In the recent decades, satellite monitoring techniques have enhanced the discovery of non-catastrophic slope movements triggered by earthquake shaking involving old paleo-landslides with deep-seated sliding surfaces. Understanding the triggering and attenuation mechanisms of such mass movements is crucial to assessing their hazard. In December 2018, Etna volcano (southern Italy) began a very intense eruption, which was accompanied by a seismic swarm with magnitudes reaching 4.9. Synthetic aperture radar data identified local displacements over a hilly area to the west of Patern`o village. We evaluated the contribution of seismically induced surface instability to the observed ground displacement by employing a multidisciplinary analysis comprising geological, geotechnical and geomorphological data, together with analytical and dynamic modelling. The results allowed us to identify the geometry and kinematics of a previously unknown paleo-landslide, which was stable before the volcanic eruption. The landslide was triggered by the light-to-moderate seismic shaking produced by the strongest event of the seismic sequence, namely, the December 26, Mw 4.9 earthquake. This observation confirms that seismic shaking has a cumulative effect on landslides that does not necessarily manifest as a failure but could evolve into a catastrophic collapse after several earthquakes.

Analysis of a large seismically induced mass movement after the December 2018 Etna volcano (southern Italy) seismic swarm

Michele Saroli
Methodology
;
2021-01-01

Abstract

In the recent decades, satellite monitoring techniques have enhanced the discovery of non-catastrophic slope movements triggered by earthquake shaking involving old paleo-landslides with deep-seated sliding surfaces. Understanding the triggering and attenuation mechanisms of such mass movements is crucial to assessing their hazard. In December 2018, Etna volcano (southern Italy) began a very intense eruption, which was accompanied by a seismic swarm with magnitudes reaching 4.9. Synthetic aperture radar data identified local displacements over a hilly area to the west of Patern`o village. We evaluated the contribution of seismically induced surface instability to the observed ground displacement by employing a multidisciplinary analysis comprising geological, geotechnical and geomorphological data, together with analytical and dynamic modelling. The results allowed us to identify the geometry and kinematics of a previously unknown paleo-landslide, which was stable before the volcanic eruption. The landslide was triggered by the light-to-moderate seismic shaking produced by the strongest event of the seismic sequence, namely, the December 26, Mw 4.9 earthquake. This observation confirms that seismic shaking has a cumulative effect on landslides that does not necessarily manifest as a failure but could evolve into a catastrophic collapse after several earthquakes.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11580/85926
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