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Paleoseismology of the Southern Section of the Black Mountains and Southern Death Valley Fault Zones, Death Valley, United States

Environmental and Engineering Geoscience

By:
, ,
DOI: 10.2113/gseegeosci.20.2.177

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Abstract

The Death Valley Fault System (DVFS) is part of the southern Walker Lane–eastern California shear zone. The normal Black Mountains Fault Zone (BMFZ) and the right-lateral Southern Death Valley Fault Zone (SDVFZ) are two components of the DVFS. Estimates of late Pleistocene-Holocene slip rates and recurrence intervals for these two fault zones are uncertain owing to poor relative age control. The BMFZ southernmost section (Section 1W) steps basinward and preserves multiple scarps in the Quaternary alluvial fans. We present optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dates ranging from 27 to 4 ka of fluvial and eolian sand lenses interbedded with alluvial-fan deposits offset by the BMFZ. By cross-cutting relations, we infer that there were three separate ground-rupturing earthquakes on BMFZ Section 1W with vertical displacement between 5.5 m and 2.75 m. The slip-rate estimate is ∼0.2 to 1.8 mm/yr, with an earthquake recurrence interval of 4,500 to 2,000 years. Slip-per-event measurements indicate Mw 7.0 to 7.2 earthquakes. The 27–4-ka OSL-dated alluvial fans also overlie the putative Cinder Hill tephra layer. Cinder Hill is offset ∼213 m by SDVFZ, which yields a tentative slip rate of 1 to 8 mm/yr for the SDVFZ.

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Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Paleoseismology of the Southern Section of the Black Mountains and Southern Death Valley Fault Zones, Death Valley, United States
Series title:
Environmental and Engineering Geoscience
DOI:
10.2113/gseegeosci.20.2.177
Volume
20
Issue:
2
Year Published:
2014
Language:
English
Publisher:
Geological Society of America, Association of Engineering Geologists
Publisher location:
College Station, TX
Contributing office(s):
Crustal Geophysics and Geochemistry Science Center
Description:
22 p.
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
First page:
177
Last page:
198
Number of Pages:
22
Country:
United States
State:
California;Nevada