Abstract

A comparative quantitative analysis of late Paleozoic subsidence in the Moscow and Dniepr-Donets basins provides additional insight into the relative importance of tectonics and eustacy as sedimentation driving forces. Late Devonian rifting clearly displayed in the Dniepr-Donets Basin and underlying Precambrian East European Craton probably also affected the Moscow Basin. After this episode, however, the history of both basins diverged ; rifting processes ceased in the Moscow Basin but continued in the Dniepr-Donets Basin. The Moscow Basin is an intracratonic basin that can be modelled with a lithospheric heating phase from Devonian to Bashkirian times and a subsequent cooling phase generating thermal subsidence from Moscovian to Asselian times. The Dniepr-Donets Basin is a rift basin displaying an initial rifting phase during the late Devonian, an initial phase of post-rift evolution from the Tournaisian to the base of late Viséan, and a second rifting phase, seen mainly in the Donets and Donbas segments only, from late Viséan to Asselian times. Subsequent subsidences ended with uplift during the Sakmarian and were overprinted by compressional tectonics during Mesozoic and Cenozoic times. A comparison of local and global second-order stratigraphic sequences, allowing an estimation of the ratio of the importance of eustatic to tectonic processes controlling subsidence in each basin, demonstrates that eustacy controlled sedimentation in the Moscow Basin and tectonics prevailed in the Dniepr-Donets Basin.

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