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New tectono-sedimentary evidences for Aptian to Santonian extension of the Cretaceous rifting in the Northern Chotts range (Southern Tunisia)

Abstract : Based on new structural, sedimentary, stratigraphic and seismic reflection data from Cretaceous sequences of the Zemlet el Beidha anticline of the northern Chotts range (South Tunisia), this study yields fresh insights into the geodynamic evolution of the South Tethyan margin. The rifting of the margin started in the Triassic–Jurassic and continued during the Aptian–Albian. In this last period N to NE trending extension was associated with WNW and NW trending normal faults, bounding the developing horsts and grabens structures. This tectonic framework is highlighted by strong thickness and facies changes in the Aptian–Albian series associated with slumps and syntectonic conglomerates. During the Coniacian to Santonian times, the study area was characterized by continued subsidence. Consequently, the Coniacian–Santonian series are represented by sedimentary infilling consisting of post-rift marl-rich sequences followed by limestone and marl sequences. Folds geometry and associated faults system and tectonics analysis, confirm the role of the Aptian–Albian rifting inheritance faulting in the structuring and the development of the folds and thrusts belts of the southern Tunisian Atlas during the Cenozoic inversion, in particular in the development of the ENE striking structures such as the Zemlet el Beidha anticline.
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Mohamed Gharbi, Amara Masrouhi, Nicolas Espurt, Olivier Bellier, El Amjed Amari, et al.. New tectono-sedimentary evidences for Aptian to Santonian extension of the Cretaceous rifting in the Northern Chotts range (Southern Tunisia). Journal of African Earth Sciences, Elsevier, 2013, 79, pp.58-73. ⟨hal-01837215⟩

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