Serkan Öztürk, Hamdi Alkan

Multiple parameter analysis for assessing and forecasting earthquake hazards in the Lake Van region, Turkey

A detailed spatial-temporal analysis of the seismic activity in and around the Lake Van region was performed using several seismotectonic parameters such as b-value, Z-value, relative intensity (RI), pattern informatics (PI), and Coulomb stress changes. Correlations between these parameters were analyzed to estimate and forecast potential seismic hazards in the Lake Van region. Particular attention was paid to the parts of the study region that exhibited smaller b-values, higher Z-values, and high-stress changes at the beginning of 2022 and to the locations of earthquake hotspots determined from the composite earthquake forecast map for 2022–2032, i.e., Muradiye, Çaldıran, Özalp, Erçek, Van city center and Gevaş covering the faults of Çaldıran, Yeniköşk, Erciş, Malazgirt and the fault zones of Saray and Van. To provide more accurate interpretations regarding potential earthquake occurrences in the near future, the seismotectonic parameters analyzed in the scope of this study were compared with the corresponding seismological, geological, geodetical, and geochemical variables reported in the literature. This comparison showed that, firstly, our results are consistent with those reported in previous studies, and, secondly, all these variables should be interpreted in combination to correctly assess strong earthquake hazards. Furthermore, this type of multiple-parameter analysis may be important for the description of seismic, tectonic, and structural characteristics of the nature of the crust. Our findings show that almost all seismotectonic parameters indicative of anomaly regions, i.e., lower b-values, higher Z-values, high-stress distribution, and hotspots, were recorded in the same parts of the study region. Thus, the anomaly regions detected at the beginning of 2019 and between 2022 and 2032 may be considered to be potential zones of future great earthquakes. To summarize, the correlations among these variables may provide accurate information for assessing and forecasting earthquake hazards in this region.


Keywords Spatial-temporal evaluation; b-value; Z-value; Forecasting; Coulomb stress; Earthquake hazard

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