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Preliminary report on regional resistivity variation inferred from the Network MT investigation in the Shikoku district, southwestern Japan


The Network MT method was used in the eastern part of the Shikoku district, southwestern Japan, and a total of thirty-nine MT impedances (64 to 2560 sec) were obtained. These MT impedances had their values averaged over a triangular element, whose sides were a few kilometers long with geomagnetic observatory data from the Kakioka Geomagnetic Observatory. Well-determined MT impedances varied from north to south with the greatest differences being at the Median Tectonic Line, which is consistent with the surface geology in the area. In addition, very large or very small values of apparent resistivity were obtained in some triangular elements. These triangles were located on a cape or near an estuary, with effects of three-dimensionality clearly apparent. Stable MT impedances were not obtained for three groups of triangular elements: (1) those where one or two sides of the triangular element cross the coast; (2) those where the electric field was contaminated by severe artificial noise, these were mainly in the northwestern part of the survey area; (3) those where the triangles had an extremely acute- or obtuse-angle.

A resistivity cross section was derived from the TM-mode data for a profile crossing the eastern part of the area. The shallower layer, which approximately corresponds to the crust, was divided into three blocks. Two resistive boundaries coincide with the geological tectonic lines and the strong horizontal contrast found at the Median Tectonic Line. The northernmost block is the most resistive, and the block to the south is the most conductive. Beneath these blocks, the subducting Philippine Sea plate was represented by a thick and highly resistive north-dipping layer. A highly conductive thin layer was found above the resistive layer on the southern side of the Median Tectonic Line. This layer is only found beneath the southern side of the Median Tectonic Line and is probably caused by pore water and/or sediment at the upper plane of the subducting Philippine Sea plate. Another conductive layer was found under the highly resistive north-dipping layer.

The resistivity structure from the lower crust to the upper mantle is firstly obtained using the Network-MT method. However, further developments are needed in methods of data analysis, which are robust to artificial electric noise, in order to clarify the spatial distribution of MT impedances in the complete study area.


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Correspondence to Satoru Yamaguchi.

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Yamaguchi, S., Kobayashi, Y., Oshiman, N. et al. Preliminary report on regional resistivity variation inferred from the Network MT investigation in the Shikoku district, southwestern Japan. Earth Planet Sp 51, 193–203 (1999).

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  • Apparent Resistivity
  • Triangular Element
  • Nankai Trough
  • Apparent Resistivity Curve
  • Short Period Range