Location

St. Louis, Missouri

Session Start Date

4-2-1995

Session End Date

4-7-1995

Abstract

Large subsided areas, especially those that intersect the water table, were among the more dramatic morphoseismic features produced by the great New Madrid earthquakes of 1811-12 in the central Mississippi River valley. Seismically induced liquefaction (SIL) with associated densification and/or lateral-movement of fluidized sediments is a well-documented factor in relatively small-scale subsidences not involving depths greater than 30 meters. Several of the sunk lands associated with the New Madrid series, such as Reelfoot Lake, Tennessee, and Big Lake, Arkansas/Missouri, are quite large with areas of more than 200 square kilometers. If SIL was a significant factor in the subsidence of these large areas the depths of liquefaction would have to extend 50 meters or more in depth. At this time there are no documented cases of SIL at such depths. This study provides an analysis of order-of-magnitude loading stresses that would be required, versus pore-water pressures that would have to be overcome to have SIL in great depths. This analysis suggests that SIL can occur at depths in excess of 100 meters under selected conditions and that such conditions were probably met during the great New Madrid earthquakes and played a role in creating some of the largest morphoseismic landforms still visible in the New Madrid Seismic Zone today.

Department(s)

Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Appears In

International Conferences on Recent Advances in Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering and Soil Dynamics

Meeting Name

Third Conference

Publisher

University of Missouri--Rolla

Publication Date

4-2-1995

Document Version

Final Version

Rights

© 1995 University of Missouri--Rolla, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

File Type

text

Language

English

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Apr 2nd, 12:00 AM Apr 7th, 12:00 AM

What is the Maximum Depth Liquefaction Can Occur?

St. Louis, Missouri

Large subsided areas, especially those that intersect the water table, were among the more dramatic morphoseismic features produced by the great New Madrid earthquakes of 1811-12 in the central Mississippi River valley. Seismically induced liquefaction (SIL) with associated densification and/or lateral-movement of fluidized sediments is a well-documented factor in relatively small-scale subsidences not involving depths greater than 30 meters. Several of the sunk lands associated with the New Madrid series, such as Reelfoot Lake, Tennessee, and Big Lake, Arkansas/Missouri, are quite large with areas of more than 200 square kilometers. If SIL was a significant factor in the subsidence of these large areas the depths of liquefaction would have to extend 50 meters or more in depth. At this time there are no documented cases of SIL at such depths. This study provides an analysis of order-of-magnitude loading stresses that would be required, versus pore-water pressures that would have to be overcome to have SIL in great depths. This analysis suggests that SIL can occur at depths in excess of 100 meters under selected conditions and that such conditions were probably met during the great New Madrid earthquakes and played a role in creating some of the largest morphoseismic landforms still visible in the New Madrid Seismic Zone today.