When is the strain in the meter the same as the strain in the rock?

Paul Segall*, Sigurjón Jónsson, Kristján Ágústsson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Borehole dilatometers are emplaced in porous fluid saturated rock. Pore-fluid flow induces strain, however there is no fluid exchange with the dilatometer. Thus, the strainmeter response is the same as the strain in the rock only when the rock remains undrained. Otherwise the instrumental strain Δinst is given by Δinst = C1 - C2p), where Δ and p are strain and pore pressure far from the borehole, and C1 and C2 depend on poroelastic rock properties. Postseismic strain in the rock is expected to increase as the induced pore pressure gradients relax. However, a dilatometer ∼3 km from a Mw 6.5 earthquake in south Iceland shows a postseismic strain change opposite in sign to the coseismic response. The theory developed here for a homogeneous, isotropic medium can only partly explain this discrepancy. Fracture dominated poroelastic response may yield an improved fit to the data.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)SDE 5-1 - SDE 5-5
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number19
StatePublished - Oct 1 2003
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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