Thermal and structural evolution of the East Carpathians in northern Romania : from Cretaceous orogeny to final exhumation during Miocene collision

Gröger, Heike R.. Thermal and structural evolution of the East Carpathians in northern Romania : from Cretaceous orogeny to final exhumation during Miocene collision. 2006, Doctoral Thesis, University of Basel, Faculty of Science.


Official URL: http://edoc.unibas.ch/diss/DissB_8291

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Combining thermochronological methods with structural field data, this study aims to reconstruct the Tertiary burial and exhumation history of the northeastern part of the Tisza‐ Dacia block during its invasion in the Carpathian embayment and final soft collision with the European margin. Zircon fission track data additionally provide information about the last metamorphic overprint during the Cretaceous. Within the basement units of the northern Central East Carpathians (Bucovinian nappe stack) and the Preluca massif (Biharia unit) zircon fission tracks are largely reset during the last (Cretaceous) orogeny. Temperatures during this Alpine metamorphic overprint increase from external to internal within the northern East Carpathians from sub‐greenschist facies conditions to at least greenschist facies conditions. Greenschist facies conditions are also observed in the Preluca massif. The close neighbourhood of Coniacian to Campanian zircon FT cooling ages with Cenomanian sediments suggests Late Cretaceous tectonic exhumation in the northern East Carpathians. The most likely explanation for this tectonic exhumation is a ‐ so far undocumented ‐ Late Cretaceous extension related to orogenic collapse (Gosau type basins). The Tertiary evolution is characterised by the invasion of the previously amalgamated Tisza‐Dacia and ALCAPA blocks into the Carpathian embayment and Miocene soft collision of both these blocks with the European margin. The juxtaposition of the ALCAPA and Tisza‐Dacia blocks, with Tisza‐Dacia in a lower plate position, is announced by the onset of Oligocene turbiditic sedimentation. The Burdigalian SE‐directed over‐thrusting of the Pienides (non‐ metamorphic flysch units) is interpreted to express the final stages of this juxtaposition. Burial heating caused full annealing of fission tracks in apatite (i.e. >120°C) in the Central East Carpathian basement in the NE of the study area, while in the basement of the Preluca massif in the SW of the study area temperatures related to Paleogene to Early Miocene burial did not exceed 80°C. The post‐Burdigalian (post‐16 Ma) soft collision of Tisza‐Dacia with the European margin occurred in two stages expressed by predominantly sinistral strike‐slip deformation during constant NE‐SW shortening. During and following soft collision, combined uplift and erosion caused exhumation of the buried rocks along the European margin. Uplift reaches up to 9 km in the Rodna horst The first post‐Burdigalian transpressional stage (16‐12 Ma) is related to perpendicular convergence of Tisza‐Dacia with the NW‐SE striking European margin. Minor exhumation during this stage resulted in Middle Miocene apatite fission track cooling ages (15‐13 Ma) in the west of the study area. The transtensional stage (12–10 Ma) led to the formation of the Bogdan‐Dragos‐Voda fault system. Sinistral transtension allowed for the docking and fitting of Tisza‐Dacia with the NW‐ SE striking European margin. Oblique E‐W convergence led to strain partitioning with thrusting in the external thrust belt and internal strike‐slip deformation. Differential lateral movements are distributed and deformation is accommodated by E‐W striking sinistral strike slip faults and SW‐NE striking normal faults, which led to fragmentation into SW‐tilted blocks. Fragmentation and differential offset along the bounding faults resulted in the formation of triangular‐shaped graben and corresponding horst structures. Enhanced exhumation during transtensional activity led to advective heat transport and resulted in Middle to Late Miocene apatite fission track cooling ages (13‐7) in the east of the study area.
Advisors:Fügenschuh, Bernhard
Committee Members:Wetzel, Andreas and Schmid, Stefan M.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Umweltwissenschaften
UniBasel Contributors:Wetzel, Andreas and Schmid, Stefan M.
Item Type:Thesis
Thesis Subtype:Doctoral Thesis
Thesis no:8291
Thesis status:Complete
Number of Pages:114
Identification Number:
edoc DOI:
Last Modified:22 Jan 2018 15:50
Deposited On:13 Feb 2009 16:28

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