In this study we perform a number of shear experiments in clay in an attempt to reproduce and understand fracture patterns observed in a rock outcrop in northern Minnesota. A cake of clay is subjected to shear by movement in opposite senses of two plates on which the clay rests. The rate of displacement of the plates is held constant in each experiment. We examine the effects of anisotropy of the clay, shear-sense inversion, and rotation associated with shear, as possible mechanisms responsible for the fracture orientations that do not agree with those predicted by Coulomb theory.
Additional contributor: Peter Hudleston (faculty mentor)
This project was supported by the University of Minnesota's Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) and the University of Minnesota Department of Geology and Geophysics.
The Role of Fabric and Shear Inversion on the Development of Fractures in Shear Zones.
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