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NERC Grant: The Seismic Cycle

Earthquakes are a very destructive and yet unpredictable manifestations of the Earth internal dynamics. They correspond to a rapid motion along geological faults, generating seismic waves as they propagate along the fault strands. The propagation of ruptures along faults induces dramatic stresses and deformation of the rocks hosting the fault, which become increasingly damaged (i.e, degraded) as multiple earthquakes occur along a fault over geological timescales. In turn, this damage of the off-fault rocks has an impact on the dynamic rupture processes: damage generation and earthquake rupture are coupled phenomena. A better knowledge of the dynamic damage processes can thus truly improve our understanding of the physics of earthquakes, and hence help to better predict strong motion and earthquake hazard. More...

Sustainable Resource Development

Sustainable Resource Development

The Himalayas hold the promise of enormous opportunities for local communities and the nations to which they belong, but their rich and varied resources are being developed against a backdrop of rapid cultural and environmental change. Geoscience holds the key to understanding these resources, and their effective and responsible development.  More...

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Deep-Water Research

The Ainsa Deepwater Channel Project, Spanish Pyrenees


An Integrated Outcrop Study: Project Manager: Professor Kevin T. Pickering


Introduction to the Ainsa Channel System


The Ainsa Channel System, south-central Pyrenees, occurs in the oldest part of the Campodarbe Group, and it is of Upper Eocene age. The Ainsa Channel Complex is per- haps the most famous of the submarine channel outcrops within Western Europe. The Ainsa channels consist of two principal channel complexes (Ainsa I and Ainsa II) which are separated by thin- and very thin-bedded sandy turbidites and marls. The Ainsa I Channel Complex is an example of an erosional-depositional system. The Ainsa II Chan- nel Complex contains significant erosional cut-downs, with infill of essentially non- erosive sandy facies. The channel dimensions are at a seismic scale.