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Ten years after the Wenchuan earthquake: new insights into the geodynamics of the eastern Tibet

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Last updated:
31 October 2017
Huiping Zhang, Institute of Geology, China Earthquake Administration

Eric Kirby, College of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences, Oregon State University

Haibing Li, Institute of Geology, Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences

Kristen Cook, GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences

Peizhen Zhang, School of Earth Science and Geological Engineering, Sun Yat-Sen University
Submission deadline: January 31, 2018



In 2008, the Mw 7.9 Wenchuan earthquake killed > 80,000 and injured more than 370,000 people in the province of Sichuan, China. About five years later, Mw6.6 Lushan earthquake occurred on April 20, 2013, only ~90 km further south. Both events were along the Longmen Shan thrust belt in eastern Tibet. The questions posed by these two events still reverberate in the Chinese and international geoscience communities. Almost ten years on, we envisioned there have been new data sets, observations, and modeling, thus it is a good time to look back on what we learned from those events, since interest in the evolution of eastern Tibet has not abated during that time. Here we propose an AGU joint special issue on Wenchuan retrospective that will span Tectonics and JGR-Solid Earth. We welcome contributions which cover the tectonics of eastern Tibet, the seismology of the earthquake, and the surface response following the earthquake. All these contributions will provide new insights into the gedynamics of the eastern Tibet.

Geodynamics, Crustal and Lithospheric Tectonics, and active deformation in the Mediterranean Regions (A tribute to Prof. Renato Funiciello)

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Last updated:
20 September 2017
Associate Editors: Mustapha Meghraoui, Laurent Jolivet, Rinus Wortel, Sandro Conticelli

Submission deadline: December 31, 2017



The special volume aims at presenting novel as well as updated research contributions on the Tethyan belt (Mediterranean to Middle East), addressing subduction and mantle convection, volcanism and fluid circulation, structural geology and active tectonics, dynamic topography and geomorphology. The special issue also welcomes papers on analogue/numerical modeling with block tectonics along with paleomagnetism results.

An Appraisal of Global Continental Crust: Structure and Evolution

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Last updated:
24 August 2017
Associate Editors: Yu Jeffrey Gu, Claire Currie, Ved Lekic, Gabi Laske

Submission deadline: January 15, 2017



The availability of broadband geophysical arrays, such as recent deployments of dense networks across North America and Asia, has substantially increased our ability to characterize crustal properties beneath major continents.  The improved data constraints, coupled with numerical simulations, enable an in-depth analysis of the structure, composition, spatial variability and evolution of the continental crust. This special issue combines new observations and synthesis of continental crust with comprehensive reviews of the evidence from a wide range of disciplines including seismology, geodynamics, gravity, magnetics and geochemistry.  In addition to a global component, this special issue offers new perspectives on the major continents such as North America, South America and Asia.

Orogenic cycles: from field observations to global geodynamics

Associate Editors: Virginia Toy, Gianretto Manatschal, Gideon Rosenbaum, Meghan Miller, Rodolfo Carosi
Orogens do not evolve in a continuum manner. Instead their evolution is characterized by episodes of intense contractional deformation intermitted by periods of tectonic quiescence. The mechanics, rates, and drivers of such switches in tectonic mode have attracted substantial research at all scales, ranging from microstructural investigation of distinct shear zones to lithospheric-scale geophysical examination. The underpinning processes are still debated, but can potentially be unravelled by co-operative consideration of emerging high-resolution structural, metamorphic, magmatic and geochronological data.



This special volume will address the topic of orogenic cycles based on observations made within the European Alps and Mediterranean, as well as other ancient and active orogenic systems, with an emphasis on (1) the geological evidence associated with orogenic cycles; (2) the geodynamic processes governing orogenic cycles; and (3) the implications of orogenic cycles to global tectonics. Potential contributions could address, for example, relationships between orogenic episodes and pre-existing rifted margins, links between orogenic cycles and plate reorganization events, and episodic behaviour of magmatic arcs.

The Arctic: An AGU Joint Special Collection

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Last updated:
24 August 2017
The Arctic has become the focus of many new investigations and studies across a number of disciplines. In many cases, this research is integrating diverse new data sets, observations, and modeling, and making connections among and across the biosphere, oceans, atmospheres, space, and geophysical environments. These papers include historical and new research on the Arctic and represent the following AGU journals: Earth’s Future, Earth and Space Science, Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems (G-Cubed), Geophysical Research Letters, Global Biogeochemical Cycles, JAMES (Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems), JGR: Oceans, JGR: Atmospheres, JGR: Solid Earth, JGR: Space Physics, JGR: Biogeosciences, JGR: Earth’s Surface, Reviews of Geophysics, Space Weather, and Water Resources Research.

The 2016 Central Italy Seismic Sequence: Insights, implications and lessons learned

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Last updated:
3 February 2017
Associate Editors: Lucilla Benedetti, Claudio Chiarabba, Laura Peruzza, Richard Walters, Fabrizio Storti

 This special volume aims at gathering studies based on data acquired during and following the 2016 Central Italy seismic sequence. The earthquakes that struck Central Italy between August 24th and October 30th 2016 constitute the largest release of seismic energy in Italy in 36 years, since the 1980 Irpinia earthquake. Consequently, this is a unique opportunity to investigate a large continental seismic sequence in Italy in the modern instrumental era; the October events are amongst the best instrumented earthquakes to-date, due to the rapid deployment of instrumentation and tasking of satellites following the first earthquake in August. These earthquakes have generated a wealth of new data and will consequently yield important scientific results that will allow better understanding of (1) surface processes associated with moderate to strong earthquakes on normal faults, (2) the dynamics of seismic sequences and stress interaction across fault networks (3), the role of pre-existing structures in fault kinematics. Potential contributions could address, for example, the links between coseismic deformation and the long term surface displacement, the relationship between active normal faults and pre-existing thrust faults, fault interaction and stress release during earthquake sequences or temporal and spatial earthquake clustering.