Magnetostratigraphy and depositional history of the Miocene Wushan basin on the NE Tibetan plateau, China: Implications for middle Miocene tectonics of the West Qinling fault zone

Zhicai Wang, Peizhen Zhang, Carmala N. Garzione, Richard O. Lease, Guangliang Zhang, Dewen Zheng, Brian Hough, Daoyang Yuan, Chuanyou Li, Jianhui Liu, Qinglong Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Scopus citations

Abstract

Based on field mapping, section measurement and magnetostratigraphy, ∼1700. m of sedimentary rocks have accumulated in the Wushan basin between ∼16. Ma and ∼6. Ma. Basin geometry, sedimentation characteristics and the early syn-depositional deformation along the northern margin of the basin indicate that formation of the Wushan basin was related to tectonic deformation along the West Qinling fault zone during the middle Miocene. A series of basins of similar age to the Wushan basin were generated along and to the south of the West Qinling fault zone while basalts also erupted in this region at this time. We suggest that the middle Miocene (∼16. Ma) may represent a change in kinematics and deformation style in the region along and to the south of the West Qinling fault zone. At this time, there was a transition from NNE-SSW compressional deformation, that dominated the region since the late Paleogene, to the development of WNW-ESE and/or E-W trending strike-slip movement and associated transpressional and transtensional activity that continues today. The Miocene Wushan basin may have developed in association with transpression along the West Qinling fault zone. Whether this transition was related to the onset of strike-slip along the east Kunlun fault and related deformation transfer, lower crustal flow, or removal of mantle lithosphere, the middle Miocene provides direct evidence for a change in the kinematic style along the plateau margin.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)189-202
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Asian Earth Sciences
Volume44
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 30 2012
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Magnetostratigraphy
  • Middle Miocene
  • Tibetan plateau
  • West Qinling fault zone
  • Wushan basin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geology
  • Earth-Surface Processes

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