A Preliminary Structural Model for the Blue Mountain Geothermal Field, Humboldt County, Nevada

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Conference Paper: A Preliminary Structural Model for the Blue Mountain Geothermal Field, Humboldt County, Nevada

Abstract
The Blue Mountain geothermal field is a blind geothermalprospect (i.e., no surface hot springs) along the west flank of BlueMountain in southern Humboldt County, Nevada. Developmentwells in the system have high flow rates and temperatures above190°C at depths of ~600 to 1,070 m. Blue Mountain is a small~8-km-long east-tilted fault block situated between the EugeneMountains and Slumbering Hills. The geothermal field occupiesthe intersection between a regional NNE- to ENE-striking,west-dipping normal-sinistral fault system, which bounds thewest flanks of Blue Mountain and the Eugene Mountains, and amore local WNW-striking, SW-dipping normal-dextral fault onthe southwest side of Blue Mountain. The WNW-striking faultappears to mark a large left step in the more regionally extensivenortheasterly striking fault zone. Quaternary fault scarps, facetedspurs, and steep mountain fronts, with ~1,000 m of topographicrelief, mark these faults. The NE-striking fault zone swings to amore easterly strike in the northern Eugene Mountains and in thenorthern part of Blue Mountain probably due to a strong ENEstrikingfabric in the Triassic metasedimentary basement. In thevicinity of the geothermal field, the intersection between the NEandWNW-striking faults is marked by multiple fault splays andfault intersections, which have generated a >1 km wide, westerlyplunging zone of highly fractured, relatively permeable rock. Theinferred kinematics of these fault zones further implies a dilatant,wedge-shaped zone at their intersection. Thus, the Blue Mountaingeothermal field appears to be controlled by a dilatant faultintersection, partly induced by the influence of strong basementfabrics on the orientation of Neogene faults.

Authors 
James E. Faulds and Glenn Melosh






Conference 
GRC Annual Meeting; Reno, Nevada; 2008/10/05


Published 
Geothermal Resources Council, 2008





DOI 
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Online 
Internet link for A Preliminary Structural Model for the Blue Mountain Geothermal Field, Humboldt County, Nevada

Citation

James E. Faulds, Glenn Melosh. 2008. A Preliminary Structural Model for the Blue Mountain Geothermal Field, Humboldt County, Nevada. In: GRC Transactions. GRC Annual Meeting; 2008/10/05; Reno, Nevada. Davis, California: Geothermal Resources Council; p. 273-278


Related Geothermal Exploration Activities
Activities (1)


Areas (1)
  1. Blue Mountain Geothermal Area
Regions (0)