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Seismic hazard of the Eastern Mediterranean

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Earthquake hazard parameters such as maximum magnitude, annual mean seismic activity rate, and the Gutenberg¨CRichter parameter, have been evaluated for the Hellenic and Cyprean Arc regions of the Eastern Mediterranean. The applied maximum likelihood procedure permits the combination of both historical and instrumental data. The collected data from different sources cover earthquakes with magnitude 3.5 throughout the last two centuries. The historical part of the catalogue only contains the strongest events, whereas the complete part can be divided into several subcatalogues, each assumed complete above a specific threshold of magnitude. The hazard parameters assessment is performed for the two study regions. The Hellenic Arc region was found to be of higher seismicity level than the Cyprean Arc region. The number of annually expected earthquakes with magnitude 3.5 is much larger in the Hellenic Arc (56) than in the Cyprean Arc (35). The maximum magnitude calculated in the Hellenic Arc zone is 7.8 for the time period equal to the length of the catalogue, i.e., 210 years. For the Cyprean Arc zone, the maximum possible magnitude is 6.8ˇŔ0.4 for the time span of 330 years.
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