Earthquake cycle mechanics during caldera collapse: Simulating the 2018 Kīlauea eruption

Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth
By:  and 



In multiple observed caldera-forming eruptions, the rock overlying a draining magma reservoir dropped downward along ring faults in sequences of discrete collapse earthquakes. These sequences are analogous to tectonic earthquake cycles and provide opportunities to examine fault mechanics and collapse eruption dynamics over multiple events. Collapse earthquake cycles have been studied with zero-dimensional slider-block models, but these do not account for the complicated interplay between fluid and elastic dynamics or for factors such as the heterogeneous fault properties and non-vertical ring fault geometries often inferred at volcanoes. We present two-dimensional axisymmetric mafic piston-like collapse earthquake cycle models that include rate-and-state friction, fully-dynamic elasticity, and compressible viscous fluid magma flow. We demonstrate that collapse earthquake intervals and magnitudes are highly sensitive to inertial effects, evolving stress fields, fault geometry, and depth-varying fault friction. Given the consistent earthquake cycles observed in most eruptions, this suggests that ring faults can quickly stabilize and often become nearly vertical at depth. We use the well-monitored 2018 collapse sequence at Kı̄lauea as a case study. Our model can produce many features of Kı̄lauea seismic and geodetic observations, except for a significant amount of interseismic slip, which cannot be readily explained with simple rate-and-state friction parameterizations.

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Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Earthquake cycle mechanics during caldera collapse: Simulating the 2018 Kīlauea eruption
Series title Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth
DOI 10.1029/2024JB028886
Volume 129
Issue 5
Year Published 2024
Language English
Publisher Wiley
Contributing office(s) Volcano Science Center
Description e2024JB028886
Country United States
State Hawaii
Other Geospatial Kīlauea volcano
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