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Earth sciences science fair project:
What causes the big breaks and cracks (faults) in our Earth?




Science Fair Project Information
Title: What causes the big breaks and cracks (faults) in our Earth?
Subject: Earth Sciences
Grade level: Primary School - Grades K-3
Academic Level: Ordinary
Project Type: Experimental
Cost: Low
Awards: First place, Canada Wide Virtual Science Fair (2005)
Affiliation: Canada Wide Virtual Science Fair (VSF)
Year: 2005
Description: What causes the big breaks and cracks in our Earth? What do faults have to do with fractures? Can we reproduce what happens to the Earth with cheese? We are science lovers so we will try!
Link: http://www.virtualsciencefair.org/2005/kina5c1/public_html/
Short Background

In geology a fault, or fault line, is a planar fracture in rock in which the rock on one side of the fracture has moved with respect to the rock on the other side. Large faults within the Earth's crust are the result of differential or shear motion and active fault zones are the causal locations of most earthquakes. Earthquakes are caused by energy release during rapid slippage along a fault. A fault that runs along the boundary between two tectonic plates is called a transform fault.

Since faults do not usually consist of a single, clean fracture, the term fault zone is used when referring to the zone of complex deformation that is associated with the fault plane. The two sides of a non-vertical fault are called the hanging wall and footwall. By definition, the hanging wall occurs above the fault and the footwall occurs below the fault. This terminology comes from mining. When working a tabular ore body the miner stood with the footwall under his feet and with the hanging wall hanging above him.

For More Information: Faults

Source: Wikipedia (All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License)

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