Selected sites have been analyzed geo-mathematically in order to determine the frequency distribution of the fault populations; these data were used to formulate fault prediction models. Using published geological maps and other information, statistical evaluations of the fault patterns have been completed for 16 selected localities. The calculated statistical parameters were used to estimate the frequency distribution of faults for each locale. In general, the patterns approximate an exponential distribution function with the exception of Edinburgh, Scotland--the control area. The faulting pattern of Edinburgh closely approximates a negative binomial frequency distribution.


The Lawrence Livermore Laboratory is conducting a study: "Technical Support in the Development of Nuclear Waste Management Criteria," for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. In developing a basis for site suitability criteria, one concern has been the possibility of overlooking an important geological feature that might contribute to the release of nuclear materials to the biosphere. Some of this concern can be addressed by considering the exploration/evaluation techniques whose use can minimize the possibility. The San Jose State University Foundation contracted with the Laboratory to consider the general problem of geological exploration to evaluate nigh-level nuclear waste repository sites in order to develop bases for criteria to aid in the evaluation process. Certain specific items of the exploration process have been considered such as faulting, the selection of exploration tools--i.e., allocation of resources, and the cost of exploration.


The statistics of fault occurences at 16 selected geological locations were computed and analyzed. The possible significance of the distribution patterns was analyzed. The distributions analyzed were obtained from available published geological maps of the various locations. These are presented in Table 1; and were selected to present dispersed geographical sites throughout the United States.

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