The Neogene development of the eastern Mediterranean Sea as manifested in and near the Rhodes Basin : an insight into arc-arc junctions

Winsor, Jonathan Dion (2004) The Neogene development of the eastern Mediterranean Sea as manifested in and near the Rhodes Basin : an insight into arc-arc junctions. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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    Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
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Abstract

New multi-channel seismic data were acquired by Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN) over the Rhodes Basin, eastern Mediterranean Sea, during the summer of 2001. Imaging challenges imposed by the deep water depth, short receiver array and channel and frequency specific noise were overcome by careful data processing. The final processed data generally yields good image quality for the first 1.5 seconds below the seabed with significant improvements in areas where the geology is simple and the Pliocene-Quaternary basin fill is thick. -- The Rhodes Basin is a deep (~4400 m) bathymetric trough located near the junction between the Hellenic and Cyprus Arcs. On the basis of this study, two major seismic-stratigraphic units are identified and described in detail: a pre-late Miocene unit (Eocene-Miocene) and a Pliocene-Quaternary unit separated by a laterally extensive unconformity, interpreted in this work as the M reflector. Hence, unlike most of the eastern Mediterranean, the Rhodes Basin has not preserved its Messinian stratigraphy (e.g., Messinian evaporites). This suggests that, since the late Miocene, it developed somewhat independently from the remainder of the eastern Mediterranean since the late Miocene. -- Analysis of structural and stratigraphic architectures reveals that the Rhodes Basin can be divided into three structural domains: a) Domain 1- the heavily sheared plateau, b) Domain 2- the folded and faulted deep Rhodes Basin and c) Domain 3- the Turkish continental slope. Structural and stratigraphic relationships within and between these structural Domains suggest that the Rhodes Basin has been subjected to two major episodes of deformation during the Neogene. The first deformation episode, P₁, is characterized by southeast-verging Miocene thrusting and uplift consistent with the emplacement of the Lycian Nappes to the northeast and fold/thrust complexes on the Island of Rhodes to the west. Following an early Pliocene period of regional subsidence associated with the opening of the Aegean Graben System, a middle Pliocene-Quaternary phase of northeast-southwest sinistral transpression (P₂) developed in response to an actively curving Hellenic Arc and the increasing obliquity of its eastern limb (Pliny-Strabo trench system) to the African Plate convergence vector. The middle Pliocene introduction of this strike slip deformation into the proto-Rhodes Basin re-activated the P₁ structural fabric as transpressional faults and facilitated rapid subsidence (~555-740 m/Ma) along its margins in a strike-slip pull-apart regime. The identification of a structural trend reminiscent of the Cyprus Arc and Hoyran-Beysehir Nappes along the eastern margin of the Rhodes Basin suggest that the Rhodes Basin marks the apex of the structurally complex Hellenic Arc/Cyprus Arc junction.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/6687
Item ID: 6687
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 311-318.
Department(s): Science, Faculty of > Earth Sciences
Date: 2004
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Mediterrenean Sea--Rhodes Basin
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Geology, Stratigraphic--Neogene; Paleoseismology--Mediterranean Sea--Neogene; Pliocene-Pleistocene boundary; Mediterranean Sea--Rhodes Basin

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