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Proceedings Paper

Kinematics and seismotectonics of a segment of the North America-Caribbean plate boundary: a remote sensing and field study of the Jocotan fault system in Guatemala
Author(s): Luca Ferrari; Giorgio Pasquare; Eugenio Zilioli
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Paper Abstract

We studied the kinematics and the tectonics setting of the Guatemalan part of the Jocotan fault system (JFS), the southernmost of the three left-lateral fault systems considered to form the North America- Caribbean plate boundary. Remote sensing studies were carried out on standard false colour composite 1:250,000 and band 3 (near infrared) 1:250,000 Landsat MSS scenes and include a supervised morpho-structural classification and a statistical analysis of both volcano-tectonic and tectonic lineaments. The interpretation of these data revealed a clear left-lateral deformation pattern in the form of Riedel shear fractures with a dominant orientation 60 degree(s)N-75 degree(s)E at any length class of lineaments. Two NNE trending extensional structures, the Jocotan and the Chiquimula half-grabens, are located along the central part of the JFS and are interpreted as releasing bend structures associated with a change in the fault trend from ENE to E-W. Although the JFS appears a very marked feature, no definite evidences of recent active tectonic motions were detected. The field study confirmed that the JFS is a first order left-lateral strike-slip structure, which accommodated also a certain amount of southward thrusts. Field inspections along land fissures opened during the 1976 Guatemala earthquake indicated that they were likely due to gravitational failure triggered by the ground motion.

Paper Details

Date Published: 30 December 1994
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 2320, Geology from Space, (30 December 1994); doi: 10.1117/12.197300
Show Author Affiliations
Luca Ferrari, Univ. degli Studi/Milano (Italy)
Giorgio Pasquare, Univ. degli Studi/Milano (Italy)
Eugenio Zilioli, IRRS/CNR (Italy)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2320:
Geology from Space
Eugenio Zilioli, Editor(s)

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