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Nucleation and growth of strike slip faults in granite.

Journal of Geophysical Research

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Abstract

Fractures within granodiorite of the central Sierra Nevada, California, were studied to elucidate the mechanics of faulting in crystalline rocks, with emphasis on the nucleation of new fault surfaces and their subsequent propagation and growth. Within the study area the fractures form a single, subparallel array which strikes N50o-70oE and dips steeply to the S. Some of these fractures are identified as joints because displacements across the fracture surfaces exhibit dilation but no slip. The joints are filled with undeformed minerals, including epidote and chlorite. Other fractures are identified as small faults because they display left-lateral strike slip separations of up to 2m. Slickensides, developed on fault surfaces, plunge 0o-20o to the E. The faults occur parallel to, and in the same outcrop with, the joints. The faults are filled with epidote, chlorite, and quartz, which exhibit textural evidence of shear deformation. These observations indicate that the strike slip faults nucleated on earlier formed, mineral filled joints. Secondary, dilational fractures propagated from near the ends of some small faults contemporaneously with the left-lateral slip on the faults. These fractures trend 25o+ or -10o from the fault planes, parallel to the direction of inferred local maximum compressive stress. The faults did not propagate into intact rock in their own planes as shear fractures. -from Authors

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Nucleation and growth of strike slip faults in granite.
Series title:
Journal of Geophysical Research
Volume
88
Issue:
B1
Year Published:
1983
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Journal of Geophysical Research
First page:
555
Last page:
568