2020 Volume 96 Issue 7 Pages 297-315
Slow earthquakes are a recently discovered phenomenon that mainly occur updip and downdip of the seismogenic zones of great earthquakes along the subducting plate interface. The spatiotemporal activity of various slow earthquakes occurring in the Nankai subduction zone is characterized by along-strike heterogeneity and along-dip systematic changes. Various slow earthquakes are horizontally distributed at their own depths and along-strike segments can be observed with respect to this distribution downdip of the locked zone; however, slow and great earthquakes occur in the same depth range near the Nankai Trough and Japan Trench axes. The frequently observed spatiotemporal interactions between different slow earthquakes can be attributed to their sensitivity and the stress transfer of the surrounding areas. This stress transfer is expected to extend to the adjacent sections in the seismogenic zone. Therefore, precise monitoring of slow earthquakes is important for future evaluations of great earthquakes, which requires the long-term maintenance and continuous improvement of the high-quality observation networks.