Open-source archive of active faults for northwest South America
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We present a publicly available database of active structures for the northern Andes based on the literature, our own field mapping, interpretation of digital elevation models, earthquakes, and the regional velocity field obtained from Global Positioning System (GPS) studies. The “Active Tectonics of the Andes” database (ATA v.1.0) is a digital archive of more than 400 active faults available in a variety of digital formats for use by the scientific and teaching communities. ATA v.1.0 is an open-source archive that is updateable based on new results obtained by the scientific community, and it should prove useful to scientists, teachers, policy makers, and the general population. We use ATA v.1.0 in combination with surface velocities from GPS to evaluate the regional kinematics of faulting in northwest South America. In particular, we find that the development of active strike-slip systems is controlled, in part, by the degree of convergence obliquity between subducting oceanic plates and South America.
Manuscript received 24 April 2012; accepted 23 July 2012