Seismological constraints for the dyke emplacement of the July-August 2001 lateral eruption at Mt. Etna volcano, Italy

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Domenico Patanè
Eugenio Privitera
Stefano Gresta
Aybige Akinci
Salvatore Arpalone
Graziella Barberi
Lauro Chiaraluce
Ornella Cocina
Salvatore D'amico
Pasquale De Gori
Giuseppe Di Grazia
Susanna Falsaperla
Ferruccio Ferrari
Salvatore Gambino
Elisabetta Giampiccolo
Horst Langer
Vincenza Maiolino
Milena Moretti
Antonino Mostaccio
Carla Musumeci
Davide Piccinini
Danilo Reitano
Luciano Scarfì
Salvatore Spampinato
Andrea Ursino
Luciano Zuccarello


In this paper we report seismological evidence regarding the emplacement of the dike that fed the July 18 - August 9, 2001 lateral eruption at Mt. Etna volcano. The shallow intrusion and the opening of the eruptive fracture system, which mostly occurred during July 12, and July 18, were accompanied by one of the most intense seismic swarms of the last 20 years. A total of 2694 earthquakes (1 £ Md £ 3.9) were recorded from the beginning of the swarm (July 12) to the end of the eruption (August 9). Seismicity shows the upward migration of the dike from the basement to the relatively thin volcanic pile. A clear hypocentral migration was observed, well constraining the upwards propagation of a near-vertical dike, oriented roughly N-S, and located a few kilometers south of the summit region. Earthquake distribution and orientation of the P-axes from focal mechanisms indicate that the swarm was caused by the local stress source related to the dike intrusion.

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Patanè, D., Privitera, E., Gresta, S., Akinci, A., Arpalone, S., Barberi, G., Chiaraluce, L., Cocina, O., D’amico, S., De Gori, P., Di Grazia, G., Falsaperla, S., Ferrari, F., Gambino, S., Giampiccolo, E., Langer, H., Maiolino, V., Moretti, M., Mostaccio, A., Musumeci, C., Piccinini, D., Reitano, D., Scarfì, L., Spampinato, S., Ursino, A. and Zuccarello, L. (2003) “Seismological constraints for the dyke emplacement of the July-August 2001 lateral eruption at Mt. Etna volcano, Italy”, Annals of Geophysics, 46(4), pp. 599–608. doi: 10.4401/ag-6302.

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