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Carsten Uphoff, Duo Li, J. Nicolas Hayek, Casper Pranger, Dave May and Alice-Agnes Gabriel. Methods for simulating earthquake sequences and rupture dynamics in diffuse fault zones. AGU Fall Meeting 2020.
Earthquakes are typically modelled as a displacement discontinuity across a prescribed fault surface embedded in linear viscoelastic media adhering to several simplifying assumptions: (i) faults are infinitesimally thin, although volumetric failure patterns are observed in well-recorded small and large earthquakes and laboratory experiments; (ii) earthquake models artificially distinguish between on-fault frictional failure and off-fault (in-)elastic rock deformation; (iii) initial and fault interface conditions, such as loading stress and frictional strength, drive faulting dynamics but are themselves poorly constrained.