2007 Alum

Emanuelle A. Feliciano Bonillo

Emanuelle A. Feliciano Bonilla

Years participated in RESESS:
2008 →

An Overview

Historical seismicity of the northeastern region of Russia: A perspective on the M7.6 earthquake at Koryakia, Russia

Academic Affiliation: Undergraduate, University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez, Geology
Science Research Mentors: Harley Benz - USGS; Antonio Villaseñor - Institute of Earth Sciences Jaume Almera
Writing and Communication Mentor: Shelley Olds - UNAVCO
Community Mentor: Joe Pettit - UNAVCO
Peer Mentor: Armand Silva


A major earthquake which occurred near Koryakia, Russia during April 20, 2006 is analyzed and given perspective in contrast with the historical seismicity, plate tectonics and the local geology of the area. The relevance of this earthquake is that it occurred in a complex geological area, where the locations of the plate boundaries are not well known and no major earthquakes were recorded since 1900. This event is evaluated through a comparison with past events and plate tectonic models. Our approach to analyzing the tectonic regime of the Koryakia region included, conducting a survey of published articles on the geology of the area, mapping of the regional seismicity in ArcGIS and creating models of 3D visualization of the region using 3D Seismicity Viewer. An analysis of the resulting maps and models gives us a new perspective of what mechanisms triggered this major M7.6 earthquake that was the cause of leaving 40 people injured and some buildings and water supply systems badly damaged. The earthquake caused an estimated 55 million U.S. dollars worth of damage. The goal of this research has been to make a well structured tectonic summary, which can be used as a reference by the USGS and the scientific community for future events that may occur in or near the Koryakia region. Our research indicates that the possible cause of the event is a release in stress due to the compression near a proposed boundary between the Bering microplate and the North American plate.