Current Research Projects


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    Thermal structure of subduction zones

    We investigate the effect of temperature-dependent thermal parameters on the thermal structure of subduction zone in the simplified subduction setup of Van Keken et al., 2008. This project is in collaboration with Tim Craig (University of Leeds) and Cedric Thieulot (Utrecht University).

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    Geodynamics 101

    We present the basics of geodynamic modelling for modellers, collaborators, and reviewers from diverse backgrounds. It is a true team effort together with Fabio Crameri (University of Oslo), Adina Pusok (University of Oxford), Anne Glerum (GFZ Potsdam), Juliane Dannberg (University of Florida), and Cedric Thieulot (Utrecht University).

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    Rupture on splay faults & tsunamis

    We apply the SC-DR coupling method to splay fault rupture and add a tsunami model to study the ensuing tsunami. This project is in collaboration with Leonhard Rannabauer (TUM Munich, Germany), Alice-Agnes (LMU Munich, Germany), and Ylona van Dinther (Utrecht University, The Netherlands).

  • 3D coupling of earthquakes and tsunamis

    In a project led by Aniko Wirp (LMU Munich, Germany), we use the output of a geodynamic seismic cycle model (Van Zelst et al., 2019 JGR) as input for a 3D dynamic rupture model and coupled 2D tsunami inundation and propagation model to investigate how variations in hypocenter location in linked models impacts rupture dynamics, seafloor uplift, and tsunami generation, propagation, and inundation. The results of these physics-based linked dynamic rupture and tsunami scenarios generate new insights in seismic and tsunami hazards.

  • Subduction dynamics and seismicity

    In a project led by Silvia Brizzi (University of Texas at Austin, USA), we look into the effect of sediment subduction on subduction dynamics and the corresponding seismic signature with 2D seismo-thermo-mechanical models. We also consider the effect of changing thermal structures caused by the addition of sediments by exploring the effect of different slab ages combined with different sediment thicknesses. Besides that, we consider the effect of plate convergence rate on subduction dynamics and seismicity to relate back to the commonly used thermal parameter of subduction zones.

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    Tectonics & tsunamigenesis

    We complement a global earthquake database that contains subduction zone characteristics (Heuret et al., 2011) with tsunami data. We analyse the database using both bi- and multivariate statistical methods to identify tectonic parameters that affect tsunamigenesis.

  • The role of off-fault plasticity in realistic subduction zone settings

    Simulations of subduction zone earthquakes based on purely elastic seafloor displacements typically underestimate the potential seafloor displacement and hence the ensuing tsunami. We use dynamic rupture simulations to analyse whether plastic energy dissipation is a missing rheological component that could account for larger surface displacements. This project is in collaboration with Stephanie Wollherr, Alice-Agnes Gabriel, Elizabeth Madden, and Thomas Ulrich (LMU Munich, Munich, Germany).

Completed projects