Long-wavelength late-Miocene thrusting in the north Alpine foreland: implications for late orogenic processes

Mock, Samuel; von Hagke, Christoph; Schlunegger, Fritz; Dunkl, István; Herwegh, Marco (2020). Long-wavelength late-Miocene thrusting in the north Alpine foreland: implications for late orogenic processes. Solid Earth, 11(5), pp. 1823-1847. Copernicus Publications 10.5194/se-11-1823-2020

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In this paper, we present new exhumation ages for the imbricated proximal molasse, i.e. Subalpine Molasse, of the northern Central Alps. Based on apatite (U−Th−Sm)/He thermochronometry, we constrain thrust-driven exhumation in the Subalpine Molasse between 12 and 4 Ma. This occurs synchronously to the main deformation in the adjacent Jura fold-and-thrust belt farther north and to the late stage of thrust-related exhumation of the basement massifs (i.e. external crystalline massifs) in the hinterland. Our results agree with other findings along the north Alpine foreland. While site-specific variations in the mechanical stratigraphy of the molasse deposits influence the pattern of thrusting at the local scale, we observe that late-Miocene thrusting is a long-wavelength feature occurring along the north Alpine foreland roughly between Lake Geneva and Salzburg. The extent of this thrusting signal as well as the timing suggests that late-Miocene thrusting in the north Alpine foreland coincides with the geometries and dynamics of the attached Central Alpine slab at depth. Interestingly, this implies that the slab geometry at depth does not coincide with the boundary between the Eastern and Central Alps as observed in the surface geology. Using this observation, we propose that thrusting in the Subalpine Molasse and consequently also the late stage of thrust-related exhumation of the external crystalline massifs, as well as the main deformation in the Jura fold-and-thrust belt are at least partly linked to changes in slab dynamics.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geological Sciences

UniBE Contributor:

Mock, Samuel; Schlunegger, Fritz and Herwegh, Marco

Subjects:

500 Science > 550 Earth sciences & geology

ISSN:

1869-9510

Publisher:

Copernicus Publications

Language:

English

Submitter:

Marco Herwegh

Date Deposited:

17 Nov 2020 10:41

Last Modified:

17 Nov 2020 10:41

Publisher DOI:

10.5194/se-11-1823-2020

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.147744

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/147744

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