Preliminary analysis of radon time series before the Ml=6 Amatrice earthquake: possible implications for fluid migration

Valentina Cannelli, Antonio Piersanti, Elena Spagnuolo, Gianfranco Galli


On August 24, 2016, a Ml=6.0 earthquake occurred in Central Apennines, Italy, between the towns of Norcia and Amatrice, causing severe destruction and casualties in a wide area around the epicenter. We present a preliminary analysis of continuous radon concentration data collected from the second half of 2012 to the day after the earthquake by a long term radon monitoring station, installed at Cittareale (Rieti, Italy), about 11 km south-west of the epicenter. We combine the field data analysis with the outcome of dedicated laboratory experiments, aimed to study real time radon emission dynamics from rock samples subject to normal and shear stress loads in absence of fluid transport and migration phenomena. Our results suggest the possibility of a minor role played by phenomena related to fluid migration for the Amatrice seismic event with respect to other recent Apennine earthquakes.


Amatrice earthquake; Continuous radon concentration analysis; Laboratory experiments

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Published by INGV, Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia - ISSN: 2037-416X