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AAPG Bulletin

Abstract

AAPG Bulletin, V. 96, No. 4 (April 2012), p. 709728.

Copyright copy2012. The American Association of Petroleum Geologists. All rights reserved.

DOI:10.1306/09141111035

The lateral strike-slip domain in gravitational detachment delta systems: A case study of the northwestern margin of the Niger Delta

Amelie M. Leduc,1 Richard J. Davies,2 Alexander L. Densmore,3 Jonathan Imber4

1Center for Research in Earth Energy Systems, Department of Earth Sciences, Science Laboratories, Durham University, United Kingdom; [email protected]
2Center for Research in Earth Energy Systems, Department of Earth Sciences, Science Laboratories, Durham University, United Kingdom; [email protected]
3Institute of Hazard, Risk, and Resilience, and Department of Geography, Science Laboratories, Durham University, United Kingdom; [email protected]
4Center for Research in Earth Energy Systems, Department of Earth Sciences, Science Laboratories, Durham University, United Kingdom; [email protected]

ABSTRACT

We use two- and three-dimensional seismic data to describe the structural geology of the lateral margin of a deep-water delta lobe within the Niger Delta that has undergone basinward, gravitationally driven translation. We term this region the “lateral strike-slip domain.” Deformation is characterized by a strike-slip fault system that can be followed for a distance of approximately 75 km (sim47 mi) from the shelf to the slope and toe of slope. On the northwestern side of the fault system, a fold and thrust belt that propagated north to northwest has developed within a large-scale restraining area of 460 km2 (180 mi2). On the southeastern side of the strike-slip fault system, widespread extension has occurred, characterized by several graben and kilometer-scale rollover structures. Lateral margins of gravitational collapses give key information on how they deformed. We estimate a minimum horizontal displacement on the main strike-slip fault of approximately 7 km (sim4 mi). Structural and kinematic evidence, such as present-day propagating strike-slip faults, for possible future lateral expansions of the lateral strike-slip domain, is described. We expect to observe similar sets of deformation styles at the margins of other preserved gravitational collapse sliding over a detachment whose efficiency in causing downdip slip may vary laterally.

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