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The Perth Basin is a major tectonic province along the western margin of the Australian continent. Basin morphology is controlled by north-striking faults formed during Permian rifting and reactivated during later tectonic events, notably during continental break-up in Late Jurassic–Early Cretaceous time. Transfer structures, including those normal and oblique to the major faults, compartmentalized the basin into segments of distinctive character. East-west transfer faults, perpendicular to the basin trend, were active throughout the rift stage of basin development and are recognized only in the northernmost onshore part of the Perth Basin, corresponding to the depocentre for Permian sediment accumulation. Northerly trending normal faults change in character and/or terminate at these east-west structures. The NW-striking transfer zones influenced deformational features formed during the Late Jurassic–Early Cretaceous break-up. No continuous fault plane has been identified with these zones in the sedimentary sequences. They are characterized by the termination and/or swing of major normal faults at the transfer zones. Sinistral strike-slip movement of at least 16 km is recognized across the Abrolhos Transfer Zone on the basis of offset in the trend of the Beagle Fault system. The orientation, age of activation, and position of these zones are similar to those of transform faults in the adjoining Indian Ocean, suggesting that the two structures are contiguous.

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