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New Insights Into Southern Atlantic Margin Evolution and Petroleum Prospectivity; Integrating Reconstructions and Restorations

Abstract

Over the last few years the availability of margin scale transects derived from new geophysical data and techniques coupled with the plate reconstructions has unquestionably led to a paradigm shift in our understanding of the architecture of passive continental margins. In particular, the integration of the resulting margin scale transects and the use of plate reconstructions has been used to generate conjugate margin sections and the transition from continental to oceanic lithosphere. These sections, however, still commonly only consider architecture of the margin by placing conjugate sections together in their pre-break up position without considering realistic architecture of the margin at the time of deposition. In this study we use plate reconstructions to consider location of sections at a variety of time steps. We then apply stratigraphic and structural techniques to determine the architecture of the depositional sequence to predict the architecture of the margin at the time of deposition, including water depth and restore the sections to that. We do this for a number of key time intervals, including end rifting, SDR emplacement, Barremian sag phase and various Cretaceous sequences. In this way we provide a better understanding of how the margin evolved and better constraints on paleo geography part of the system for the first time.