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Salt Tectonics in the Sivas Basin (Turkey): Mini Basins Compared to Seismic Analogues

Abstract

The Sivas basin, in the central Anatolian plateau of Turkey, contains an exceptional open-air collection of salt tectonic structures. This elongated E-W basin developed during the Cenozoic above the Taurus-Pontides suture in an overall orogenic context. Following the deposition of the major gypsum formation during the tectonically quiet period, the mini basins recorded sedimentary sequences from mid Oligocene to early Miocene, composed of sebkhas, red silts and fluvial sandstones, marls and lacustrine to marine limestones. The stratigraphic pile also records several major phases of allochtonous evaporite sheet development, associated to important rotation of the mini basins. Concomitantly to the mini basin formation, compression resumed in early Miocene time and was responsible for mini basin capsizing and an increase of gypsum outpour, which led to the formation of evaporite sheets and a second generation of mini basin. Mini basins present several halokinetic successions (hooks and wedges) along evaporite walls, which are regionally observed in both continental and marines domains, and point out the major phases of basin development. Thinning and spectacular angular unconformities are associated with example of structural traps like welds, overturned turtle wings, evaporite glaciers feeding re-deposited evaporite. Various stage of minibasins evolution can be observed and provide exceptional geometric analogues, which are compared with seismic images from the classic petroleum province (such as the Gulf of Mexico, the Brazilian, Angolan and Congo Margins) and sandbox analogue models.