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Features and effects of basement faults on deposition in the Tarim Basin

Lin, Bo, Zhang, Xu, Xu, Xuechun, Yuan, Jinyang, Neng, Yuan, Zhu, Jianwei
Earth-science reviews 2015 v.145 pp. 43-55
basins, geological eons, geophysics, tectonics, China
The Tarim Basin, as the largest inland, oil-producing basin in China, is a large-scale composite basin, which formed from a Palaeozoic craton basin that was overprinted by a Mesozoic–Cenozoic foreland basin. Based on comprehensive analyses of gravitational data, aeromagnetic data and seismic data from the basin, 38 basement faults can be identified, demonstrating that the Tarim Basin has undergone several tectonic cycles. According to their distributional locations in the basin, basement faults can be divided into marginal and internal basin basement faults. Moreover, on the basis of the distribution characteristics in the plane and controlling effects on the basin, the basement faults can be divided into 20 primary basement faults and 18 secondary basement faults. Combined with the interpretations of seismic profiles, we can determine the relationship between the basement faults and sedimentary cover faults. Considering the section balance of seismic profiles, we find that some basement faults are syn-depositional with continuous long-term activity during the basin's evolution and control the deposition in the basin. By counting fault growth indexes of the main sections, it is obvious that different parts of the same fault have different growth indexes but show similar activity within the same geological period. The faults' stress states remain consistent with their geological history, although the growth indexes of different faults are inconsistent.