GARCÍA-ARIAS Sergio, VELANDIA Francisco, ALVAREZ Angélica, SANABRIA-GÓMEZ José D, TARAZONA Yessenia, VARGAS María Camila. 2024: Stress tensors and quantification of fracture patterns to analyze connectivity and potential fluid flow in a mesa landform of the Northern Andes. Journal of Mountain Science, 21(1): 271-291. DOI: 10.1007/s11629-023-8338-5
Citation: GARCÍA-ARIAS Sergio, VELANDIA Francisco, ALVAREZ Angélica, SANABRIA-GÓMEZ José D, TARAZONA Yessenia, VARGAS María Camila. 2024: Stress tensors and quantification of fracture patterns to analyze connectivity and potential fluid flow in a mesa landform of the Northern Andes. Journal of Mountain Science, 21(1): 271-291. DOI: 10.1007/s11629-023-8338-5

Stress tensors and quantification of fracture patterns to analyze connectivity and potential fluid flow in a mesa landform of the Northern Andes

  • This work applies stress tensors inversions and quantification of fracture patterns along the Mesa de Los Santos, in the Eastern Cordillera of Colombia, to better understand the potential fluid flow. It thus contributes to the conceptual hydrogeological model. The area was subdivided into three blocks, separated by the NW Potreros and the Los Santos faults, having minor inner faults of different orientations. This separation facilitates the analysis of the fractures measured in the field, which in general show high dip angles and a conjugate geometry in the northern block, tension fractures (Mode I) in the central block, and a random distribution in the southwestern block. Win-Tensor treatment of slickensides yielded a maximum horizontal stress (SHmax) of 111º, which coincides with the WNW-ESE tensor observed from the conjugate and tension joints. We then used FracPaQ to generate interpolation maps of fracture intensity and density. The maps show the highest values in the central block and the lowest in the northern block, where the precipitation is higher, causing intensive rock weathering and homogenization of the fracture planes. Although the highest values of connectivity by line are found to the south of the mesa, we suggest the possibility of greater flow from the recharge zone (NE) along bedding planes and open NW-SE fractures.
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