The anisotropy of magnetic susceptibility (AMS) of soft rocks was measured in order to distinguish between the effect of remote and local strain fields, determine the size of the related inelastic damage zone and resolve the fault-plane solutions of past earthquakes. The AMS fabrics were explored next to late Pleistocene syndepositional normal faults (total displacement up to ~3.5 m) that cross soft lacustrine rocks within the seismically active Dead Sea basin. 'Deposition fabrics' prevail meters away from the fault planes and are characterized by scattered maximum and intermediate principal AMS axes. 'Deformation fabrics' are detected up to tens of centimetres from the fault planes and are characterized by well-grouped AMS axes, in which one of the principal axes is parallel to the strike of the nearby fault. Variations in the AMS fabrics and magnetic lineations define the size of the inelastic damage zone around the faults. The results demonstrate that the deformation-driven magnetic fabrics and the associated inelastic damage zones are compatible with coseismic dynamic faulting and the effects of the local strain field during earthquakes. Most of the AMS fabrics show a conspicuous similarity to that of the fault-plane solutions, i.e., the principal AMS axes and instantaneous strain ellipsoids are coaxial. These results suggest a novel application of the AMS method for defining the shape and size of the damage zones surrounding dynamic faults and determining the full tensor of the local strain field.
- Fractures and faults
- Magnetic fabrics and AMS