Thermally induced primary fracture development in tabular granitic plutons: a preliminary analysis

M. A. Koenders, Nick Petford

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

We present an analytical model that predicts some of the mechanical effects associated with the intrusion and subsequent cooling of a rectangular intrusion emplaced at a uniform temperature into elastic continental crust. Assuming an idealized geometry and initial conditions, we recover the temperature field and subsequent strain field as a function of both position and time. The strain field is particularly relevant as it provides information on the primary (cooling-related) fracture formation pattern and direction within and immediately surrounding the pluton. We find a large strain jump across the pluton-country rock contact, implying that fracture formation should be maximized at the edges and corners of the intrusion. The direction of the fractures is predominantly vertical within the pluton centre, but becomes progressively more inclined towards the pluton margin and into the adjacent country rock. Fracture orientation may depend critically on the geometry of the intrusion, in particular the ratio of the longest to shortest dimension L (sub 1) /L (sub 2) .
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-150
Number of pages8
JournalGeological Society, London, Special Publications
Volume214
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 30 Apr 2008

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pluton
country rock
cooling
fracture orientation
geometry
continental crust
temperature
analysis

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Thermally induced primary fracture development in tabular granitic plutons: a preliminary analysis. / Koenders, M. A.; Petford, Nick.

In: Geological Society, London, Special Publications, Vol. 214, No. 1, 30.04.2008, p. 143-150.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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