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Insights on fault reactivation during the 2019 November 11, Mw 4.9 Le Teil earthquake in southeastern France, from a joint 3-D geological model and InSAR time-series analysis

Abstract : The 2019, Mw 4.9 Le Teil earthquake occurred in southeastern France, causing substantial damage in this slow deforming region. Field observations, remote sensing and seismological studies following the event revealed that coseismic slip concentrates at shallow depth along a ~5 km long rupture associated with surface breaks and a thrusting mechanism. We further investigate this earthquake by combining geological field mapping, 3-D geology, InSAR time-series analysis and a coseismic slip inversion. From structural, stratigraphic and geological data collected around the epicentre, we first produce a 3-D geological model of the region surrounding the rupture using the GeoModeller software. Our model includes the geometry of the geological layers and the main faults, including the La Rouvière Fault, (LRF) the Oligocene normal fault that ruptured during the earthquake. We generate a time-series of surface displacement from Sentinel-1 SAR data ranging from early 2019 January to late 2020 January using the NSBAS processing chain. The spatio-temporal patterns of surface displacement for this time span show neither a clear pre-seismic signal nor significant post-seismic transient deformation. We extract the coseismic displacement pattern from the InSAR time-series, highlighting along-strike variations of coseismic surface slip. The maximum relative displacement along the line of sight is up to ~16 cm and is located in the southwestern part of the rupture. We invert for the slip distribution on the fault from the InSAR coseismic surface displacement field. Constraining our fault geometry from the geological model, acceptable fault dip ranges between 55° and 60°. Our model confirms the reactivation of LRF, with reverse slip at very shallow depth and two main slip patches reaching, respectively, 30 and 24 cm of slip, both around 500 m depth. We finally discuss how the 3-D fault geometry and geological structure may have impacted the slip distribution and propagation during the earthquake. This study is a step to reassess the seismic hazard of the many faults similar to the La Rouvière one along the Cévennes fault system, in a densely populated area hosting several sensitive nuclear sites.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, February 22, 2022 - 1:39:27 PM
Last modification on : Sunday, May 1, 2022 - 3:17:51 AM

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L. Marconato, P. H. Leloup, C. Lasserre, R. Jolivet, Séverine Caritg, et al.. Insights on fault reactivation during the 2019 November 11, Mw 4.9 Le Teil earthquake in southeastern France, from a joint 3-D geological model and InSAR time-series analysis. Geophysical Journal International, 2022, 229, pp.758-775. ⟨10.1093/gji/ggab498⟩. ⟨insu-03584321⟩

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