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Discussion papers | Copyright
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
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Research article 07 Feb 2018

Research article | 07 Feb 2018

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. A revision of the manuscript is under review for the journal Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences (NHESS).

Tsunamigenic potential of a Holocene submarine landslide along the North Anatolian Fault (North Aegean Sea, off Thasos Island): insights from numerical modeling

Alexandre Janin1, Mathieu Rodriguez1, Dimitris Sakellariou2, Vasilis Lykousis2, and Christian Gorini3 Alexandre Janin et al.
  • 1Laboratoire de Géologie de l'Ecole normale supérieure de Paris; PSL research university, CNRS UMR 8538, 24 rue Lhomond, 75005 Paris, France
  • 2Institute of Oceanography, Hellenic Center of Marine Research, GR-19013 Anavyssos, Greece
  • 3Sorbonne Universités, UPMC Université Paris 06, UMR 7193, ISTeP, F-75005, Paris, France

Abstract. The North Anatolian Fault in the northern Aegean Sea triggers frequent earthquakes of magnitude up to Mw7. This seismicity can be a source of modest tsunamis for the surrounding coastlines with less than 50cm height according to numerical modelling and analysis of tsunami deposits. However, other tsunami sources may be involved, like submarine landslides. We assess the severity of this potential hazard by performing numerical simulations of tsunami generation and propagation from a Holocene landslide (1.85km3 in volume) identified off Thasos island. We use a model coupling the simulation of the submarine landslide, assimilated to a granular flow, to the propagation of the tsunami wave. The results of these simulations show that a tsunami wave of water height between 1.10m and 1.65m reaches the coastline at Alexandroupolis (58.000 inhabitants) one hour after the triggering of the landslide. In the same way, tsunamis waves of water height between 0.80m and 2.00m reach the coastline of the Athos peninsula 9min after the triggering of the landslide. Landslide tsunamis should not be neglected as a potential source of tsunami in the area. Despite numerous earthquakes of Mw>7 and strong detrital input (on the order of 30cmka−1), only a few Holocene landslides have been recognized so far, asking the question of the relationships between seismicity and landslide frequency in the area.

Alexandre Janin et al.
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Alexandre Janin et al.
Alexandre Janin et al.
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Publications Copernicus
Short summary
Here we present new numerical simulations showing that Holocene submarine landslides along the North Anatolian Fault in the Aegean Sea may have triggered tsunamis higher than the ones expected for earthquake sources. During the Holocene, the shore facing the city of Alexandroupolis may have been impacted by tsunami up to 1.65 m at the coastline.
Here we present new numerical simulations showing that Holocene submarine landslides along the...