--> --> Miocene to Recent Tectonic and Kinematic Evolution of the Florence Rise and It's Linkage with the Anaximander Mountains at the Junction of the Cyprus and Hellenic Arcs, Eastern Mediterranean

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Miocene to Recent Tectonic and Kinematic Evolution of the Florence Rise and It's Linkage with the Anaximander Mountains at the Junction of the Cyprus and Hellenic Arcs, Eastern Mediterranean

Abstract

The Florence Rise and Anaximander Mountains are marine bathymetric highs situated close to the junction of the Cyprus and Hellenic Arcs in the easternmost Mediterranean. This region provides an excellent opportunity to study incipient continent to continent collision, as well as the interaction of the promontories and irregularities on both the Aegean-Anatolian Microplate and African Plate margins. The main scientific objectives of this study are: (1) to delineate the regional trends of faults, morphotectonic elements (e.g. basins and ridges), halokinetic structures, and mud diapirs; (2) to determine the character of faults; (3) to create a model that explains the Miocene-Recent structural and sedimentary evolution of the Florence Rise and its linkage with the Anaximander Mountains within the context of plate tectonics and halokinetic processes; and (4) to clarify the nature and evolution of the intersection of the Cyprus and Hellenic Arcs. This study involves processing and interpretation of ∼3000 km of high-resolution multi-channel seismic reflection profiles acquired at the junction between the Hellenic and Cyprus Arcs. These data are used to carry out detailed mapping of structures, and delineate the timing of the development of structures observed along the western Cyprus Arc. They are also integrated with bathymetric data previously collected by IFREMER and data from DSDP Sites 375 and 376. Current interpretation of the prominent structural elements in the seismic profiles revealed the following salient conclusions: (A) regional compression during the Middle to Late Miocene resulted in the development of several major NW-SE trending and SW-verging thrust culminations; (B) the final desiccation of the Mediterranean Sea at the end of the Miocene and the sub-aerial exposure of the sea-floor at that time resulted in the development of a major erosional surface, represented by a well-defined angular unconformity in seismic reflection profiles; (C) a fundamental change in kinematic regime occurred during the transition from the Miocene to Pliocene-Quaternary, with a series of positive flower structures over the pre-existing SW-verging thrust culminations. The Pliocene-Quaternary structures are interpreted as the onset of a transpressional regime along the Florence Rise. Preliminary results also suggest that the strain is strongly partitioned in the Miocene to Pliocene-Quaternary, which created number of distinct morpho-tectonic domains in the area.