InteGrated Laboratories to investigate the mechanics of ASeismic vs. Seismic faulting
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The details of the GLASS project can be found in the following pages... please explore them!!
Grant agreement no.: 259256
Principal Investigator: Cristiano Collettini
Host Institution: Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Roma
Budget: 1.514.400 Euro
Starting date October 2010, duration 5 years.
- Synoptic view of GLASS
- The down-hole seismometers
- The new rock deformation apparatus
- Scientific Products
Earthquakes are potentially catastrophic phenomena that have a huge impact on the environment and society. Understanding the physical processes responsible for earthquakes and faulting requires high quality data and direct observations of the underlying phenomena. However, no direct measurements can be made at depth where earthquakes initiate and propagate. Our knowledge of the mechanical properties of fault zones relies on Earth surface observations and experiments conducted in rock deformation laboratories. Despite recent progress, we have much to learn about the mechanics of earthquakes and the complex and inherently scale-dependent processes that govern earthquake faulting. Numerous fundamental questions concerning the mechanical behaviour of faults remain unanswered: What are the rheological properties of fault zone materials that govern seismic or aseismic slip behaviour? How do the frictional and rheological properties of fault zones vary in space and time? How do aseismic and seismic slip interact in time and space?
Here, I propose a novel approach that will employ integrated studies of geological, seismological and laboratory data to open new horizons about our understanding of seismic and aseismic faulting.
Central Italy is a unique test site that can serve as a natural laboratory for the integration of high resolution data gathered from different disciplines. I propose to develop my innovative and multidisciplinary research to unravel the physico-chemico processes responsible for faulting phenomena ranging from aseismic creep to seismic slip. GLASS will aim to:
(i) locate and analyze different types of transient seismic signals from the actively deforming crust, such as fast/slow and high/low frequency earthquakes and non volcanic tremors;
(ii) study deformation processes in outcrops of ancient faults that represent exhumed analogues of the active structures today;
(iii) characterize the fluid flow and frictional properties of faults in rock deformation experiments;
(iv) investigate earthquake nucleation and recurrence by developing numerical models that will be constrained by field and experimental data and calibrated by seismological records.
The proposed research will allow to create unprecedented insight into the mechanics of earthquakes and to investigate deformation processes from the crustal to the nano-scale and from a time window ranging from the seismic cycle to entire geologic fault history.