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Earth Surface Dynamics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/esurf-2019-53
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/esurf-2019-53
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 15 Oct 2019

Submitted as: research article | 15 Oct 2019

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Earth Surface Dynamics (ESurf).

Short communication: A semi-automated method for rapid fault slip analysis from topographic scarp profiles

Franklin D. Wolfe1, Timothy A. Stahl2, Pilar Villamor3, and Biljana Lukovic3 Franklin D. Wolfe et al.
  • 1Earth and Planetary Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, 02143, USA
  • 2College of Science, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, 8041, NZ
  • 3GNS Science, Lower Hutt, 5040, NZ

Abstract. Here, we introduce an open source, semi-automated, Python-based graphical user interface (GUI) called the Monte Carlo Slip Statistics Toolkit (MCSST) for estimating dip slip on individual or bulk fault datasets. Using this toolkit, profiles are defined across fault scarps in high-resolution digital elevation models (DEMs) and then relevant fault scarp components are interactively identified (e.g., footwall, hanging wall, and scarp). Displacement statistics are calculated automatically using Monte Carlo simulation and can be conveniently visualized in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for spatial analysis. Fault slip rates can also be calculated when ages of footwall and hanging wall surfaces are known, allowing for temporal analysis. This method allows for rapid analysis of tens to hundreds of faults in rapid succession within GIS and a Python coding environment. Application of this method may contribute to a wide range of regional and local earthquake geology studies with adequate high-resolution DEM coverage, both regional fault source characterization for seismic hazard and/or estimating geologic slip and strain rates, including creating long-term deformation maps. ArcGIS versions of these functions are available, as well ones that utilize free, open source Quantum GIS (QGIS) and Jupyter Notebook Python software.

Franklin D. Wolfe et al.
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Status: open (until 01 Dec 2019)
Status: open (until 01 Dec 2019)
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
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Model code and software

GitHub Repository with User Manual and Codes F. D. Wolfe https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.3485198

Franklin D. Wolfe et al.
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Short summary
This short communication presents an efficient method for analyzing large fault scarp data sets. The programs and workflow required are open-source and the methodology is easy to use, thus the barrier to entry is low. This tool can be applied to a broad range of active tectonic studies. A case study in the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand exemplifies the novelty of this tool by generating results that are consistent with extensive field campaigns in only a few hours at a workstation.
This short communication presents an efficient method for analyzing large fault scarp data sets....
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