Localisation de la déformation et de la sismicité en domaine intraplaque : réactivation des paléo-structures crustales et lithosphériques

Abstract : Current deformation and seismicity are poorly understood phenomena in intraplate domains. In particular, the role of structural inheritance on spatial variations of seismicity, and hence seismic hazard, remains a major social and academic issue. Previous studies tend to show that rheology weakening created during the formation of large tectonic structures, currently inherited, is essential to explain the current deformation localization and magnitude. However, quantifying the structural inheritance impact on upper crustal deformation is still poorly constrained, if not unknown.The goal of this thesis is to quantify the impact of structural inheritance on present-day upper crustal deformation. It is performed through two research axes. The first one is the measure of precise strain rates in the Saint Lawrence Valley, eastern Canada, using the Global Positioning System (GPS). This region presents a strong structural inheritance related to the Iapetus paleo-rift (~700 Ma) and a dense GPS network, allowing a high resolution in the strain rate measurements both outside and inside the structural inheritance area. One of the novelties in this study is the combination of continues and campaign GPS stations (dedicated network, used for the first time to constrain strain rates in this region). GPS strain rate analysis show that structural inheritance significantly localizes the deformation, increasing 2-11 times the average surface strain rates in the structural inheritance area compared to surrounding regions. The comparison of GPS strain rates and glacial isostatic adjustment models (GIA, the main active process in the St Lawrence Valley) shows that GIA-induced strain rates are amplified inside the inheritance area about a factor of 6 to 28, whereas they are not amplified outside the inherited domain.The second research axe involves developing 2D thermo-mechanical numerical models including rheology weakening related to structural inheritance. Quantification of the upper crustal strain rate amplification is carried out following different weak zone localization in the lithosphere. Models are first produced for a generic intraplate domain and then, dedicated to the St Lawrence Valley. One of the novelties of this study is to analyze the models for a fixed net driving force (including the impact of regional and local forces) assumed to be at equilibrium with the lithospheric integrated strength. This approach allows studying the mechanical behavior of the lithosphere for a non-steady state. For a generic intraplate model, the strain rate amplification varies between 1 to 27 depending on the tested parameters (crustal strength, amount of inherited strain, geotherm and net driving force). These model amplification factors are in good agreement with observed GPS and seismic strain rates calculated on a large spatial scale (100s km) in Eastern North America. Representatives models of the St Lawrence Valley investigate the impact of the weak zone geometry and lateral variations of both the amount of weakening and the geotherm. The associated amplification range between 1-11 and is in good agreement with GPS amplifications calculated in this region. A major feature highlighted through this study is the presence of a preserved elastic core in the upper lithospheric mantle despite the high imposed weakening, limiting amplification effects.Our results reflect long-term behavior (10^3 to 10^5 yrs) of the lithosphere deformation and mechanical behavior. The next step is to include and quantify the impact of transient processes, which could be at the origin of structural inheritance reactivation.
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Alizia Tarayoun. Localisation de la déformation et de la sismicité en domaine intraplaque : réactivation des paléo-structures crustales et lithosphériques. Tectonique. Université Montpellier, 2018. Français. ⟨NNT : 2018MONTG055⟩. ⟨tel-02010582⟩

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