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Fault architecture, basin structure and evolution of the Gulf of Corinth Rift, central Greece

Fault architecture, basin structure and evolution of the Gulf of Corinth Rift, central Greece
Fault architecture, basin structure and evolution of the Gulf of Corinth Rift, central Greece
The style of extension and strain distribution during the early stages of intra-continental rifting is important for understanding rift-margin development and can provide constraints for lithospheric deformation mechanisms. The Corinth rift in central Greece is one of the few rifts to have experienced a short extensional history without subsequent overprinting. We synthesise existing seismic reflection data throughout the active offshore Gulf of Corinth Basin to investigate fault activity history and the spatio-temporal evolution of the basin, producing for the first time basement depth and syn-rift sediment isopachs throughout the offshore rift. A major basin-wide unconformity surface with an age estimated from sea-level cycles at ca. 0.4Ma separates distinct seismic stratigraphic units. Assuming that sedimentation rates are on average consistent, the present rift formed at 1^2Ma, with no clear evidence for along-strike propagation of the rift axis. The rift has undergone major changes in relative fault activity and basin geometry during its short history. The basement depth is greatest in the central rift (maximum 3 km) and decreases to the east and west. In detail however, two separated depocentres 20^50 km long were created controlled by N- and S-dipping faults before 0.4Ma, while since ca. 0.4Ma a single depocentre (80 km long) has been controlled by several connected N-dipping faults, with maximum subsidence focused between the two older depocentres. Thus isolated but nearby faults can persist for timescales ca.1Ma and form major basins before becoming linked. There is a general evolution towards a dominance of N-dipping faults; however, in the western Gulf strain is distributed across several active N- and S-dipping faults throughout rift history, producing a more complex basin geometry.
0950-091X
824-855
Bell, R.E.
e2ddbacb-1df1-4238-8d2e-fe6da74e4e8d
McNeill, L.C.
1fe6a1e0-ca1a-4b6f-8469-309d0f9de0cf
Bull, J.M.
974037fd-544b-458f-98cc-ce8eca89e3c8
Henstock, T.J.
27c450a4-3e6b-41f8-97f9-4e0e181400bb
Collier, R.E.L.
4568b663-a810-44d7-8712-41a6fe1dd40a
Leeder, M.R.
614c11d6-18c1-47cd-ab84-788a8e94c637
Bell, R.E.
e2ddbacb-1df1-4238-8d2e-fe6da74e4e8d
McNeill, L.C.
1fe6a1e0-ca1a-4b6f-8469-309d0f9de0cf
Bull, J.M.
974037fd-544b-458f-98cc-ce8eca89e3c8
Henstock, T.J.
27c450a4-3e6b-41f8-97f9-4e0e181400bb
Collier, R.E.L.
4568b663-a810-44d7-8712-41a6fe1dd40a
Leeder, M.R.
614c11d6-18c1-47cd-ab84-788a8e94c637

Bell, R.E., McNeill, L.C., Bull, J.M., Henstock, T.J., Collier, R.E.L. and Leeder, M.R. (2009) Fault architecture, basin structure and evolution of the Gulf of Corinth Rift, central Greece. Basin Research, 21 (6), 824-855. (doi:10.1111/j.1365-2117.2009.00401.x).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The style of extension and strain distribution during the early stages of intra-continental rifting is important for understanding rift-margin development and can provide constraints for lithospheric deformation mechanisms. The Corinth rift in central Greece is one of the few rifts to have experienced a short extensional history without subsequent overprinting. We synthesise existing seismic reflection data throughout the active offshore Gulf of Corinth Basin to investigate fault activity history and the spatio-temporal evolution of the basin, producing for the first time basement depth and syn-rift sediment isopachs throughout the offshore rift. A major basin-wide unconformity surface with an age estimated from sea-level cycles at ca. 0.4Ma separates distinct seismic stratigraphic units. Assuming that sedimentation rates are on average consistent, the present rift formed at 1^2Ma, with no clear evidence for along-strike propagation of the rift axis. The rift has undergone major changes in relative fault activity and basin geometry during its short history. The basement depth is greatest in the central rift (maximum 3 km) and decreases to the east and west. In detail however, two separated depocentres 20^50 km long were created controlled by N- and S-dipping faults before 0.4Ma, while since ca. 0.4Ma a single depocentre (80 km long) has been controlled by several connected N-dipping faults, with maximum subsidence focused between the two older depocentres. Thus isolated but nearby faults can persist for timescales ca.1Ma and form major basins before becoming linked. There is a general evolution towards a dominance of N-dipping faults; however, in the western Gulf strain is distributed across several active N- and S-dipping faults throughout rift history, producing a more complex basin geometry.

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Published date: December 2009
Organisations: Ocean and Earth Science

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 69598
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/69598
ISSN: 0950-091X
PURE UUID: bd596918-f7dd-49dc-9776-326745769022
ORCID for T.J. Henstock: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-2132-2514

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Date deposited: 16 Nov 2009
Last modified: 19 Jun 2018 00:34

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