Land-Level Changes Produced by the Mw 8.8 2010 Chilean Earthquake

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Science  29 Jul 2010:
DOI: 10.1126/science.1192094


We observed vertically displaced coastal and river markers after the 27 February 2010 Chilean earthquake [moment magnitude (Mw) 8.8]. Land-level changes range between 2.5 and –1 meters, evident along an approximately 500-kilometer-long segment identified here as the maximum length of coseismic rupture. A hinge line located 120 kilometers from the trench separates uplifted areas, to the west, from subsided regions. A simple elastic dislocation model fits these observations well; model parameters give a similar seismic moment to seismological estimates and suggest that most of the plate convergence since the 1835 great earthquake was elastically stored and then released during this event.