Concept

Fracture (geology)

Summary
A fracture is any separation in a geologic formation, such as a joint or a fault that divides the rock into two or more pieces. A fracture will sometimes form a deep fissure or crevice in the rock. Fractures are commonly caused by stress exceeding the rock strength, causing the rock to lose cohesion along its weakest plane. Fractures can provide permeability for fluid movement, such as water or hydrocarbons. Highly fractured rocks can make good aquifers or hydrocarbon reservoirs, since they may possess both significant permeability and fracture porosity. Brittle deformation Fractures are forms of brittle deformation. There are two types of primary brittle deformation processes. Tensile fracturing results in joints. Shear fractures are the first initial breaks resulting from shear forces exceeding the cohesive strength in that plane. After those two initial deformations, several other types of secondary brittle deformation can be observed, such as frictional sliding or cat
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