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The Impact of Thrust and Backthrust Faults in the Albanian Thrust-Belt–Platform System and Opportunities

T. K. Velaj1 and C. B. Xhufi2
1Warrington, PA
2Calgary, Alberta, Canada

The Albanian Thrustbelt (Supersalt complex) consist of some tectonic zones (Ionian.Kruja, Krasta zones etc.), which are westward overthrusted (500-100 km) above the autochthonous (subsalt complex). This overthrusting process is helped by the presence of the Upper Triassic sheets, which constitutes major detachment level of the alloctons.

The subsalt complex is characterized by a development of the tectonic features (thrust, overthrust, strike-slip etc.), which are developed during the collision and postcollision stage, causing:
1. The overthrusting of the tectonic zones, masking the autochthonous structures with large dimensions and high exploration perspective.
2. Three structural anticlinal belts (Berati, Kurveleshi, and Cika) are formed in the Ionian zone. They have overthrusting of 20–30 km westward masking several perspective folded structures. These above structures belong to the duplex and triplex style.
3. The overthrusting of their own anticlinal units of thrustbelts (5– 10 km), which happens more in the Kurveleshi belt and less in Kruja zone. As a result of these overthrusts is formed imbrications and duplex style bringing to the masking of subthrust complex.

The subsalt complex (Apulia platform and South Adriatic basin) has the form of a regional monoclinal, folded in its eastern part (under the Thrustbelt) and unfolded in its western one.

Backthrust phenomenon is secondary and has taken place in both supersalt and subsalt complexes in postcollision stage. Generally they are eastward thrust (5–10 km) faults. They have local and regional character and mask the geological structures as well.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90900©2001 AAPG Eastern Section Meeting, Kalamazoo, Michigan