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Abstract

The aim of this volume has been to present a study of basin evolution within the Pannonian basin, which is more accurately called the Pannonian basin system because it consists of several individual basins. The papers contained in this volume were designed to present basic data from a wide variety of geological disciplines, and to integrate these different data sets into acomprehensive study of the evolution ofthe Pannonian basin. These papers have focused not only on evolution of the basins themselves, but also on attendant processes within the crust and upper mantle that controlled the development of the basin in some fundamental ways.

The Pannonian basin system is a particularly good candidate for basin analysis, partly because the evolution of this young basin system is relatively simple. In addition, the basin system had one brief period of extension, a simple sedimentary history and a clearly defined regional tectonic setting. The active processes that formed the basin system were short-lived and recent, are essentially finished, and have not been overprinted by subsequent tectonic events. Events within the basin system itself can be spatially and temporally related to regional tectonic events outside of the basin area. The young age of the basin system ensures that many geological and geophysical data such as heat flow, seismic velocities, earthquakes, and so on, provide useful constraints on the processes of basin formation. Because dating is more accurate in young rocks than in older ones, events that are diachronous by as little as one or two million years can be documented in this young basin system, whereas in older basins these events would appear to be contemporaneous everywhere.

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