International Journal of Earth Sciences

, Volume 106, Issue 3, pp 1023–1055 | Cite as

Multidisciplinary approach to constrain kinematics of fault zones at shallow depths: a case study from the Cameros–Demanda thrust (North Spain)

  • A. M. Casas-Sainz
  • T. Román-Berdiel
  • B. Oliva-Urcia
  • C. García-Lasanta
  • J. J. Villalaín
  • L. Aldega
  • S. Corrado
  • C. Caricchi
  • C. Invernizzi
  • M. C. Osácar
Original Paper


Thrusting at shallow depths often precludes analysis by means of structural indicators effective in other geological contexts (e.g., mylonites, sheath folds, shear bands). In this paper, a combination of techniques (including structural analysis, magnetic methods, as anisotropy of magnetic susceptibility and paleomagnetism, and paleothermometry) is used to define thrusting conditions, deformation, and transport directions in the Cameros–Demanda thrust (North Spain). Three outcrops were analyzed along this intraplate, large-scale major structure having 150 km of outcropping length, 30 km of maximum horizontal displacement, and 5 km of vertical throw. Results obtained by means of the different techniques are compared with data derived from cross sections and stratigraphic analysis. Mixed-layer illite–smectite and vitrinite reflectance indicating deep diagenetic conditions and mature stage of hydrocarbon generation suggests shallow depths during deformation, thus confirming that the protolith for most of the fault rocks is the footwall of the main thrust. Kinematic indicators (foliation, S/C structures, and slickenside striations) indicate altogether a dominant NNW movement of the hanging wall in the western zone and NE in the eastern zone of the thrust, thus implying strain partitioning between different branches of the main thrust. The study of AMS in fault rocks (nearly 400 samples of fault gouge, breccia, and microbreccia) indicates that the strike of magnetic foliation is oblique to the transport direction and that the magnetic lineation parallelizes the projection of the transport direction onto the k max/k int plane in sites with strong shear deformation. Paleomagnetism applied to fault rocks indicates the existence of remagnetizations linked to thrusting, in spite of the shallow depth for deformation, and a strong deformation or scattering of the magnetic remanence vectors in the fault zone. The application of the described techniques and consistency of results indicate that the proposed multidisciplinary approach is useful when dealing with thrusts at shallow crustal levels.


Intraplate thrusting Fault rock Cameros–Demanda thrust Transport direction Magnetic techniques Paleothermometry 



The authors thank Sylvia Gracia for her help in measuring with the KLY3S susceptibility meter, and Manuel Tricas for thin-section preparation. The authors also acknowledge the use of Servicio General de Apoyo a la Investigación-SAI, Universidad de Zaragoza (Servicio de Preparación de Rocas y Materiales Duros, and Servicio de Líquidos Criogénicos). This study has been financed by the Research Project UZ2012-CIE-11 of the University of Zaragoza and the Research Projects CGL2013-42670-P and CGL2012-38481 of the MINECO (Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad of Spain). The authors acknowledge the careful and constructive revisions from Manuel Sintubin and Jean Luc Bouchez, who helped to strongly improve a former version of the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. M. Casas-Sainz
    • 1
  • T. Román-Berdiel
    • 1
  • B. Oliva-Urcia
    • 2
  • C. García-Lasanta
    • 1
  • J. J. Villalaín
    • 3
  • L. Aldega
    • 4
  • S. Corrado
    • 5
  • C. Caricchi
    • 5
  • C. Invernizzi
    • 6
  • M. C. Osácar
    • 1
  1. 1.Departamento de Ciencias de la TierraUniversidad de ZaragozaSaragossaSpain
  2. 2.Departamento de Geología y GeoquímicaUniversidad Autónoma de MadridMadridSpain
  3. 3.Laboratorio de Paleomagnetismo, Departamento de FísicaUniversidad de BurgosBurgosSpain
  4. 4.Dipartimento di Scienze della TerraSapienza Università di RomaRomeItaly
  5. 5.Dipartimento di ScienzeUniversità Roma TreRomeItaly
  6. 6.Scuola di Scienze e Tecnologie, Sezione GeologiaUniversità di CamerinoCamerinoItaly

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