Fault damage zones can act as a preferential corridor for fluid flow in the subsurface, and for this reason the characterization of their structure, including the attributes of the associated fracture network, is fundamental. In this work, we characterize the damage zone of the Qala fault, a normal fault developed in platform carbonates of the Gozo Island (Maltese Islands). We propose a new workflow that combines scanline and scan-area analysis applied on a high resolution DOM. Linear scanlines allow to characterize fracture spatial distribution, detect stationary area and identify damage zone width. Areal sampling permits to extract the fracture parameters matching the stationary 1D domains. This new approach allows us to: (1) univocally separate the damage zone from the background fractures, (2) identify fracture corridors, (3) collect fracture parameters (length, trend, density, intensity, spacing and topology), (4) identify the REV of the fracture density, intensity and topology and (5) characterize the fracture network connectivity.
Damage zone characterization combining scan-line and scan-area analysis on a km-scale Digital Outcrop Model: The Qala Fault (Gozo) / Martinelli, M.; Bistacchi, A.; Mittempergher, S.; Bonneau, F.; Balsamo, F.; Caumon, G.; Meda, M.. - In: JOURNAL OF STRUCTURAL GEOLOGY. - ISSN 0191-8141. - 140(2020), p. 104144. [10.1016/j.jsg.2020.104144]