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Nonlinear Processes in Geophysics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 17, issue 5
Nonlin. Processes Geophys., 17, 513–527, 2010
https://doi.org/10.5194/npg-17-513-2010
© Author(s) 2010. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Special issue: Complexity and extreme events in geosciences

Nonlin. Processes Geophys., 17, 513–527, 2010
https://doi.org/10.5194/npg-17-513-2010
© Author(s) 2010. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

  04 Oct 2010

04 Oct 2010

Intraplate seismicity in Canada: a graph theoretic approach to data analysis and interpretation

K. Vasudevan1, D. W. Eaton1, and J. Davidsen2 K. Vasudevan et al.
  • 1Department of Geoscience, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta T2N 1N4, Canada
  • 2Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta T2N 1N4, Canada

Abstract. Intraplate seismicity occurs in central and northern Canada, but the underlying origin and dynamics remain poorly understood. Here, we apply a graph theoretic approach to characterize the statistical structure of spatiotemporal clustering exhibited by intraplate seismicity, a direct consequence of the underlying nonlinear dynamics. Using a recently proposed definition of "recurrences" based on record breaking processes (Davidsen et al., 2006, 2008), we have constructed directed graphs using catalogue data for three selected regions (Region 1: 45°−48° N/74°−80° W; Region 2: 51°−55° N/77°−83° W; and Region 3: 56°−70° N/65°−95° W), with attributes drawn from the location, origin time and the magnitude of the events. Based on comparisons with a null model derived from Poisson distribution or Monte Carlo shuffling of the catalogue data, our results provide strong evidence in support of spatiotemporal correlations of seismicity in all three regions considered. Similar evidence for spatiotemporal clustering has been documented using seismicity catalogues for southern California, suggesting possible similarities in underlying earthquake dynamics of both regions despite huge differences in the variability of seismic activity.

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