Beauchamp, W., Barazangi, M., Demnati, A., and El Alji,
Intracontinental rifting and inversion: Missour Basin and Atlas Mountains,
AAPG Bulletin, 80, 1459-1482, 1996.
The intracontinental High and Middle Atlas mountain
belts in Morocco intersect to form the southern and western margins of the Missour
Basin, an intermontane basin formed as a result of the uplift and inversion of
the Mesozoic Atlas paleorifts. These rifts were areas where the crust was greatly
attenuated and more subject to deformation in response to nearby plate boundary
tectonics. Data from observations based on seismic reflection profiles and wells
over the Missour basin for hydrocarbon exploration and field mapping were used
to understand the basin evolution, structural styles, and inversion timing of
the nearby Atlas Mountains. Hercynian and Mesozoic normal faults were reactivated
into high-angle reverse and thrust faults in the Mesozoic during the Jurassic,
early Cretaceous (early Alpine phase), and the Paleogene (late Alpine phase).
The reactivation of synrift normal faults of the paleo-Atlas rifts inverted previous
half grabens into anticlinal structures, with the axis of the half graben centered
below the axis of the inverted anticline. The resulting inverted fold geometries
are controlled by the geometries of the extensional planar or listric faults.
This paper was published in the AAPG Bulletin by AAPG, and AAPG retains the
Link to AAPG
Key Figures and Captions
Figure 12. Map showing digital topography of the Missour basin
and the adjacent High and Middle Atlas mountains; seismic reflection profiles,
well data, and field locations are shown. A total of 3400 km of seismic lines
were used to study the tectonic evolution of the Missour basin and Atlas Mountains.
The seismic lines in white are those used in this paper; both black and white
lines were used in the study.