The energy budget of the Nankai accretionary wedge
The energy budget provides a concise, comprehensive and quantifiable framework of comparing the energetic importance of diverse processes operating in tectonic systems. Evidence suggests that faults grow in order to optimize the overall efficiency of the system. Consequently, identifying the components of the budget that consume the most energy in various tectonic systems and stages of fault development may help reveal which component best reflects the overall system efficiency.
Recent work has calculated the components of the energy budget in scaled physical dry sand accretion experiments, in numerical models based on these experiments, and in numerical models of larger spatial dimensions. The energy budget scales from the laboratory to crustal-sized numerical models that match the fault geometry of the analogue experiments. In this project, the student will develop numerical models with fault geometries that match geometries interpreted from seismic sections of the Nankai accretionary wedge.
The student will then use existing code to calculate the components of the energy budget in this suite of numerical models of the Nankai wedge.