Ground deformation effects from the ~M6 earthquakes (2014–2015) on Cephalonia–Ithaca Islands (Western Greece) deduced by GPS observations

Abstract

The implications of the earthquakes that took place in the central Ionian Islands in 2014 (Cephalonia, M w6.1, M w5.9) and 2015 (Lefkas, M w6.4) are described based on repeat measurements of the local GPS networks in Cephalonia and Ithaca, and the available continuous GPS stations in the broader area. The Lefkas earthquake occurred on a branch of the Cephalonia Transform Fault, affecting Cephalonia with SE displacements gradually decreasing from north (~100 mm) to south (~10 mm). This earthquake revealed a near N–S dislocation boundary separating Paliki Peninsula in western Cephalonia from the rest of the island, as well as another NW–SE trending fault that separates kinematically the northern and southern parts of Paliki. Strain field calculations during the interseismic period (2014–2015) indicate compression between Ithaca and Cephalonia, while extension appears during the following co-seismic period (2015–2016) including the 2015 Lefkas earthquake. Additional tectonically active zones with differential kinematic characteristics were also identified locally.

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Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank Dr. M. Keiding, an anonymous reviewer and the editor Prof. E, Papadimitriou for their constructive comments. Data from the cGPS stations SPAN, PONT, VLSM, ZAKY AGRI were provided by the Geodynamic Institute of National Observatory of Athens (NOA), Greece. GPS receivers were provided by the Hellenic Forestry Commission, Athens. Figures were created with Generic Mapping Tool s/w (Wessel and Smith 1998). Ithaca GPS benchmarks were installed by Dr. Brian Damiata (UCLA).

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Correspondence to Vassilis Sakkas.

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Sakkas, V., Lagios, E. Ground deformation effects from the ~M6 earthquakes (2014–2015) on Cephalonia–Ithaca Islands (Western Greece) deduced by GPS observations. Acta Geophys. 65, 207–222 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11600-017-0017-x

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Keywords

  • Tectonic motions
  • Ground deformation
  • GPS measurements
  • Cephalonia
  • Ithaca Islands
  • Ionian Sea