Alexandria, VA - A 2002 eruption of Nyiragongo in the Democratic Republic of the Congo that killed more than 100 people also triggered an earthquake eight months later that shook the town of Kalehe in the Lake Kivu region. EARTH Magazine explores just what happened to better understand a region that is being pulled apart by plate tectonics.
Using remotely sensed radar data, a team from Penn State University has inferred that a 19-kilometer-long dike was emplaced during the eruption. They then calculated how a dike, injecting new material into crust, affected the regional stress fields to ensure that this was more than simply a geologic coincidence.
While the stress field calculations suggests the fault would have been pushed to near failure, the scientists are exploring why it took an extra eight months for the fault to rupture. EARTH Magazine brings you this story, and its complex geology in the June Issue: http://bit.
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The American Geosciences Institute is a nonprofit federation of geoscientific and professional associations that represents more than 250,000 geologists, geophysicists and other earth scientists. Founded in 1948, AGI provides information services to geoscientists, serves as a voice of shared interests in the profession, plays a major role in strengthening geoscience education, and strives to increase public awareness of the vital role the geosciences play in society's use of resources, resiliency to natural hazards, and interaction with the environment.