Miocene tectonic history of the Central Tauride intramontane basins, and the paleogeographic evolution of the Central Anatolian Plateau

Ayten Koç*, Nuretdin Kaymakçı, Douwe J.J. Van Hinsbergen, Klaudia F. Kuiper

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Marine Lower-Upper Miocene deposits uplifted to > 2 km elevation in the Tauride mountains of southern Turkey are taken as evidence for the rise of a nascent plateau. The dynamic causes of this uplift are debated, but generally thought to be a regional dynamic topographic effect of slab motions or slab break-off. Immediately adjacent to the high Tauride mountains lie the Central Tauride Intramontane Basins, which consist of Miocene and younger fluvio-lacustrine basins, at much lower elevations than the highly uplifted marine Miocene rocks. These basins include the previously analyzed Altınapa and Yalvaç basins, as well as the until now undescribed Ilgın Basin. In this paper, we aim to constrain the paleogeography of the Central Tauride Intramontane Basins and determine the role of the tectonics driving the formation of the high Miocene topography in southern Turkey. Therefore, we provide new data on the stratigraphy, sedimentology and structure of the continental Ilgın Basin. We provide an 40Ar/39Ar age of 11.61 ± 0.05 Ma for pumice deposits in the stratigraphy. We provide paleostress inversion analysis based on growth faults showing that the basin formed during multi-directional extension, with NE-SW to E-W dominating over subordinate N–S extension. We conclude that major, still-active normal faults like the Akşehir Fault also controlled Miocene Ilgın basin formation, with proximal facies close to the basin margins grading upwards and basinwards into lacustrine deposits representing the local depocenter. The Ilgın Basin was a local depocenter, but it may have connected with the adjacent Altınapa Basin during high lake levels in late Serravallian time. The Ilgın Basin and the other continental basins provide key constraints on the paleogeography and tectonic history of the region. These continental basins were likely close to the paleo-coastline during the Late Miocene after which there must have been major differential uplift of the Taurides. We suggest that the extension we documented in the Central Tauride intramontane basins are in part responsible for the major topography that characterizes the Central Taurides today. The causes of extension remain engmatic, but we suggest that the tomographically imaged Antalya Slab may have caused the contemporaneous formation of NE-SW trending syn-contractional basins in the west and NW-SE trending Central Tauride intramontane basins in the east by slab retreat. Our study highlights that the Neogene deformation history, and perhabs even active tectonics, may be strongly affected by complex slab geometry in SW Turkey, and that crustal deformation plays an important role in generating the Miocene Tauride topography. The role of this crustal deformation needs to be taken into account in attempts to explain the ride of the Taurides and the evolution of the Anatolian Plateau.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)83-102
Number of pages20
JournalGlobal and Planetary Change
Volume158
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2017

Keywords

  • Anatolia
  • Central Taurides
  • Ilgın Basin
  • Paleogeograph
  • Paleostress inversion

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