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The growth of shallow sills is studied in analogue experiments performed in polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) and glass. The experimental fractures curve towards the surface to become saucer-shaped, which is consistent with many field observations of dolerite sills. The curvature of the saucer is shown to decrease as the in situ stress acting parallel to the surface increases relative to an estimate of the strength of the fracture-induced stress field. The initially circular fractures also elongate in plan view to become egg-shaped, a tendency that decreases with increasing importance of viscous dissipation in the growth process. Sill emplacement is further...

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