Multi-Segment Earthquake Clustering as Inferred From 36Cl Exposure Dating, the Bet Kerem Fault System, Northern Israel


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Recovering the seismic history of multiple segments within a fault system provides a spatiotemporal framework for the fault activity across the system. This kind of data is essential for improving our understanding of how faults interact during earthquake cycles and how they are distributed within a fault system. Bedrock fault scarps, reaching up to 10-m height, are abundant across the Bet Kerem fault system, Galilee, northern Israel. Using the 36Cl exposure dating method, we recovered the last 30 ka scarp exhumation history of three fault segments from the Bet Kerem fault system. Results indicate that the three faults were active simultaneously in at least three distinguished activity periods, during which a minimum of 1.2 m of surface rupturing occurred in each period. The synchronized activity and total surface rupture at each activity period suggest that the three dated segments were ruptured simultaneously by the same earthquake. That is, a multi-segment rupture earthquake and that each activity period included a cluster of at least two large multi-segment earthquakes. The results also indicate a recurrence interval between clusters of 3.5–4.5 ka and the existence of a seismic super cycle with a recurrence interval of about 13 ka.

Original languageAmerican English
Article numbere2023TC007953
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Wiley Periodicals LLC. The Authors.


  • Cl cosmogonic exposure dating
  • Galilee (North Israel)
  • earthquake clustering
  • normal fault
  • past earthquakes


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