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John Suppe - Probing What Makes the Crust Strong (or Weak): Insight from Boreholes, Earthquakes, Active Fault Systems, and Toy Models

AAPG Distinguished Lecture Series, 2023-24 Season

AAPG Distinguished Lecture Series, 2023-24 Season


A Distinguished Lecture talk given by John Suppe during 2023-24 AAPG DL Season.

For well over a century there have been conflicting indications of the strength of the crust and of faults and what controls them.  Much of our ignorance comes quite naturally from the general inaccessibility of the crust to measurement--in contrast with our understanding of the atmosphere, which is much more accessible to observation as well as more rapidly changing.  Crustal strength is best understood in deforming sedimentary basins where the petroleum industry has made great contributions, particularly in deforming petroleum basins because of the practical need to predict. In this talk we take a broad look at key issues in crustal strength and deformation and what we can learn from boreholes, earthquakes, active fault systems, and toy models.

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Distinguished Lecturer


John Suppe

Distinguished Professor, University of Houston

University of Houston

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