Abstract

The eastern Potwar region represents the most strongly deformed part of the Potwar fold & thrust belt, with large low angle detachment faults accommodating more shortening than elsewhere in the Potwar fold-and-thrust belt. The tectonic framework of the eastern Potwar region is largely controlled by the Salt Range & Domeli thrusts forward thrust systems, and the Dil-jabba & Domeli backthrusts. To constrain the 3D geometry of thrusts in the eastern Potwar region, we used the interpretation of data from 3-D and 2-D seismic and a series of structural cross sections. On the basis of these data, we developed a 3D model of the major fault planes as well as the basement surface underneath the eastern and southeastern Potwar region. 2D structural restoration was used to understand the pre-deformation phase of the structures.

The results of this work illustrate that the foreland fold & thrust belt of eastern Potwar comprises classical imbricate thrusts, pop-up structures, and a regional triangle zone. The geometry and kinematics of thin-skinned deformation in the fold-and-thrust belt appear to have been controlled by basement-involved horst & graben. Evidence from the Salt Range implies that the structures formed during two main episodes of deformation:

  1. ≥5 Ma normal faulting, and

  2. ≤2.5 Ma thrusting.

During the latter, deformation in the Potwar Basin and Salt Range area has been detached from the underlying basement along a continuous decollement within Precambrian Salt.

The eastern Potwar region is an important oil & gas producing area, with hydrocarbon production from late Cambrian, Permian, and Eocene rocks. More than 50 wells have been drilled, which produced several million barrels of oil & billions of cubic feet of gas. The integrated three-dimensional structural model presented here will be contribute to a better quantitative understanding of the structural complexities in this region.

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