Regional Deformation by Block Translation and Rotation

  • Z. Garfunkel
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (ASIC, volume 254)

Abstract

Deformation in the brittle part of the crust is often distributed on many faults which tend to form domains of conjugate fractures. Within each domain the fault blocks translate and rotate simultaneously, their motion being strongly governed by kinematic constraints. Blocks rotate about vertical axes where fault slip has a strike-parallel component (pure strike slip, oblique normal faults) and on horizontal axes where dip slip occurs. Relative to domain boundaries, the sense of rotation is opposite to the sense of the fault slip and away from the principal axis of shortening. In multi-domain areas the deformation is complicated in detail. The kinematic constraints may lead to geometric incompatibility between domains and may require formation of new structures in order to satisfy the externally imposed boundary conditions. However, as local shears and rotations in different senses and amounts can occur, the overall regional deformation may be quite simple. Mechanical constraints on fault motion control the amount of fault rotation and the formation of new structures, but these effects are difficult to evaluate, because the kinematic constraints can modify the stress field within faulted areas. The factors which allow fault slip and rotation to continue are also incompletely understood. Block systems that rotated on vertical and/or horizontal axes are decoupled to greater or lesser extents from the underlying mid-crustal ductile levels, but localized shear can probably lead to differential rotations of rock masses even below the decoupling zones. While block rotations related to faulting is probably more common than hitherto recognized, other mechanisms, e.g. motions of micro-plates or exotic terranes, may also cause rock masses to rotate about verical axes. Therefore paleomagnetic data on rotation must be combined with structural data in order to identify the contribution of faulting to block rotation.

Keywords

Shear Zone Intact Rock Kinematic Constraint Fault Slip Regional Deformation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Z. Garfunkel
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of GeologyHebrew University of JerusalemIsrael

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