"I'm sure you have heard about the San Andreas fault
being overdue for an earthquake, so from dating past earthquakes, we know that the average recurrent interval is about 180 years," according to Dr Thomas Rockwell, a San Diego State University geology professor and paleoseismologist.
Geological Survey (USGS) said the southern San Andreas Fault
has typically seen large earthquakes every 150 years.
A magnitude 8.2 earthquake would rupture the San Andreas Fault
from the Salton Sea - close to the Mexican border - all the way to Monterey County.
These unusual earthquakes, called low-frequency earthquakes, or tremor due to their low rumbling character compared to ordinary earthquakes, were recently discovered along an unexpectedly weak section of Californias 800-mile-long San Andreas Fault
. It has been known for several years that these earthquakes surge in response to the daily tides; the new study reports that this surge is strongest during certain phases of the moon, on a cycle that repeats every 14 days.
The San Andreas Fault
, which runs for more than 800 miles through California, gives way, triggering a magnitude 9 earthquake that decimates the west coast.
In contrast, California's San Andreas fault
is several kilometres thick in places.
The team of scientists, from Edinburgh University, used the data to examine the impact of such movements, called tectonic activity, on hills in California's San Andreas Fault
They include new views on the evolution of the San Andreas fault
zone in central California and the Carrizo Plain, from deep to modern time along the western Sierra Nevada foothills from San Joaquin to Kern River drainages, mesozoic metasedimentary framework and gabbroids of the Early Cretaceous Sierra Nevada batholith, and debris flows in the southern and eastern Sierra Nevada region.
After a stunning flight over the San Andreas Fault
, audiences travel back in time to experience San Francisco's infamous 1906 earthquake.
USGS geophysicist Don Blakeman said the temblor struck in a "seismically active area" near the San Andreas Fault
, about 90 miles (145 kilometers) southeast of San Jose.
The San Andreas Fault
map was produced with SCAI's Mapping Contouring Software (MCS), a petroleum reservoir modeling software package used in the petroleum Industry by petroleum engineers, reservoir engineers, geophysicists, and geologists.
"This study could explain a lot of the questions about the mechanics of the San Andreas Fault
and other earthquakes," said Tullis, professor emeritus of geological sciences, who has studied earthquakes for more than three decades.