The Hesperides basin: a continental-scale upper Palaeozoic to Triassic basin in southern Gondwana
Francisco Pangaro, Vıctor A. Ramos and Pablo J. Pazos
Journal name: Basin Research
Issue: Vol 28, No 5, October 2016 pp. 685 - 711
Info: Article, PDF ( 15.71Mb )
The late Palaeozoic to Triassic sedimentary record of the central Argentinean offshore was analysed through the integration of data from exploratory wells and 2D seismic lines. Our interpretations were combined with existing ones in Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil and South Africa for their analysis in the late Palaeozoic south-western Gondwana context. The mapped upper Palaeozoic-Lower Triassic stratigraphic record offshore Argentina bears a thickness of +7000 m south of the Colorado basin and encompasses the time span between Pennsylvanian and Lower Triassic; this means that it triples that of the Sierras de la Ventana of Argentina and involves a far larger time span. On the basis of seismic stratigraphic interpretations in localities near the coast, we interpret that a strong denudation process removed a great portion of the stratigraphic record in the Sierras de la Ventana, the surrounding plains and the Tandilia system of Buenos Aires. The seismic stratigraphic configuration of the late Palaeozoic succession shows continuous and parallel reflections in a wide sediment wedge extending for more than 1000 km between the Gondwanides orogen core to the south and offshore Uruguay to the north. Two salient aspects of this sedimentary wedge are that no flexural depocentre was observed at the Ventania fold belt front, and that deformation in the orogenic front is post-Lower Triassic. The original westwards extent of the basin is interpreted to have encompassed the whole of Buenos Aires province in continuity with the Chacoparana basin; to the east continuity and a straightforward correlation with the Karoo basin was interpreted. The name of Hesperides Basin (1) is proposed herein to refer to a Pennsylvanian to Lower Triassic basin mainly controlled by dynamic subsidence that encompasses and exceeds the area of the Sauce Grande and Colorado basins and the Claromeco fore-deep in Argentina. The Hesperides basin is interpreted to have been in lateral continuity with the Kalahari, Karoo and Chacoparana basins of Africa and South America forming a +3 000 000 sq. km depocentre.