Title of research project: Understanding and Modeling of Chaos and Critical Phenomena in the Earth's Lithosphere

Reference number of grant: MB3000

Period of performance: 1994 to 1996

Principal Investigator: Prof. V. Keilis-Borok


The research was focused on the instability of the lithosphere, leading to earthquakes and creep, in the time scales from months to years. The lithosphere is regarded as hierarchical non-linear dissipative system. Its basic features were investigated, particularly - scenaria of transition to critical phenomena. It was explored, which of the features are common for many non- linear systems, which - for most of the seismic regions and which are region- specific. The project provided a new theoretical base for its understanding and prediction. Three types of models were investigated: interacting blocks, cellular automata and, in the search of universal features - Burger's equation. These models were tested on phenomenology of the observed fields - seismicity, slow deformations, stress and dynamics of fluids - in the regions of high, low and induced tectonic activity.