Abstract

Two new high-resolution seismic reflection profiles from the Kinarot Valley, Dead Sea rift, analyzed with older conventional oil exploration profiles, throw light on the Quaternary evolution of the African-Arabian transform-type plate boundary in the area. The present en echelon main faults of the Dead Sea transform are observed in the seismic data as wide zones of deformation rather than as distinct fault planes. A similar zone of deformation is observed in the center of the Kinarot basin and may be associated with an extinct trace of the main fault. The Zemah structure, previously mapped and drilled, is shown by the new data to be an inactive anticline. Compression within the basin is suggested as being the result of motion along the now inactive main fault observed in the center of the basin. Compression and shortening started some 2 m.y. ago and ended late in the Quaternary as a result of changes in the geometry of the transform. At present the Kinarot basin is subsiding.

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