What is a fault? main content.

What is a fault?

Part of Hall of Planet Earth.

What is a Fault? AMNH/R.Mickens

Exhibition Text

A fault is a rock fracture along which movement occurs. Normal faults develop where the crust stretches apart, as in the East African Rift Valley. In thrust faults, which are found at subduction zones, the rocks on one side of the fault are pushed up and over those on the other side. A third type of fault is the strike-slip fault, where the rocks on either side of the fault slip by each other horizontally. The San Andreas Fault is a strike-slip fault.

For Educators

Topic: Earth Science

Subtopic: Plate Tectonics

Keywords: Earthquakes, Plate tectonics, Faults (Geology)

Audience: General