** Progress in Earth and Planetary Science is the official journal of the Japan Geoscience Union, published in collaboration with its 50 society members.

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    • Progress in Earth and Planetary Science
    • Progress in Earth and Planetary Science
    • Progress in Earth and Planetary Science
    • Progress in Earth and Planetary Science
    • Progress in Earth and Planetary Science
    Progress in Earth and Planetary Science

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    Solid earth sciences

    Postseismic fluid discharge chemically recorded in altered pseudotachylyte discovered from an ancient megasplay fault: an example from the Nobeoka Thrust in the Shimanto accretionary complex, SW Japan

    Hasegawa R, Yamaguchi A, Fukuchi R, Hamada Y, Ogawa N, Kitamura Y, Kimura G, Ashi J, Ishikawa T

    Megasplay fault, Fluid-rock interaction, Pseudotachylyte, Hydrothermal alteration

    Megasplay fault branching from plate boundaries of subduction zones is thought to be important sources of earthquakes and tsunamis. In this study, we performed structural and geochemical analyses on a fossilized megasplay fault (the Nobeoka Thrust of the Shimanto accretionary complex) to understand fluid-rock interaction and how the splay fault plays a role in fluid flow in the seismogenic zone. As a result of structural observations, we report that the principal slip zone (PSZ) of the Nobeoka Thrust is composed of foliated cataclasite originating from a sandstone-shale mélange and includes a thin (~ 1.5 mm thick) pseudotachylyte layer. Major and trace element composition analysis and EPMA element mapping revealed that the pseudotachylyte is enriched in Li and Cs within the PSZ, as well as in the slip zone of a minor fault in the footwall. Li and Cs enrichment in pseudotachylyte is interpreted as a result of fluid-rock interaction in the postseismic stage, because such an anomaly only results from a large fluid/rock ratio (R >‚ÄČ512–24 at 250–350 °C) under the influence of Li- and Cs-enriched fluids. The amount of fluid that reacted with the pseudotachylyte is estimated to be 1.78 × 100 to 7.61 × 103 m3.