Abstract

The Makgadikgadi Pans Complex forms a large and unusual surface feature in the central part of the Republic of Botswana (Figs. 1, 2). The two major pans of the complex, Sua and Ntwetwe, comprise an area in excess of 8,400 km2 (Fig. 3). The pans occupy a basin that is the lowest point in a drainage system extending into Rhodesia Angola, and South West Africa (Namibia). The history of the pans, is complex and, is closely tied to the great climatic changes and tectonic activity that have affected this area since late Tertiary time and which continues today.

Continuing seismic, activity in Botswana has been linked to the East, African Rift System/ Considerable work has been undertaken to trace the rift zone beneath the OKavango Swamps, scene of the most intense earthquake activity. Little published information exists, however, on the adjacent Makgadikgadi Pans and their relation to this same rifting process. This paper provides a review of current knowledge about the pans and correlates investigations of nearby, areas with some new data.

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