Comparison of tectonic styles in the Mexican and Canadian Rocky Mountain Fold–Thrust Belt
Elisa Fitz-Diaz, Peter Hudleston, Gustavo Tolson, 2011. "Comparison of tectonic styles in the Mexican and Canadian Rocky Mountain Fold–Thrust Belt", Kinematic Evolution and Structural Styles of Fold-and-Thrust Belts, J. Poblet, R. J. Lisle
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Despite the fact that most fold–thrust belts around the world share many features, successfully explained by the critical wedge model, the details of their geometric evolution and tectonic style development are poorly understood. In the classic section of the southern Canadian Rocky Mountains the dominant tectonic style consists of imbricate thrust sheets with relatively little internal deformation of the individual slices. In the Mexican fold–thrust Belt (Central Mexico), the age of deformation, the overall structural pattern and the total amount of shortening are similar, but the individual thrust sheets exhibit much more internal deformation as manifest by metre-scale buckle folds. One of the differences between these localities is the lateral variation of facies resulting in massive platform limestone separated by thinly-bedded basinal limestone in the Central Mexico section. Strain is concentrated toward the margins between platforms and basins. In Canada, thick platform carbonates form continuous resistant units across the Front Range. Possible reasons for the differences in tectonic style between the two sections include the dominant lithology, distribution of lithologies, taper angle of the tectonic wedges, amount of friction along the basal detachment and the degree of anisotropy of the basin facies rocks.
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Fold-and-thrust belts occur worldwide, have formed in all eras of geological time, and are widely recognized as the most common mode in which the crust accommodates shortening. Much current research on the structure of fold-and-thrust belts is focused on structural studies of regions or individual structures and on the geometry and evolution of these regions employing kinematic, mechanical and experimental modelling. In keeping with the main trends of current research, this title is devoted to the kinematic evolution and structural styles of a number of fold-and-thrust belts formed from Palaeozoic to Recent times. The papers included in this book cover a broad range of different topics, from modelling approaches to predict internal deformation of single structures, 3D reconstructions to decipher the structural evolution of groups of structures, palaeomagnetic studies of portions of fold-and-thrust belts, geometrical and kinematical aspects of Coulomb thrust wedges and structural analyses of fold-and-thrust belts to unravel their sequence of deformations.