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Abstract

In this paper we report on the results of a systematic study carried out on the fault and fracture systems exposed in the Majella Mountain, in the central Apennines fold and thrust belt of mainland Italy. The focus of our work was to assess the dimensional, spatial, and scaling properties of fault and fractures in carbonate rocks, in order to set up appropriate flow models for these types of potential geofluid reservoirs. The results provide information on (1) orientation, size distribution, density variations, and fractal characteristics of the fault and fracture networks affecting the Majella anticline; (2) the scaling properties and the overall architecture of different fault zone components; (3) the overprinting relationships between fault and fracture sets and the Majella fold structure. These data were used to elaborate a three-dimensional discrete fault and fracture model (DFFN model) of a ~100 m3 geological volume, and for this to (1) evaluate the transport and storage properties of the reservoir; and (2) assess the degree of vulnerability and any possible hazard related to the exploitation and management of geofluids hosted in carbonate rock volumes.

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