Skip to main content

Fine fault structure of a moderate earthquake in the 2007 earthquake sequence of Northern Mie, Japan


A moderate crustal earthquake (Mj = 5.4) occurred in the northern part of Mie Prefecture, Central Japan, 2007. In order to clarify the fault structure of the main shock and its relation to the active faults, we estimated the precise hypocenter locations and focal mechanisms. For the relocation of the hypocenters, we used the differential time obtained by both manual picking and waveform cross-correlation analysis. The estimated detailed fault structure suggests that the main shock ruptured the southwestward dipping fault plane. We found that the faults of the moderate earthquake possessed complex fault segments. Around the largest aftershock hypocenter, a subsidiary fault plane parallel to the main shock fault was identified. This result suggests that the fault structure around the deep part of the active fault is complicated. The hypocenters of the foreshock and main shock were located in the offset part of the aftershock alignment, implying that they did not occur on the same fault plane. The Chisato Fault and Yokkaichi Fault were located around the upward extension of the aftershock alignment. The main shock probably occurred in the deep parts of these faults.


  • Boatwright, J., Detailed spectral analysis of two small New York State earthquakes, Bull. Seismol. Soc. Am., 68, 1131–1177, 1978.

    Google Scholar 

  • Douglas, A. D., G. C. Beroza, and W. L. Ellsworth, Foreshock sequence of the 1992 Landers, California, earthquake and its implications for earthquake nucleation, J. Geophys. Res., 100, 9865–9880, 1995.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Fukuyama, E., W. L. Ellsworth, F. Waldhause, and A. Kubo, Detailed fault structure of the 2000Western Tottori, Japan, Earthquake Sequence, Bull. Seismol. Soc. Am., 93, 1468–1478, 2003.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Hanmer, S., Great Slave Lake shear zone, Canadian Shield: Reconstructed vertical profile of a crustal-scale fault zone, Tectonophysics, 149, 245–264, 1988.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Ide, S., G. C. Beroza, S. G. Prejean, and W. L. Ellsworth, Apparent break in earthquake scaling due to path and site effects on deep borehole recordings, J. Geophys. Res., 108(B5), doi:10.1029/2001JB001617, 2003.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ikeda, Y., T. Imaizumi, H. Sato, M. Togo, K. Hirakawa, and T. Miyamachi, in Atlas of Quaternary Thrust Fault in Japan, p. 254, University of Tokyo Press, Tokyo, 2002 (in Japanese).

    Google Scholar 

  • Imanishi, K., Y. Kuwahara, T. Takeda, and Y. Haryu, The seismicity, fault structures, and stress field in the seismic gap adjacent to the 2004 Mid- Niigata earthquake inferred from seismological observations, Earth Planets Space, 58, 831–841, 2006.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Ishiyama, T., K. Mueller, H. Sato, and M. Togo, Coseismic fault-related fold model, growth structure, and the historic multisegment blind thrust earthquake on the basement-involved Yoro thrust, Central Japan, J. Geophys. Res., 112, B03S07, doi:10.1029/2006JB004377, 2007.

  • Jones, L. M., B. Wang, S. Xu, and T. J. Fitch, The foreshock sequence of the February 4, 1975, Haicheng Earthquake (M= 7.3), J. Geophys. Res., 87, 4575–4584, 1982.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Kagan, Y. Y., 3-D rotation of double-couple earthquake sources, Geophys. J. Int., 106, 708–716, 1991.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kato, A., E. Kurashimo, N. Hirata, S. Sakai, and T. Iwasaki, Imaging the source region of the 2004 Mid-Niigata Prefecture earthquake and the evolution of a seismogenic thrust-related fold, Geophys. Res. Lett., 32, L07307, doi:10.1029/2005GL022355, 2005.

  • Norris, R. J., Strain localization within ductile shear zone beneath active faults: The Alpine Fault contrasted with the adjacent Otago Fault system, New Zealand, Earth Planets Space, 56, 1095–1101, 2004.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Obara, K., K. Kasahara, S. Hori, and Y. Okada, A densely distributed highsensitivity seismograph network in Japan: Hi-net by National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention, Rev. Sci. Instrum., 76, 021301-doi:10.1063/1.1854197, 2005.

  • Organization of the Headquarters for Earthquake Research Promotion, Long term Evaluations of Eastern Nunobiki Mountains active fault system,, 2005.

    Google Scholar 

  • Research Group for Active Faults of Japan, Active Faults in Japan, revised edition, 437 pp., University of Tokyo Press, Tokyo, 1991 (in Japanese).

    Google Scholar 

  • Sato, H., N. Hirata, K. Koketsu, K. Ito, D. Okaya, T. Iwasaki, T. Ito, K. Kasahara, S. Abe, T. Kawanaka, M. Matsubara, R. Kobayashi, and T. Ikawa, Seismic reflection profiling in the Kanto and Kinki Metropolitan Areas, Japan, Bull. Earthq. Res. Inst. Univ. Tokyo, 81, 233–238, 2006.

    Google Scholar 

  • Shearer, P., Improving local earthquake locations using the L1 norm and waveform cross correlation: Application to the Whittier Narrows, California, aftershock sequence, J. Geophys. Res., 102, 8269–8283, 1997.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Shibutani, T., Y. Iio, S. Matsumoto, H. Katao, T. Matsushima, S. Ohmi, F. Takeuchi, K. Uehira, K. Nishigami, B. Enescu, I. Hirose, Y. Kano, Y. Kohno, M. Korenaga, Y. Mamada, M. Miyazawa, T. Ueno, H. Wada, and Y. Yukutake, Aftershock distribution of the 2004 Mid Niigata Prefecture Earthquake derived from a combined analysis of temporary online observations and permanent observations, Earth Planets Space, 57, 545–549, 2005.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Ukawa, M., M. Ishida, S. Matsumura, and K. Kasahara, Hypocenter determination of the Kanto-Tokai Observation Network for microearthquakes, Rep. Nat’l. Res. Inst. Earth Sci. Disas. Prev., 53, 1–88, 1984.

    Google Scholar 

  • Waldhauser, F. and W. L. Ellsworth, A double-difference earthquake location algorithm: Method and application to the Northern Hayward fault, Bull. Seismol. Soc. Am., 90, 1352–1368, 2000.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Wessel, P. and W. H. F. Smith, New version of the generic mapping tools released, Eos Trans. AGU, 76, 329, 1995.

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Yohei Yukutake.

Rights and permissions

Open Access  This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made.

The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder.

To view a copy of this licence, visit

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Yukutake, Y., Takeda, T. & Obara, K. Fine fault structure of a moderate earthquake in the 2007 earthquake sequence of Northern Mie, Japan. Earth Planet Sp 60, 981–985 (2008).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Revised:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:

Key words

  • Earthquake sequence
  • Northern Mie
  • aftershocks
  • hypoDD
  • fault structure