Volume 10 Issue 2
Jan.  2021
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R. Castaldo, L. D'Auria, S. Pepe, G. Solaro, V. De Novellis, P. Tizzani. The impact of crustal rheology on natural seismicity: Campi Flegrei caldera case study[J]. Geoscience Frontiers, 2019, 10(2): 453-466. doi: 10.1016/j.gsf.2018.02.003
Citation: R. Castaldo, L. D'Auria, S. Pepe, G. Solaro, V. De Novellis, P. Tizzani. The impact of crustal rheology on natural seismicity: Campi Flegrei caldera case study[J]. Geoscience Frontiers, 2019, 10(2): 453-466. doi: 10.1016/j.gsf.2018.02.003

The impact of crustal rheology on natural seismicity: Campi Flegrei caldera case study

doi: 10.1016/j.gsf.2018.02.003

This work was carried out within the framework of the GEOTHERMAL ATLAS OF SOUTHERN ITALY project, one of six constituting the program CNR per il Mezzogiorno of the Italian National Research Council, aimed at improving know-how in the fields of advanced technology for energy efficiency, environmental protection, agro-food innovative methodologies for the Made in Italy and biotech medicine production, and was partially funded by 368 DTA. AD004.065.001 Geophysics-Project CNR _PDGP 2016-2018.

  • Received Date: 2017-06-16
  • Rev Recd Date: 2017-12-11
  • Publish Date: 2021-01-07
  • We analyze the crustal rheology beneath the active resurgent Campi Flegrei caldera (CFc) in Southern Italy by modelling the 3D brittle-ductile (B/D) transition, based on available thermal, geological and geophysical data. Firstly, the thermal field in the conductive physical regime is modeled using a finite element method; based on an optimization tool, this method is applied to evaluate the location and dimensions of the deep thermal source beneath the caldera. A horizontally-extended thermal anomaly located at about 5000 m depth below sea level is identified beneath Pozzuoli Bay, a part of the CFc. The same isotherm is located at a depth of 20,000 m beyond the caldera. This indicates a higher horizontal temperature gradient in the caldera with respect to the surrounding area. Next, we utilize this thermal model to image the 3D rheological stratification of the shallow crust below the caldera with two different values of strain rates. Within the caldera, the B/D transitions with ε equal to 10-12 s-1 and 10-8 s-1 are located at 3000 m and 5000 m depths, respectively. Outside the caldera, the transition is very deep (15,000-20,000 m), seemingly uninfluenced by the thermal state of the CFc volcanism. Finally, we compare these results with the spatial distribution of earthquake hypocenters, Benioff strain release and b-value distribution to investigate the relationship between crustal rheology and seismicity characteristics. Our analysis reveals that the image of the B/D transition is in agreement with the distribution of earthquake hypocenters, constraining the potential seismogenic volume of the region. Our study demonstrates that knowledge of the rheological state of a volcanic system is an important element to interpret its dynamic, forecast future activity and improve evaluation of the associated seismic hazard.
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