Paleoseismology of Utah, Volume 3: The number and timing of paleoseismic events on the Nephi and Levan segments, Wasatch fault zone, Utah (SS-78)

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Paleoseismic Studies

By: M. D. Jackson

This report on the Holocene history of ground-rupturing earthquakes on the Nephi and Levan segments of the Wasatch fault zone is the third in the Utah Geological Survey's Paleoseismology of Utah Special Studies series. The study was jointly supported by the U.S. Geological Survey under the National Earthquake Hazard Reduction Program, and by the UGS as part ofthe Wasatch Front Earthquake Hazard Assessment Program, a cooperative five-year research effort to evaluate earthquake hazard and risk along Utah's heavily populated Wasatch Front. Fault-trenching studies, like the one presented here, provide information on earthquake timing and recurrence, fault displacement, and fault geometry that is used to characterize seismic-source zones and to evaluate the long-term earthquake potential of active faults..

This study is of particular interest because it makes extensive use of the relatively new thermoluminescence technique to date past ground-rupturing earthquakes. Efforts to adapt the TL technique, originally developed by archaeologists for dating pot shards, as a tool for dating paleoearthquakes are exciting because the TL method can be applied to mineral grains in commonly abundant silt and fine sand deposits. In the dry, sparsely vegetated regions of western Utah, organic material required for conventional radiocarbon dating is generally rare or absent. The availability of a reliable dating technique that can be readily applied in organic-poor arid environments represents a significant advance in our ability to interpret the earthquake history of active faults..

Other Information:
Published: 1991
Pages: 22 p.
Plates: 2 pl.
Location: Utah County
Media Type: Paper Publication

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