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ISSN  2096-3955

CN  10-1502/P

Citation: Zhang, Q., Zhao, Y. H., Wang, H., Ehsan, M. I., Yang, J. Y., Tian, G., Xu, A. D., Liu, R., and Xiao, Y. J. (2020). Evolution of the deformation field and earthquake fracture precursors of strike-slip faults. Earth Planet. Phys., 4(2), 151–162.

2020, 4(2): 151-162. doi: 10.26464/epp2020021


Evolution of the deformation field and earthquake fracture precursors of strike-slip faults

School of Earth and Space Sciences, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China

Corresponding author: YongHong Zhao, Wang,

Received Date: 2019-06-22
Web Publishing Date: 2019-12-25

Seismic hazard analysis is gaining increased attention in the present era because of the catastrophic effects of earthquakes. Scientists always have as a goal to develop new techniques that will help forecast earthquakes before their reoccurrence. In this research, we have performed a shear failure experiment on rock samples with prefabricated cracks to simulate the process of plate movement that forms strike-slip faults. We studied the evolution law of the deformation field to simulate the shear failure experiment, and these results gave us a comprehensive understanding of the elaborate strain distribution law and its formation process with which to identify actual fault zones. We performed uniaxial compression tests on marble slabs with prefabricated double shear cracks to study the distribution and evolution of the deformation field during shear failure. Analysis of the strain field at different loading stages showed that with an increase in the load, the shear strain field initially changed to a disordered-style distribution. Further, the strain field was partially concentrated and finally completely concentrated near the crack and then distributed in the shape of a strip along the crack. We also computed coefficients of variation (CVs) for the physical quantities u, v, and exy, which varied with the load. The CV curves were found to correspond to the different loading stages. We found that at the uniform deformation stage, the CV value was small and changed slowly, whereas at the later nonuniform deformation stage, the CV value increased sharply and changed abruptly. Therefore, the precursor to a rock sample breakdown can be predicted by observing the variation characteristics of CV statistics. The correlation we found between our experimental and theoretical results revealed that our crack evolution and sample deformation results showed good coupling with seismic distribution characteristics near the San Andreas Fault.

Key words: strike-slip fracture, digital image correlation method, evolution of deformation field, rock failure, fracture precursor

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Evolution of the deformation field and earthquake fracture precursors of strike-slip faults

Qi Zhang, YongHong Zhao, Hang Wang, Muhammad Irfan Ehsan, JiaYing Yang, Gang Tian, AnDong Xu, Ru Liu, YanJun Xiao