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Book Chapter

Basins and Thrust Belts of the Balkan Coast of the Black Sea

By
Chris J. Banks
Chris J. Banks
Royal Holloway University of London Eghan, Surrey, United Kingdom
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Published:
January 01, 1997

Abstract

Three minor thrust belts are abruptly terminated at the Balkan coast of the Black Sea: the Strandzhides of Thrace and Bulgaria, the Balkanides of central Bulgaria, and the North Dobrogea belt of Romania.

The Strandzhides are the eastern external zones of the Rhodope Massif and were the site of a south-facing continental margin that started as a pas-sive margin in the Triassic, but soon became active. The major compression was in the Late Jurassic, and the belt is made up of at least four large thrust nappes, with large displacements. The foreland basin, if it exists at all, is now buried by a Late Cretaceous magmatic arc. The Balkanides are a narrow thrust belt involving Mesozoic-Paleogene stratigraphy that is remarkably different from south to north of the belt. The area was affected by extension, mainly in the late Triassic and early-mid Cretaceous (when the Western Black Sea opened). It was not seriously compressed until the Eocene, at which time a narrow foreland basin formed due to thrust loading of the otherwise stable Moesian Platform. North Dobrogea is an enigmatic zone separating Moesia from the Eastern European Platform. It was highly extended during the Triassic, and then compressed, probably transpressively, in the Late Jurassic.

The Mesozoic-Paleogene tectonic history of the Balkans was controlled by the northward subduction of the Vardar oceanic plate (a branch of Tethys) from the Mid-Late Triassic until its closure in the Eocene. It is suggested that North Dobrogea marks a major crustal boundary at the northern limit of back-arc deformation, where the Moesian Platform was displaced SE by a distance of several hundred kilometers during the Late Triassic to Early Jurassic. The Strandzhides and Balkanides constituted a mobile active margin of the overriding Moesian-European Plate, which was alternately extended (Triassic and Cretaceous) and compressed (Jurassic/Cimmeride and Paleogene/ Alpide), so that the area has become a mosaic of extensional and compressive structural elements.

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Contents

AAPG Studies in Geology

Regional and Petroleum Geology of the Black Sea and Surrounding Region

A. G. Robinson
A. G. Robinson
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American Association of Petroleum Geologists
ISBN electronic:
9781629810782
Publication date:
January 01, 1997

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