Advertisement

structural style of the Makran Tertiary accretionary complex in SE-Iran

  • J.-P. BurgEmail author
  • A. Dolati
  • D. Bernoulli
  • J. Smit
Conference paper
Part of the Frontiers in Earth Sciences book series (FRONTIERS)

Abstract

We report new structural descriptions and measurements carried out across the onshore Makran Accretionary Wedge, in SE Iran. Complementary geological mapping led to the identification of four main tectono-stratigraphic units separated by major thrust zones. From the north to the south, i.e. from top to bottom, these major thrust sheets are called North-, Inner-, Outer- and Coastal-Makran. The Bashakerd Thrust that emplaced North on Inner Makran separates two geologically different domains. North Makran includes ophiolites obducted in Late Cretaceous to Paleogene times and a tectonic assemblage of Cretaceous to Paleogene? deep-sea sediments and volcanics, the so-called “Coloured Mélange”, whereas from Inner Makran to the South, a Miocene to Recent fold-and-thrust belt constitutes the upper part of the Makran Accretionary Wedge. Inner and Outer Makran began to form before the catastrophic emplacement of a Tortonian olistostrome. Folding accompanying thrusting pertains to a continuous history that, however, was not evenly distributed in terms of location and amplification rates of individual folds, yet developed altogether in Middle Miocene to Pliocene times. Most of the deformation was shifted after emplacement of the olistostrome to the present-day submarine wedge, and Coastal Makran evolved into a wedge-top basin with shallower water and continental sedimentation. The juxtaposition of two wedges of different age makes it difficult to average the surface slope and to conclude that Makran is a mature wedge with one of the lowest taper angles, worldwide. Owing to internal strain and syn-sedimentary tectonic processes, it is likely that the Makran maintained an equilibrium triangular cross-sectional shape to grow into a larger similar wedge.

Keywords

Accretionary wedge Makran Structural analysis 

Notes

Acknowledgments

The Swiss National Fond supports this project (N°2-77 634-05). Financial contribution and support from the MEBE program and the Geological Survey of Iran are also acknowledged. We are indebted to L. Hottinger, C. Müller and S. Spezzafferri for numerous fossil determinations. Sincere thanks are extended to the many people who hosted and helped us in remote places of the Makran. Reviews by Jean Letouzey and Jaume Vergès helped clarifying our descriptions and interpretations.

References

  1. Arthurton RS, Farah A, Ahmed W (1982) The late-cretaceous–cenozoic history of western Baluchistan Pakistan–the northern margin of the Makran subduction complex. In: Leggett JK (ed) Trench-forearc geology: sedimentation and tectonics on modern and ancient active plate margins, vol 10. Geological Society, London, pp 373–385Google Scholar
  2. Bayer R, Chery J, Tatar M, Vernant P, Abbassi M, Masson F, Nilforoushan F, Doerflinger E, Regard V, Bellier O (2006) Active deformation in Zagros-Makran transition zone inferred from GPS measurements. Geophys J Int 165(1):373–381CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Berberian F, Muir ID, Pankhurst RJ, Berberian M (1982) Late Cretaceous and early miocene andean-type plutonic activity in northern makran and central Iran. J Geol Soc London 139(5):605–614CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bernstein-Taylor BL, Brown KM, Silver EA, Kirchoff-Stein KS (1992) Basement slivers within the New Britain accretionary wedge: implications for the emplacement of some ophiolitic slivers. Tectonics 11(4):753–765CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bijwaard H, Spakman W, Engdahl ER (1998) Closing the gap between regional and global travel time tomography. J Geophys Res 103(B12): 30,055–30,078Google Scholar
  6. Burg J-P, Bernoulli D, Smit J, Dolati A, Bahroudi A (2008) A giant catastrophic mud-and-debris flow in the Miocene Makran. Terra Nova 20(3):188–193CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Byrne DE, Sykes LR, Davis DM (1992) Great thrust earthquakes and aseismic slip along the plate boundary of the Makran subduction zone. J Geophys Res 97(B1): 449–478Google Scholar
  8. Carter A, Najman Y, Bahroudi A, Bown P, Garzanti E, Lawrence RD (2010) Locating earliest records of orogenesis in western Himalaya: evidence from Paleogene sediments in the Iranian Makran region and Pakistan Katawaz basin. Geology 38(9):807–810CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Chapple WM (1978) Mechanics of thin-skinned fold-and-thrust belts. Geol Soc Am Bull 89(8):1189–1198CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Critelli S, Rosa RD, Platt JP (1990) Sandstone detrital modes in the Makran accretionary wedge, southwest Pakistan: implications for tectonic setting and long-distance turbidite transportation. Sediment Geol 68: 241–260Google Scholar
  11. Davis D, Suppe J, Dahlen FA (1983) Mechanics of fold-and-thrust belts and accretionary wedges. J Geophys Res 88(B2): 1153–1172Google Scholar
  12. De Jong KA (1982) Tectonics of the Persian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, and southern Pakistan region. In: Nairn AEM, Stehli FG (eds) The Indian Ocean, vol 6. Plenum Press, New York, pp 315–351Google Scholar
  13. Dercourt J, Ricou L-E, Vrielynck B (1993) Atlas Tethys palaeoenvironmental maps. Gauthier-Villars, Paris, p 307, 314 maps, 301plateGoogle Scholar
  14. Desmons J, Beccaluva L (1983) Mid-ocean ridge and island-arc affinities in ophiolites from Iran: palaeographic implications. Chem Geol 39(1–2):39–63CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Dolati A (2010) Stratigraphy, structure geology and low-temperature thermochronology across the Makran accretionary wedge in Iran. PhD thesis, ETH ZurichGoogle Scholar
  16. Ellouz-Zimmermann N, Deville E, Müller C, Lallemant S, Subhani AB, Tabreez AR (2007a) Impact of sedimentation on convergent margin tectonics: example of the Makran Accretionary Prism (Pakistan). In: Lacombe O , Lavé J, Roure F, Vergès J (eds) Thrust belts and foreland basins: from fold kinematics to hydrocarbon systems. Springer, Berlin, pp 325–348Google Scholar
  17. Ellouz-Zimmermann N et al. (2007b) Offshore frontal part of the Makran Accretionary Prism (Pakistan): the Chamak survey. In: Lacombe O, Lavé J, Roure F, Vergès J (eds) Thrust belts and foreland basins: from fold kinematics to hydrocarbon systems. Springer, Berlin, pp 349–364Google Scholar
  18. Emami H, Vergés J, Nalpas T, Gillespie P, Sharp v, Karpuz R, Blanc EP, Goodarzi MGH (2010) Structure of the mountain front flexure along the Anaran anticline in the Pusht-e Kuh Arc (NW Zagros, Iran): insights from sand box models. In: Leturmy P, Robin C (eds) Tectonic and stratigraphic evolution of zagros and makran during the mesozoic–cenozoic, vol 330. Geological Society, London, pp 155–178Google Scholar
  19. Farhoudi G, Karig DE (1977) Makran of Iran and Pakistan as an active arc system. Geology 5(11):664–668CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Fruehn J, White RS, Minshull TA (1997) Internal deformation and compaction of the Makran accretionary wedge. Terra Nova 9: 101–104Google Scholar
  21. Fruehn J, Reston T, von Huene R, Bialas J (2002) Structure of the Mediterranean Ridge accretionary complex from seismic velocity information. Mar Geol 186(1–2):43–58CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Gansser A (1955) New aspects of the geology in central Iran. paper presented at 4th World Petroleum Congress, Roma, pp 279–300Google Scholar
  23. Gansser A (1959) Ausseralpine ophiolithprobleme. Eclogae Geol Helv 52(2):659–680Google Scholar
  24. Grando G, McClay K (2006) Morphotectonics domains and structural styles in the Makran accretionary prism, offshore Iran. Sed Geol 196(1–4):157–179Google Scholar
  25. Hafkenscheid E, Wortel MJR, Spakman W (2006) Subduction history of the Tethyan region derived from seismic tomography and tectonic reconstructions. J Geophys Res 111: B08401, doi: 10.1029/2005JB003791
  26. Harms JC, Cappel HN, Francis DC (1984) The Makran coast of Pakistan: its stratigraphy and hydrocarbon potential. In: Haq BU, Milliman JD (ed) Marine geology and oceanography of Arabian Sea and coastal Pakistan, Van Nostrand Reinhold Co., New York, pp 3–27Google Scholar
  27. Hosseini-Barzi M, Talbot CJ (2003) A tectonic pulse in the Makran accretionary prism recorded in Iranian coastal sediments. J Geol Soc London 160(6):903–910CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Jamison WR (1987) Geometric analysis of fold development in overthrust terranes. J Struct Geol 9(2):207–219CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Konstantinovskaya E, Malavieille J (2011) Thrust wedges with décollement levels and syntectonic erosion: a view from analog models. Tectonophysics 502(3–4):336–350CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Kopp C, Fruehn J, Flueh ER, Reichert C, Kukowski N, Bialas J, Klaeschen D (2000) Structure of the Makran subduction zone from wide-angle and reflection seismic data. Tectonophysics 329(1–4):171–191CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Kukkonen IT, Clauser C (1994) Simulation of heat transfer at the Kola deep-hole site–implications for advection, heat refraction and palaeoclimatic effects. Geophys J Int 116: 409–420Google Scholar
  32. Kukowski N, Lallemand SE, Malavieille J, Gutscher M-A, Reston TJ (2002) Mechanical decoupling and basal duplex formation observed in sandbox experiments with application to the Western Mediterranean Ridge accretionary complex. Mar Geol 186(1–2):29–42CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Kukowski N, Schillhorn T, Huhn K, Von Rad U, Husen S, Flueh ER (2001) Morphotectonics and mechanics of the central Makran accretionary wedge off Pakistan. Mar Geol 173(1–4):1–19CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Leroy S et al. (2004) From rifting to spreading in the eastern Gulf of Aden: a geophysical survey of a young oceanic basin from margin to margin. Terra Nova 16(4): 185–192Google Scholar
  35. Maruyama S, Liou JG, Tarabayashi M (1996) Blueschists and eclogites of the world and their exhumation. Int Geol Rev 38(6):485–591CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Masson F, Anvari M, Djamour Y, Walpersdorf A, Tavakoli F, Daignières M, Nankali H, Van Gorp S (2007) Large-scale velocity field and strain tensor in Iran inferred from GPS measurements: new insight for the present-day deformation pattern within NE Iran. Geophys J Int 170: 436–440Google Scholar
  37. McCall GJH (1983) Mélanges of the Makran, southeastern Iran. In: McCall GJH (ed) Ophiolitic and related mélanges. Hutchinson Ross Publishing Company, Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania. Benchmark Papers in Geology/66, pp 292–299Google Scholar
  38. McCall GJH (1985) Area report. East Iran Project–Area No. 1Rep., Geological Survey of Iran, Tehran, Iran, p 634Google Scholar
  39. McCall GJH (1997) The geotectonic history of the Makran and adjacent areas of southern Iran. J Asian Earth Sci 15(6):517–531CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. McCall GJH (2002) A summary of the geology of the Iranian Makran. In: Clift PD, Kroon FD, Gaedecke C, Craig J (ed) The tectonic and climatic evolution of the Arabian Sea Region, Geological Society, London, vol 195. Special Publication, pp 147–204Google Scholar
  41. McCall GJH, Kidd RGW (1982) The Makran southeastern Iran: the anatomy of a convergent margin active from Cretaceous to present. In: Leggett JK (ed) Trench-forearc geology: sedimentation and tectonics of modern and ancient plate margins vol 10. Geological Society, Special Publication, London, pp 387–397Google Scholar
  42. McCall J, Rosen B, Darrell J (1994) Carbonate deposition in accretionary prism settings; early Miocene coral limestones and corals of the Makran Mountain range in Southern Iran. Facies 31(1):141–178CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. McQuarrie N, Stock JM, Verdel C, Wernicke BP (2003) Cenozoic evolution of Neotethys and implications for the causes of plate motions. Geophys Res Lett 30:2036. doi: 10.1029/2003GL017992 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Minshull TA, White R (1989) Sediment compaction and fluid migration in the Makran accretionary prism. J Geophys Res B Solid Earth Planets 94(B6): 7387–7402Google Scholar
  45. Platt JP (1986) Dynamics of orogenic wedges and the uplift of high-pressure metamorphic rocks. Geol Soc Am Bull 97: 1037–1053Google Scholar
  46. Platt JP, Leggett JK, Alam S (1988) Slip vectors and fault mechanics in the Makran accretionary wedge, SW Pakistan. J Geophys Res 93(B7): 7955–7973Google Scholar
  47. Platt JP, Leggett JK, Young J, Raza H, Alam S (1985) Large-scale sediment underplating in the Makran accretionary prism. Geology 13: 507–511Google Scholar
  48. Qayyum M, Niem AR, Lawrence RD (1996) Newly discovered Paleogene deltaic sequence in the Katawaz basin Pakistan and its tectonic implications. Geology 24(9):835–838CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Ramsay JG, Huber MI (1987) The techniques of modern structural geology–vol 2: Folds and fractures. Academic, London 700Google Scholar
  50. Reyss JL, Pirazzoli PA, Haghipour A, Hatté C, Fontugne M (1999) Quaternary marine terraces and tectonic uplift rates on the south coast of Iran. In: Stewart IS, Vita-Finzi C (ed) Coastal tectonics, vol 146. Geological Society, London, pp 225–237Google Scholar
  51. Ricou L-E (1994) Tethys reconstructed: plates, continental fragments and their boundaries since 260 Ma from Central America to South-eastern Asia. Geodin Acta 7(4):169–218Google Scholar
  52. Schlüter HU, Prexl A, Gaedicke C, Roeser H, Reichert C, Meyer H, von Daniels C (2002) The Makran accretionary wedge: sediment thicknesses and ages and the origin of mud volcanoes. Mar Geol 185(3–4):219–232CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Schott B, Koyi HA (2001) Estimating basal friction in accretionary wedges from the geometry and spacing of frontal faults. Earth Planet Sci Lett 194(1–2):221–227CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Şengör AMC, Altiner D, Cin A, Ustaomer T, Hsü K (1988) Origin and assembly of the Tethyside orogenic collage at the expense of Gondwana Land, vol 37. Geological Society, London, Special Publication, pp 119–181Google Scholar
  55. Sepehr M, Cosgrove J, Moieni M (2006) The impact of cover rock rheology on the style of folding in the Zagros fold-thrust belt. Tectonophysics 427(1–4):265–281CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Smit J, Burg J-P, Dolati A, Sokoutis D (2010) Effects of mass waste events on thrust wedges: analogue experiments and application to the Makran accretionary wedge. Tectonics 29: TC3003Google Scholar
  57. Vernant P et al (2004) Present-day crustal deformation and plate kinematics in the Middle East constrained by GPS measurements in Iran and northern Oman. Geophys J Int 157(1):381–398CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Vigny C, Huchon P, Ruegg J, Khanbari K, Asfaw LM (2006) Confirmation of Arabia plate slow motion by new GPS data in Yemen. J Geophys Res 111: B02402, doi: 10.1029/2004JB003229
  59. Westbrook GK, Ladd JW, Buhl P, Bangs N, Tiley GJ (1988) Cross section of an accretionary wedge: Barbados Ridge complex. Geology 16(7):631–635CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. White RS (1982) Deformation of the Makran accretionary sediment prism in the Gulf of Oman (North-West Indian Ocean). In: Leggett JK (ed) Trench-Forearc geology; sedimentation and tectonics on modern and ancient active plate margins, vol 10, conference. Geological Society of London, London, United Kingdom, pp 357–372Google Scholar
  61. White RS, Klitgord K (1976) Sediment deformation and plate tectonics in the Gulf of Oman. Earth Planet Sci Lett 32(2):199–209CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • J.-P. Burg
    • 1
    Email author
  • A. Dolati
    • 1
    • 2
  • D. Bernoulli
    • 1
    • 3
  • J. Smit
    • 1
  1. 1.ETH and University ZurichZürichSwitzerland
  2. 2.Geological Survey IranTehranIran
  3. 3.Geology InstituteUniversity of BaselBaselSwitzerland

Personalised recommendations