Seismic interpretation of the Canterbury Plains, New Zealand

Jessie Marie Arthur, Donald C. Lawton

New Zealand is a seismically active region, located within a complex tectonic environment. The 2010-2011 Canterbury earthquake sequence in the Canterbury Plains on the South Island of New Zealand ruptured previously unknown fault systems, and resulted in severe damage to infrastructure and loss of life. The region continues to experience aftershock activity in the present day. Identifying faults in seismically active populated areas is essential in geotechnical engineering applications and seismic hazard risk assessment in earthquake studies. Seismic reflection and imaging techniques provide a means to identify and characterize fault zones, and an understanding of the regional tectonics and geology is essential for interpreting the seismic data.