Seismological Studies at the Miravalles Geothermal Project
The Miravalles Geothermal Project (MPG) is located in the Guanacaste Mountain Range within the Guayabo Caldera in northwest Costa Rica. The Guanacaste Range is a chain of andesitic Quaternary stratovolcanos aligned northwest, composed of pyroclastic rocks, lava, and fluvio-lacustrine deposits. Glowing avalanche deposits (ignimbrites) formed gently-sloping plateaus on both sides of the mountain range. This area is under constant regional stress derived from the subduction of the Cocos Plate under the Caribbean Plate and the regional uplift of the volcanic arc, resulting in a complex system of faults with main orientations northwest, northeast, and north.
The Costarrican Institute of Electricity (ICE) through its Department of Geology has undertaken seismological and volcanological studies in the northwest part of the country since 1974. From 1974 to 1978 a ten-station seismic network was in operation in the Guanacaste region. A local network was set up during 1977–1978 at the MGP in order to study, in detail, the microseismicity in this area.
Microseismic observations at MGP have been successful in determining the seismicity, stress fields, seismic alignments, and active or potentially active faults within the area of the geothermal project.
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