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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

AAPG Bulletin


Volume: 63 (1979)

Issue: 3. (March)

First Page: 447

Last Page: 447

Title: Active Faults in Houston, Texas, Area as Observed on LANDSAT Imagery: ABSTRACT

Author(s): John R. Everett

Article Type: Meeting abstract


Digitally processed LANDSAT imagery offers geologists a new perspective for detecting and assessing active faults in the Texas Gulf coastal plain. Many known active faults in and around Houston, such as those that periodically break the Katy Freeway and the runway at Ellington Air Force Base, appear on LANDSAT imagery as discrete linear features. Many other linear features correlate with surface projection of down-to-basin growth faults mapped in the subsurface. Several linear features observed do not appear to correlate with any known or mapped features. Investigation of these features using surface and subsurface data may reveal incipient or potentially active faults that may constitute geologic hazards as urban growth and development continue.

Many lineaments are marked by geomorphic features. Some lineaments seem to be marked by small-scale disruption of terrain and cultural patterns, especially in the urban area. Still others appear as changes in tone across sharp linear boundaries that may reflect differences in soil moisture on either side of a fracture system.

Each linear feature detected on space or aircraft imagery must be carefully investigated before it is designated a fault because its recognition can both guide future development and adversely affect current property values.

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Copyright 1997 American Association of Petroleum Geologists