Three wide-angle seismic profiles were acquired from onshore southern Ireland during VARNET-96. These data provide the only subsurface seismic images of a series of predominantly Late Palaeozoic sedimentary basins. The Dingle Basin is a broadly symmetrical rift on the Dingle peninsula, but assumes a half-graben geometry to the east. The southern syn-rift basin margin is defined by the north-dipping Dingle Bay–Galtee Mountains Line. A south-dipping normal fault at Kerry Head marks the northern basin margin in the west, with displacement on this structure decreasing towards the east. The Dingle Basin is separated from the Munster Basin to the south by a basement horst. Seismic data strongly suggest that the Killarney–Mallow Fault Zone, located on the southern margin of this positive feature, is the Munster Basin northern syn-rift marginal fault. The preserved extensional displacement on this detachment decreases from c. 2.5 km in northern Iveragh, to c. 1 km at Mallow, suggesting that the fault tips out to the east of Mallow. A tilted fault block, possibly cored by shallow granite, is imaged in the northern Munster Basin. This fault terrace is bounded to the south by the Cork–Kenmare Line. The combined Munster Basin and South Munster Basin succession thickens across the Cork–Kenmare Line to a maximum thickness of 8 km on the Beara peninsula. A tectonic thickness of 6 km of sediment is modelled at the Old Head of Kinsale, increasing to 7 km in the southwest.
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New Perspectives on the Old Red Sandstone
From the 1960s onwards, the Old Red Sandstone of both borders of the Atlantic Ocean has acted as a test-bed for the development of new ideas on the interpretation of fluvial, lacustrine and aeolian sedimentary rocks, and the investigation of tectonically-active basins. Much of the earlier reconnaissance work is now being reviewed in the light of further detailed field study, along with new developments in the understanding of the biostratigraphy, palaeobiology, geochronology, pedogenesis and tectonics.
Three general papers review recent work on the stratigraphical and chronological analysis of the Late Silurian, Devonian and Early Carboniferous strata, and summarize present understanding of the tectonics of the basins. These are then followed by twenty-seven contributions covering new work in Eastern USA, Canada, Ireland, Britain, Norway, Greenland and Spitsbergen.