Indicator kriging for unit vectors: Rock joint orientations

Document Type


Publication Date



Indicator kriging (IK) is extended to analyze three-dimensional random unit vectors and evaluate the local probability distribution of rock joint orientations in geological formations. The pole vector representing joint orientations is regionalized and projected on a plane normal to the mean attitude of the joint family and centered at the mean. A two-dimensional cutoff system is developed to define the indicator variable, and corresponding indicator variograms and indicator kriging. The cutoff system defines probability regions similar to those of a bivariate distribution, concentric rings sliced into radial sectors. A case study made on an open pit mine proved positively the efficiency of IK and encourages its applications to localized probabilistic structural modeling for geotechnical or geohydrological analysis and oil and gas reservoir analysis. © 1987 International Association for Mathematical Geology.

Publication Title

Mathematical Geology