Geological Society of London
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Sicily’s fold–thrust belt and slab roll-back: the SI.RI.PRO. seismic crustal transect

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journal contribution
posted on 2016-06-21, 11:15 authored by Raimondo Catalano, Vera Valenti, Cinzia Albanese, Flavio Accaino, Attilio Sulli, Umberta Tinivella, Maurizio Gasparo Morticelli, Claudio Zanolla, Michela Giustiniani

Sicily is a thick orogenic wedge formed by (1) the foreland (African) and its Sicilian orogen and (2) the thick-skinned, Calabrian–Peloritani wedge. The crust under central Sicily, from the Tyrrhenian margin to the coastline of the Sicily Channel, has been investigated by the multidisciplinary (SI.RI.PRO.) research project. The project dealt with the nature and thickness of the crust and depth and geometry of the Moho, which is essential in formulating subduction models and improving the knowledge of African and Tyrrhenian–European lithospheres. The results resolve features such as (1) the main orogenic wedge, (2) the very steep, NW–SE-trending regional monocline suggesting inflection of the foreland crust, (3) the deep Caltanissetta synform imaged, for the first time, to about 25 km, and (4) the top of the crystalline basement and the inferred crust–mantle boundary. The SI.RI.PRO. transect confirmed that the NNW-dipping, autochthonous Iblean platform of SE Sicily and its basement extends all the way into central Sicily. Further NW, towards the NNW end of the transect, a large uplift involves the Iblean platform and its underlying basement. The associated gravity anomaly is interpreted as the southern wedge edge of the Tyrrhenian mantle that splits the subducting Iblean–Pelagian (African) continental slab from an overlying synformal stack of allochthonous thrust sheets.


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