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Thrust-related, diapiric, and extensional doming in a frontal orogenic wedge: example of the Montagne Noire, Southern French Hercynian Belt

Abstract : The Montagne Noire, which is situated at the toe of the orogenic wedge of the French Massif Central South European Variscides, appears to be a well-suited area for studying the origin and evolution of middle to upper crustal domes adjacent to foreland basins. The data reported in the present paper show that the Montagne Noire dome is a particular type of basement-involved frontal culmination in an orogenic wedge and foreland basin system. This frontal culmination is characterized by a syn-contractional HT decompression recorded by clockwise PTt paths and widespread strata overturning in thrust and fold structures, which controlled the sedimentation in the adjacent foreland basin. These unusual characteristics are interpreted to be a result of the succession of thrusting, diapirism and extensional collapse. Antiformal stacking of syn-metamorphic thrust sheets controlled the first stages of the foreland basin development. Diapirism was essentially responsible for the HT decompression and widespread strata overturning. Extensional doming was a result of late- to post-metamorphic collapse acting on the pre-existing high-amplitude dome. Diapirism and associated isothermal decompression metamorphism, which constitute the essential difference between the Montagne Noire and 'ordinary' frontal ridges in orogenic wedges, were probably enhanced by a local partial melting of the upper to middle crust. It is suggested that the occurrence of these phenomena in front of an orogenic wedge was related to local over-thickening due to the superposition of an upper crustal antiformal stack on top of a lower crustal ramp anticline.
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Submitted on : Friday, April 15, 2022 - 1:45:53 PM
Last modification on : Saturday, June 25, 2022 - 8:53:34 AM

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Jean-Claude Soula, Pierre Debat, Stéphane Brusset, Gilbert Bessière, Frédéric Christophoul, et al.. Thrust-related, diapiric, and extensional doming in a frontal orogenic wedge: example of the Montagne Noire, Southern French Hercynian Belt. Journal of Structural Geology, 2001, 23, pp.1677-1699. ⟨10.1016/S0191-8141(01)00021-9⟩. ⟨insu-03642939⟩

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