Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2122/8451
Authors: Violay, M. E. S.* 
Nielsen, S.* 
Spagnuolo, E.* 
Cinti, D.* 
Di Toro, G.* 
Di Stefano, G.* 
Title: Pore fluid in experimental calcite-bearing faults: Abrupt weakening and geochemical signature of co-seismic processes
Issue Date: 2013
Series/Report no.: /361 (2013)
DOI: 10.1016/j.epsl.2012.11.021
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2122/8451
Keywords: earthquakes friction pore fluid carbonate-bearing rocks
Subject Classification04. Solid Earth::04.06. Seismology::04.06.01. Earthquake faults: properties and evolution 
Abstract: While itiswidelyrecognizedthatfluidsinfluencefaultstrengthandearthquakenucleation,propaga- tion andarrest,theireffectsonco-seismicslidingfrictionareonlyconjectured.Toshedlightonthese effects,55highvelocity(41 m s 1) frictionexperimentswereconductedatroomtemperatureon Carraramarblesamplesinthepresenceofporefluid(upto15MPaporepressure),room-humidityand ‘‘vacuum’’(10 4 mbar)conditions.Inalltheexperiments,thefrictioncoefficientevolvedfromapeak value of0.6–0.8toasteady-statevalueof0.1inabout1–1.5mofslip.However,experiments performedinthepresenceofporefluidhadalargeandmoreabruptdecreaseinfrictionatthe initiationofsliding(65%after20mmofslip),whereasexperimentsperformedundervacuumandroom humidityconditionsshowedinitialvelocity-strengtheningbehaviorfollowedbyamoregradual reductioninfriction.Thisindicatesthatcalcite-bearingrocksaremorepronetoslipinthepresence of water.Underroom-humidityconditions,CO2 was detectedduringtheentiredurationofthe experiment.Inthepresenceofporefluid,HCO3 and Ca2þ were detectedforslips 40.1 m.Thelack of decarbonationproducts(HCO3 and Ca2þ) inporefluidexperimentsforslip o0.1 mimpliesthat the abruptweakeningisnotrelatedtodecarbonation(orthattheabundanceofthereactionproductsis below theresolutionoftheanalyticalmethods).Giventhemodestthermalexpansionofwater, the estimatedthermalpressurizationduringtheabruptweakeningappearstobenegligible.Instead, we suggestthatabruptweakeningisduetosubcriticalcrack-growth,hydrolyticweakeningandbrittle failureoftheasperitiesontheslidingsurfaces.Modelingshowsthattheoccurrenceinnatureof co-seismic(water-present)decarbonationreactionssimilartothosetriggeredinthelaboratorycould yield sufficientreactionproducttobedetectedinaquiferslocatedintheproximityofactivefaults.
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