Structure Deformation of the Minjiang and Huya Fault, the Eastern Margin of the Tibetan Plateau Revealed by Deep Seismic Reflection Profiles

Tuesday, 16 December 2014
Rui Gao, Haiyan Wang, Wenhui Li and Hongqiang Li, CAGS Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences, Beijing, China
The Minshan region, located along the eastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau north of the Sichuan Basin, provides an important natural laboratory in which to study the patterns of deformation and their relationship to mountain building at the margin of the plateau. The Minshan range is bounded by the Minjiang fault to the west and Huya fault to the east. Evidence from the Neotectonics sediments suggests that deformation along the western Min Shan may reflect the surface response to thickening of a weak lower crust at the margin of the Tibetan Plateau (Kirby et al., 2000). In 2014, two deep seismic profiles was carried out across the Minjiang fault (55 km long) and Huya fault (45 km long) respectively, supported by China geological survey project (No.1212011220260) and Crust Probe Project of China (SinoProbe-02-01).

The recording of seismic waves from 4 big shots (500kg), 100 middle shots (120 kg) and 400 small shots (36 kg) were employed. The geophones spacing is 50 m. The preliminary stack sections provide us a detailed deformation mechanism of the Minshan region for the first time. The result shows that: (1) The Huya fault section shows different reflection characteristics on the west and east flank. (2) The Moho reflection beneath the Huya fault, which appeared at 12-13 s two-way time, tilts from the east to the west. (3) The Minjiang fault shows as a series of thrust nappe in the upper crust. (4) A strong reflector appears in the middle crust of the Minjiang section at 8-9 s two-way times, and it dips down to the lower crust from west to east.