2014 GSA Annual Meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia (19–22 October 2014)

Paper No. 233-5
Presentation Time: 10:00 AM


GUEST, Bernard1, JAVADI, Hamid2 and ASHTIANI, Marzieh Esterabi2, (1)Dept. of Geoscience, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB T2N 1N4, Canada, (2)Geological Survey of iran, Tarbiat Modares University, Meraj Blvd., Azadi Sq., P. O. Box: 13185, Tehran, 13185-1494, Iran, bguest@ucalgary.ca

The left-lateral Doruneh Fault System bounds the north margin of the Central Iranian microplate, and has played an important role in the structural evolution of the Turkish-Iranian plateau and Afghanistan. The western termination of the Doruneh Fault System is a sinistral synthetic branch fault array that shows clear kinematic evidence of having undergone recent slip sense inversion from a dextral array to a sinistral array in the latest Neogene or earliest Quaternary. Similarly, kinematic evidence from the Anarak Metamorphic complex at the southwestern most branch of the DFS terminal fault array suggests that this core complex formed at a transpressive left stepping termination and that it was inverted in the latest Neogene to a transtensional fault termination. The recognition that the DFS and possibly other faults in NE Iran were inverted from dextral to sinistral strike slip in the latest Neogene, and the likely connection between the DFS and the Herat Fault of Afghanistan suggests that the evolutions of Afghanistan and the Indo-Asian collisional system are linked to the tectonic evolution of the Turkish-Iranian Plateau. We present a new model that explains the Late Neogene tectonic realignment of the Arabia-Eurasia collision zone in terms of the interaction between the Afghan blocks that were extruding west from the Indo-Asian collision and the Turkish Iranian collision zone that was evolving to the east as Arabia sutured diachronously with Eurasia. The collision of the Afghan blocks with East Iran effectively locked the respective eastern and western free boundaries for the Arabia-Eurasia, and Indo-Asian collisional belts and forced them to diverge away from one another.