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Inheritance and style of rifting: incremental structural restoration of the Laptev Sea Rift System, north-eastern Russian Arctic

  • Christian BrandesEmail author
  • David C. Tanner
  • Dieter Franke
Case Report


The Laptev Sea Rift System, on the north-eastern continental margin of the Russian Arctic, is a key area to understand the opening of the Eurasia Basin. The rifts developed since Cretaceous/Early Cenozoic times and consists of five, roughly north–south trending depocentres, controlled by major listric normal faults. Three cross-sections from the rift system were incrementally restored to quantify the amount of extension over time and to reconstruct the geological evolution. We show that since the beginning of rifting, fault activity in the Anisin Basin was unevenly distributed between two symmetrical graben systems. The central Ust’ Lena Rift has a completely different structure: regularly spaced west-dipping faults are interrupted by minor east-dipping faults in only three places. Fault dip decreases from west to east, from 60° to 30°, respectively.


Laptev Rift Structural restoration Rifting Extension 



The authors acknowledges the use of the MOVE Software Suite granted by Petroleum Experts Limited, which we used to restore the cross-sections. We are grateful to an anonymous reviewer for the constructive comments.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institut für GeologieLeibniz Universität HannoverHannoverGermany
  2. 2.Leibniz Institute for Applied Geophysics (LIAG)HannoverGermany
  3. 3.Bundesanstalt für Geowissenschaften und Rohstoffe (BGR)HannoverGermany

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