The Oligo-/Miocene Qom formation (Iran): Evidence for an early Burdigalian restriction of the Tethyan Seaway and closure of its Iranian gateways

Markus Reuter, W. E. Piller, M. Harzhauser, O. Mandic, B. Berning, F. Rögl, A. Kroh, M. P. Aubry, U. Wielandt-Schuster, A. Hamedani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

121 Scopus citations

Abstract

In the central Iranian Esfahan-Sirjan and Qom basins sedimentation of the Oligo-/Miocene Qom Formation took place on extensive mixed carbonate-siliciclastic ramps. During this time, both basins were positioned at the Eurasian margin of the Tethyan Seaway, which connected the western and eastern regions of the Tethys Ocean at least until the late Burdigalian. During the so-called Terminal Tethyan Event the Tethyan Seaway was then closed due to the collision of the African/ Arabian and Iranian/Eurasian plates. Facies analysis of the sedimentary record of both basins indicates paleoenvironments ranging from terrestrial to open marine settings, including mangrove, restricted inner shelf lagoon, seagrass meadow, reefal, and deeper offshore environments. Recognition of eight depositional sequences and elaboration of an integrated biostratigraphic framework (calcareous nannoplankton, planktic and larger benthic foraminifers, gastropods, and pectinids) allow us to construct a basin-spanning stratigraphy. The assignment of the recognized sea-level lowstands to the Ru 3 to Bur 3 lowstands of the global sea-level curve enables a comparison with time-equivalent sections from the Zagros Basin, which was part of the African/Arabian Plate on the opposing southern margin of the Tethyan Seaway. The so calibrated sections display restrictions of the Tethyan Seaway and interruption of the south Iranian gateways between the Qom Basin and the Proto-Indopacific in relation to ongoing plate collision during the early Burdigalian.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)627-650
Number of pages24
JournalInternational Journal of Earth Sciences
Volume98
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

Keywords

  • Iran
  • Qom Formation
  • Stratigraphy
  • Terminal Tethyan Event
  • Tethyan Seaway

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