Strike and dip refer to the orientation or attitude of a geologic feature.

The strike of a stratum or planar feature is a line representing the intersection of that feature with the horizontal. On a geologic map this is represented with a short straight line segment oriented parallel to the compass direction of the strike. Strike is usually given as a compass bearing (N25°E for example) in terms of east or west of north. The dip gives the angle below the horizontal of a tilted stratum or feature. The symbol is a short line attached and at right angles to the strike symbol pointing in the direction of inclination. Typically the angle of dip is included on a geologic map. Planes can be defined in space by their inclination or dip and their strike, the bearing of the line of intersection of the plane and a horizontal surface. Notice that the bearing of the projection of the dip on a horizontal surface is in a direction at right angles to the strike. This is called the dip direction. The layer of sandstone is tilted to the north at an angle of about 45 degrees. The dip and strike are 45N/180. The dip and dip direction are 45/090. Notice that if the dip were to the south we would write 45S/180 and 45/270 for the dip/strike and dip/dip-direction respectively. Engineers prefer the second notation because the direction of dip is ambiguous when dip/strike pairs are recorded. On maps, the strike and dip are indicated by a line parallel to the strike with a tick and number value to indicate the dip direction and dip respectively. In the example, the crosssection is oriented in the dip direction to show the true dip. Any other direction, oblique to the dip direction, will show an apparent dip less than the true dip.

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