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Fracture-correlated lineaments at Great Bay, southeastern New Hampshire

October 1, 2002

Analysis by remote-sensing techniques and observations of exposed bedrock structure were preliminary steps taken in a study to locate potential bedrock-fracture zones that may store and transmit ground water near Great Bay, N.H. To help correlate lineaments on the surface with fractures, structural measurements were made at exposed bedrock, largely along the shoreline of the bay, and analyzed to identify fracture trends and fracture characteristics. With these fracture data, lineament-filtering techniques, such as (1) buffer analysis around individual lineaments, (2) discrete-measurement analysis by domain, and (3) spacing-normalized analysis by domain, identified 'fracture-correlated lineaments.' Of the 927 lineaments identified in the study area (180 square kilometers), 406 (44 percent) were evaluated because they either were located within 305 meters of an outcrop with fracture data or intersected one of five 3,300-meter-square grid domain cells that encompassed the fracture data. Of the 406 lineaments, 190 (47 percent) are fracture correlated, although only 15 percent were correlated by more than one filtering technique.

The large number of lineaments found in areas of thin glacial overburden and high densities of fractured outcrops suggests that filtering techniques are useful in these areas to selectively identify fracture-correlated lineaments. Fractures parallel to bedding in the Kittery Formation are open locally and often associated with vugs, with up to 1-centimeter aperture, and may provide appreciable secondary porosity in this rock unit. Discrete-measurement analysis by domain identified fracture-correlated lineaments with orientations parallel to these open and vug-filled fractures. Fracture-correlated lineaments related to closely spaced fractures were identified by the spacing-normalized analysis by domain. Analysis results may be used to indicate the potential bedrock pathways for ground-water-discharge points along the shoreline of Great Bay.

Publication Year 2002
Title Fracture-correlated lineaments at Great Bay, southeastern New Hampshire
DOI 10.3133/ofr0213
Authors James R. Degnan, Stewart F. Clark
Publication Type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Series Title Open-File Report
Series Number 2002-13
Index ID ofr0213
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse