Sequential ductile to brittle reactivation of major fault zones along the accretionary margin of Gondwana in Central Argentina
Published:January 01, 2001
Carol Simpson, Steven J. Whitmeyer, Declan G. De Paor, L. Peter Gromet, Roberto Miro, Michael A. Krol, Heather Short, 2001. "Sequential ductile to brittle reactivation of major fault zones along the accretionary margin of Gondwana in Central Argentina", The Nature and Tectonic Significance of Fault Zone Weakening, R. E. Holdsworth, R. A. Strachan, J. F. Magloughlin, R. J. Knipe
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Metamorphic and plutonic basement rocks and cover sequences of the Eastern Sierras Pampeanas, Argentina, have undergone multiple episodes of fault reactivation. Faults take advantage of mid- to late Cambrian, NW-SE-striking, steeply east-dipping foliations in Vendian-aged accretionary prism metasedimentary rocks. Foliations in peraluminous schists, paragneisses and migmatites are deflected into late Cambrian amphibolite-grade high-strain zones. Greenschist-grade mylonite zones and thick retrogressed ultramylonite zones with mainly NNW strikes, easterly dips, and east-over-west movement, affect the metasedimentary rocks and Ordovician-aged intrusive rocks and are presumably related to early Devonian accretion of terranes to the west of Gondwana. pseudotachylyte veins occur in nearly all mylonite zones. Brittle deformation during Carboniferous to Triassic time produced major pull-apart basins located above terrane boundaries. Outcrop patterns of Triassic to Cretaceous sedimentary rocks are consistent with transtensional pull-apart basins followed by Andean transpressional deformation. The theoretical basis for fault reactivation and production of ‘short cuts’ is examined in the context of Tertiary to Recent basin inversion faults. The inversion faults follow the Palaeozoic trends and produce the present-day NNW-oriented, deep sedimentary basins and intervening ranges of basement rocks.
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The Nature and Tectonic Significance of Fault Zone Weakening
Many faults appears to form persistent zones of weakness that fundamentally influence the distribution, arichitecture and movement patterns of crustal-scale deformation and associated processes in both continental and oceanic regions. They act as conduits for the focused migration of economically important fluids and, as most seismicity is associated with active faults, they also constitute one of the most important global geological hazards.
This book brings together papers by an international group of Earth Scientists to discuss a broad range of topics centred upon the controls of fault weakening and the role of such faults during lithosphere deformation.
The book will be of interests to both academic and industrial Earth Scientists with an interest in geodynamics, structure at all scales, tectonics and the migration of petroleum and water.