough S (1984) A model for the shape of the Fourier amplitude spectrum of acceleration at high frequencies. Bull Seism Soc Am 74:1969–1993Google Scholar
  2. Ardeleanu L, Leydecker G, Bonjer K-P, Busche H, Kaiser D, Schmitt T (2005) Probabilistic seismic hazard map for Romania as a basis for a new building code. Nat Hazard Earth Syst Sci 5:679–684CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Atkinson GM, Cassidy JF (2000) Integrated use of seismograph and strong-motion data to determine soil amplification: response of the Fraser River delta to the Duvall and Georgia Strait earthquakes. Bull Seism Soc Am 90:1028–1040CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bijwaard H, Spakman W (2000) Non-linear global P-wave tomography by iterated linearized inversion. Geophys J Int 141:71–82CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bonjer K-P, Oncescu L, Rizescu M, Enescu D, Driad L, Radulian M, Ionescu M, Moldoveanu T (2000) Source- and site-parameters of the April 28, 1999 intermediate-depth Vrancea earthquake: First results from the new K2-network in Romania, In: Book of Abstracts and Papers of the XXVII General Assembly of the European Seismological Commission, Lisbon, SSA-2-13-O, 53Google Scholar
  6. Bonjer K-P, Oncescu M-C, Driad L, Rizescu M (1999) A note on empirical site responses in Bucharest, Romania. In: Wenzel F et al (eds) Vrancea earthquakes: tectonics, hazard and risk mitigation. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, pp 149–162Google Scholar
  7. Boore DM (1983) Stochastic simulation of high frequency ground motion based on seismological model of the radiated spectra. Bull Seism Soc Am 73:1865–1894Google Scholar
  8. Boore DM (2003) Simulation of ground motion using the stochastic method, Pure Appl Geophys 160:635–676Google Scholar
  9. Brune JN (1970) Tectonic stress and the spectra of seismic shear waves from earthquakes. J Geophys Res 75:4997–5009Google Scholar
  10. Brune JN (1971) Correction. J Geophys Res 76:5002Google Scholar
  11. Chernov YK (1989) Strong ground motion and quantitative assessment of seismic hazard, FAN Publishing House, Tashkent (in Russian)Google Scholar
  12. Chernov YuK, Sokolov VYu (1999) Correlation of seismic intensity with Fourier acceleration spectra. Phys Chem Earth Part A: Solid Earth Geodesy 24:522–528Google Scholar
  13. Cornell CA (1968) Engineering seismic risk analysis. Bull Seism Soc Am 58:1583–1606Google Scholar
  14. Csontos L, Nagymarosy A, Horvath F, Kovac M (1992) Tertiary evolution of the intra-Carpathian area; a model. Tectonophysics 208:221–241CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Demetrescu C, Nielsen SB, Ene M, Serban DZ, Polonic G, Andreescu M, Pop A, Balling N (2001) Lithosphere thermal structure and evolution of the Transylvanian Depression—insight from new geothermal measurements and modeling results. Phys Earth Planet Int 126:249–267CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Dinter G, Nutto M, Schmitt G, Schmidt U, Ghitau D, Marcu C (2001) Three dimensional deformation analysis with respect to plate kinematics in Romania. Rep Geodesy 2:29–42Google Scholar
  17. Fuchs K, Bonjer K, Bock G, Cornea I, Radu C, Enescu D, Jianu D, Nourescu A, Merkler G, Moldoveanu T, Tudorache G (1979) The Romanian earthquake of March 4, 1977. II. Aftershocks and migration of seismic activity. Tectonophysics 53:225–247CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Girbacea R, Frisch W (1998) Slab in the wrong place: Lower lithospheric mantle delamination in the last stage of the Eastern Carpathian subduction retreat. Geology 26:611–614CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Green HW II, Burnley PC (1989) A new self-organizing mechanism for deep-focus earthquakes. Nature 341:733–737CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Griggs DT, Baker DW (1969) The origin of deep-focus earthquakes. In: Mark H, Fernbach S (eds) Properties of matter under unusual conditions. Wiley, New York, pp 23–42Google Scholar
  21. Gusev A, Radulian M, Rizescu M, Panza GF (2002) Source scaling of intermediate-depth Vrancea earthquakes. Geophys J Int 151:879–889CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Hacker BR, Peacock SM, Abers GA, Holloway SD (2003) Subduction factory. 2. Are intermediate-depth earthquakes in subducting slabs linked to metamorphic dehydration reactions? J Geophys Res 108:2030, doi:10.1029/ 2001JB001129CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Hauser F, Raileanu V, Fielitz W, Bala A, Prodehl C, Polonic G, Schulze A (2001) VRANCEA99—the crustal structure beneath the southeastern Carpathians and the Moesian Platform from a seismic refraction profile in Romania. Tectonophysics 340:233–256CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Hauser F, Prodehl C, Landes M, the VRANCEA working group (2002) Seismic experiments target earthquake-prone region in Romania. EOS, Trans Am Geophys Union 83(457):462–463Google Scholar
  25. Ismail-Zadeh AT (2003) Modeling of stress and seismicity in the south-eastern Carpathians: Basis for seismic risk estimation. In: Beer T, Ismail-Zadeh AT (eds) Risk science and sustainability. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, pp 149–162Google Scholar
  26. Ismail-Zadeh AT, Keilis-Borok VI, Soloviev AA (1999) Numerical modeling of earthquake flows in the southeastern Carpathians (Vrancea): Effect of a sinking slab. Phys Earth Planet Inter 111:267–274CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Ismail-Zadeh A, Mueller B, Wenzel F (2005a) Modeling of descending slab evolution beneath the SE-Carpathians: Implications for seismicity. In: Wenzel F (ed) Perspectives in modern seismology, LNES, Vol 105. Springer-Verlag, Heidelberg, pp 203–224Google Scholar
  28. Ismail-Zadeh A, Mueller B, Schubert G (2005b) Three-dimensional modeling of present-day tectonic stress beneath the earthquake-prone southeastern Carpathians based on integrated analysis of seismic, heat flow, and gravity observations. Phys Earth Planet Inter 149:81–98CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Ismail-Zadeh AT, Panza GF, Naimark BM (2000) Stress in the descending relic slab beneath the Vrancea region, Romania. Pure Appl Geophys 157:111–130CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Ivan IA, Enescu BD, Pantea A (1998) Input for seismic hazard assessment using Vrancea source region. Rom J Phys 43:619–636Google Scholar
  31. Jaiswal K, Sokolov V, Sinha R, Wenzel F, Chernov Yu (2004) Probabilistic seismic hazard assessment for Mumbai (western India) area. In: Chen YT et al (eds) Earthquake hazard, risk, and strong ground motion. Seismological Press, Beijing, pp 7–30Google Scholar
  32. Jiricek R (1979) Tectonic development of the Carpathian arc in the Oligocene and Neogene. In: Mahel M (ed) Tectonic profiles through the western carpathians. Geol. Inst., Dionyz Stur, pp 205–214Google Scholar
  33. Lermo J, Chavez-Garcia FJ (1993) Site effect evaluation using spectral ratios with only one station. Bull Seis Soc Am 83:1574–1594Google Scholar
  34. Linzer H-G (1996) Kinematics of retreating subduction along the Carpathian arc, Romania. Geology 24:167–170CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Lungu D, Demetriu S, Radu C, Coman O (1995) Uniform hazard response spectra for Vrancea earthquakes in Romania. In: Proc. 10th European Conf. on Earthq. Eng., Balkema, Rotterdam, pp 365–370Google Scholar
  36. Lungu D, Cornea T, Nedelcu C (1999) Hazard assessment and site dependent response for Vrancea earthquakes. In: Wenzel F et al (eds) Vrancea earthquakes: tectonics, hazard and risk mitigation. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, pp 251–267Google Scholar
  37. Lungu D, Aldea A, Demetriu S, Craofaleanu I (2003) Seismic strengthening and seismic instrumentation—two priorities for seismic risk reduction in Romania. In: Proc. of the First International Conference on “Science and Technology for Safe Development of Lifeline Systems”, 4–5 November 2003, Sofia, pp 1–24Google Scholar
  38. Mandrescu N (1984) Geological hazard evaluation in Romania. Eng Geol 20:39–47CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Mandrescu N, Anghel M, Smalbergher V (1988) The Vrancea intermediate-depth earthquakes and the peculiarities of the seismic intensity distribution over the Romanian territory. St Cerc, Geofiz, Geogr GEOFIZICA 26:51–57Google Scholar
  40. Mandrescu N, Radulian M (1999) Macroseismic field of the Romanian intermediate-depth earthquakes. In: Wenzel F et al (eds) Vrancea earthquakes: tectonics, hazard and risk mitigation. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, pp 163–174Google Scholar
  41. Mantyniemi P, Marza VI, Kijko A, Retief P (2003) A new probabilistic seismic hazard analysis for the Vrancea (Romania) seismogenic zone. Nat Haz 29:371–385CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Martin M, Achauer U, Kissling E, Mocanu V, Musacchio G, Radulian M, Wenzel F and CALIXTO Working Group (2001) First results from the tomographic experiment CALIXTO’99 in Romania. Geophys Res Abst 3:SE1.02Google Scholar
  43. Martin M, Ritter JRR, the CALIXTO working group (2005) High-resolution teleseismic body-wave tomography beneath SE Romania—I. Implications for three-dimensional versus one-dimensional crustal correction strategies with a new crustal velocity model. Geophys J Int 162:448–460CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Marza VI (1996) Romania’s seismicity file: 1. Pre-instrumental data. Special Publicat Geol Soc Greece 6:141–148Google Scholar
  45. Marza VI, Pantea AI (1994) Probabilistic estimation of seismic intensity attenuation for Vrancea (Romania) subcrustal sources. In: Proc. XXIV Gen. Assembly ESC, Athens, Greece, vol. III, pp 1752–1761Google Scholar
  46. Marza VI, Kijko A, Mantyniemi P (1991) Estimate of earthquake hazard in the Vrancea (Romania) region. Pure Appl Geophys 136:143–154CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. McKenzie DP (1972) Active tectonics of the Mediterranean region. Geophys J R Astron Soc 30:109–185Google Scholar
  48. Moldovan I-A, Enescu BD, Ionescu C (2000) Predicting peak ground horizontal acceleration for Vrancea large earthquakes using attenuation relations for moderate shocks. Rom J Physics 45:785–800Google Scholar
  49. Musson RMW (2000) Generalised seismic hazard maps for the Pannonian Basin using probabilistic methods. Pure Appl Geophys 157:147–169CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Oncescu MC (1984) Deep structure of the Vrancea region, Romania, inferred from simultaneous inversion for hypocenters and 3-D velocity structure. Ann Geophys 2:23–28Google Scholar
  51. Oncescu MC, Bonjer KP (1997) A note on the depth recurrence and strain release of large Vrancea earthquakes. Tectonophysics 272:291–302CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Oncescu MC, Trifu CI (1987) Depth variation of moment tensor principal axes in Vrancea (Romania) seismic region. Ann Geophys 5:149–154Google Scholar
  53. Oncescu MC, Bonjer KP, Rizescu M (1999a) Weak and strong ground motion of intermediate depth earthquakes from the Vrancea region. In: Wenzel F et al (eds) Vrancea earthquakes: tectonics, hazard and risk mitigation. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, pp 27–42Google Scholar
  54. Oncescu M-C, Marza VI, Rizescu M, Popa M (1999b) The Romanian earthquake catalogue between 984–1997. In: Wenzel F et al (eds) Vrancea earthquakes: tectonics, hazard and risk mitigation. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, pp 43–47Google Scholar
  55. Pana D, Erdmer P (1996) Kinematics of retreating subduction along the Carpathian arc, Romania: comment. Geology 24:862–863CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Pana D, Morris GA (1999) Slab in the wrong place: Lower lithospheric mantle delamination in the last stage of the Eastern Carpathian subduction retreat: comment. Geology 27:665–666CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Radu C (1979) Catalogue of strong earthquakes occurred on the Romanian territory. Part I—before 1901; Part II—1901–1979 (in Romanian). In: Cornea I, Radu C (eds) Seismological studies on the March 4, 1977 earthquake. Bucharest, Romania, pp 723–752Google Scholar
  58. Radu C (1991) Strong earthquakes occurred on the Romanian territory in the period 1901–1990 (in Romanian). Vitralii 3:12–13Google Scholar
  59. Radulian M, Vaccari F, Mandrescu N, Panza GF, Moldoveanu CL (2000) Seismic hazard of Romania: deterministic approach. Pure Appl Geophys 157:221–247CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Raleigh CB, Paterson MS (1965) Experimental deformation of serpentine and its tectonic consequences. J Geophys Res 70:3965–3985CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Sandi H (2001) Obstacles to earthquake risk reduction encountered in Romania. In: Lungu D, Saito T (eds) Earthquake hazard and countermeasures for existing fragile buildings. Independent Film, Bucharest, Romania, pp 261–266Google Scholar
  62. Sokolov VYu (1998) Rough estimation of site response using earthquake ground motion records, In: Proc. Second Int. Symp. on the Effects of Surface Geology on Seismic Motion (ESG 1998). Yokohama, Japan, pp 517–522Google Scholar
  63. Sokolov VYu (2000) Hazard-consistent ground motions: generation on the basis of Uniform Hazard Fourier Spectra. Bull Seism Soc Am 90:1010–1027CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Sokolov VYu (2002) Seismic intensity and Fourier acceleration spectra: revised relationship. Earthquake Spectra 18:161–187CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Sokolov VYu, Chernov YuK (2001) Probabilistic microzonation of the urban territories: a case of Tashkent city. Pure Appl Geophys 158:2295–2312CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Sokolov VYu, Wald DJ (2002) Instrumental Intensity Distribution for the Hector Mine, California, and the Chi–Chi, Taiwan, Earthquakes: a Comparison of Two Methods. Bull Seism Soc Am 92:2145–2162CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Sokolov VYu, Loh CH, Wen KL (2004a) Evaluation of generalized site response functions for typical soil classes (B, C and D) in the Taiwan region. Earthquake Spectra 20:1279–1316CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Sokolov VYu, Bonjer K-P, Rizescu M (2004b) Assessment of site effect in Romania during intermediate depth Vrancea earthquakes using different techniques. In: Chen YT et al (eds) Earthquake hazard, risk, and strong ground motion. Seismological Press, Beijing, pp 295–322Google Scholar
  69. Sokolov VYu, Bonjer K-P, Wenzel F (2004c) Accounting for site effect in probabilistic assessment of seismic hazard for Romania and Bucharest: A case of deep seismicity in Vrancea. Soil Dyn Earthq Eng 24:929–947CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Sokolov VYu, Bonjer K-P, Oncescu M, Rizescu M (2005) Hard rock spectral models for intermediate-depth Vrancea (Romania) earthquakes. Bull Seism Soc Am 95:1749–1765CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Sperner B, the CRC 461 Team (2005) Monitoring of slab detachment in the Carpathians. In: Wenzel F (ed) Perspectives in modern seismology, LNES, Vol. 105. Springer-Verlag, Heidelberg, pp 187–202Google Scholar
  72. Sperner B, Lorenz F, Bonjer K, Hettel S, Müller B, Wenzel F (2001) Slab break-off—abrupt cut or gradual detachment? New insights from the Vrancea region (SE Carpathians, Romania). Terra Nova 13:172–179CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. Wenzel F, Lorenz FP, Sperner B, Oncescu MC (1999) Seismotectonics of the Romanian Vrancea area. In: Wenzel F et al (eds) Vrancea earthquakes: tectonics, hazard and risk mitigation. Kluwer Publishers, Dordrecht, pp 15–25Google Scholar
  74. Wirth W, Wenzel F, Sokolov V, Bonjer K-P (2003) A uniform approach to urban seismic effect analysis. Soil Dyn Earthq Eng 23:735–758CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alik Ismail-Zadeh
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Vladimir Sokolov
    • 1
  • Klaus-Peter Bonjer
    • 1
  1. 1.Geophysikalisches InstitutUniversität KarlsruheKarlsruheGermany
  2. 2.Institut de Physique du Globe de ParisParisFrance
  3. 3.International Institute of Earthquake Prediction Theory and Mathematical GeophysicsRussian Academy of SciencesMoscowRussia

Personalised recommendations