The May 11 Paphos, Cyprus, earthquake: implications for stress regime and tsunami modelling for the Eastern Mediterranean shorelines


ARABIAN JOURNAL OF GEOSCIENCES, cilt.13, 2020 (SCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi) identifier identifier

  • Cilt numarası: 13 Konu: 18
  • Basım Tarihi: 2020
  • Doi Numarası: 10.1007/s12517-020-05943-1


The paper deals with the analysis of the propagation, heights, and arrival times of a tsunami that may occur on the coastal areas of Cyprus and Eastern Mediterranean in the case of an earthquake in southern Cyprus. Following a review of the seismic risk and historical earthquakes which occurred in southern Cyprus, it was concluded that this region may be subject to high vulnerability if a tsunami occurs. A study was conducted on the numerical modelling of a possible tsunami generated by movement along the fault of the 1222 Paphos earthquake. The region where the earthquake occurred can be attributed to the Cyprian Arc in the southwest of Cyprus. This arc is one of the most active seismic zones in the Mediterranean, which has led to the occurrence of earthquakes from submerged seismogenic sources. A methodology is used to simulate tsunami wave propagation for the Eastern Mediterranean coastal areas which requires the initial wave due to fault parameters as well as the bathymetry data. The GEBCO30 bathymetry data are used which have a grid spacing of 0.30 arc min. The fault parameters are deduced from the maximum stress directions and source geometry of the region from the moment tensor solutions derived from analyzing of earthquake waveforms. The numerical tsunami propagation model was performed by using SWAN code. The simulated highest tsunami heights were 4.02 m in Kouklia (Cyprus); 2.85 m in Paphos Ktima (Cyprus); 2.58 in Episkopi (Cyprus); 2.06 in Peyia (Cyprus); 1.76 in Yennadhi, Rhodes (Greece); 1.53 in Burg Migheizil (Egypt); 1.46 m in Tarabulus (Lebanon); 1.39 m in Bur Said (Egypt); 1.28 in Al-Burj (Egypt); and 0.60 in Mugla-Aksaz (Turkey). The results of the model outline the extent of the tsunami waves of damaging size, but destructive event in the region.