The Canfranc underground laboratory (LSC), excavated under the Central Pyrenees, is mainly devoted to the study of phenomena which needs "cosmic silence." It also hosts a geodynamical facility, named Geodyn, which holds an accelerometer, a broadband seismometer, and two high-resolution laser strainmeters. During the routine processing of the seismic data, we detected an unusual spectral signature in the 2-10 Hz frequency band, which does not correspond to the typical sources of seismic noise and which can also be recognized in the strain records. After checking against meteorological and hydrological data, we can relate those signals to variations in the discharge by the Aragon River, an Alpine-style river in the southern Pyrenees, located about 400m from the LSC Geodyn facility. Four main episodes have been identified since early 2011, each lasting 1-2 to 6-8 days. Additionally, a limited number of shorter episodes have also been detected. Three types of river-generated seismic events have been identified, related respectively to moderate rainfall, snowmelt, and flooding events associated to severe storms. Each of those types has distinctive characteristics which allow monitoring the hydrological events from the analysis of seismic and deformation data. A few previous studies have already described the seismic noise close to rivers with larger discharge or in small-scale experimental settings, and we are showing here that the so-called "fluvial seismology" can be useful to study the hydrological evolution of Alpine style streams and may have a potential interest for the civil authorities in charge of the management of hydrological basins.

Seismic monitoring of an Alpine mountain river

CRESCENTINI, LUCA;AMORUSO, ANTONELLA;
2014

Abstract

The Canfranc underground laboratory (LSC), excavated under the Central Pyrenees, is mainly devoted to the study of phenomena which needs "cosmic silence." It also hosts a geodynamical facility, named Geodyn, which holds an accelerometer, a broadband seismometer, and two high-resolution laser strainmeters. During the routine processing of the seismic data, we detected an unusual spectral signature in the 2-10 Hz frequency band, which does not correspond to the typical sources of seismic noise and which can also be recognized in the strain records. After checking against meteorological and hydrological data, we can relate those signals to variations in the discharge by the Aragon River, an Alpine-style river in the southern Pyrenees, located about 400m from the LSC Geodyn facility. Four main episodes have been identified since early 2011, each lasting 1-2 to 6-8 days. Additionally, a limited number of shorter episodes have also been detected. Three types of river-generated seismic events have been identified, related respectively to moderate rainfall, snowmelt, and flooding events associated to severe storms. Each of those types has distinctive characteristics which allow monitoring the hydrological events from the analysis of seismic and deformation data. A few previous studies have already described the seismic noise close to rivers with larger discharge or in small-scale experimental settings, and we are showing here that the so-called "fluvial seismology" can be useful to study the hydrological evolution of Alpine style streams and may have a potential interest for the civil authorities in charge of the management of hydrological basins.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11386/4432257
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