Revista de la Asociación Geológica Argentina
versión On-line ISSN 1851-8249
HERNANDEZ, Roberto y ECHAVARRIA, Leandro. Subandean fold and thrust belt of Northwest Argentina: stratigraphy, geometry, and chronology of deformation. Rev. Asoc. Geol. Argent. [online]. 2009, vol.65, n.1, pp. 068-080. ISSN 1851-8249.
The Subandean ranges of northwestern Argentina are an active thin-skinned fold and thrust belt that represents the easternmost deformation expression at the Central Andes. The stratigraphic column is made up by more than 10 km of sediments from the Silurian to the Present. The Silurian-Devonian sediments include more than 3,000 m of a shallow marine platform sediments arranged in three coarsening upward sequences. Carboniferous-Jurassic sedimentation (Tarija basin) exhibits a strong glacial influence at the base (Macharetí and Mandiyutí Groups), evolving to more arid and warm conditions to the top (Cuevo and Tacurú Groups). At last, took place the deposition of a thick pile of continental Neogene sediments in a foreland basin that records the Andean uplift in pre-growth and growth strata arrangements. The main detachment level within Silurian shales dips 2°- 3° W, and all the major east-verging faults detach from it. Important intermediate detachment levels in the Devonian shales generate lift-off structures and the decoupling of the lower and upper structural levels. The Subandean thrust belt has a minimum shortening of about 60 km (36%) at about 22°40' latitude. The deformation started at about 8.5-9 Ma with the uplift of the El Pescado Range and the formation of an important backthrust at the Cinco Picachos Range, and then moved to the east. An important stage dominated by out-of-sequence thrusts spans from about 4.5 Ma to Present. For both proposed shortening models, the Quaternary rates of shortening between 8 and 11 mm/a coincide well with GPS results from the area.
Palabras clave : Subandean system; Fold and thrust belt; Chronology of deformation; Andean.