Determination of strain ellipsoid according to two-dimensional data on three or more intersection planes

  • J. Shao
  • C. Wang
Short Note


The eigenvalue method (Gendzwill and Stauffer, 1981) is adopted to determine three-dimensional deformation of geological bodies from two-dimensional data on three or more nonparallel sections. A least-squares method is employed to fit an overdetermined system for uniquely determining an ellipsoid. The inverse problem is treated more directly. Calculated examples show that the errors are caused mainly from inaccuracy of the procedures used to obtain two-dimensional data.

Key words

deformation ellipsoid (strain ellipsoid) principal deformation axis (principal deformation direction) eigenvalue method least-squares method 


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  1. Gendzwill, D. J. and Stauffer, M. R., 1981, Analysis of triaxial ellipsoids: Their shapes, plane sections, and plane projections: Jour. Math. Geol., v. 13, no. 2, p. 135–152.Google Scholar
  2. Ramsay, J. G., 1967, Folding and fracturing of rocks: McGraw-Hill Book Company, New York, p. 142–148.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Shao
    • 1
  • C. Wang
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of GeologyBeijing UniversityBeijingPeople's Republic of China
  2. 2.Department of Thermal EnergyTsinghua UniversityBeijingPeople's Republic of China

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