Encyclopedia of Planetary Landforms

2015 Edition
| Editors: Henrik Hargitai, Ákos Kereszturi

Contraction Crack

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-3134-3_102

Definition

Cracks, which occur when stresses build up in a material due to contraction either due to thermal cooling (as in thermal contraction polygons and columnar basalt) or loss of material, particularly volatiles (as in desiccation).

Category

A type of  fracture

A type of  tension crack

Synonyms

Subtypes

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References

  1. Anderson TL (2005) Fracture mechanics: fundamentals and applications, 3rd edn. CRC Press, Boca RatonGoogle Scholar
  2. El Maarry MR, Markiewicz WJ, Mellon MT, Goetz W, Dohm JM, Pack A (2010) Crater floor polygons: desiccation patterns of ancient lakes on Mars? J Geophys Res 115:E10006. doi:10.1029/2010JE003609CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Lachenbruch AH (1961) Depth and spacing of tension cracks. J Geophys Res 66(12):4273–4292CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Lachenbruch AH (1962) Mechanics of thermal contraction cracks and ice-wedge polygons in permafrost. Spec Pap Geol Soc Am 70:69Google Scholar
  5. Mellon MT (1997) Small-scale polygonal features on Mars: seasonal thermal contraction cracks in permafrost. J Geophys Res 102(E11):25617–25628CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Physikalisches Institut, Bern UniversitätBernSwitzerland