The physics underlying Gutenberg-Richter in the earth and in the moon

Crampin, Stuart; Gao, Yuan. 2015 The physics underlying Gutenberg-Richter in the earth and in the moon. Journal of Earth Science, 26 (1). 134-139.

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The linear Gutenberg-Richter relationship is well-established. In any region of the Earth, the logarithm of the number of earthquakes, greater than any magnitude, is proportional to magnitude. This means that the underlying physics is non-linear and not purely elastic. This nonlinear physics has not been resolved. Here we suggest that a new understanding of fluid-rock deformation provides the physics underlying Gutenberg-Richter: where the fluid-saturated microcracks in almost all in situ rocks are so closely-spaced that they verge on failure and fracture, and hence are critical-systems which impose fundamentally-new properties on conventional sub-critical geophysics. The observation of linear Gutenberg-Richter relationship in moonquakes suggests that residual fluids exist at depth in the Moon.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
ISSN: 1674-487X
Date made live: 24 Mar 2015 14:48 +0 (UTC)

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