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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

Houston Geological Society Bulletin


Houston Geological Society Bulletin, Volume 31, No. 2, October 1988. Pages 10-11.

Abstract: Rift Offsets-Gulf of Suez, Egypt


Ron Nelson and T. L. Patton*

Structure and stratigraphic mapping in the northern half of the Gulf of Suez (GOS) documents two en echelon, rift-parallel (Clysmic trend) rift segments. The segments are right stepping and share a zone of overlap which extends southward from the southern border of the Wadi Araba structure on the western shore of the Gulf, to the north end of the Abu Durba block on the east side of the Gulf. The spatial relationship of the two segments defines the central GOS rift Previous HitoffsetNext Hit, and the structural depression linking the segments in the area of overlap forms a rift-Previous HitoffsetNext Hit zone.

Within the rift-Previous HitoffsetNext Hit zone, surface and subsurface data record a variety of structural trends, with two being dominant: the Clysmic trend and a north-northeast trend. Bimodal fault populations with similar orientations relative to the rift axis are found in better exposed, right-stepping rift offsets (e.g., Rhinegraben, Rio Grande rift) and document the departure from the dominantly plane strain of rift segments oriented perpendicular to the extension direction to three-dimensional strain in rift segments oriented obliquely to the extension direction. The left-lateral component of slip documented on some of the oblique-trending faults in the central GOS Previous HitoffsetNext Hit (e.g., Abu Durba-Araba fault) is kinematically consistent with motion across a right-stepping rift Previous HitoffsetNext Hit. Formation of the structural Previous HitoffsetNext Hit zone may have been contemporaneous with the normal segments it joins or a relatively late feature due to linking of adjacent propagating segments.

Recognition of Previous HitoffsetNext Hit zones and their associated fault fabrics is essential for effective exploration of riff basins. For example, the alignment of producing fields and elongation directions of individual fields in the central GOS Previous HitoffsetTop are anomalous relative to those of other producing trends in the Gulf.

End_Pages 10 and 11---------------


* Gulf of Suez Petroleum Company, Cairo, Egypt


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