Repeating Earthquakes at the Edge of the Afterslip of the 2016 Ecuadorian MW 7.8 Pedernales Earthquake

Caroline Chalumeau, Hans Agurto-Detzel, Louis De Barros, Philippe Charvis, Audrey Galve, Andreas Rietbrock, Alexandra Alvarado, Stephen Hernandez, Susan Beck, Yvonne Font, Mariah C. Hoskins, Sergio León-Ríos, Anne Meltzer, Colton Lynner, Frederique Rolandone, Jean Mathieu Nocquet, Marc Régnier, Mario Ruiz, Lillian Soto-Cordero, Sandro VacaMónica Segovia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Repeating earthquakes repeatedly rupture the same seismic asperity and are strongly linked to aseismic slip. Here, we study the repeating aftershocks of the April 16, 2016 MW 7.8 Pedernales earthquake in Ecuador, which generated a large amount of afterslip. Using temporary and permanent stations, we correlate waveforms from a one-year catalog of aftershocks. We sort events with a minimum correlation coefficient of 0.95 into preliminary families, which are then expanded using template-matching to include events from April 2015 to June 2017. In total, 376 repeaters are classified into 62 families of 4–15 events. They are relocated, first using manual picks, and then using a double difference method. We find repeating earthquakes during the whole period, occurring primarily within large aftershock clusters on the edges of the areas of largest afterslip release. Their recurrence times, shortened by the mainshock, subsequently increase following an Omori-type law, providing a timeframe for the afterslip's deceleration. Although they are linked temporally to the afterslip, repeater-derived estimates of slip differ significantly from GPS-based models. Combined with the fact that repeaters appear more spatially correlated with the afterslip gradient than with the afterslip maxima, we suggest that stress accumulation at the edge of the afterslip may guide repeater behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere2021JB021746
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2021


  • Pedernales
  • afterslip
  • cross correlation
  • match filtering
  • repeating earthquakes
  • subduction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science


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