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Buried shallow fault slip from the South Napa earthquake revealed by near-field geodesy

Overview of attention for article published in Science Advances, July 2017
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  • In the top 25% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (89th percentile)
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Buried shallow fault slip from the South Napa earthquake revealed by near-field geodesy
Published in
Science Advances, July 2017
DOI 10.1126/sciadv.1700525
Pubmed ID

Benjamin A. Brooks, Sarah E. Minson, Craig L. Glennie, Johanna M. Nevitt, Tim Dawson, Ron Rubin, Todd L. Ericksen, David Lockner, Kenneth Hudnut, Victoria Langenheim, Andrew Lutz, Maxime Mareschal, Jessica Murray, David Schwartz, Dana Zaccone


Earthquake-related fault slip in the upper hundreds of meters of Earth's surface has remained largely unstudied because of challenges measuring deformation in the near field of a fault rupture. We analyze centimeter-scale accuracy mobile laser scanning (MLS) data of deformed vine rows within ±300 m of the principal surface expression of the M (magnitude) 6.0 2014 South Napa earthquake. Rather than assuming surface displacement equivalence to fault slip, we invert the near-field data with a model that allows for, but does not require, the fault to be buried below the surface. The inversion maps the position on a preexisting fault plane of a slip front that terminates ~3 to 25 m below the surface coseismically and within a few hours postseismically. The lack of surface-breaching fault slip is verified by two trenches. We estimate near-surface slip ranging from ~0.5 to 1.25 m. Surface displacement can underestimate fault slip by as much as 30%. This implies that similar biases could be present in short-term geologic slip rates used in seismic hazard analyses. Along strike and downdip, we find deficits in slip: The along-strike deficit is erased after ~1 month by afterslip. We find no evidence of off-fault deformation and conclude that the downdip shallow slip deficit for this event is likely an artifact. As near-field geodetic data rapidly proliferate and will become commonplace, we suggest that analyses of near-surface fault rupture should also use more sophisticated mechanical models and subsurface geomechanical tests.

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Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 30 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Ph. D. Student 7 23%
Researcher 7 23%
Student > Master 4 13%
Unspecified 3 10%
Other 3 10%
Other 6 20%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Earth and Planetary Sciences 18 60%
Unspecified 5 17%
Engineering 4 13%
Social Sciences 3 10%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 19. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 04 August 2017.
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Altmetric has tracked 12,434,047 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 94th percentile: it's in the top 10% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 2,500 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 128.1. This one is in the 35th percentile – i.e., 35% of its peers scored the same or lower than it.
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We're also able to compare this research output to 217 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one is in the 42nd percentile – i.e., 42% of its contemporaries scored the same or lower than it.