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Okhotsk Plate: Wikis

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Map of the Okhotsk Plate and its neighbouring plates

The Okhotsk Plate is a tectonic plate covering the Sea of Okhotsk, the Kamchatka Peninsula, and Eastern Japan. It was formerly considered a part of the North American Plate, but recent studies indicate that it is an independent plate, bounded on the north by the North American Plate. The boundary is a left-lateral moving transform fault, the Ulakhan Fault. On the east, the plate is bounded by the Pacific Plate at the Kuril-Kamchatka Trench and the Japan Trench, on the south by the Philippine Sea Plate at the Nankai Trough, on the west by the Eurasian Plate, and possibly on the southwest by the Amurian Plate.

The boundary between Okhotsk Plate and Amurian Plate might be responsible for many strong earthquakes occurred in the Sea of Japan as well as in the Sakhalin island, such as the MW7.1 (MS7.5 according to other sources) earthquake of May 27, 1995 in northern Sakhalin.[1][2] [3] The earthquake devastated Neftegorsk, and the town was not rebuilt after the earthquake.

The boundary between Okhotsk Plate and Pacific Plate is a subduction zone, where Pacific Plate subducts beneath the Okhotsk Plate. Many strong megathrust earthquakes occurred here, some of them among the largest on world record, including the Kamchatka earthquakes of 1737 (estimated M9.0~9.3) and 1952 (M9.0). Such strong megathrust earthquakes can also occur near the Kuril Islands, as the M8.3 earthquake of November 15, 2006[4][5], and Hokkaido, as the M8.3 earthquake of September 26, 2003[6][7].

GPS measurements and other studies show that the Okhotsk Plate is slowly rotating in a clockwise direction.

References

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Bibliography

  • Tetsuzo Seno, Taro Sakurai, and Seth Stein. 1996. Can the Okhotsk plate be discriminated from the North American plate? J. Geophys. Res., 101, 11305-11315 (abstract)

Notes

External links


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