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Wang X.,Key Laborotary of Submarine Geosciences and Exploration Techniques | Wang X.,Ocean University of China | Yu S.,Key Laborotary of Submarine Geosciences and Exploration Techniques | Yu S.,Ocean University of China | And 9 more authors.
Geotectonica et Metallogenia | Year: 2014

The northern continental margin of the South China Sea hosts numerous oil- and gas-bearing basins, the northern South China Sea Continental Slope, in particular, is characterized by enrichment of gas hydrate. Detailed investigations into the propagation of NE-trending faults in South China to the northern continental margin of the South China Sea and the clarification of the overall structural pattern have a very important significance for understanding the earthquakes, resource exploration, tectonic evolution and dynamics in the northern South China Sea. Based on the interpretation of gravity and magnetic anomalies, two-dimensional seismic profiles as well as earthquake activity and tectonomorphological analysis, we find that the structural characteristics of the major NE-trending faults in the South China Sea and the South China Block are similar, the four major faults, namely the Binhai Fault, the Changle-Nan'ao Fault, the Zhenghe-Dabu Fault and the Shaowu-Heyuan-Yangjiang Fault developed in the South China Block and extended into the northern South China Sea. The four main faults that extend to the northern South China Sea controlled the development of the basins, i.e., the Binhai Fault is the eastern boundary of the Zhu'er Depression; the Changle-Nan'ao Fault across the Zhujiangkou Basin; the Zhenghe-Dabu Fault is located at the western boundary of the Zhuyi and Zhu'er depressions and the eastern boundary of the Beijiao Depression, the Shaowu-Heyuan-Yangjiang Fault is the western boundary of the Qiongdongnan Basin. These basins in the South China Block and the northern South China Sea are similar in formation regime as pull-apart basins. The NE-trending dextral strike-slip faults in the northern continental margin of the South China Sea controlled the development of these basins, and the NEE-trending faults controlled the filling pattern of the depressions.

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