Open Access

Frictional behavior of synthetic gouge-bearing faults under the operation of pressure solution

Earth, Planets and Space201454:BF03353316

https://doi.org/10.1186/BF03353316

Received: 27 December 2001

Accepted: 28 July 2002

Published: 26 June 2014

Abstract

Two recent experimental studies on the frictional behavior of synthetic gouge-bearing faults under the operation of pressure solution are compared. One is triaxial shear experiments on quartz gouge at high pressure-temperature hydrothermal conditions (Kanagawa et al., 2000), and the other is rotary shear experiments on halite gouge at atmospheric pressure and room temperature in the presence of methanol-water mixtures (Bos et al., 2000). In spite of quite different experimental settings and conditions, the results of these two series of experiments are strikingly similar; both cataclasis and pressure solution being active during the experiments, gouge strength rate-controlled by cataclasis, two different frictional behaviors of slip hardening and softening, slip hardening associated with gouge compaction, distributed deformation and wall-rock failure, slip softening associated with localized slip along the gouge-wall-rock interface, and the transition from slip-hardening to slip-softening behavior according to decreasing rate of pressure solution. Although there is a difference in velocity dependence of strength between quartz and halite gouges, these similarities clearly demonstrate the important effects of pressure solution on the frictional behavior of gouge-bearing faults.