A sea-floor spreading event captured by seismometers

Publication Type  Journal Article
Year of Publication  2006
Authors  Tolstoy, M.; Cowen, J. P.; Baker, E. T.; Fornari, D. J.; Rubin, K. H.; Shank, T. M.; Waldhauser, F.; Bohnenstiehl, D. R.; Forsyth, D. W.; Holmes, R. C.; Love, B.; Perfit, M. R.; Weekly, R. T.; Soule, S. A.; Glazer, B.
Journal Title  Science
Volume  314
Issue  5807
Pages  1920-1922
Journal Date  Dec 22
ISBN Number  0036-8075
Accession Number  ISI:000242996800046
Key Words  east pacific rise; volcanic activity; midocean ridges; segmentation; patterns; crest; vents

Two-thirds of Earth's surface is formed at mid-ocean ridges, yet sea-floor spreading events are poorly understood because they occur far beneath the ocean surface. At 9 degrees 50' N on the East Pacific Rise, ocean-bottom seismometers recently recorded the microearthquake character of a mid-ocean ridge eruption, including precursory activity. A gradual ramp-up in activity rates since seismic monitoring began at this site in October 2003 suggests that eruptions may be forecast in the fast-spreading environment. The pattern culminates in an intense but brief (similar to 6-hour) inferred diking event on 22 January 2006, followed by rapid tapering to markedly decreased levels of seismicity.


119EYTimes Cited:11Cited References Count:24

URL  http://www.ldeo.columbia.edu/~felixw/papers/Tolstoy_etal_Science2006.pdf
DOI  DOI 10.1126/science.1133950