Faults are complex three-dimensional geological objects that grow and change their properties over time (i.e., fourth dimension). Therefore, their thorough understanding intrinsically requires a three- and four- rather than two-dimensional analysis. In this session, we invite contributions that address the geometrical, kinematical, and the underlying mechanical characteristics of faults, by considering their inherent three- and four-dimensional nature. Considerations in this new light will bring us closer to fully address some of the fundamental questions in fault analysis: how do faults initiate? How do they evolve in space and time? How do they accommodate displacement and at what slip rates? Ideally, contributions should arise from analysis of a broad spectrum of data such as, among others, geophysical imaging, earthquake seismicity, outcrop (including novel virtual outcrop geology), and analogue and numerical modelling data. The integration of these different data types will provide insights on characteristics of faults at different scales and resolutions, and on their evolution at different time frames. We encourage contributions that explore the repercussions that a three- and four- rather than two-dimensional approach to the study of faults can have on a broad range of practical problems such as, among others, earthquake hazard assessment and fluid flow.

Co-organized by NH4/SM2
Convener: Giovanni CamanniECSECS | Co-conveners: Efstratios DelogkosECSECS, Michael KettermannECSECS, Vincent Roche, David Tanner
| Attendance Mon, 04 May, 16:15–18:00 (CEST)

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Chat time: Monday, 4 May 2020, 16:15–18:00

Chairperson: Giovanni Camanni, Efstratios Delogkos, Michael Kettermann, Vincent Roche, David Tanner
D1364 |
| solicited
Christopher Jackson, Luca Collanega, Thomas Phillips, Antje Lenhart, Edoseghe Osagiede, Catherine Siuda, Matthew Reeve, Oliver Duffy, Rebecca Bell, Atle Rotevatn, Craig Magee, Robert Gawthorpe, Alexander Coleman, Paul Whipp, Thomas Kristensen, Haakon Fossen, Anna Breda, and Nicola Marsh

Rifts often evolve on a template of crystalline basement that may contain strong lithological and mechanical heterogeneities related to complex pre-rift tectonic histories. Numerous studies argue that reactivation of such pre-existing structures can influence the geometry and evolution of normal faults and rift physiography. However, in many cases: (i) it is unclear where, if at all, structures at the rift margin continue along-strike below the rift axis; and (ii) the precise geometric and kinematic relationship between pre-existing structures and newly formed normal faults is not well understood. These uncertainties reflect the fact that: (i) potential field data are typically of low-resolution, and thus cannot resolve the detailed morphology of shallow fault networks; (ii) field data cannot provide an accurate 3D image of intra-basement structures and the overlying rift; and (iii) seismic reflection data typically do not image deeply buried intra-basement structures. Understanding the kinematic as well as geometric relationship between intra-basement structures and rift-related fault networks is important for understanding plate motions and for undertaking stress inversions, given that paleo-extension directions (and sigma 3) are, in many rifted provinces, typically thought to lie normal to the dominant fault strike. 


We here tackle these problems using subsurface data from the Taranaki Basin, offshore New Zealand, and the northern North Sea, offshore west Norway. Our data provide excellent imaging of shallowly buried intra-basement structures, as well as cover-hosted normal faults and their associated pre- and syn-growth strata. We identify a range of intra-basement structures, both extensional and contractional,, and a range of geometric and kinematic interactions between intra-basement structures and cover normal faults. For example, some of the normal faults are physically connected to intra-basement structures oriented oblique to the regional extension direction. It is notable that, even in cases, intra-basement structures were apparently not extensionally reactivated during the later rift phase. Displacement maxima on cover faults occur at 100-200 m above the crystalline basement-cover interface, suggesting the former did not form due to simple extensional reactivation and upward propagation of pre-existing structures; rather, ‘passive’ basement structures somehow perturbed the regional stress field, leading to the development of normal faults whose strikes mimic those of the underlying pre-existing basement structures. Cover normal faults can also display a range of complex geometries related to the linkage of numerous, originally separate slip surfaces, and upward-bifurcation of strongly segmented fault systems. We also show that the timing of physical linkage between basement and cover structures can be recorded in the geometry of related growth strata, which document the switch from non-rotational to rotational faulting.


Our analyses show that km-scale, intra-basement structures can control the nucleation and development of newly formed, rift-related normal faults, most likely due to a local perturbation of the regional stress field. Because of this, simply inverting fault strike for causal extension direction may be incorrect, especially in provinces where pre-existing, intra-basement structures occur. We also show that a detailed kinematic analysis is key to deciphering the temporal as well as the geometric relationships between structures developed at multiple structural levels.

How to cite: Jackson, C., Collanega, L., Phillips, T., Lenhart, A., Osagiede, E., Siuda, C., Reeve, M., Duffy, O., Bell, R., Rotevatn, A., Magee, C., Gawthorpe, R., Coleman, A., Whipp, P., Kristensen, T., Fossen, H., Breda, A., and Marsh, N.: Do pre-existing basement structures influence the geometry and growth of normal faults and rifts?, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-19731, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-19731, 2020.

D1365 |
Jie Zhang, Zhiping Wu, and Yanjun Cheng

The horsetail structure, also named brush structure, generally refers to a sets of secondary faults converged to the primary fault on the plane. Based on 2-D and 3-D seismic data, the structural characteristics, evolution and mechanism of the horsetail structure of Liaodong Bay area in Bohai Bay Basin and Weixinan area in Beibuwan Basin are analyzed. In the Liaodong Bay area, the primary fault of the horsetail structure is the NNE-striking branch fault of Tan-Lu strike-slip fault zone. The NE-striking secondary extensional faults converged to the primary strike-slip fault. Fault activity analysis shows that both the primary and secondary faults intensively activated during the third Member of the Shahejie Formation (42~38 Ma). In the Weixinan area, the NE-striking Weixinan fault is the primary fault of the horsetail structure, which is an extensional fault. A large amount of EW-striking secondary extensional faults converged to the primary NE-striking Weixinan fault. Fault activity analysis shows that NE-striking primary fault intensively activated during the second Member of the Liushagang Formation (48.6~40.4 Ma), whereas the EW-striking secondary faults intensively activated during the Weizhou Formation (33.9~23 Ma). The different structure and evolution of the horsetail structure in the Liaodong Bay area and Weixinan area are mainly resulted from the regional tectonic settings. About 42 Ma, the change of subduction direction of the Pacific plate and the India-Eurasian collision resulted in the right-lateral strike-slip movement of NNE-striking Tan-Lu fault and the formation of NE-striking extensional faults along the bend of the strike-slip fault, therefore, the horsetail structure of Liaodong Bay area formed. However, the formation of the horsetail structure of Weixinan area is related to the clockwise rotation of extension stress in the South China Sea (SCS): 1) During Paleocene to M. Eocene (65~37.8 Ma), the retreat of Pacific plate subduction zone resulted in the formation of NW-SE extensional stress field in the north margin of the SCS, NE-striking primary fault of horsetail structure formed; 2) During L. Eocene to E. Oligocene (37.8~28.4 Ma), the change of subduction direction of the Pacific plate and the India-Eurasian collision resulted in the clockwise rotation of extension direction from NW-SE to N-S in the north margin of the SCS, a large amount of EW-striking secondary faults of horsetail structure formed, and the horsetail structure was totally formed in the Weixinan area until this stage.

How to cite: Zhang, J., Wu, Z., and Cheng, Y.: Structural Characteristics and Mechanism of the Horsetail Structure in China Offshore Basins: Case Studies from Liaodong Bay Area, Bohai Bay Basin and Weixinan Area, Beibuwan Basin, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-4581, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-4581, 2020.

D1366 |
Yangwen Pei

Understanding the detailed fault architecture of reverse faulting is not only critical for revealing the processes involved in fold-thrust belts as well as predicting the relationship between folds and faults, the distribution of strain, and sub-seismic faulting deformation, but also important for understanding fault related compartmentalisation and fluid flow behaviour both along and/or across thrust fault zones. The Lenghu5 fold-thrust belt, provides an exceptionally well-exposed outcrop example of a reverse fault-related fold. Detailed stratigraphic logging coupled with high-resolution cross-sections provides a unique insight into the 3D geometry of a thrust fault at both basin and outcrop scale.

In this study we observed 85 - 90% of the estimated throw is accommodated on the main fault zone (i.e., the Lenghu5 thrust fault), which has sufficient throw to be imaged on a seismic profile, while 15-20% of the throw is accommodated on smaller scale folds and faults that are beyond seismic resolution. The Lenghu5 thrust fault, a seismically resolvable fault with up to ~800m of throw, exhibits a large variation of fault architecture and strain distribution along the fault zone. As meso-scale (1-100 m) structural features are normally beyond the seismic resolution, high-resolution outcrop in-situ mapping (5-10 cm resolution) was employed to study the deformation features of the Lenghu5 thrust fault zone. The excellent exposure of outcrops enables detailed investigation of its fault zone architecture. Multiple structural domains with different levels of strain were observed and are associated with the fault throw distribution across the fault. Based on previously proposed models and high-resolution outcrop mapping, an updated fault zone model was constructed to characterize the structural features and evolution of the Lenghu5 thrust fault.

The possible parameters that impact fault architecture and strain distribution, including fault throw, bed thickness, lithology and mechanical heterogeneity were evaluated. Fault throw distributions and linkages control the strain distribution across a thrust fault zone, with local folding processes contributing important elements in the Lenghu5 thrust fault especially where more incompetent beds dominate the stratigraphy. Mechanical heterogeneity, induced by different layer stacking patterns, controls the details of the fault architecture in the thrust zone. The variations in bed thicknesses and mechanical property contrasts are likely to control the initial fault dips and fault/fracture density. Large fault throws are associated with wide strain accommodation and damage zones, although the relationship between the development and width of the fault zone with the throw accumulation remains to be assessed.

By presenting the high resolution mapping of fault architecture this study provides an insight into the sub-seismic fault zone geometry and strain distributions possible in thrust faults and reviews their application to assessing fault zone behaviour.

How to cite: Pei, Y.: Field-based fault architecture of fold-thrust belts: an example from the Qaidam basin, northeast Tibetan Plateau, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-12844, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-12844, 2020.

D1367 |
Michele Fondriest, Fabrizio Balsamo, Andrea Bistacchi, Luca Clemenzi, Matteo Demurtas, Fabrizio Storti, and Giulio Di Toro

The mechanics and seismogenic behaviour of fault zones are strongly influenced by their internal structure, intended as three-dimensional geometry and topology of the fault/fracture network and distribution of the fault zone rocks with related physical properties.  In this perspective, the internal structure of the extensional seismically active Vado di Corno Fault Zone (Central Apennines, Italy) was quantified by combining high-resolution structural mapping with modern techniques of 3D fault network modelling over ∼2 km along fault strike. The fault zone is hosted in carbonate host rocks, was exhumed from ∼2 km depth, accommodated a normal slip of ∼1.5-2 km since Early-Pleistocene and cuts through the Pliocene Omo Morto Thrust Zone that was partially reactivated in extension.

The exceptional exposure of the Vado di Corno Fault Zone footwall block allowed us to reconstruct with extreme detail the geometry of the older Omo Morto Thrust Zone and quantify the spatial arrangement of master and subsidiary faults, and fault zone rocks within the Vado di Corno Fault Zone. The combined analysis of the structural map and of a realistic 3D fault network model with kinematic, topological and slip tendency analyses, pointed out the crucial role of the older Omo Morto Thrust Zone geometry (i.e. the occurrence and position of lateral ramps) in controlling the along-strike segmentation and slip distribution of the active Vado di Corno normal fault zone. These findings were tested with a boundary element mechanical model that highlights the effect of inherited compressional features on the Vado di Corno Fault Zone internal structure and returns distributions and particularly partitioning of slip comparable with those measured in the field.

Lastly, we discuss the exhumed Vado di Corno Fault Zone as an analogue for the shallow structure of many seismic sources in the Central Apennines. The mechanical interaction of the inherited Omo Morto Thrust Zone and the extensional Vado di Corno Fault Zone generated along-strike and down-dip geometrical asperities. Similar settings could play first-order control on the complex spatio-temporal evolution and rupture heterogeneity of earthquakes in the region (e.g. 2009 Mw 6.1 L’Aquila earthquake).

How to cite: Fondriest, M., Balsamo, F., Bistacchi, A., Clemenzi, L., Demurtas, M., Storti, F., and Di Toro, G.: Structural Complexity and Mechanics of a shallow crustal Seismogenic Source (Vado di Corno Fault Zone, Italy), EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-11814, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-11814, 2020.

D1368 |
Simon Preuss, Jean Paul Ampuero, Luca Dal Zilio, Taras Gerya, and Ylona van Dinther

Natural fault networks are geometrically complex systems that evolve through time. The growth and evolution of faults and their off-fault damage pattern are influenced by both dynamic earthquake ruptures and aseismic deformation during the interseismic period. To better understand each of their contributions to faulting we simulate both earthquake rupture dynamics and long-term deformation in a visco-elasto-plastic crust subjected to rate-and-state-dependent friction [1,2]. The continuum mechanics-based numerical model presented here includes three new features. First, a 2.5-D approximation to incorporate effects of a viscoelastic lower crustal substrate below a finite depth. Second, we introduce a dynamically adaptive (slip-velocity-dependent) measure of fault width to ensure grid size convergence of fault angles for evolving faults. Third, fault localisation is facilitated by plastic strain weakening of bulk rate-and-state friction parameters as motivated by laboratory experiments. This allows us to for the first time simulate sequences of episodic fault growth due to earthquakes and aseismic creep. Localized fault growth is simulated for four bulk rheologies ranging from persistent velocity-weakening to velocity-strengthening. Yet, episodic fault growth is only obtained for a bulk rheology that transitions from velocity-strengthening friction to velocity-weakening friction. Interestingly, in each of these bulk rheologies, faults predominantly localise [LDZ1] and grow in the inter-seismic period due to aseismic deformation. However, [LDZ2] off-fault deformation - both distributed and localised - is typically formed during dynamic earthquake ruptures. Simulated off-fault deformation structures range from fan-shaped distributed deformation to localized Riedel splay faults and antithetic conjugate [LDZ3] Riedel shear faults [LDZ4] and towards wing cracks. We observe that the fault-normal width of the outer damage zone saturates with increasing fault length due to the finite depth of the seismogenic zone. We also observe that dynamically and statically evolving stress fields from neighbouring fault strands affects first and secondary fault growth. Finally, we find that the amount of off-fault deformation distinctly depends on the degree of optimality of a fault with respect to the prevailing but dynamically changing stress field. Typically, we simulate off-fault deformation on faults parallel to the loading direction. This produces a 6.5-fold higher off-fault energy dissipation than on an optimally oriented fault, which in turn has a 1.5-fold larger stress drop. The misalignment of the fault with respect to the static stress field thus facilitates off-fault deformation. These results imply that fault geometries bend [2], individual fault strands interact and that optimal orientations and off-fault deformation vary through space and time. With our work we establish the basis for simulations and analyses of complex evolving fault networks subject to both long-term and short-term dynamics. Currently, we are using this basis to simulate and explain orthogonal faulting observed in the 2019 M6.4-M7.1 Ridgecrest earthquake sequence.

How to cite: Preuss, S., Ampuero, J. P., Dal Zilio, L., Gerya, T., and van Dinther, Y.: Characteristics of episodic fault growth and off-fault deformation structures, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-13914, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-13914, 2020.

D1369 |
Manaska Mukhopadhyay, Uddalak Biswas, Nibir Mandal, and Santanu Misra

Faults and fracture surfaces record the history of slip events through a range of structural features in tectonically active zones. Slickensides, among them, prove to be the most prominent evidences of such slip movements. These linear features give us crucial information about the mechanical processes associated with shear surface roughness formation. We conducted extensive field survey in the Singhbhum Shear Zone, Eastern India, and report shear fractures of varying surface roughness from deformed quartzites. Shear surfaces encountered in the field study varied from very smooth, devoid of any lineation to strongly rough with prominent slickenlines.

For better understanding of the varied surface roughness, we performed analogue laboratory experiments. The experimental results suggest that the fracture orientation and the mode of shear failure are potential factors that control the fracture roughness. We used cohesive sand-talc models for the analogue experiments with varying sand:talc volume ratio, ranging from pure sand to pure talc variant. Experimental models with pure sand composition underwent Coulomb failure in the brittle regime. With subsequent increase in talc content, the behavior of failure switched to plastic yielding in the ductile regime. This transition from coulomb failure to plastic yielding produced a remarkable variation in the shear surface roughness characteristics. Shear surfaces formed by Coulomb failure are smooth and devoid any slickenlines, whereas, those formed by plastic yielding show prominent presence strongly linear roughness, defined by cylindrical ridge-grooves along the slip direction.

Shear surface roughness defined by linear irregularities become more prominent with increasing fracture orientation (θ) to the compression direction (θ = 30° to 60°). Increase in θ promotes the formation of smooth slickenlines at the cost of rough zones. For critical analysis and understanding of these features we develop a new computational technique. The technique is based on controlled optical images to map the shear surface geometry from field casts and laboratory samples. Binarization of the irregular surface images (cantor set) provides 1D fractal dimension (D), which is used to quantify the roughness variability, and the degree of their anisotropy in terms of ΔD (difference in D across and along the slip direction). From numerical models, we finally show onset of wave instability in the mechanically distinct rupture zone as an alternative mechanism for slickenlines formation.  

How to cite: Mukhopadhyay, M., Biswas, U., Mandal, N., and Misra, S.: Factors controlling shear rupture roughness: An insight from field and laboratory experiments, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-989, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-989, 2020.

D1370 |
Koen Torremans, John Conneally, John Güven, Robert Doyle, jiulin Guo, Eoin Dunlevy, and John Walsh

Fault systems in the Irish Lower Carboniferous are important in relation to its subsurface groundwater, geothermal and mineral resources. For example, major base metal deposits in the world-class Irish Orefield occur in association with normal faults. Despite their economic importance, however, the fault networks and structural framework at depth are still poorly constrained. The Irish Carboniferous Basin is an excellent area to study the extensional fault systems and evolution of rift basins, given the relatively low amounts of later compressional deformation and metamorphism, and because high-quality subsurface datasets exist from several decades of mineral exploration. Our work aimed at developing a coherent structural framework for the Lower Carboniferous in Ireland, to unravel the geometries and kinematics of faulting in a carbonate-dominated rift basin that developed on top of a strong pre-existing structural template in the underlying basement rocks.

We have defined the geometry of key fault systems in the rift across a wide range of scales, using three-dimensional integrated analysis of large datasets. These datasets include public and proprietary onshore 2D reflection seismic, mapping, drillhole, micro-palaeontological, aeromagnetic, electromagnetic, and ground gravity data. Our work has revealed the nature of segmentation patterns and interactions of normal faults, including synthetic and conjugate relay zones. Quantification of fault parameters, kinematic analysis and kinematic restoration have allowed us to gain insights into the distribution of extension during rifting in time and space, using growth sequences and facies changes on faults. The analysis of this structural framework in relation to several mineral deposits, and in combination with lithofacies distribution and the development of bathymetry during basin formation, allows us to better understand current and past fluid flow pathways, especially in relation to base metal mineralising events.

How to cite: Torremans, K., Conneally, J., Güven, J., Doyle, R., Guo, J., Dunlevy, E., and Walsh, J.: Fault interactions, fault kinematics, and evolution of the structural framework in the Irish Lower Carboniferous, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-4557, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-4557, 2020.

D1371 |
| Highlight
Derren Cresswell, Gaël Lymer, and Tim Reston

We investigate the structures of hyper-extended continental crust and the 3D nature of the development of syn-rift fault networks at the Galicia margin, West of Spain, based on observations from a 3D multi-channel seismic reflection dataset acquired in 2013. This seismic volume provides, for the first time, 3D high-resolution imaging of a fault network geometry above a detachment fault (The “S reflector”) in the distal setting of a continental margin. The Galicia margin is sediment-starved, magma-poor and salt-free, thus providing optimal observations of the structures through seismic data.

We use the 3D data to observe the geometries of the faults, to analyse the fault heaves at different levels of the litho-stratigraphic sequence (i.e. at the top of the crystalline basement, at the top of the pre-rift/early syn-rift sediments and at the top of the syn-kinematic sediments), and to make a stratigraphic analysis to constrain the dynamics and the kinematics of fault activity within the successive half-grabens.

Our 3D interpretations demonstrate that the continental crust thins to zero during the rifting by the simultaneous development of initially individual fault planes, which progressively link with adjacent faults to form a network of active faults. The linked roots of the faults altogether form the surface of the S at depth, and allow the oceanward propagation of the detachment fault during the rifting. The faults throughout the network remained active and progressively rotated with further extension, until their deactivation when they acquired an angle of ~30°. Whereupon, a new network of active, initially isolated, faults developed and linked one step (~10 km) oceanward. The system repeats until the break-up of the continental crust, resulting in the progressive focussing of the locus of the extension toward the ocean, where the continental crust is the thinnest. 

Given the similitude of the features observed at the Galicia margin with other magma poor continental margins, we expect that most margins worldwide might have formed following similar processes, thus representing a paradigm shift in the global understanding of late fault network development at rifted margins during continental break-up.

How to cite: Cresswell, D., Lymer, G., and Reston, T.: 3D fault network development at the Galicia magma-poor margin, North-Atlantic , EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-5092, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-5092, 2020.

D1372 |
| Highlight
Luca Collanega, Donatella Mellere, Matteo Massironi, and Anna Breda

Rift-related faults often display non-rectilinear geometries, which have been interpreted as (i) the result of linkage between different fault segments -developed during a single or more tectonic phases-, (ii) as curvilinear faults due to gravitational collapse, (iii) as inherited basement trends. Disentangling these processes is generally difficult, with multi-phase rifting and reactivation of pre-existing structures being the most intuitive and commonly adopted explanations.

Here, we use 3D seismic data to reconstruct the evolution of a couple of intersecting, curvilinear faults in the Horda Platform (Northern North Sea), which is characterised by a complex history of reactivation and multi-phase extension during the Jurassic-Cretaceous rifting. By reconstructing the three-dimensional geometry of the fault planes, we highlight that one fault follows the trend of the Permian-Triassic rift along its entire length, whereas the other, strongly curvilinear, fault appears to be partially deflected from it. By using time-thickness maps and kinematic analyses, we show that the partially deflected fault initiated in the Late Jurassic, soon after the other one (which activated in the Middle Jurassic). Notably, the younger fault flexes from the inherited Permian-Triassic trend as it approaches the other, more mature, fault, getting perpendicular to -and finally crosscutting- it. Hence, the curvilinear geometry developed during the upward propagation of the fault plane during the Jurassic-Cretaceous rifting, suggesting that such change of strike was driven by the influence of the more mature fault and is not due to structural inheritance. Similar deflections can be observed also in other areas of the dataset, with incipient faults flexing towards more mature structures.

More generally, newer faults have been shown to deflect perpendicularly to pre-existing faults both in analogue and numerical models, suggesting we are facing a general process. These strike deflections suggest a stress re-orientation in the vicinity of well-developed structures, and not just simply a stress-drop as widely indicated by fault spacing and throw distribution of parallel faults. This is consistent with observations on deflected normal faults developing in correspondence to oblique basement fabrics as well as with the numerical model of the stress field by Homberg et al. (1997). Hence, our three-dimensional analysis of fault geometries suggests that the well-established concept of “fault-related stress-drop” should be broadened into the concept of “fault-related stress-reorientation”.



Homberg, C., Hu, J.C., Angelier, J., Bergerat, F., Lacombe, O., 1997. Characterization of stress perturbations near major fault zones: insights from 2-D distinct-element numerical modelling and field studies (Jura mountains). Journal of Structural Geology 19, 703–718. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0191-8141(96)00104-6

How to cite: Collanega, L., Mellere, D., Massironi, M., and Breda, A.: Three-dimensional analysis of normal faults in the Horda Platform (North Sea): the possible influence of stress perturbations on fault geometries, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-21550, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-21550, 2020.

D1373 |
Giovanni Camanni, Vincent Roche, Conrad Childs, Tom Manzocchi, John Walsh, John Conneally, Muhammad Mudasar Saqab, and Efstratios Delogkos

Individual normal faults are rarely single planar surfaces and often comprise arrays of fault segments arising from the earliest stages of fault propagation. Current models for the geometry and formation of relay zones between adjacent fault segments have been informed mainly by 2D analysis from either maps or cross-sections observed in outcrop and, to a lesser extent, by the analysis of relay zones from 3D seismic reflection data. Using high quality 3D seismic reflection datasets from a selection of sedimentary basins, we investigate fundamental characteristics of segmentation from the analysis of 67 normal faults with modest displacements (< ca. 190 m) which preserve the 3D geometry of 532 relay zones. Our analysis shows that relay zones most often develop by bifurcation from a single fault surface but can also arise from the formation of segments which are disconnected in 3D. Relay zones generally occur between fault segments that step in either the dip or strike direction, and oblique relay zones with an intermediate orientation are less frequent. This is attributed to the influence of mechanical stratigraphy, and to a tendency for faults to locally propagate laterally and vertically rather than obliquely. Cross-sectional stepping of relay zones typically forms contractional rather than extensional relay zones, a configuration which is attributed to the development of early stage Riedel shears associated with fault localisation. Comparing datasets from different geological settings suggests that the mechanical heterogeneity of the faulted sequence and the influence of pre-existing structure are the underlying controls on the geometrical characteristics of relay zones in normal faults, and different combinations of these two controls can account for the variation in fault zone structure observed between datasets.

How to cite: Camanni, G., Roche, V., Childs, C., Manzocchi, T., Walsh, J., Conneally, J., Saqab, M. M., and Delogkos, E.: Three-dimensional geometries of relay zones in normal faults, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-15764, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-15764, 2020.

D1374 |
John Walsh, Vincent Roche, Giovanni Camanni, Conrad Childs, Tom Manzocchi, John Conneally, Muhammad Mudasar Saqab, and Efstratios Delogkos

Normal faults are often complex three dimensional structures comprising multiple sub-parallel segments separated by intervening relay zones. In this study we outline geometrical characterisations capturing this 3D complexity and providing a semi-quantitative basis for the comparison of faults and for defining the factors controlling their geometrical evolution.

Individual relay zones can be assigned to one of four types according to their form (i.e. whether the bounding segments are unconnected in 3D or merge into a single surface) and their orientation (i.e. whether they are slip-parallel or slip-perpendicular). From the detailed analysis of 84 fault arrays mapped from 3D seismic reflection surveys (including 63 from our mapping of 8 different study areas and 21 derived from the literature), we show that the 3D geometry of fault arrays can be quantitatively defined on the basis of the relative numbers of these types of relay zones.

Detailed mapping of fault zones indicates that whilst they can individually contain all four types of relay zone, their relative proportions varies between different study areas. Differences in the proportions of relay zone types are attributed to two primary controls, the mechanical heterogeneity of the faulted sequence and the presence of basement structure. For example, relay zones with an upward bifurcating geometry are prevalent in faults that reactivate deeper structures, whereas the formation of laterally bifurcating relays is promoted by heterogeneous mechanical stratigraphy. 

Fault arrays in the literature generally do not contain the full range of possible relay zone type but tend to comprise either all bifurcating relay zones or all unconnected relay zones. These end-member fault geometries have led to contrasting conceptual models for the growth of faults. The mapping conducted here suggests that the proportion of bifurcating relay zones increases as data resolution increases and that fault surface bifurcation is ubiquitous. Models for the geometrical evolution of fault arrays must account for the full range of relay zone geometries that appears to be a characteristic of all faults.

How to cite: Walsh, J., Roche, V., Camanni, G., Childs, C., Manzocchi, T., Conneally, J., Saqab, M. M., and Delogkos, E.: The three-dimensional geometries of segmented normal faults, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-19706, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-19706, 2020.

D1375 |
Inbar Vaknin, Andy Nicol, and Conrad Childs

Fault surfaces and fault zones have been shown to have complex geometries comprising a range of morphologies including, segmentation, tip-line splays and slip-surface corrugations (e.g., Childs et al., 2009*). The three-dimensional (3D) geometries of faults (and fault zones) is difficult to determine from outcrop data which are typically 2D and limited in size. In this poster we examine the small-scale geometries of faults from normal faults cropping out in well bedded parts of the Mount Messenger and Mahakatino formations in Taranaki, New Zealand. We present two main datasets; i) measurements and maps of 2D vertical and horizontal sections for in excess of 200 faults and, ii) 3D fault model of a small-fault (vertical displacement ~1 cm) produced by serial fault-perpendicular sections of a block 10x10x13 cm. The sectioned block contains a single fault that offsets sand and silt layers, and comprises two main dilational bends; in the 3D model we map displacement, bedding and fault geometry for the sectioned fault zone. Faults in the 2D dataset comprise a range of geometries including, vertical segmentation, bends, splays and fault-surface corrugations. Although we have little information on the local magnitudes and orientations of stresses during faulting, geometric analysis of the fault zones provides information on the relationships between bed characteristics (e.g., thickness, induration and composition) and fault-surface orientations. The available data supports the view that the strike and dip of fault surfaces vary by up to 25° producing undulations or corrugations on fault surfaces over a range of scales from millimetres to metres and in both horizontal and vertical directions. Preliminary analysis of the available data suggests that these corrugations appear to reflect fault refractions due to changing bed lithologies (unexpectedly the steepest sections of faults are in mudstone beds), breaching of relays and development of conjugate fault sets. The relative importance of these factors and their importance for fault geometry will be explored further in the poster.


*Childs, C., Walsh, J.J., Manzocchi, T., Bonson, C., Nicol A., Schöpfer, M.P.J. 2009. A geometric model of fault zone and fault rock thickness variations. Journal of Structural Geology 31, 117-127.

How to cite: Vaknin, I., Nicol, A., and Childs, C.: 3D geometry of outcrop-scale normal faults from Taranaki, New Zealand, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-22497, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-22497, 2020.

D1376 |
Conrad Childs, Robert Worthington, John Walsh, and Vincent Roche

The transfer of displacement between faults that dip in the same direction is well understood and relay ramps between adjacent fault segments have been frequently described. Perhaps counterintuitively, displacement can also be transferred between faults that dip in opposite directions but the structure at the boundaries between opposed dipping faults is not well understood. We constrain the mechanism by which displacement is transferred between opposed-dipping faults by examining the geometries of faulted horizons and fault throw distributions at these ‘conjugate relay zones’.

Structure contour maps of horizons offset by overlapping opposed-dipping faults from different extensional settings display a consistent pattern. Above the line of intersection between the conjugate faults the deformed horizon is flat between converging faults and displacement transfer is reflected in changes in footwall elevation. Below the line of fault intersection the mutual footwall is flat and elevation changes occur in the hanging walls of the divergent faults. These elevation changes can be explained as a simple superposition of the deformation fields of two faults that have retarded lateral propagation due to the presence of the other synchronous fault, irrespective of whether the two faults actually intersect. The observed patterns of horizon elevation strongly resemble those seen at boundaries between adjacent basin-scale half-graben of opposed polarity.

How to cite: Childs, C., Worthington, R., Walsh, J., and Roche, V.: Transfer of displacement between faults of opposed dip, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-20580, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-20580, 2020.

D1377 |
| Highlight
Bailey Lathrop, Christopher Jackson, Rebecca Bell, and Atle Rotevatn

We need to understand how normal faults grow in order to better determine the tectono-stratigraphic evolution of rifts, and the distribution and size of potentially hazardous earthquakes. The growth of normal faults is commonly described by two models: 1) the propagating fault model (isolated growth model), and 2) the constant-length model. The propagating fault model envisages a sympathetic increase between fault lengthening (L) and displacement (D), whereas the constant-length model states that faults reach their near-final length before accumulating significant displacement (Walsh et al., 2002). Several relatively recent studies agree that faults generally follow a constant-length model, or a “hybrid model” of the two, where most faults reach their near final length within the first 20-30% of their lives, and accrue displacement throughout. Furthermore, in the past 20 years, much research has focused on how faults grow; relatively few studies have questioned what happens to the fault geometry as it becomes inactive, i.e. do faults abruptly die, or do they more gradually become inactive by so-called tip retreat. We here use a 3D seismic reflection dataset from the Exmouth Plateau, offshore Australia to support a hybrid fault growth model for normal faults, and to also determine the relationship between length and displacement as a fault dies. We show that the studied faults grew in three distinct stages: a lengthening stage (<30% of the faults life), a displacement accrual stage (30-75%), and a possible tip retreat stage (75%-end). This work has important implications in our understanding of the temporal evolution of normal faults, both how they grow and how they die.

How to cite: Lathrop, B., Jackson, C., Bell, R., and Rotevatn, A.: The temporal evolution of syn-sedimentary normal faults and the possible role of tip retreat, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-1187, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-1187, 2020.

D1378 |
Hagen Deckert, Steffen Abe, and Wolfgang Bauer

In the course of hydrocarbon or geothermal exploration the characterisation of fault zone architectures is of interest for fluid flow modelling and geomechanical studies. Seismic data normally offer the best information for the identification of fault zone geometries in sedimentary basins. However, the internal structure or the damage zone of a fault can be hardly resolved with seismic data as displacements along single fault strands or fractures are by far too small. Thus, it is not possible to directly map small scale faults with seismic methods, though these structures might significantly influence fluid flow. We try to examine the architecture of extensional fault zones in carbonate rocks at subseismic scales by using discrete element method (DEM) techniques to numerically simulate the evolution of fault zones including their associated damage zones.

As a case study we have analysed the geometry, displacement and fault width of normal faults in fine grained jurassic limestones in a quarry in Franconia, Germany. The quarry shows a rather simple set of conjugated 60deg dipping normal faults. Displacement is rather small and varies between c. 5cm up to c. 2m, some faults show almost no offset. The fault thickness varies between 2cm and c. 1m. A closer investigation of the fault geometries reveals, next to planar parts, sometimes complex fault zone structures including restraining and releasing bends, multiple fault strands as well as lenses and associated riedel shears. Analysis of high resolution photogrammetric data revealed a high number of small scale fractures between neighbouring discrete fault surfaces which are interpreted as highly fractured damage zones. Some faults with rather small displacement suggest that the overall inclination of the fault is a result of small subvertical sections which are connected in a staircase like appearance. 

The DEM models simulate normal faulting in a layered marl-limestone sequence driven by the displacement of an underlying basement fault. Different layer geometries and effective vertical stresses in the range of 15-45 MPa, equivalent to an overburden thickness of c. 1000-3000m, have been used in the models. The stress range covers the maximum burial depth of the carbonates, which is assumed to be c. 1500m. Material properties used in the DEM were calibrated based on laboratory data, i.e. results of triaxial deformation tests on the studied limestones.

Results of the models show fault geometries which resemble those observed in the studied outcrop. In particularly under low stress, small offsets and with strongly decoupled layers we observe steeply dipping faults (>70deg) which also show staircase structures composed of sub-vertical fractures within each of the layers and horizontal offsets along the layer interfaces. We also observe the development of multiple fault strands and associated damage zones. 

Our study shows that the DEM models are capable to reproduce observed fault geometries and damage zones. The results help to understand fault zone architectures and depict highly fractured areas in a sub-seismic scale.

How to cite: Deckert, H., Abe, S., and Bauer, W.: Geometrical comparison of outcrop data and discrete element models of extensional fault zones in layered carbonates, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-9046, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-9046, 2020.

D1379 |
Janis Aleksans, Conrad Childs, and Martin Schöpfer

Scaled numerical models of faults are useful complements to geological data and by providing insights into fault dynamics they can improve our understanding of the different stages of development of normal fault systems, from nucleation through to localisation and maturity.

In this work, we use Particle Flow Code in three dimensions, which implements the Distinct Element Method (DEM), to study the development of systems of normal faults. The modelling is based on spherical particles that interact via a linear force-displacement law. Cohesion is modelled by adding linear elastic bonds to particle-particle contacts. These bonds break if the critical normal or shear strength is exceeded, thus creating a fracture surface within the rock volume. Model boundaries are represented by rigid and frictionless walls enclosing the modelled volume vertically and at the ends, with periodic lateral boundaries. Extension is replicated by slowly moving the end walls away from the centre while maintaining a constant confining pressure.

The DEM models replicate many aspects of the geometry and dynamics of natural fault systems with stages of fault nucleation, propagation, interaction and linkage. Here we focus on the sinuosity of model fault map traces which show a similar variability to that seen in nature. In the models, fault trace sinuosity is negatively correlated with the Young’s modulus of the rock, so that faults become less sinuous as the stiffness of the solid medium increases. This relationship supports a model in which the lengths of fault segments formed at the early stages of extension are smaller in rocks with lower Young’s modulus than in rocks with higher Young’s modulus. Longer initial fault segments become connected as displacement increases, to give lower sinuosity faults.

How to cite: Aleksans, J., Childs, C., and Schöpfer, M.: Investigating fault sinuosity using discrete element modelling in 3D, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-10293, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-10293, 2020.

D1380 |
Ester Piegari, Rosa Di Maio, Rosanna Salone, and Claudio De Paola

In the last twenty years, a growing interest is noticed in quantifying non-volcanic degassing, which could represent a significant input of CO2 into the atmosphere. Large emissions of non-volcanic carbon dioxide usually take place in seismically active zones, where the existence of a positive spatial correlation between gas discharges and extensional tectonic regimes has been confirmed by seismic data. Extensional stress plays a key role in creating pathways for the rising of gases at micro- and macro-scales, increasing the rock permeability and connecting the deep crust to the earth surface. Geoelectrical investigations, which are very sensitive to permeability changes, provide accurate volumetric reconstructions of the physical properties of the rocks and, therefore, are fundamental not only for the definition of the seismic-active zone geometry, but also for understanding the processes that govern the flow of fluids along the damage zone. In this framework, we present the results of an integrated approach where geoelectrical and passive seismic data are used to construct a 3D geological model, whose simulated temporal evolution allowed the estimation of CO2 flux along an active fault in the area of Matese Ridge (Southern Apennines, Italy). By varying the geometry of the source system and the permeability values of the damage zone, characteristic times for the upward migration of CO2 through a thick layer of silts and clays have been estimated and CO2 fluxes comparable with the observed values in the investigated area have been predicted. These findings are promising for gas hazard, as they suggest that numerical simulations of different CO2 degassing scenarios could forecast possible critical variations in the amount of CO2 emitted near the fault.

How to cite: Piegari, E., Di Maio, R., Salone, R., and De Paola, C.: Estimation of Carbon Dioxide emissions along an active fault by using geoelectrical measurements, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-20632, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-20632, 2020.

D1381 |
Hamed Davari, Anooshiravan Ansari, Sanaz Vajedian, and Navid Kheirdast

In the finite-fault modelling we aim to invert the observed data to image the earthquake rupture inside the solid crust medium. The common finite fault inversion methods usually take a planar geometry for the ruptured area, however, evidences show more complicated geometries (e.g. 2016 Mw7.8 Kaikura) can causes the seismic event. Having the advanced remote sensing technologies (e.g. InSAR), with a high data resolution in the near fault area, we can increase the accuracy for determination of rupture geometry. In this study, we consider a large three dimensional ensemble of point sources in the solid crust medium, each point source can trigger six moment tensor components that makes the model space of the problem. We then find the most probable geometry of the ruptured area by inverting the interferometric observation for moment tensor components. Using the Bayesian inversion with MCMC (Markov Chain Monte Carlo) simulation the fault geometry and static slip deformation is determined from moment tensor to have a ruptured zone that maximizes the posteriori likelihood. The proposed method would be applied to 2019 M5.9 Torkamanchay earthquake in Iran and the preliminary results is presented.

How to cite: Davari, H., Ansari, A., Vajedian, S., and Kheirdast, N.: Bayesian Finite-fault inversion for determination of rupture geometry and slip function , EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-1073, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-1073, 2020.

D1382 |
Alfons Berger and Marco Herwegh

The seismic-interseismic cycle strongly relates to the interplay between dilation owing to fracturing and frictional granular flow on one hand side and hydrothermal cementation processes on the other side. This study investigates different fault rocks of a crustal-scale fault zone in the Central Alps (Switzerland). We combine microstructural with geochemical approaches to decipher the interaction of grain size reduction via frictional processes with precipitation and resulting particle size increases. The three major fault rocks, i.e. (1) cockade-bearing breccias, (2) cataclasites, and (3) fault gouges, differ in their microstructure. The chemical data clearly demonstrate a decreasing gain of volume along this group of tectonites. Their different precipitation volumes most likely relate to dynamic changed of the local permeability of these rocks. The fluid pathways control the precipitation at different localities and times, which affect the healing of these fault rocks inducing a gain in rock strength. During the next deformation event, the extent of healing therefore directly controls the mechanical behavior of the rock. The estimated volume gain (~+110%) in cockade-bearing breccias is consistent with the seismic dilatant behavior of these frictional rocks as already proposed from other arguments (Berger and Herwegh 2019). This is in contrast to the fault-gouges with only minor gains in volume and mass resulting in a predominantly non-cohesive deformation style. This example indicates that permeability evolution (and related hydrothermal processes) strongly influences the mechanical behavior of such faults. This shows the highly dynamic behavior with time in long-lived fault systems. These dynamic changes in precipitation and resulting different strengths occur at different timescales from minutes (seismic events) to thousands of years.

Ref.: Berger, A., Herwegh, M., 2019. Cockade structures as a paleo-earthquake proxy in upper crustal hydrothermal systems. Nature Scientific Reports, 9, 9209.

How to cite: Berger, A. and Herwegh, M.: Cockade-bearing breccias, cataclasites and gouges in a single fault zone: Microstructures and geochemisty, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-2426, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-2426, 2020.

D1383 |
Debo Ma

Characteristics and evolution process of strike-slip fault is a key issue restricting further exploration in Halahatang area, North Tarim Basin, NW China. This paper uses the new-acquired 3D seismic data and applies fault structural analysis method to study the characteristics of Halahatang area, and discusses evolution process of the faults.
The data used in this paper include 1960 km2 3D seismic data in prestack time migration in Halahatang area, and 4 wells logging data used to calibrate seismic horizon. The bin size of 3D seismic is 25 m×25 m with sampling rate of 4ms, and data length of 7000 ms. Firstly, the Eigen-structure coherency and SO semblance are used to identify the distribution of the strike-slip fault. Secondly, the segmentation of Ordovician strike-slip fault in the study area is studied and the control effect of segmentation on reservoir development and oil and gas enrichment is discussed.
The slip distance of strike-slip fault is very small, the maximum is no more than 2 km. They are typical cratonic strike-slip faults which are developed inside the craton. There are four kinds of structural styles on the profile, which are vertical and steep, positive flower structure, negative flower structure and semi-flower structure. Five structural styles of linear extension, X type, braided structure, horsetail structure, and en-echelon structure are developed on the plane. There are obvious segmentation along the fault trend.
According to the strata subjected to strike-slip deformation and the structural styles in different strata, it is determined that the strike-slip faults have three stages of activity in Halahatang area. 
In the Late Ordovician, NNE, NNW, NE, and NEE strike-slip faults are mainly developed in the study area. The faults on the seismic profile are steep and upright, with small displacements. Faults generally only break into the Ordovician, and later activities will cause faults to go up to the Silurian and even the upper Palaeozoic, which have different tectonic styles with that of the Ordovician faults. The NNE and NNW strike-slip faults form an “X”-type conjugate strike-slip fault, reflecting the conjugate strike-slip fault is generated by near north-south compression.
In the Late Permian, 4 NNW transtensional strike-slip faults are generated by the activation of some Ordovician strike-slip faults. In the Late Cretaceous-Palaeocene, the study area mainly develop several groups of NNE, near SN transtensional strike-slip faults. These transtensional strike-slip faults appear as graben and horst or stepped faults on the section. These transtensional strike-slip faults are R-shear faults in the Mesozoic and Cenozoic strata formed by the Ordovician NNE faults slip dextrally under the tectonic stress.

How to cite: Ma, D.: Characteristics and evolution process of strike-slip fault in Halahatang area, North Tarim Basin, NW China, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-20861, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-20861, 2020.

D1384 |
Ajay Kumar, Soumyajit Mukherjee, Mohamedharoon A. Shaikh, and Seema Singh

The Morni hills located in the north-western Himalaya in Panchkula district, Haryana has undergone poly-phase deformation owing to its complex tectonic history. In order to better understand the kinematic evolution of study area, detailed structural analyses of the fault system at regional-scale is carried out. We perform paleostress analyses on the collected fault-slip data to derive the paleostress tensors. The fault-slip data includes attitudes of fault planes and slickenside lineations, and the sense of slip along the fault plane determined by observing various kinematic indicators. The study area mainly exposes compacted, fine- to medium-grained calcareous sandstones belonging to the lower Siwalik formation in the Himalayan foreland basin. The exposed sandstones contain numerous striated slip planes of varying slip-sense. As the fault planes are intra-formational and exposed in uniform lithology, sense of slip cannot be determined through offset markers. In such cases, the sense of slip of the fault plane is determined solely by observing various slickenside kinematic indicators and fracture types developed on the faulted surface. The slickenside kinematic indicators e.g., calcite mineral steps were found useful in deciphering the sense of movement of each of the slip plane. The paleostress inversion of fault-slip data was carried out by applying the open source software T-Tecto studio X5 to obtain the reduced stress tensor. The Paleostress inversion algorithm called the Right Dihedral Method (RDM) is executed to estimate the principal stress axes orientations. Temporally, the slip planes may have reactivated multiple times preserving multiple slickenside orientations superimposing one another. Such fault-slip data are called heterogeneous and therefore, multiple stress states are deduced to explain the heterogeneous fault-slip data. The paleostress analysis results indicate stress regime index (R’) range 1.25–2.25 and 0.20–1.00 suggesting pure strike-slip to transpressive and pure extensive to transtensive stress regime respectively prevailing in the study area.

How to cite: Kumar, A., Mukherjee, S., Shaikh, M. A., and Singh, S.: Fault kinematic investigations along the Panchkula-Morni region, NW Himalaya, India, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-237, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-237, 2020.

D1385 |
Meng Zhang, Zhiping Wu, and Shiyong Yan

Buried-hills, paleotopographic highs covered by younger sediments, become the focused area of exploration in China in pace with the reduction of hydrocarbon resources in the shallow strata. A number of buried-hill fields have been discovered in Tanhai area located in the northeast of Jiyang Depression within Bohai Bay Basin, which provides an excellent case study for better understanding the structural evolution and formation mechanism of buried-hills. High-quality 3-D seismic data calibrated by well data makes it possible to research deeply buried erosional remnants. In this study, 3-D visualization of key interfaces, seismic cross-sections, fault polygons maps and thickness isopach maps are shown to manifest structural characteristics of buried-hills. Balanced cross-sections and fault growth rates are exhibited to demonstrate the forming process of buried-hills. The initiation and development of buried-hills are under the control of fault system. According to strike variance, main faults are grouped into NW-, NNE- and near E-trending faults. NW-trending main faults directly dominate the whole mountain range, while NNE- and near E-trending main faults have an effect on dissecting mountain range and controlling the single hill. In addition, secondary faults with different nature complicate internal structure of buried-hills. During Late Triassic, NW-trending thrust faults formed in response to regional compressional stress field, preliminarily building the fundamental NW-trending structural framework. Until Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous, rolling-back subduction of Pacific Plate and sinistral movement of Tan-Lu Fault Zone (TLFZ) integrally converted NW-trending thrust faults into normal faults. The footwall of NW-trending faults quickly rose and became a large-scale NW-trending mountain range. The intense movement of TLFZ simultaneously induced a series of secondary NNE-trending strike-slip faults, among which large-scale ones divided the mountain range into northern, middle and southern section. After entry into Cenozoic, especially Middle Eocene, the change of subduction direction of Pacific Plate induced the transition of regional stress field. Near E-trending basin-controlling faults developed and dissected previous tectonic framework. The middle section of mountain range was further separated into three different single hill. Subsequently, the mountain range was gradually submerged and buried by overlying sediments, due to regional thermal subsidence. Through multiphase structural evolution, the present-day geometry of buried-hills is eventually taken shape.

How to cite: Zhang, M., Wu, Z., and Yan, S.: Fault System Evolution and Its Influences on Buried-hills Formation in Tanhai Area of Jiyang Depression, Bohai Bay Basin, China, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-2829, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-2829, 2020.

D1386 |
Rowan Vernon, Jon Ford, Katie Watkinson, Richard Haslam, Mark Woods, Andrew Farrant, Helen Burke, Alice Davis, Jennifer Lear, Harris Tarnanas, and Edward Wrathmell

The Flamborough Head Fault Zone (FHFZ) marks the southern extent of the Cleveland Basin and the northern margin of the Market Weighton Block, England. It is a regionally-significant structural zone which has undergone a complex history of Mesozoic-Cenozoic extension and compression. It is predominantly comprised of east-west trending faults which form a graben that is dissected by north-south trending faults, including the southern extension to the Peak Trough, the Hunmanby Fault. To the west, FHFZ links with the Howardian Fault System and offshore, in the east, it is truncated by the north-south trending Dowsing Fault. The FHFZ is well exposed and described from coastal cliff sections at Flamborough Head but the inland development of the faults have hitherto been poorly explored predominantly due to limited inland-exposure.

The region around the FHFZ is underlain by the Chalk Group, a 500 m thick limestone succession. The Chalk Group is a principal aquifer that is the main source of water supply in East Yorkshire. The geometry and physical characteristics of the Chalk succession, including the effects of faulting, influence groundwater flow across the region. A range of modern data and recent geological research highlight that considerable changes can be made to the region’s current geological maps and subsurface understanding. Ensuring these features are better-documented is key for up-dating groundwater models to enable more confident decisions about land-use, water management and environmental regulation.

A multi-faceted approach to geological mapping has been undertaken in the region by the British Geological Survey (BGS), in collaboration with the Environment Agency. Remote sensing and field mapping of the superficial deposits has better characterised the extent and nature of these deposits and identified potential recharge ‘windows’ into the bedrock. Remote sensing, targeted field mapping, palaeontological analysis, passive seismic and 2D onshore seismic interpretation have been integrated to produce a new map of the Chalk succession, which reveals the inland extension of the FHFZ in unprecedented detail. Combining these techniques has enabled us to bridge the gap between the surface geology and deeper subsurface structure, increase our understanding of the geology of the region and produce an improved conceptual model at a range of depths which will be used to better manage water resources.

How to cite: Vernon, R., Ford, J., Watkinson, K., Haslam, R., Woods, M., Farrant, A., Burke, H., Davis, A., Lear, J., Tarnanas, H., and Wrathmell, E.: Surface and subsurface fault mapping in the Yorkshire Wolds, UK, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-7290, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-7290, 2020.

D1387 |
Yuri Panara, Francesco Emanuele Maesano, Roberto Basili, Giacomo Losi, Jakub Fedorik, and Giovanni Toscani

Fault plane attitude and dimension are important parameters for deriving seismotectonic information or input data for earthquake hazard assessment and in this sense a complete 3D view and characterization of geological and structural elements is essential. However, there is always a trade-off between structural complexity and data availability at the scale of the designed application.

In the last few years, merging public and confidential seismic reflection profiles and borehole data, were used in order to carry out a 3D reconstruction of fault planes and Plio-Pleistocene stratigraphic horizons in the northern Adriatic Sea, at the front of the northern Apennine fold-and-thrust belt and associated foredeep. The study area straddles the Italian coastline and subsurface data interpretation allowed us to reconstruct the structural setting of both onshore and offshore structures. Although it is known that this area has low rates of active tectonic deformation, it hosts important seismogenic faults associated with instrumental seismicity and historical earthquakes.

The dense distribution of seismic reflection profiles allowed us to perform an accurate 3D reconstruction of almost 50 fault planes, of different dimensions and order of importance. Their geometrical and structural features helped to define the most recent tectonic phases. To this end, we also mapped several Plio-Pleistocene regional unconformities and integrated them with previously published reconstructions of key horizons.

In some cases, where further published data were available, it was also possible to perform detailed cross sections whose restoration allowed us to reconstruct the post-Miocene (5.33 Ma) slip-rate history of some important tectonic structures with a detail of ~1 Ma. The 3D geological model revealed several structural features like fault continuity and terminations, level of connectivity, presence of lateral ramps, along strike variations of displacement that could not be fully addressed using cross sections alone.

How to cite: Panara, Y., Maesano, F. E., Basili, R., Losi, G., Fedorik, J., and Toscani, G.: 3D reconstructions of fault surfaces and key stratigraphic horizons to define recent tectonic activity in the northern Apennines outer fronts and foredeep (northern Adriatic Sea, Italy), EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-9569, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-9569, 2020.

D1388 |
Abeer Al Ashkar, Antoine Schlupp, Matthieu Ferry, and Munkhuu Ulziibat

Ulaanbaatar, capital city of Mongolia (1.5 M inhabitants, i.e. half of the country’s population), is located in Central Mongolia where seismic activity and deformation rates are low (< 1mm/yr.). In contrast, Western Mongolia has experienced four great earthquakes (M ≥ 8) between 1905 and 1957 as well as numerous moderate ones. Some (e.g. the 1957 Bogd earthquake) have been felt at the capital located more than 500 km away. During the last decades, several active faults, located 10 km to 45 km away from Ulaanbaatar, have been discovered and studied. Tectonic Geomorphology and Paleoseismology studies indicate that these faults are able to generate earthquakes of M ≥ 6 with average recurrence times ranging from 1 kyr to 10 kyr (e.g. 1195 ± 157 yr for the Sharkhai fault). Furthermore, since 2005 very dense microseismicity swarms located 10 km NW of the City have been monitored by the Seismic Observatory of Mongolia (IAG). Further studies showed the swarms are produced by the previously undetected Emeelt fault zone along three parallel branches. Due to their proximity to a key population and economic center, all these active structures contribute significantly to increasing Seismic Hazard. During the course of these studies, we documented Quaternary activity along several supplementary faults, which demonstrates that the knowledge of active faults in the region is still incomplete and suggests seismic hazard levels should be revised. Therefore, we undertook to map, as exhaustively as possible, all active tectonic structures in a radius of 300 km around Ulaanbaatar. Here we present preliminary results based on the combined analysis of multi-source and multi-sensor data from satellite images (e.g. Pleiades, Sentinel-2, Landsat8), UAV photographs, and digital elevation models (TanDEM-X and UAV photogrammetric DEMs) in order to extract the most relevant information at various scales. We performed a detailed Tectonic Geomorphology analysis of alluvial and slope landforms to identify recent deformation affecting stream channels and associated deposits (ponds, fans and terraces). On that basis, we document segmentation, deformation patterns and kinematics, as well as relationships between faults at regional scale. Finally, we identify potential sites for future paleoseismic investigations along the main structures. Though this project is in a preliminary stage, our long-term goal is to build a comprehensive database of sources of seismic hazard to the City of Ulaanbaatar and integrate these results into seismic hazard calculations.

How to cite: Al Ashkar, A., Schlupp, A., Ferry, M., and Ulziibat, M.: Taking up the challenge of identifying active faults for seismic hazard assessment of the city of Ulaanbaatar (Mongolia), EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-14014, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-14014, 2020.

D1389 |
Ji-Hoon Kang

The Yangsan Fault Zone (YFZ) of NNE trend and Ulsan Fault Zone (UFZ) of NNW trend are developed in the Gyeongsang Basin, the southern part of the Korean Peninsula, and many active faults and Quaternary faults (ATV and QTY Fs) have been found in these fault zones. The tectonic movement of the YFZ can be explained at least by two different strike-slip movements, named as D1 sinistral strike-slip and D2 dextral strike-slip, and then two different dip-slip movements, named as D3 conjugate reverse-slip and D4 Quaternary reverse-slip. The surfaces of D3 fault in basement rocks are extended those of D4 fault in the covering Quaternary deposits, like the other Quaternary faults within the YFZ. The D3 and D4 faults were formed under the same compression of (N)NW-(S)SE direction. After that, the active faults occurred in the Korean Peninsula under the compression of E-W direction. The ATV and QTY Fs thrust the Bulguksa igneous rocks of Late Cretaceous-Early Tertiary upon the Quaternary deposits or are developed within the Quaternary deposits in the UFZ, showing the reverse-slip sense of top-to-the west movement. This presentation is suggested the formation model of neotectonic fault zone in the UFZ on the basis of the various trends [(W)NW, N-S, (E)NE trends] of fault surfaces of the ATV and QTY Fs found in the UFZ, and the zigzag-form connecting line of their outcrop sites, and the deformation history (the N-S trending 1st reverse-slip faulting by the 1st E-W compression and associated the E-W trending strike-slip tear faulting, the N-S trending 2nd reverse-slip faulting by the 2nd E-W compression) of neotectonic fault zone in the Singye-ri valley around the UFZ, and the compressive arc-shaped lineaments which convex to the west reported in the YFZ.

Acknowledgements: This research was financially supported by a grant (2017-MPSS31-006) from the Research and Development of Active fault of Korean Peninsula funded by the Korean Ministry of the Interior and Safety, and by Ministry of public Administration and Security as Disaster Prevention Safety Human resource development Project.

How to cite: Kang, J.-H.: The formation model of neotectonic fault zone in the Ulsan Fault Zone, Gyeongsang basin, Korea, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-21089, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-21089, 2020.