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Recent and active deformation pattern off the easternmost Algerian margin, Western Mediterranean Sea: New evidence for contractional tectonic reactivation

Abstract : We describe for the first time a set of large active thrusts and folds near the foot of the easternmost Algerian margin, Western Mediterranean, from swath bathymetry and high-resolution seismic data acquired in 2005 during the Maradja2/Samra cruise. This active system resumes a previous passive margin and creates growth strata deposition on the limbs of large folds, resulting in the development of perched basins at the foot of the margin since less than ~ 1 Ma. They form a set of overlapping fault segments verging toward the Algerian basin, in a way similar to what has been observed off eastern Algiers on the rupture zone of the 2003 Mw 6.8 Boumerdes earthquake. The horizontal shortening rate across large folds is estimated to be of the order of 1 mm/yr. Although no historical earthquakes are reported here, these fault segments could have been responsible for large (M ~ 7.5) events in the past. This young tectonic system further supports the hypothesis of subduction inception of the Neogene oceanic lithosphere in the context of the Africa–Eurasia convergence.
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Abdelaziz Kherroubi, Jacques Déverchère, Abdelkarim Yelles, Bernard Mercier de Lépinay, Anne Domzig, et al.. Recent and active deformation pattern off the easternmost Algerian margin, Western Mediterranean Sea: New evidence for contractional tectonic reactivation. Marine Geology, Elsevier, 2009, 261 (1-4), pp.17-32. ⟨10.1016/j.margeo.2008.05.016⟩. ⟨insu-00401780⟩

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