Evolution of salt structures during extension and inversion of the Offshore Parentis Basin (Eastern Bay of Biscay)
O. Ferrer, M. P. A. Jackson, E. Roca, M. Rubinat, 2012. "Evolution of salt structures during extension and inversion of the Offshore Parentis Basin (Eastern Bay of Biscay)", Salt Tectonics, Sediments and Prospectivity, G. I. Alsop, S. G. Archer, A. J. Hartley, N. T. Grant, R. Hodgkinson
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The Late Jurassic–Cretaceous Parentis Basin (Eastern Bay of Biscay) illustrates a complex geological interplay between crustal tectonics and salt tectonics. Salt structures are mainly near the edges of the basin, where Jurassic–Lower Cretaceous overburden is thinner than in the basin centre and allowed salt anticlines and diapirs to form. Salt diapirs and walls began to rise reactively during the Late Jurassic as the North Atlantic Ocean and the Bay of Biscay opened. Some salt-cored drape folds formed above basement faults from the Upper Jurassic to Albian. During Albian–Late Cretaceous times, passive salt diapirs rose in chains of massive salt walls. Many salt diapirs stopped growing in the Mid-Cretaceous when their source layer depleted. During the Pyrenean orogeny (Late Cretaceous–Cenozoic), the basin was mildly shortened. Salt structures absorbed almost all the shortening and were rejuvenated to form squeezed diapirs, salt glaciers and probably subvertical welds, some of which were later reactivated as reverse faults. No new diapirs formed during the Pyrenean compression, and salt tectonics ended with the close of the Pyrenean orogeny in the Middle Miocene. Using reprocessed industrial seismic surveys, we document how salt tectonics affected the structural evolution of this offshore basin largely unknown to the international audience.