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Research topics in

Structural Geology

The main research topics in structural geology and tectonics include: (i) the various styles and modes of deformation characterizing the different parts of orogenic belts; (ii) exhumation and uplift processes, and extensional tectonics in different geodynamic settings; (iii) seismotectonics and active tectonics; (iv) fractured reservoirs; (v) fault/shear zone nucleation and growth processes. Such topics are analyzed by means of a multi-disciplinary approach involving the integration of structural data with various data-sets related with the fields of stratigraphy, petrology, geochronology, thermochronometry, geomorphology, geodesy and geophysics. The research activities have been carried out in cooperation with research groups and scientists from the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, Spain, Poland, as well as numerous Italian institutions (e.g. Protezione Civile) and with the oil industry (e.g. Shell).
The research topics include:
– deformation processes at various scales within the framework of the tectonic evolution of mountain belts and basins particularly, but not exclusively, in the Alpine-Mediterranean area (e.g. Apennines, Betic Cordillera, Carpathians);
– fault/shear zone nucleation and growth processes based on field studies (e.g. Machu Picchu, Peru; Tauern Window, Eastern Alps) as well as mathematical modelling;
– normal fault architecture, extensional tectonics and its relationships with volcanism (e.g. rift zone of central-north Iceland);
–quantitative analysis of ductile (both intra- and inter-crystalline) and brittle (fracture network development, structural permeability and role of mechanical stratigraphy) deformation mechanisms in carbonate rocks, based on the integration of meso- and micro-structural data (including SEM and TEM investigations) with facies analysis, diagenesis and petrophisics;
– seismotectonic analysis and paleosismological studies of active faults;
–quantitative study of vertical movements, exhumation, crustal deformation and their geodinamic context.
Main active collaborations
University of Granada, SPAIN (Agustin Martin-Algarra); Curtin University of Technology, Perth, AUSTRALIA (Steven Reddy); University of Victoria, CANADA (Stephen Johnston); University of New Brunswick, CANADA (Joe White); Warsaw Geophysical Institute, Polish Academy of Sciences, POLAND (Rafal Szaniawski); Polish Geological Survey, Cracovia,POLAND(Leszek Jankowski); University of Aberdeen, UK (Robert Butler); University of Tangier, MOROCCO (Mohamed Najib Zaghloul); University of Texas, Dallas, USA (John Oldow); Australian National University, Canberra, AUSTRALIA (Kurt Lambeck); DEOS, Faculty of Aerospace Engineering, TU Delft, The NETHERLANDS (Paolo Stocchi); CEREGE, Aix-en-Provence, FRANCE (Lucile Benedetti); University of Padua (Massimiliano Zattin); University of Roma Tre (Sveva Corrado); University of Roma La Sapienza (Sabina Bigi); University of Camerino (Chiara Invernizzi, Emanuele Tondi, Eugenio Turco); University of Urbino (Vincenzo Perrone, Stefano Santini, Daniele Savelli); University of Catania (Carmelo Monaco); University of Palermo (Attilio Sulli, Fabrizio Pepe); University of Trieste (Francesco Fanucci); University of Cagliari (Paolo Orrù); INGV Roma (Pierfrancesco Burrato, Claudio Chiarabba, Luigi Improta, Antonella Megna); INGV Catania (Mario Mattia); ENEA, Special Project Global Climate, Roma, (Fabrizio Antonioli); IAMC-CNR, Napoli (Salvatore Passaro, Marina Iorio); Istituto di Metodologie Avanzate per l’Analisi Ambientale, CNR, Tito (Sabatino Piscitelli, Erwan Gueguen); Total E&P Italia (Vincenzo Spina); Petroceltic (Peter Shiner); Edison Milan (Francesco Borraccini); Shell Italia E&P (Carlos Pirmez, Maurizio Giorgioni, Cristoph Strauss).
Mazzoli S., Ascione A., Buscher J. T., Pignalosa A., Valente E. & Zattin M. 2014. Low-angle normal faulting and focused exhumation associated with late Pliocene change in tectonic style in the southern Apennines (Italy). Tectonics, 33, doi: 10.1002/2014TC003608.
Mazzoli S., Macchiavelli C. & Ascione A., 2014. The 2013 Marche offshore earthquakes: new insights into the active tectonic setting of the outer northern Apennines. Journal of the Geological Society, London, 171, 457–460, doi: 10.1144/jgs2013-091.
Mazzoli S., Martín-Algarra A., Reddy S. M., López Sánchez-Vizcaíno V., Fedele L. & Noviello A. 2013. The evolution of the footwall to the Ronda subcontinental mantle peridotites: insights from the Nieves Unit (western Betic Cordillera). Journal of the Geological Society, London, 170, 385-402, doi: 10.1144/jgs2012-105.
Ferranti L., Palano, M., Cannavò F., Mazzella, M.E., Oldow, J. S., Gueguen E., Mattia M. & Monaco C., 2014. Rates of geodetic deformation across active faults in southern Italy. Tectonophysics, 621, 101–122,
Ferranti, L., Passaro S., & de Alteriis G., 2014. Morphotectonics of the Gorringe Bank summit, eastern Atlantic Ocean, based on high-resolution multibeam bathymetry, Quaternary International 232, 99-114,
Santoro E., Ferranti L., Burrato P., Mazzella M. E., & Monaco C., 2013. Deformed Pleistocene marine terraces along the Ionian sea margin of southern Italy: Unveiling blind fault-related folds contribution to coastal uplift. Tectonics, 32, 1–26, doi: 10.1002/tect.20036.
Tavani S., Storti F., Lacombe O., Corradetti A., Muñoz J.A. & Mazzoli S. 2015. A review of deformation pattern templates in foreland basin systems and fold-and-thrust belts: Implications for the state of stress in the frontal regions of thrust wedges. Earth-Science Reviews, 141, 82-104, doi: 10.1016/j.earscirev.2014.11.013.
Tavani S., Snidero M. & Muñoz J.A. 2014. Uplift-induced residual strain release and late-thrusting extension in the Anaran mountain front anticline, Zagros (Iran). Tectonophysics, 636, 257-269, doi: 10.1016/j.tecto.2014.08.018.
Tavani S., Carola E., Granado P., Quintà A. & Muñoz J.A. 2013. Transpressive inversion of a Mesozoic extensional forced fold system with an intermediate décollement level in the Basque- Cantabrian Basin (Spain). Tectonics, 32, doi: 10.1002/tect.20019.
Vitale S., 2014. Finite strain estimation from deformed elliptical markers: The minimized Ri-(MIRi) iterative method. Journal Of Structural Geology, 68, 112-120, doi: 10.1016/j.jsg.2014.09.010.
Vitale S. & Isaia R., 2014. Fractures and faults in volcanic rocks (Campi Flegrei, southern Italy): insight into volcano-tectonic processes. International Journal Of Earth Sciences, 103, 801-819, doi: 10.1007/s00531-013-0979-0.
Vitale S., Zaghloul M.N., Tramparulo F.D.A., El Ouaragli B. & Ciarcia S., 2014. From Jurassic extension to Miocene shortening: An example of polyphasic deformation in the External Dorsale Calcaire Unit (Chefchaouen, Morocco). Tectonophysics, 633, 63-76, doi: