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Cursus: GEO4-1411
Structural analysis of deformed rocks
Cursus informatie
Studiepunten (EC)7,5
By the end of the course the student:
  • has build upon his basic skills of description and qualitative analysis of deformed rocks, and can quantitatively analyse geometric, kinematic and dynamic aspects of deformation structures on outcrop to grain-scale;
  • has insight into mechanical aspects of structure development and the role of instabilities;
  • is able to analyse interrelated thermal and kinematic histories of deformed rocks;
  • can apply structural analysis in the tectonic reconstruction of deformed crustal/mantle terrain.
The course concentrates on the geometry, mechanics, kinematics and dynamics of structures developed in deformed rocks on the meso- to micro-scale (i.e. from outcrop and handspecimen to grain scale), and on how the analysis of these structures, in space and time, facilitates reconstruction of the tectonic evolution of crustal or mantle terrain.
The course is relevant for a wide range of employment opportunities. This includes general research positions in materials science or geology in industry or academia, and employment in sectors like resource exploration and production, geotechnical engineering and geological risk assessment.
The course will be given as an advanced level Structural Geology course, assuming deforming familiarity with basic characteristics and significance of deformation structures in rocks.
The course consists of three parts:
  1. Analysis of meso-scale structures: Geometric, kinematic and dynamic aspects of folds, boudinage and mullion structures, vein systems, faults and shear zones. Role of mechanical instabilities in structure development. Inversion of fault slip data to obtain principal stress orientations;
  2. Analysis of rock micro-structures;
  3. Case studies of deformed crustal and mantle terrains: Long-lived lithospheric fault/shear zones (initiation and evolution). Evolution of LP-HT metamorphic terrains. Structural analysis of mantle terrains.

Development of Transferable skills:
  • Ability to work in a team: all practical assignments are carried out in a team of two, both members having the same responsibility w.r.t. the final product;
  • Written communication skills: results of the practical assignments have to be presented in the form of a written reports (7x);
  • Problem-solving skills: None of the practical assignments have a straightforward recipe to come to the final product, but require good analysis of how to solve the questions at hand; 
  • Initiative: In working on the assignments, the students cannot wait until supervision arrives, they have to take initiatives themselves to get progress;
  • Analytical/quantitative skills: application of the knowledge obtained during lectures and self study to solve problems and answer research-like questions;
  • Technical skills: use of excel, stress inversion software, optical microscopy.

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