Quantifying fault breccia geometry: Dent Fault, NW England

Mort, K. and Woodcock, N. H. (2008) Quantifying fault breccia geometry: Dent Fault, NW England. Journal of Structural Geology, 30 (6). pp. 701-709. DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsg.2008.02.005

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jsg.2008.02.005


A geometric classification of fault breccia borrowed from the cave-collapse literature has been suggested as an alternative to available genetic classifications. Here, image analysis is used to explore geometric discrimination between the visually assigned classes of crackle breccia, mosaic breccia and chaotic breccia, using samples from the well-understood Dent Fault, northwest England. Clast sphericity and surface roughness show some correlation with the breccia classes, but particle size distributions and their fractal dimension show none. A more useful parameter is the percentage of sample area occupied by clasts. Crackle breccia has >75% clasts, mosaic breccia 60–75% clasts, and chaotic breccia has <60% clasts. The eye is also good at judging the tessellation (goodness-of-fit) of clasts, and a semi-quantitative approach to assessing this parameter is explored. The average degree of rotational misfit of the clasts is strongly related to breccia class: crackle breccia involves less than 10° average rotation, mosaic breccia 10–20° and chaotic breccia more than 20° rotation. Comparison charts are provided for semi-quantitative classification of fault breccias.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 08AREP IA55 2008 P Part III
Subjects: 02 - Geodynamics, Geophysics and Tectonics
Divisions: 02 - Geodynamics, Geophysics and Tectonics
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Structural Geology
Volume: 30
Page Range: pp. 701-709
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsg.2008.02.005
Depositing User: Sarah Humbert
Date Deposited: 16 Feb 2009 13:03
Last Modified: 23 Jul 2013 10:08
URI: http://eprints.esc.cam.ac.uk/id/eprint/549

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