International Journal of Earth Sciences

, Volume 100, Issue 7, pp 1685–1695 | Cite as

Listric versus planar normal fault geometry: an example from the Eisenstadt-Sopron Basin (E Austria)

  • Darko Spahić
  • Ulrike Exner
  • Michael Behm
  • Bernhard Grasemann
  • Alexander Haring
  • Herbert Pretsch
Original Paper

Abstract

In a gravel pit at the eastern margin of the Eisenstadt-Sopron Basin, a satellite of Vienna Basin (Austria), Neogene sediments are exposed in the hanging wall of a major normal fault. The anticlinal structure and associated conjugated secondary normal faults were previously interpreted as a rollover anticline above a listric normal fault. The spatial orientation and distribution of sedimentary horizons and crosscutting faults were mapped in detail on a laser scan of the outcrop wall. Subsequently, in order to assess the 3D distribution and geometry of this fault system, a series of parallel ground penetrating radar (GPR) profiles were recorded behind the outcrop wall. Both outcrop and GPR data were compiled in a 3D structural model, providing the basis for a kinematic reconstruction of the fault plane using balanced cross-section techniques. However, the kinematic reconstruction results in a geologically meaningless normal fault cutting down- and up-section. Additionally, no evidence for a weak layer serving as ductile detachment horizon (i.e. salt or clay horizon) can be identified in stratigraphic profiles. Instead, the observed deflection of stratigraphic horizons may be caused by a displacement gradient along a planar master fault, with a maximum displacement in the fault centre, decreasing towards the fault tips. Accordingly, the observed deflection of markers in the hanging wall—and in a nearby location in the footwall of the normal fault—is interpreted as large-scale fault drag along a planar fault that records a displacement gradient, instead of a rollover anticline related to a listric fault.

Keywords

Listric fault Fault drag Ground penetrating radar Balanced cross-section 

References

  1. Allen PA, Allen JR (2005) Basin analysis: principles and applications. Wiley-Blackwell, London, pp 560Google Scholar
  2. Bally AW (1983) Seismic expression of structural styles. A picture and work atlas (3 vols). Am Ass Petrol Geol Stud Geol 15Google Scholar
  3. Barnett JAM, Mortimer J, Rippon JH, Walsh JJ, Watterson J (1987) Displacement geometry in the volume containing a single normal fault. Am Assoc Petr Geol B 71:925–937Google Scholar
  4. Bhattacharaya JP, Davies RK (2001) Growth faults at the prodelta to delta-front transition, Cretaceous Ferron sandstone. Utah Mar Petrol Geol 18:525–534CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bristow CS, Jol HM (2003) An introduction to ground penetrating radar (GPR) in sediments. In: Bristow CS, Jol HM (eds) Ground penetrating radar in sediments. Geological Society of London Special Publications, vol 211, pp 1–7Google Scholar
  6. Brun JP, Mauduit TP-O (2008) Rollover in salt tectonics: the inadequacy of the listric fault model. Tectonophysics 457:1–11CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Brun JP, Mauduit TP-O (2009) Salt rollers: structure and kinematics from analogue modelling. Mar Petrol Geol 26:249–258CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Butler R (2009) Apulian foreland, offshore SE Italy. Virt Seis AtlGoogle Scholar
  9. Chamberlin RT (1910) The Appalachian folds of central Pennsylvania. J Geol 18:228–251CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Chwatal W, Decker K, Roch K-H (2005) Mapping active capable faults by high-resolution geo-physical mathods: examples from the central Vienna basin. Aust J Earth Sci 97:52–59Google Scholar
  11. Crook AJL, Wilson SM, Yu JG, Owen DRJ (2006) Predictive modeling of structure evolution in sandbox experiments. J Struct Geol 28:729–744CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Davison I (1986) Listric normal fault profiles: calculation using bed-length balance and fault displacement. J Struct Geol 8:209–210CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Decker K (1996) Miocene tectonics at the Alpine-Carpathian junction and the evolution of the Vienna Basin. Mitt Ges Geol Bergbaustud Österr 41:33–44Google Scholar
  14. Decker K, Peresson H (1996) Rollover and hanging-wall collapse during Sarmatian/Pannonian synsedimentary extension in the Eisenstadt Basin. Mitt Ges Geol Bergbaustud Österr 41:45–52Google Scholar
  15. Decker K, Peresson H, Hinsch R (2005) Active tectonics and Quaternary basin formation along the Vienna Basin Transform fault. Quat Sci Rev 24:305–320CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Desheng L (1996) Basic characteristics of oil and gas basins in China. J Southe Asian Earth 13:299–304CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Dooley T, McClay K, Pascoe R (2003) 3D analogue models of variable displacement extensional faults: application to Revfallet Fault system off shore mid Norway. In Nieuwland DA (ed) New insights into structural interpretation and modelling. Geological Society of London Special Publications, vol 212, pp 151–167Google Scholar
  18. Dula WF (1991) Geometric models of listric normal faults and rollover folds. Am Assoc Petr Geol B 75:1609–1625Google Scholar
  19. Dutton DM, Lister D, Trudgill BD, Pedro K (2004) Three-dimensional geometry and displacement configuration of a fault array from a raft system, Lower Congo, Offshore Angola: implications for the Neogene turbidite play. In: Davies RJ, Cartwright JA, Stewar SA, Lappin M, Underhill JR (eds) 3D seismic technology: application to the exploration of sedimentary basins. Geological Society of London Mem., vol 29, pp 133–142Google Scholar
  20. Erickson SG, Strayer LM, Suppe J (2001) Mechanics of extension and inversion in the hanging walls of listric normal faults. J Geophys Res 106:26655–26670CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Exner U, Grasemann B (2010) Displacement gradients and heterogeneous strain along deformation bands in gravels. J Geol Soc LondGoogle Scholar
  22. Fodor L (1995) From transpression to transtension: Oligocene-Miocene structural evolution of the Vienna Basin and the East Alpine-Western Carpathian junction. Tectonophysics 242:151–182CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Gaullier V, Brun JP, Guérin G, Lecanu H (1993) Raft tectonics: the effects of residual topography below a salt décollement. Tectonophysics 228:363–381CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Ge H, Jackson PAM, Vendeville B (1997) Kinematics and dynamics of salt tectonics driven by progradation. Am Assoc Petr Geol B 81:398–423Google Scholar
  25. Gibbs AD (1984) Structural evolution of extensional basin margins. J Geol Soc Lond 141:609–620CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Gibson JR, Walsh JJ, Watterson J (1989) Modelling of bed contours and cross-sections adjacent to planar normal faults. J Struct Geol 11:317–328CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Grasemann B, Martel S, Passchier CW (2005) Reverse and normal drag along a fault. J Struct Geol 27:999–1010CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Gupta A, Scholz CH (1998) A model of normal fault interaction based on observations and theory. J Struct Geol 22:865–879CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Hamblin WK (1965) Origin of “reverse drag” on the down-thrown side of normal faults. Geol Soc Am Bull 76:1145–1164CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Harzhauser M, Kowalke T (2002) Sarmatian (Late Middle Miocene) Gastropod Assemblages of the Central Paratethys. Facies 46:57–82CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Hinsch R, Decker K, Wagreich M (2005) 3-D mapping of segmented active faults in the southern Vienna Basin. Quat Sci Rev 24:321–336CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Imber J, Childs C, Nell PAR, Walsh JJ, Hodgetts D, Flint S (2003) Hanging wall fault kinematics and footwall collapse in listric growth fault systems. J Struct Geol 25:197–208CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Koyi HA, Skelton A (2001) Centrifuge modelling of the evolution of low-angle detachment faults from high-angle normal faults. J Struct Geol 23:1179–1185CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Krézsek C, Adam J, Grujic D (2007) Mechanics of fault and expulsion rollover systems developed on passive margins detached on salt: insights from analogue modelling and optical strain monitoring. In: Jolley SJ, Barr D, Walsh JJ, Knipe RJ (eds) Structurally complex reservoirs. Geological Society of London Special Publications, vol 292, pp 103–121Google Scholar
  35. Mansfield CS, Cartwright JA (2000) Stratal fold patterns adjacent to normal faults: observations from the Gulf of Mexico. In: Cosgrove JW, Ameen MS (eds) Forced folds and fractures. Geological Society of London Special Publications, vol 169, pp 115–128Google Scholar
  36. Mauduit T, Brun JP (1998) Development of growth fault/rollover systems: birth, growth, and decay. J Geophys Res 103:18119–18136CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. McCaffrey KJW, Jones RR, Holdsworth RE, Wilson RW, Clegg P, Imber J, Holliman N, Trinks I (2005) Unlocking the spatial dimension: digital technologies and the future of geoscience fieldwork. J Geol Soc Lond 162:927–938CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. McClay KR (1990) Extensional fault systems in sedimentary basins: a review of analogue model studies. Mar Petrol Geol 7:206–233CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. McClay KR (1995) The geometries and kinematics of inverted fault systems; a review of analogue model studies. In Buchanan JG, Buchanan PG (eds) Basin inversion. Geological Society of London Special Publications, vol 88, pp 97–118Google Scholar
  40. McClay KR, Scott AD (1991) Experimental models of hanging wall deformation in ramp-flat listric extensional fault systems. Tectonophysics 188:85–96CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Meschede M, Asprion U, Reicherter K (1997) Visualization of tectonic structures in shallow-depth high resolution ground-penetrating radar (GPR) profiles. Terra Nova 9:167–170CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Nunns AG (1991) Structural restoration of seismic and geologic sections in extensional regimes. Am Assoc Petr Geol B 75:278–297Google Scholar
  43. Poblet JBM, Bulnes M (2005) Fault slip, bed-length and area variations in experimental rollover anticlines over listric normal faults: influence in extension and depth to detachment estimations. Tectonophysics 396:97–117CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Porras JS, Vallejo EL, Marchal D, Selva C (2003) Extensional folding in the Eastern Venezuela Basin: examples from fields of Oritupano-Leona Block. Search and Discovery Article #50003:7Google Scholar
  45. Ratschbacher L, Frisch W, Linzer H-G, Merle O (1991) Lateral extrusion in the Eastern Alps: 2, structural analysis. Tectonics 10:257–271CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Reches Z, Eidelman A (1995) Drag along faults. Tectonophysics 247:145–156CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Reiss S, Reicherter KR, Reutner C-D (2003) Visualization and characterization of active normal faults and associated sediments by high-resolution GPR. In: Bristow CS, Jol HM (eds) Ground penetrating radar in sediments. Geological Society of London Special Publications, vol 211, pp 247–255Google Scholar
  48. Rowan MG, Hart BS, Nelson S, Flemings PB, Trudgill BD (1998) Three-dimensional geometry and evolution of salt related growth-fault array: Eudene Island 330 field, offshore Louisiana, Gulf of Mexico. Mar Petrol Geol 15:309–328CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Royden LH (1985) The Vienna Basin: a thin-skinned pull-apart basin. In: Biddle KT, Christie-Blick N (eds) Strike-slip deformation, basin formation, and sedimentation. SEPM Special Publications, vol 37, pp 319–338Google Scholar
  50. Schmid HP, Harzhauser M, Kroh A (2001) Hypoxic events on a middle miocene carbonate platform of the Central Paratethys (Austria, Badenian, 14 Ma). Ann Naturhist Mus Wien 102A:1–50Google Scholar
  51. Shelton WJ (1984) Listric normal faults, an illustrated summary. Am Assoc Petrol Geol Bull 68:801–815Google Scholar
  52. Strauss P, Harzhauser M, Hinsch R, Wagreich M (2006) Sequence stratigraphy in a classic pull-apart basin (Neogene, Vienna Basin). A 3D seismic based integrated approach. Geol Carpath 57:185–197Google Scholar
  53. Suess E (1909) Das Antlitz der Erde. Tempsky F, Freitag G, Prag and Wien, LeipzigGoogle Scholar
  54. Tearpock DJ, Bischke RE (2003) Applied subsurface geological mapping, pp 821Google Scholar
  55. Vendeville B, Cobbold PR (1988) How normal faulting and sedimentation interact to produce listric fault profiles and stratigraphic wedges. J Struct Geol 10:649–659CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Wagreich M (2000) A slope-apron succession filling a piggyback basin the Tannheim and Losenstein Formations (Aptian–Cenomanian) of the eastern part of the North Calcareous Alps (Austria). Mitt Österr Geol Ges 93:31–54Google Scholar
  57. Watterson J, Nicol A, Walsh JJ (1998) Strains at the synchronous conjugate normal faults. J Struct Geol 20:363–370CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Weber KJ (1978) Hydrocarbon distribution patterns in Nigerian growth fault structures controlled by structural style and stratigraphy. J Petrol Sci Eng 1:91–104CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Wernicke B, Burchfiel BC (1982) Modes of extensional tectonics. J Struct Geol 4:105–115CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Wessely G (1988) Structure and development of the Vienna basin in Austria. In: Royden LH, Horváth F (eds) Am Assoc Petr Geol B, vol 45, pp 333–346Google Scholar
  61. Wheeler J (1987) Variable-heave models of deformation above listric normal faults: the importance of area conservation. J Struct Geol 9:1047–1049CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. White N (1992) A method for automatically determining normal fault geometry at depth. J Geophys Res 97:1715–1733CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. White NJ, Jackson JA, McKenzie DP (1986) The relationship between the geometry of normal faults and that of the sedimentary layers in their hanging walls. J Struct Geol 8:897–909CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Williams G, Vann I (1987) The geometry of listric normal faults and deformation in their hanging walls. J Struct Geol 9:789–795CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Withjack MO, Islam QT, La Pointe PR (1995) Normal faults and their hanging-wall deformation; an experimental study. Am Assoc Petr Geol B 79:1–18Google Scholar
  66. Xiao H, Suppe J (1992) Origin of rollover. Am Assoc Petrol Geol Bull 76:509–529Google Scholar
  67. Yamada Y, McClay K (2003) Application of geometric models to inverted listric fault systems in sandbox experiments. Paper 1: 2D hanging wall deformation and section restoration. J Struct Geol 25:1551–1560CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Darko Spahić
    • 1
  • Ulrike Exner
    • 1
  • Michael Behm
    • 2
  • Bernhard Grasemann
    • 1
  • Alexander Haring
    • 3
  • Herbert Pretsch
    • 1
  1. 1.Department for Geodynamics and SedimentologyUniversity of ViennaViennaAustria
  2. 2.Institute of Geodesy and GeophysicsVienna University of TechnologyViennaAustria
  3. 3.Christian Doppler Laboratory for “Spatial Data from Laser Scanning and Remote Sensing”Vienna University of TechnologyViennaAustria

Personalised recommendations