Syn-kinematic strata influence the structural evolution of emergent fold-thrust belts

Robert W.H. Butler* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)
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Whether thrusts are ramp-dominated and form imbricate fans, or run out onto the synorogenic surface, forming “thrust-allochthons”, is governed by the activity of secondary “upper” detachments along the syn-orogenic surface, activations of which are inhibited by syn-kinematic sedimentation at the thrust front. In the northern Apennines, where thrust systems are ramp-dominated and form an emergent imbricate fan, syn-kinematic sedimentation was abundant and accumulated ahead and above each thrust. In the southern Apennines, the far-travelled Lagronegro allochthon achieved its high displacements (>65 km) while the foredeep basin received little sediment. The imbricate fan at the front of the main Himalayan arc developed within a foredeep that experienced high rates of syn-kinematic sedimentation. In contrast, further west, the Salt Range Thrust emerged into a distal, weakly developed foredeep with significantly reduced rates of sediment accumulation. Displacements were strongly localized onto this thrust (c 25 km displacement) which activated an upper detachment along the synorogenic surface. It is an arrested thrust-allochthon. Lateral variations into the adjacent, ramp-dominated but still salt-detached, Jhelum fold-belt is marked by increases in synkinematic sedimentation. As sedimentation styles can vary in space and time, individual thrusts and thrust systems can evolve from being allochthon-prone to imbricate-dominated.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)57-78
Number of pages22
JournalGeological Society Special Publications
Early online date15 Aug 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2019

Bibliographical note

Field research in the Salt Range was originally supported by historical (1980s) research grants from the UK’s Natural Environment Research Council and the Royal Society. Recent research on thrust systems is funded through the Fold-Thrust
Research Group, supported by InterOil, OilSearch and Santos.

From: HAMMERSTEIN, J. A., DI CUIA, R., COTTAM, M. A., ZAMORA, G. & BUTLER, R. W. H. (eds) Fold and Thrust Belts:
Structural Style, Evolution and Exploration. Geological Society, London, Special Publications, 490


  • imbricate stacks
  • NW Himalayas
  • Salt Range
  • Apennines
  • thrust-allochthons


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