JGR: Solid Earth
We developed a catalog of small magnitude (ML −0.1 to 4.7) seismicity across Colorado and New Mexico from the EarthScope USArray Transportable Array and CREST (Colorado Rocky Mountains Experiment and Seismic Transects) seismic networks from 2008 to 2010 to characterize active deformation in the Rio Grande Rift. We recorded over 900 earthquakes in the Rio Grande Rift region, not including induced earthquakes and mine blasts, and find that the rift is actively deforming both broadly and in distinct regions. Seismic events that are likely induced, mostly in the Raton Basin, make up 66% of the catalog (1837 earthquakes). Neogene faults in the northern rift in north central Colorado are seismically active in the North Park Basin and northwestern Colorado. The central rift from the San Luis Basin (southern Colorado) to south of the Socorro Magma Body is the most seismically active rift region, and seismicity delineates the deformation in the Colorado Plateau transition zone, which is spatially correlated with volcanic vents, dikes, and faults within the western Jemez Lineament. The eastern Jemez Lineament is nearly aseismic and surrounded by a halo of seismicity culminating in boundaries defined by recent moderate (Mw 3.9 and Mw 3.3) earthquakes. The southern rift is characterized by diffuse seismicity in Texas and Mexico. This study provides an updated seismic catalog built with uniformity in seismometer coverage and low epicentral uncertainties (~2 km) that allows for regional evaluation of seismicity. During this time period, clusters of seismicity and moderate magnitude earthquakes characterize deformation in a low‐strain rate extensional environment.
Nakai, J.S.; Sheehan, A.F.; and Bilek, S.L., "Seismicity of the rocky mountains and Rio Grande Rift from the EarthScope Transportable Array and CREST temporary seismic networks, 2008–2010" (2017). Geological Sciences Faculty Contributions. 21.