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Earthquakes as a stress meter of active volcanoes
  • Yosuke Aoki
Yosuke Aoki
Earthquake Research Institute, The University of Tokyo

Corresponding Author:yaoki@eri.u-tokyo.ac.jp

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The orientation of faulting associated with volcano-tectonic earthquakes follows the stress field there, as with tectonic earthquakes. Therefore, stress changes associated with volcanic activity change fault orientations or focal mechanisms. Zhan et al. (2022) observed temporal changes of focal mechanisms associated with volcanic unrest. They decomposed the stress field into the ambient differential stress, volcano loading, and the stress change by the dike intrusion; they then evaluated their relative contributions to constrain the magnitude of the ambient differential stress that is consistent with the observation. This study indicates that focal mechanisms can be used to monitor the stress state of an active volcano. Combining focal mechanisms with other geophysical observables, such as seismic anisotropy and geodetic measurements, will give us more precise assessments of the stress state, leading to better forecasts of volcanic activity.