Abstract

Palaeomagnetic data from fault rocks along major faults in the Laerdal-Gjende Fault System cutting the Caledonian structure in the Jotunheimen area of central south Norway reveals a multi-component remanence pattern. Sample and site-mean directions from the fault rocks obtained by thermal cleaning demonstrate a simple pattern of normal polarity low blocking components and reverse polarity high-blocking directions. The magnetic signature of the Laerdal-Gjende Fault System fault rocks is identical to that observed on breccias on late faults along the west coast of Norway. Based on available palaeomagnetic reference data, we assign ages of mid-late Permian and late Jurassic-early Cretaceous for important phases of faulting and breccia formation along the Laerdal–Gjende Fault System in central south Norway. Structural windows, partly exposing basement along the axis of the Caledonides in southern Norway were exhumed by footwall uplift on major faults in the Laerdal–Gjende Fault System. The consanguinity of fault rock data from the Laerdal–Gjende Fault System and fault rocks in western Norway, and comparison with displacement on the offshore continuation of the Laerdal–Gjende Fault System along the Hardangerfjorden Shear Zone, indicate that the main tectonic events responsible for the development of the North Sea basin also significantly affected the geology of central south Norway.

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