GY 111 Lecture Notes D. Haywick (2007-08) 1GY 111 Lecture Notes Thrust Faults and the Appalachian Mountains Lecture Goals: A) Thrust Faults B) The Appalachian Mountains Reference: Press et al., 2004, Chapters 2, 6, 20; Grotzinger et al., 2007, Chapters xxx-xxx;A) Thrust Faults, Several lectures ago, we discussed the major types of faults. Two of these were dip slip faults where movement was along the dip direction of the fault plane. At the time, I hinted that there was a special class of reverse dip slip fault associated with mountain building. They are low angle reverse faults called thrust faults. Thrust faults occur when widespread compression, usually associated with convergent plate boundaries, starts to affect continental rocks. They are particularly prominent in thick sequences of sedimentary rock. To make a long story short, when sedimentary rock sequences are compressed, a series of thrust faults that dip in the direction that the stress originated from start to develop. Any rock layers that lay above the thrust fault are pushed over top the layers that lay below the thrust fault. This does two things. First of all, it "thrusts" the overlying layers up above the surface of the Earth forming linear trending mountain belts (amazingly called thrust
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