Oligocene to Middle Miocene basin development in the Velez Rubio Corridor - Espuna (Internal-External Zone Boundary; Eastern Betic Cordilleras, SE Spain).

T. Geel, T.B. Roep

    Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


    The Velez Rubio Corridor and the area northwest of the Sierra Espuna are located on the Internal-External Zone Boundary. The External Zone is represented by the Southern Subbetic, the most basinward part of the former passive margin of Iberia, the Internal Zone by its unmetamorphosed highest unit, the Malaguide Complex, tectonically underlain by the metamorphosed Alpujarride Complex. During the Oligocene and Aquitanian, the Southern Subbetic was the locus of slope deposition with northeastern provenance of detritus. In the Malaguides of the Espuna, the detritus of Lower Oligocene transgressive conglomerates and Middle Oligocene fan deltas indicates Sardinian proximity. The Upper Oligocene to lower Aquitanian Ciudad Granada and Pliego formations of the Malaguide Complex, carrying exclusively Malaguide detritus, were deposited in grabens within the Malaguide realm during an extensional rifting phase. The Malaguides, still far removed from the Subbetic, underwent major thrusting during the Aquitanian. Of the sedimentary units found between the Internal and External Zones, the oldest unit (the allochthonous Aquitanian Solana formation) was deposited in submarine fans outside the Subbetic or Malaguide realms proper, but in close connection with the latter. The Internal Zone collided with the External Zone in the early Burdigalian with concomitant disruption of the Southern Subbetic slope. On the suture, a deep basin was formed and filled in by the Burdigalian Espejos formation carrying detritus from the Subbetic and from the Malaguide and Alpujarride Complexes. In the late Burdigalian, the Subbetic was thrust southward over the Espejos formation, thus double-sealing the collisional contact. During the latest Burdigalian to Langhian, new basins were formed along the Internal-External Zone Boundary and within the Southern Subbetic. The onset of strike-slip faulting caused shoaling and uplift of these basins. Onset of a new pattern of strike-slip faulting induced the formation of a new suite of basins during the Tortonian, e.g. the Lorca Basin.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)39-61
    JournalNetherlands Journal of Geosciences = Geologie en Mijnbouw
    Publication statusPublished - 1999


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