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Noun: approximately planar surface along which originally contiguous rocks have broken and separated and along which the relative displacement of originally adjacent points across the fracture is small compared with fracture length.[1][2]

Verb: the process of brittle breakage.


  1. Pollard, D., D., Segall, P., 1987, Theoretical displacements add stresses near fractures with applications to fault, joints, veins, dikes, and solution surfaces, in Atkinson, B. K., ed., Fracture Mechanics of Rock: London, Academic Press, p. 277–349.
  2. Vincelette, R. R., E. A. Beaumont, and N. H. Foster, 1999, Classification of exploration traps in E. A. Beaumont and N. H. Foster, eds., Handbook of Petroleum Geology: Exploring for Oil and Gas Traps, AAPG Treatise #3, p. 225

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