My research interests focus on rupture dynamics, frictional processes, and on the relation between fluids and faulting through laboratory experiments and numerical simulations. In particular, I am interested in understanding rupture phenomena encompassing the full spectrum of slip behavior from slow slip to dynamic events; the evolution of dynamic friction and how it affects rupture propagation; and the effects of fault inhomogeneities on rupture behavior.
To investigate these topics I have developed and employed highly instrumented laboratory experiments of frictional ruptures featuring ultrahigh-speed digital image correlation, as well as a range of other high-fidelity diagnostics, including laser velocimeters and strain gages.
These experiments have recently enabled capturing the full-field behavior of spontaneously propagating dynamic ruptures, the evolution of local dynamic friction and several other rupture features that were undetectable with previous techniques, such as the formation of pressure shock fronts, the near-rupture-tip pattern, and the spatiotemporal characteristics associated with dynamic shear ruptures. These measurements provide a crucial input in the modeling of earthquake source processes.